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Future Retro Vectra - Available for pre-order

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Future Retro Vectra - Available for pre-order

Unread post by Robin »

A hybrid vector Synthesizer with 4 joysticks

The Vectra is a unique digital-analog hybrid synthesizer providing four oscillators, white and pink noise sources, four ring modulators, a four-channel mixer, five LFO’s, six morphing envelopes, six primary multimode analog filter types, a main analog VCA, and numerous internal modulation routings and VCA’s controlling modulation amounts.

It really is like having a powerful self-contained semi-modular synthesizer with approximately 500 internal signal routings, and around 256 storable sound parameters. This synthesizer covers so much sonic territory from analog to digital sounds, traditional to experimental, bass, leads, solos, percussion, effects, drones, ambient sounds, and those yet to be discovered.

The Vectra's synthesis architecture is designed to allow the greatest flexibility in recreating multiple synthesis techniques of the past while introducing several new innovations and methods.


The oscillators are digital as this provides the highest degree of tuning stability, while allowing both traditional virtual analog waveforms and 500 digital waveforms. With features like oscillator Sync, PWM, our new waveform Phase Slice, and Fade features, independent glide times per oscillator, constant beat detuning, monophonic and eight paraphonic voice modes, not to mention FM, AM, Ring-modulation, and dedicated LFO’s, Envelopes, and VCA’s per oscillator really make these oscillators a power house.


The four-channel mixer is unique in that it provides an even balance when mixing multiple sources, either manually with the joystick, or applying automated vector mixing, or mixer modulation.


The five LFO’s provide 500+ waveforms to choose from, with their frequency spanning from sub-audio to well into the audio range. Their frequency can be stationary or track keyboard notes with glide. Waveforms can sync to any waveform phase at a note-on, and they can be frequency modulated as well. In short they can be used as LFO’s, complex envelopes, or audio rate oscillators.


The six morphing envelopes are really something else. With each envelope providing initial Delay, Attack, Hold, Decay, Sustain, Release, as well as a loop time when set to Repeat. Ultra precise and snappy, they provide envelope times from 0ms to 14.7 seconds per each stage. Each envelope provides multiple envelope curve selections, and can be one-shot, normal envelope types, or looping. And did you notice they can morph? Yes, that’s right! All six envelopes can morph and modulate between two individual values per each envelope stage.


The analog multimode filter provides six primary filter types being: 4-pole low-pass, 2-pole low-pass, 1-pole low-pass, 2-pole band-pass, 2-pole high-pass, 2-pole notch, with some additional selections to define a filter’s self resonance response, and also to recreate a very unique characteristic of the EMS VCS type filter modulation. The filter can track notes played on the keyboard, has a dedicated LFO, Envelope, and one additional modulation source.


And finally there is the analog VCA before all those sweet sounds hit our ears. The Amplifier VCA has a dedicated morphing envelope as well.


The Vectra provides a 29-note capacitive touch keyboard for ultra-fast key response, with Note-On/Off, Pitch, Velocity, Aftertouch, Auto-Glide features, with Pitch-Bend and Mod-Wheel controls. The Vectra keybed incorporates our original design to allow gliding through chromatic notes, major keys, or minor keys. The keyboard also provides 29 selectable musical Scales, with linear transposition, and scale transposition. While some may think this 29 note keybed is limiting, realize that most real instruments do have a limited range of notes. However once you apply scales to the keybed, you have instant access to four octaves of major scale notes, and six octaves of pentatonic scale notes.


The Vectra also includes an integrated arpeggiator and sequencer, so you can begin arpeggiating and then edit the arpeggiation just like you would a sequence, or be playing a sequence and jump into playing an arpeggiation. All arpeggiator and sequence data is stored with each individual sound file, and a total of 999 sound and sequence files can be stored on the memory card.

The arpeggiator can play notes momentarily, or up to 16 notes can be entered in any order, and held. You can then edit and manipulate the arpeggiator data just as you can do for any sequence, changing the Rhythm, or Velocity parts, entering new notes in real-time, editing any number of steps simultaneously, or applying Fills to introduce variations.

The sequencer can play internally, or sync to external sequencers, and play the internal sound section or external MIDI sound modules. Tempo range is from 10-250 BPM, with adjustable swing timing. The sequencer also provides 29 scales, linear transposition, scale transposition, octave reiteration range, 29 selectable play directions, adjustable loop point, and multiple time signatures. You can enter Pitch, Velocity, and Rhythm (note-off/on, glide, sustain) part information using the Arpeggiation mode, Step editing (where any number of steps can be edited simultaneously), Real-time recording, and Auto recording (when sequencer is stopped). The Fill mode allows multiple ways to quickly introduce variations into your sequences, and perform your music in new ways.


MIDI allows you to play any external sound modules using the internal keyboard, arpeggiator or sequencer, sync or send sync to external MIDI sequencers, and of course you can also play the internal sound section using any external MIDI keyboard or sequencer. The MIDI channel can be changed on the fly as well.

The interface is designed to be simple and to the point, providing the essential controls for performing with ease, and offering plenty of expression. As I'm sure you noticed by now, the Vectra provides four joysticks to alter multiple parameters simultaneously. One is dedicated to Pitch-Bend and Mod-Wheel control, another for the four-channel Mixer, another for the filter Cutoff and Resonance, and the fourth can be assigned to control multiple parameters simultaneously. Eight encoders with built in switches are provided to edit sound parameters and settings. The Vectra includes an Assign mode where any eight synthesizer parameters can be assigned to these controls and tailored for each individual sound. The smaller display is the Scope and is used as visual aid to see waveforms, signal levels, and modulation signals. The large display will show all parameter values for the sound and sequencer.

Each unit will include a printed manual, micro SD card, and power supply.

Message from Future Retro:
We are excited to announce the new Vectra synthesizer, and are now taking pre-orders. The total cost of the unit will be $1,100 plus shipping. A deposit payment in the amount of $550 is required to pre-order this unit. Once the first 100 pre-orders are received, we will begin our parts ordering and production of this unit. The remaining balance of $550 plus shipping will be due once these units are ready to ship. We expect shipping to begin around Spring 2022. Although the time-frame will be determined by the availability of components and how quickly you get your pre-order in. Please note, the deposit payment is non-refundable.

Website of the manufacturer: http://www.future-retro.com
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Enthusiastic synthesist performing under the name Vōlc. Follow me on YouTube or BandCamp.

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