The first of the famous VIRUS synthesizers family, started at the end of the nineties as Nord lead' s main competitor.
Virus line product is still produced with new versions featuring more powerful DSP processors like T1 and T2 models - but still the A is now considered now as a classic synthesizer.
LAPTOP module with optional rackmount. Overall quality build is top-notch quality: solid metal frame and precise potentiometers with relative or absolute position mode. The main panel features a 2 * 16 lines LCD , 32 knobs + 27 buttons... seems a lot but they do not cover all the available parameters.
Back panel has several connections: triple stereo outputs (note: the first left output can be also used for headphones) a single stereo input for sound processing - 2 independent mono signals or a combination stereo signal with 36 dB gain - Midi IN and OUT that can be also switched to THRU mode.
Power supply is external PSU connector - 12 VDC 1A with + in center.
VOICE physical-modeling DSP core generates 12 digital voices at 20 Bit resolution. Each voice is composed by two oscillators + a sub-Oscillator (Square or Triangle) + a noise generator (128 colors variation).
The wave selector generates a waveform from three possible choices:
- Virtual Analog generated SINUSOIDAL
- Virtual Analog generated TRIANGLE
- 1 PCM out of the 64 ROM encoded precalculated digital spectral waveshapes like a Waldorf Microwave (but no Wavescan process).
OSCILLATOR synthesis management is a bit confusing at first glance: changing the waveshaper value progressively modifies the waveform toward SAW (at 12 o'clock pot) and again toward Square wave; when in "peak" (right-most position) value you are in full square wave, then the wave selector acts as rectangle Width.
Both oscillators have individual mixing Volume, tuning ringmodulation and Sync option (OSC2 restarts its cycle each time) or even passed though FM process: OSC1 signal controls the OSC2 frequency.
ENVELOPE two EG in total with same characteristics : FILTER and AMPLITUDE ADSR have a 4-stages ADSR plus 2 times on Sustain segment.
FILTER double individual -12 dB filters with CUTOFF / RESONANCE and several combination paths:
- Serial -24/-36dB FILTER1 with 4-poles and FILTER2 with 2-poles.
- Parallel -24dB 2poles per filter.
- Split mode: Both filters are totally independent.
Each filter is multimode including Low Pass/ High Pass/ Band Pass / Band reject + a saturation stage called "SATURATOR" that emulates tube overdrive or distortion behaves.
A special KEYFOLLOW mode compensates filter cutoff toward higher (or lower) octaves.
LFO up to three modulators with Delay engage and note retrig modulation. LFO1 and LFO2 share the same five waveforms: Saw, Square, Triangle (with adjustable symmetry), Sample & Hold and Sample & glide.
LFO1 modulates OSC1-OSC2 pitch, Pulse Width (on both OSC), Filter resonance and Filter GAIN. LFO2 basically is like LFO1 but different destinations: Osc1-2 wave Shape progression, Frequency modulation amount between OSC1-2, Filter 1 Cutoff, Filter2 cutoff and finally Pan. The third LFO is only accessible by display and modulates Osc1 - Osc2 pitch and PWM.
PERFORMANCE there are four monophonic playmodes with Legato function (variable priority notes) plus a special "Twin" double oscillators stack mode that thick the sound (but also halves polyphony) changing the detune values.
EFFECTS stereo DSP featuring Delay, Chorus, Flanger and Phaser with several restriction in Multimode Performance.
MIDI full Control Change implementation, Exclusive systems and two free-assignable knobs to any Midi Control Change. Velocity values from keypress can be also routed toward various destinations like OSC 1-2 waveshape progression, Filter Cutoff, Resonance, Amplitude, Panning, PWM and FM amount .
MEMORY holds 256 Single and 128 Multi programs. Memory works with a lithium 3V battery with Holder, replacement is piece of cake.
if you have some cool Virus recordings, consider sharing them. Thanks
- Good sound
- lot of solid knobs - Midi
- not so easy to understand
Second hand price : 300
"Good sound , great wavetable and weird multimode filter"
"Those massive analog beasts certainly had a stunning visual effect, especially on stage. However, we will guarantee that you will change your mind ..." VIRUS manual