The first of the famous Virtual analog "Virus" series, started at the end of the nineties as Nord lead' s main competitor.
Today the Virus line product is still upgraded with new versions and more powerful DSP processor onboard like T1 and T2 models, but still the "A" is now a classic.
LAPTOP laptop module rackmountable using the special rack tray.
The overall quality build is top notch quality with metal and precise potentiometers with relative or absolute position mode.
The main panel is split into three main sections featuring a 2 x 16 lines green LCD with active matrix backlight and total of 32 knobs and 27 buttons, seems a lot, but It does not cover all the available parameters.
The Back panel (pic) has the following connections: three pairs of assignable stereo outputs (note: the first left output can be also used for headphones) a stereo input for sound processing (two independent mono signals or a combination stereo signal with 36 dB gain ), Midi IN and OUT that can be also switched to THRU mode.
The power supply is external DC connector - 12 VDC 1A with positive "+" in center.
VOICE l physical-modeling DSP core generates 12 voices digital at 20 Bit resolution.
Two oscillators + a sub-Oscillator (Square or Triangle) per voice, plus a summable noise generator (128 "colors" variation ) and a summable ring modulation (with no Depth).
The wave selector generates a waveform from:
- VA generated SINUSOIDAL
- VA generated TRIANGLE - 1 PCM out of the 64 ROM encoded precalculated digital spectral waveshapes - like a Waldorf Microwave but there's no Wavescan process.
The DSP 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're in full Square wave, THEN the wave selector acts as rectangle Width.
Both two oscillators have individual mixing Volume and are detunable/syncable (OSC2restarts its cycle each time), or even passed though FM process: the signal of OSC1 controls the frequency of OSC2 rate also modulated by LFO.
PLAYMODE There are various PLAY MODES:
- Monophonic (4 modes) with variable priority notes and legato.
- Twin double oscillators each with "panorama" PANNING and DETUNE- that thicks the sound- the other side of the coin is that it halves available polyphony.
FILTER two digital independent two-poles filters with own CUTOFF / RESONANCE and several combination paths:
-Serial -24/-36dB (FILTER 1 with 4 poles and FILTER2 with 2 poles).
-Parallel -24dB Oct. (2 poles per filter).
-Split mode(2 poles each) totally independent.
Each filter is multimode including Low Pass/ High Pass/ Band Pass /Band reject and a saturation stage SATURATOR that emulates tube overdrive, fuzz or distortion behaves.
A special KEYFOLLOW mode compensates filter cutoff toward higher (or lower) octaves,
ENVELOPE two four stages (Sustain has two times) A/D/S/R for both FILTER and AMPLITUDE .
LFO three independent Low Frequency Oscillators Delay engage and sync note retrigger.
The two main LFO1 and LFO2 have the same five waveforms Saw/ Square/ Triangle with adjustable symmetry/ Sample & Hold / Sample & glide- Lag process but different destinations (or even all in same time) :
- LFO1 modulates Osc 1 / Osc 2 pitch Frequency PWM Pulse Width (both OSC), Filter resonance and Filter GAIN (accessible only here). - LFO2 basically as LFO1 with different destination : Osc1-2 wave Shape progression, Frequency modulation amount between OSCs, Filter 1 Cutoff , Filter 2 cutoff and finally Panning position, - LFO3 is only accessible by LCD panel with destinations Osc1 or Osc2 or 1+2 pitch and PWM.
FX stereo DSP featuring Delay / Chorus / Flanger / Phaser with several restriction in Multimode Performance. >IHMO< Very digital sounding but it is handy.
MIDI flexible with full Control Change controls, Exclusive systems and two free assignable knobs to any Midi CC.
Velocity values from key press can be also routed toward various destinations like: OSC 1-2 waveshape progression, Filter Cutoff, Resonance, Amplitude, Panning, PWM and FM amount .
MEMORY 256 Single and 128 Multi programs, full sysex dump- no external storage.
Memory works with a lithium 3v battery with Holder, quite easy to replace: just open the machine! check out the picture on the right,
- Good sound
- lot of solid knobs-excellent Midi
- not so easy to understand some logics
- polyphony -manual
The first of the breed! less artefact than actual Virus, less delay and arpeggiators. Good sound , great wavetable and peculiar filter multimode.
They are gone cheap today, around 200/ 300 euro.
"Those massive analog beasts certainly had a stunning visual effect, especially on stage. However, we will guarantee that you will change your mind the first time you carry your Virus into a rehearsal room
and find that you are not even winded. VIRUS manual
manuals (free of charge), trademarks are just for info purpose.Nothing should
be considered as advertising, and I stricly express my point of view on review. Names and other trademarks are the property of the respective trademark
holders.Ask to have material: don't rip.All sounds and snapshots by Eric
Pochesci- except marked *
Snapshot watermarked to avoid Ebay scamms and fraud.WARNING Some mp3 contains
very high frequencies and COULD damage your speakers, pay attention to volume!