“For someone who has spent most of their life playing live with real analogue instruments, I’ve always found it hard to replicate their warmth and fullness with software. Solina V bridges that gap so perfectly that I imagine my instruments will be gathering dust in my studio now!”- Kevin Baird, 2014 (Two Doors Cinema Club)
GRENOBLE, FRANCE: music software and hardware company Arturia is proud to announce availability of its latest venture into classic keyboard emulation territory with Solina V — bringing back the still-sought-after sounds of the Seventies-vintage Solina String Ensemble as an authentic-sounding software recreation of one of the era’s sonically-defining string machines — as of December 5…
The silky-smooth, shimmering sounds of the Solina String Ensemble effectively defined the late-Seventies disco era, ending up on countless hit records recognisable by the ensemble/chorus effect to which it lends its name. This is achieved by passing the sound through three modulated delay lines to produce pitch-shifting, sounding thicker and animated as a result. Reliant on paraphonic-playing-enabling divide-down technology found in organs of the time, that these sounds became so sought-after is a happy accident of sorts since they started out as part of Dutch home organ manufacturer Eminent’s 310 Unique dual-manual model. Fortunately for Eminent, in 1974 they separated this unwieldy instrument’s String Ensemble section to create the eminently portable Solina String Ensemble as a 49-note keyboard instrument in its own right with much subsequent success — so much so that pre-eminent American synth manufacturer ARP also ‘rebadged’ various versions for the US market until production ceased in 1981.
Fast-forward 40 years from its incept date and the Solina String Ensemble is not so portable (or reliable) by today’s exacting standards. Still sounds stunning, though! Which is why Arturia agreed to faithfully replicate this keyboard classic conveniently in software. Six Solina String Ensemble-emulated presets — CELLO, CONTRA BASS, VIOLA, VIOLIN, HORN, and TRUMPET — are accessible instantly in Solina V via a gorgeous GUI that looks like the real thing. As authentic as those presets all sound in software, that’s not all. An additional preset, HUMANA, replicates the instantly-recognisable, resonator- reliant Vox Humana from the PolymoogTM polysynth, popularised by British synth pop pioneer Gary Numan’s 1979 chart- topper ‘Cars’. The PolymoogTM provided a unique and flexible filter bank with three parallel filters with three filter modes to create such stunning sounds, so these are also included in Solina V via the UPPER RESONATOR section in its OPEN mode.
Arturia artfully ‘opens up’ the still-sought-after Solina String Ensemble sound still further by offering other OPEN mode- accessible additions. An EFFECTS section, for instance, includes a vintage-sounding dual PHASER — perfect for (re)creating those slow phased strings showcased so beautifully by French synth showman Jean-Michel Jarre’s multi-million-copy-selling breakthrough Oxygene and Equin
oxe albums — as well as a CONVOLUTION REVERB (with no fewer than 24 modelled vintage spring and digital reverbs); MIDI-sync-able DIGITAL DELAY; three-mode ANALOG CHORUS; and ANALOG DELAY. Deeper still, a lively LFO section and dedicated BASS SECTION controls such as a 24dB/octave filter emulation and BASS ARP (arpeggiator) also serve to open up sound sculpting possibilities well above and beyond the creative scope of the original instrument.
Interestingly, even Eminent changed their excellent ensemble effect from mono to stereo, so Solina V boasts both ‘Mk1’ (mono) and ‘Mk2’ (stereo) ENSEMBLE modes to cover all bases. Speaking of which, an abundance of ambient pads, mono leads, basses, brass, and arpeggios reside within, with 150 presets professionally produced by some of the top sound designers around to showcase its capabilities and kickstart creativity. Whether working within a DAW or standalone, Solina V has genuinely got you covered… from the Seventies through to today!
The AAX-, AU-, VST-, and VST3-compatible Solina V is available to purchase as a boxed version for €99.00 EUR/$99.00 USD from any authorised Arturia dealer or online as a boxed version or download directly from Arturia here: http://www.arturia.com/
For more in-depth information, please visit the dedicated Solina V product webpage here: http://www.arturia.com/