iZotope VocalSynth Review
In this review, we are going to be going over iZotope’s new VocalSynth – a four voice audio effect audio plugin to make your vocals stand out no matter what kind of effect you use; be it a lions roar, a robot or just to widen up your vocals to get them sit better in your mix.
VocalSynth comes with four vocal generators Polyvox, Vocoder, Compuvox and Talkbox with auto-tune style pitch correction five different types of effects Distort, Filter, Transform, Shred and Delay which are all set to work best with vocals and all of this can be affected with the XY pad for smooth and easy modulation.
So let’s start off with the Pitch Correction unit. This allows you to set the pitch of the incoming vocals which in key mode you can set to chromatic which opens up every key in the keyboard or to a major and minor scale or in custom mode, where you can set your own notes, adjusting the strength and speed gets you those auto-tune type of pitch corrections that you hear in allot of music nowadays. The High, Mid and Low section are nice to set what kind of voice your singer has High – works best with high pitched voices and alternatively, Low – works best with low type voices.
With Polyvox and the voices section you can turn a single voice into many and by setting the ‘Formant’ you can either turn that from a high pitched Alvin the chipmunk style choir or have Darth Vader sing your lyrics for you. With the character knob, you can have the formants shift towards the original pitches of your vocals or push it right outside the realm of what your voice is capable of and then humanize it to make your vocal sound bigger than ever before.
The Vocoder in VocalSynth is pretty sweet allowing you to create some awesome textures in your vocals. Using this together with the sidechain mode or the midi input mode is really fun. You can get a vocal to make another synth sing out its preset which is super fun and works so easily. With the sidechain mode you can get your vocal to sing in the note or notes you press on your keyboard, getting you vocal to really sing along with your track.
The Vocoder has tree modes to play with: Smooth, Vintage and Hard – these alter the response of the frequencies in both the modulator and carriers making the modulation of your vocal smoother or harder.
The Shift, Contour, and Scale knobs allow you to control the frequency shift and range of the Vocoder and how it responds to changing vowel sounds allowing you to get your vocal to actually sound like a vocal or turn it into more of a pad sound.
Compuvox is also a really fun unit that can be used to create some very neat vocal artifacts as this unit simultaneously estimates the formants and the excitation of the vocal. In layman’s terms, this unit gives you some really great bit reduction type effects and is also especially fun in sidechain and midi mode, but also has its own wavetables to be used as a carrier. Using this in conjunction with some of the other units in VocalSynth can really introduce some nice grit to your vocals.
The Talkbox is probably my favorite unit in VocalSynth using it with its own wavetables or with a carrier. This unit produces some really neat robotic type voices for your vocal.
Like as the other units in VocalSynth this unit has three modes to play with Dark, Classic and Bright which alter the frequency response of the unit – Dark being my favorite at the moment just because it gives me those deep type voices – I don’t know why I just like it.
The Drive knob in the Talkbox increases the input gain of the Talkbox which at higher levels gives you some really neat grungy type of effects. Using the ‘speaker knob’, you can adjust how the Talkbox reacts to the incoming vocal and reproduces the internal acoustics of a really Talkbox but without you having to sit with a big plastic pipe in your mouth.
The ‘formant knob’ allows you to modulate something that you could not do with any other Talkbox; control the formants which really changes the way the Talkbox responds to the vocal.
Alongside the four vocal synth units we have some nice effects to play, all set to work with vocals in the best possible way. Distort adds some really nice distortion to your vocal with four different settings Warm, Analog, Edgy and Fuzz and controls to adjust the Drive, Tone and the dry wet signal keeping it nice and simple while doing a good job on your vocals all the time.
“Transform” is also another nice convolution effect with several different models of guitar cabinets and speakers to re-amp and shape your vocal. This unit has eight different models to choose from Cambridge, Oxford, Stirling, Radio, Bass, Creep, Bright and Hollow.
VocalSynth by Izotope is a really powerful and extremely fun vocal affect unit producing so many types of effects. It’s actually quite amazing and we’re sure that is going to be a staple in a lot of producers arsenal. For me personally I fell in love with it as soon as I opened it up and started playing with it and I’m sure that will be the case for whoever will buy VocalSynth.
VocalSynth runs as a plug-in within your digital audio workstation. VocalSynth is not a standalone application.
- Easy to use and learn.
- Great presets to show you what VocalSynth is capable of.
- You can do so many great things to not only vocals but other synths as well.
- The price is quite competitive for all that it can do.
- Quite heavy on the CPU, but if you have a powerful system, you will not realize it.
As for the technical aspects, you need to know that VocalSynth runs only as an audio plugin within your DAW. Formats available: AAX (64-bit), AAX AudioSuite (64-bit), RTAS (32-bit), DPM AudioSuite (32-bit), VST2, VST3, and Audio Unit. It’s not a standalone application.
More Details/Buy Link: VocalSynth