Complete sample library for the instrument called U, accompanied by a suite of automation-ready shaping controls plus presets, made for the free Kontakt Player (version 6+), Komplete Kontrol, all S-Series Keyboards and NKS software and hardware by Native Instruments. Published by SoundIron as part of their Hopkin Instrumentarim series, 2021.
U is a glissy steel lamellophone created by master instrument inventor Bart Hopkin. Rather than having one tine per note, this creation has 14 closely spaced tines per note. Each group of tines is tuned in octaves and fifths across a range of three or four octaves. The sound is produced by stroking with a glissing action across the array of tines for the chosen note, using a thin stick-like plectrum. There are twelve such groups forming a chromatic scale. Since each group spans several octaves, melodies can be played creatively by accenting specific tines. The tines are made of narrow stainless steel machine screws, tuned by adjusting the length using the hex nuts at the base. In addition, most of the screws are overtone-tuned by means of additional hex nuts serving as adjustable weights along the length. The final result is a fascinatingly liquid and metallic timbre, ideal for your next composition that requires a truly unique tone.
To start, we recorded The U up close in wide stereo. For our second mic position, we used a tetrahedral binaural microphone to give you a first-person experience of playing the instrument, with an intimate and enveloping sound. We’ve included a range of playable tuned and untuned articulations to give you complete freedom. And in classic Soundiron tradition, we’ve also included sound-designed textures, pads and tones that take the concept beyond its material source and into the realm of pure imagination. They can be played, layered, modulated and blended along with the natural acoustic articulations to achieve and endless array of new sonic combinations. The U offers you a broad, flexible palette of musical colors and comes equipped with easy-to-use layer mixing, performance tools and special effects to spark your creativity.
The Kontakt interface includes a suite of automation-ready sound-shaping controls to give you total creative flexibility. You have control over swell, attack, release, offset, vibrato, filter, pitch (coarse & fine), articulation switching, cross-fading and layering, and so much more. We’ve also included 20 unique sound-designed custom FX presets to give you lots of creative options.
This library comes with an adaptable LFO system, with selectable LFO shape, modulation target parameter, speed, intensity, tempo-syncing and fade-in time. You can also apply your choice of 12 lowpass, high-pass and FX filters, with assignable modulation targets such as velocity, modwheel, expression, after-touch, key position and step-sequencer table control. Our customizable arpeggiator offers a velocity table and control over arp direction, timing, swing, randomization and duration. We’ve included a key and scale lock system to constrain your notes to common scales and keys for easy melodic composition and live performance.
The interface is rounded-out by our modular FX rack panel, with 18 different DSP effect modules that you can assign in any of 10 available slots, in any order that you wish. You’ll find classic phaser, flanger, delay, distortion, amp and cab simulators, compressors, EQ, rotator and so much more. The Reverb effect includes our favorite convolution reverb impulse responses, including 99 different rooms, halls, chambers and outdoor environments, plus another 40 custom FX impulses to radically transform the sound and open up whole new worlds of musical possibility. We’ve added a great bank of FX rack chain factory presets to get you started!