Headphase by Audio Reward Review
Audio Reward released Headphase, a library full of intense and lush textures. Many included presets and sounds reminds me somehow of Blade Runner-like score and vintage hardware synthesizer sounds.
Audio Reward’s team consists of Lindon Parker (Channel Robot) and Glyn Lloyd (Divergent Audio Group, Sampleism, Kontakt Hub) alongside our long-term audio partner Erick McNerney. Glyn from Kontakt Hub did send me a review copy with no strings attached. The team has been responsible for creating dozens of virtual instruments. Audio Reward is building libraries that are experimental in nature, comprehensive in features and rich in sound design. The focus is to produce low-cost, innovative and unique libraries, the company name ‘Audio Reward’ is reflecting the desire to give back to the community that supported each contributor in their former role.
After purchase and downloading the files, you have to authorize Headphase. To do so, you will receive a unique code which you need to enter when you first load the Headpshase instrument. After entering the serial, you need to save the Kontakt instrument to make the registration permanent
Headphase is provided with more than 1300 custom made samples. Each sound can be blended to create lush, deep, and intriguing texture for your score. Be it in the background, as an effect, a sound piece to add or more dominant in front of the score. There are more than 150 preset (snapshots) included as well. The presets have a fabulous sound and are usable right out the box or as a starting point. Erick McNerney has done a great job on curating these presets.
User interface & Usability
Overall this is a good laid back interface which helps you to produce sounds quickly. With the current trend to create shiny interfaces that look “cool”, it is a fresh and old-school approach to simplicity. With the included knobs you can control the Shape, Sculpt, Shift, and Smooth settings. These knobs are meant to allow you to quickly change and mangle the selected sounds or just go into search mode to find new instances.
You can also randomize each group (knob) and can specify how much randomisation for each parameter is used or which parts are randomized more.Just move the slider (see below) to the right to increase the randomization effect. As you would assume you can load and save settings for each of the knobs. What confuses me a was that the knobs after turn left or right, go back to the middle position after some time. The reason for the knobs going back to the middle is to allow you to turn them further.
By using the Gate Sequencer can be used to add further movement to your sounds.
With the Gate Sequencer, you can change the sound over time or produce wavy sequences rhythms.
Included are more than 150 handcrafted preset (snapshots) to get you started. The presets are well sorted, however, the sounds in you can select are not sorted alphabetically or grouped somehow.
Rating: Four out of five stars
Headphase is excellent for intense and lush textures. You will find a lot of gems in this library, at a reasonable price. Audio Reward wants to be different and offer new experimental libraries. Headphase is a perfect market introduction for a new company, very well produced and used in your score or as sound design elements. I am excited about the next products from Audio Reward.