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Phase Plant by Kilohearts Review
The hybrid synthesizer plugin Phase Plant under review today provides you with more options and flexibility. Perfect when you produce music or work on designed sounds without compromising your workflow. Phase Plant is a modular synthesizer or effect all in one box combining various advanced effects and synthesis techniques. The workflow in a nut-shell: Analog oscillators, samples, wavetables, and a noise generator generates the initial sound. This original sound is then refined, shaped, and treated using any order of snapins included in Phase Plant. You can add envelopes and LFOs as you need them. Next you route them to almost any parameter to inject some life into the sound.
Phase Plant is a gamechanger for a professional sound designer and people who are interested in eurorack. You get an environment in which you can design in a modular fashion hybrid instrument and shape it in myriad forms. Kilohearts did send a review copy with no strings attached. Kilohearts AB is a boutique development studio focusing on the development of software synthesizers and effects.
Installation is done easily with the Kilohearts installer tool. The company offers a single installer for all their plugins, and it also handles updates.
Phase Plant is a modular style synth. It is a modular synth that connects the Kilohearts Snapin effects with a range of unique signal creation and intonation devices. By combining the established Kilohearts effects, adding new ones, you can build compelling synthesis and sampler instruments. Phase Plant offers four signal generators: the analog oscillator, the noise generator, the sample player, and the wavetable oscillator. Each one these are very persuasive and you can combine, mix and match and combine as you want. If you do already own existing Kilohearts plugins, those will be available in Phase Plant. When purchasing Phase Plants it helps to reduce the spent.
The included analog oscillator supports Waveform (wave, pulse wave, triangle wave and sine wave), Sync and Pluse Waveform. Noise Generator well produces noise, commonly used for percussive sounds. With the Sample Player you can (think Kontakt) perform and shape sampled audio.
What are Kilohearts Snapins?
Snapins is the mysterious word for modular variability of an audio effect or tool in the KiloHearts ecosystem. These Snapins (See also our kHz Toolbox by KILOHEARTS Review) developed by Kilohearts originating in 2015 are effects you combine various effects and sound modules to create a custom effect. Phase Plant takes that concept and combines it with synthesis and sampling.
You can essentially change the entire personality and structure of the tone generator with just some settings. The result is an enormous hybrid synthesizer. You can easily combine and daisy chain effects to build your own Phase Plant preset. Like in a modular rack, you just combine the snapins you require in up to three lanes and mix the lanes individually. The available Snapins in Phase Plant depends on the edition you buy and if you did have already purchased other Snapins from Kilohearts before. Overall the full Phase Plants version is geared towards professionals. Phase Plant will load any presets that requires a snapin not already owned, but users cannot change their parameter values.
Flexible Phase Plant Engine
Phase Plant comes with an adjustable engine including generator, modulation and FX tools and possibilities. Using the generator page you can pick an analog or wavetable oscillator or alternative a sampler or noise generator. The wavetable editor can be used to create wavetables.
User interface & Usability
The UI may appear a bit overwhelming at first. You start with a blank page that you can fill Snapins like effects, generators, modulators, and processors to produce complex sounds. Through the concept, you can route waveforms, FM to different receiving units. Sound like modular or eurorack without eurocrack factor to me. When starting I would recommend to try out the included presets to get some guidance on what is possible.
After you browse through the presets you may start with experimenting and pulling elements together to see what happens. When you understand the concept of Phase Plant it is easy to go off and spend time experimenting and discovering the possibilities. Start with a empty patch and learn more about Synthesizer and modular.
Kilohearts offers a fully functional 10 day trial on all products so you can make up your mind before spending anything. As Phase Plants is hard to explain to someone who never played with such a complex system or is new to Kilohearts plugin the free trials are highly recommended to get a personal impression of what is possible when it comes to sound design with Phase Plants.
Rating: Four Out of Five Stars
Swedish manufacturer Kilohearts got it right, with Phase Plant they managed to develop a usable and high-performance next-generation hybrid synthesizer. Building on the established in-house modular system Snap Heap is an excellent way to combine generators, modulators, and effects. Perfect for modular lovers who want to save the bank account and very interesting for a professional sound designer. I look forward to combining Phase Plant with moderately modular hardware priced system as AE MODULAR by tangible waves to glue in the box with modular. I love the modular and block-based nature of the synth totally fashional with the current eurocrack trend.