[REVIEW] Buffeater By Twisted Tools (NI Reaktor)


Buffeater By Twisted Tools (Review).

Reaktor ensemble creator and sample pack pusher Twisted Tools has been around for some time. From our departure into S-layer territories and sampling, we venture into a slightly older offering of theirs. Namely Buffeater.

Buffeater is a real-time, dynamically ordered, granular multi-effect for all versions of Reaktor 5. The effect works by capturing live audio and storing it in a temporary buffer, which allows for real-time processing of the incoming audio using granular synthesis and other methods.

As I noted in my previous review of S-layer, if you want to make use of Twisted Tools offerings, you better own a copy of Native Instruments’ deep plugin maker/host Reaktor. Only then will you *ahem* be able to let the hungry effects of olde’ eat your samples.

It Will Eat Your Samples!

Even if this may not be Twisted Tools newest effect, it still aptly demonstrates why they receive such accolade among a certain type of experimental electronic producers, such as D’Arcangelo, Mike Huckaby, Richard Devine and others. It can go deep, as a multi-effect it can change a sound into virtually something completely unrecognizable.

All the buff you can eat

At its heart, Buffeater features several configurable effects, in the forms of: stretch, tape, slice repeat, deconstruct, scratch and feed grains. The effects are six in total, and all have their own dedicated sequencer, that you may program to let the live stream or sampled audio run through. Mainly, you use knobs, manipulating each effect as you see fit.

Glitch effects have come leap and bounds since the advent of VST-effects and software developer Ifformed’s legendary offering Glitch. Twisted Tools have quite a few original ideas, and here we are speaking about:

a) Using Buffeater as a tool to mangle your own or the submitted sample library.

b) Feeding live audio through Buffeater, using it as an FX tool to route an incoming audio signal through it, which I find the more interesting option.

Twisted Tools nifty Buffeater guide:

There is also a sample player, and a recording function – which I in all honesty didn’t manage to get to work in my setup, which features FL Studio as its heart. This may be a problem for this specific user, but if it is important to you, it is always recommended to try the demo out before buying. Also, I would have preferred a graphical user interface which was easier on the eyes, for those with impaired vision. The method of manipulating each effect may be effective in terms of screen-estate, but it runs the risk of appearing to miniscule on lower inch screens, or high resolution type setups.

In addendum

Buffeater comes forward as an original effect firmly positided in the glitch department. It is not one of the easiest to learn, but while it may be challenging, it is also quite fascinating.

I am sure that the persistent user will coax quite a few useful sounds from it. Also, as it must be said: I want to tip my hat in the direction of Twisted tools for the stellar samples which they always manage to ship with their effects. This is true in the case of Buffeater as well.

What’s it for?

Glitch-aficionados of the Reaktor variety.

What does it cost?

$49. Buying three products from the Twisted Tools shop will grant you a 15% discount, available at twistedtools.com. UPDATE: Twisted Tools are running a special 35% discount until 27th May 2014, thanks to mcnelson for the tip!


Innovative, fun – a little hard to learn. Ultimately rewarding.

Product link: Buffeater ($49)

Robert Halvarsson (suecae.com)

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About Author

Tomislav is a music producer and sound designer from Belgrade, Serbia. He is also the founder and editor-in-chief at Bedroom Producers Blog.

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