P511 Is A FREE Virtual Synthesizer For NI Kontakt

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Yarra Audio releases P511, a FREE emulation of the 5U modular synth instrument for Native Instruments Kontakt.

With Eurorack modules (3U size), we have seen an increase in the widespread popularity of modular gear. The smaller size of Eurorack modules makes them more accessible, although building your dream synth can become a very expensive habit. Before we had Eurorack, we had 5U modules that were roughly around three and a half inches taller than Eurorack.

My first encounter with a larger modular synth was seeing Keith Emerson on stage with something that looked like a prop from an early Sci-Fi movie. As a young student with no experience in synths of any kind, something like that can look quite intimidating.

The tricky thing as a newcomer to modular is getting over the looks and realizing that modules are typically set out in a logical way. Yarra Audio has followed that trend by giving the P511 synth a very well-defined and approachable layout.

The P511’s two Oscillators were recorded from two 5U units and are the heart of the synth. After the Oscillators, the modules are as follows: Mixer, Filters (HPF/LPF), Envelopes (Filter/Amp), Delay, Reverb, and LFO.

The included modules and layout follow the architecture of a typical subtractive synthesizer. This architecture provides a simple but very effective way to design and shape a wide variety of sounds.

If you listen to the demos, you will hear that the P511 is capable of many things; bass, leads, it can be melodic or percussive, etc.

The thing I like most about the P511 and other similar synths is the cinematic qualities they offer. I like the man meets machine feeling you get from scores anchored by massive brassy synth drones. It’s not an uncommon technique, but it’s still as effective (and grand) as ever, in my opinion.

Yarra Audio’s P511 requires the full version of Kontakt 6.6.1 or higher. It will not work in the free Kontakt Player plugin.

Since we are talking about modular, I should slip in a reminder of the recently released VCV Rack 2; check it out if you haven’t yet.

If you are looking for some old-school modular madness, download P511 for free.

Download: P511 (requires the full version of Kontakt 6.6.1 or above)

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About Author

James is a musician and writer from Scotland. An avid synth fan, sound designer, and coffee drinker. Sometimes found wandering around Europe with an MPC in hand.

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