Fabric 70 releases Explorer, a freeware virtual synthesizer in VST3 and AU plugin formats for digital audio workstations on Windows and macOS. Keep in mind that this is a beta version of the software.
Explorer is the first plugin released by Fabric 70. The developer recently released another freebie called Crush, a bitcrusher effect with multiple distortion options.
The user interface is easy on the eyes thanks to the dark color scheme and subtly colored knobs. The control layout is intuitive, with logically grouped knobs and standardized labels. The only GUI quirk is the aspect ratio. The panel is very wide, almost as if it were designed for use on an ultrawide computer screen.
The synthesis engine consists of four oscillators (the fourth is a noise generator), multiple filter types, three LFOs, and a performance control section. The oscillator modules pack some interesting features like randomization and waveshaping.
While it isn’t exactly a monster synthesizer like Surge XT, the free entry from Fabric 70 offers a handy feature set packed in an easy-to-use interface. If you’re the type of producer who likes trying new synthesizers in search of inspiration, Explorer is certainly worth the download.
Keep in mind that the product page is in Japanese, but the download button is easy to find. The developer also provided a user manual in Japanese (but let me Google Translate that for you).
Explorer is available in VST3 and AU plugin formats for 64-bit plugin hosts on Windows and macOS. You can download the software directly from the product page linked below (no registration required).
UPDATE: Several readers reported high CPU usage and issues with the presets. If you tested Explorer in your DAW, please share your impressions in the comments section below.
Download: Explorer (4.28 MB download size, ZIP archive, 64-bit VST3/AU plugin format for Windows & macOS)
Thanks for sharing the info, but I note Explorer is v0.9.0 and Crush is v0.9.6
It would be good to have finished versions of plugins. With freeware plugins there is no guarantee that the dev will make them go v1.0
As the old saying goes: beggars can’t be choosers. 😉
It is the users market, I go with Bleass Monolit FREE Monosynth instead ;-)
Yes! Monolit is awesome! 😎
Annoying presets loading and with some of them my CPU goes 100% very shortly…
I can’t seem to get any audio from the presets, even though they load up OK.
Same problem here. The Init patch seems to work, but none of the presets make any sound.
Took it for a quick spin, the CPU usage wasn’t that bad here. However, the preset system indeed is a bit fidgety. I’ll add info about this to the article.
Public Beta? I might play with the bitcrusher.
Crushes CPU consistently.
As per other comments, this totally fries the cpu (Intel Core i9 12900K). There’s some serious code changes required if this is to be useable at all. Alpha version? Wouldn’t even qualifiy as a Beta.
orchestral tools released a new sine instrument (a flute, which based on the demos sounds really good)
and prob worth mentioning again, IK released a free CS version of mixbox, with 8 free modules
The interface is almost unusable for me because of tiny blurry fonts and controls. The oscillators sound high quality.