Circle is a new subtractive/wave table software synthesizer that runs on Mac and PC. What makes it unique is it's interface. It has a fantastic new work "Flow" and feedback mechanism all presented via a high contrast single page user interface making it much easier to tweak and program than most synths.
Part of this flow is a scheme where modulate sources (LFO, Envelopes, Sequencers) have corresponding color coded "circles". Simply drag the circle to the parameter you want to modulate and you'll hear a preview. Drop the circle and the parameter is now connected to the modulation source (see a link to videos below). Very cool! The color coding makes it very easy to identify which modulation source is tied to what parameter making it easier to learn how Circle works.
The interface offers real-time feedback on parameters for the selected sound. For example, if you hit a note on your controller, this sends a circle down the volume envelope. Hold a key down and watch the LFO shape pulse. Again, this feedback system makes it much easier to see what's happening inside the synth and then tweak to get a different result. Awesome!
Aside from the interface a few other features to note are:
- Midi Learn capability. A real time saver when it comes to assigning knobs from your favorite controller. Each instance of Circle in your host can have it's own set of mappings.
- Wave morphing. Circle has a pre-defined set of waveforms. You can assign two to an oscillator and then use a modulator to morph.
- Built-in FX
- Sound browser not unlike Native Instruments Kore.
- Interesting "Keyboard" screen for setting up keyboard related modulations and more traditional arpeggiation.
To really get your mind around what I'm talking about, check out these Guided Tours of Circle.
Circle is now available for $69.00 / €49.00. Even you have other similar sounding synths in your rig, you should try the demo to get a feel for this innovative user interface.
- Circle Web Page (mp3 demos of Circle in Action).
- Download a free demo