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Evolver vs Dark Energy vs Virus C Keyboard Synthesizers
Old 29th December 2010
  #1
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jonlord's Avatar
 

Evolver vs Dark Energy vs Virus C

Hey.
GAS has struck me and been thinking getting some new gear to complement my Korg M3(with radias exb) & Nord Electro 3 and i would like to get some input.
The synth's that I've got in my mind are: DSI Evolver, Doepfer Dark Energy, Access Virus C

And my budget allows me to buy Two of the three stated above, and they will be used mostly for my own purpose noodling around/drooning etc.
But will aswell most likely be used with my band(prog/indierock, think a mix of Porcupine Tree, Pineapple Thief & Opeth) depending on how well they can be tamed to fit this kind of music (thinking of the virus here, both evolver & DE would work very well for leads and evolving patterns).

So which combo should i go for:
1. Evolver & Dark Energy
Pros:
-Dark energy = Pure awesome & initiative in live knobby situations... and its semi modular! ---> could drag me down to a full modular system(con ?) Suits well for classic prog music alá Yes etc.
-Feed DE with stepsequenser and droon for hours combined with Evolver

Cons
-Just monophonic? - might get "boring" after a while( i mean two monophonics to play melodies with compared to 1mono synth/1 poly synth), im sure i will not get bored of Evolver since it has endless possibilities but the DE?
-Miss out on polyphonic sounds like pads/Synth-strings (which my M3 covers otherwise, but getting some fresh pads & inspiration would not hurt).


2. Evolver & Virus C.
Pros:
-Gain a knobby & deep VA synth with enough polyphony for pads and other interesting sounds and not just monophonic stuff.
-Virus is easily controllable via midi for patch changes etc = more versatility compared to the DE.
-Arpeggiator (that is easily accessible rather than hidden like in the DE)

Cons
-Virus not suited for Progmusic (fill me in here please)..What are your subjective thoughts about the Virus pad-sounds?
-Lack of DE knobbiness for prog-leads & drooning.(well not really but DE is very simple and straightforward with everything you need straight on the panel compared to Virus which is alot deeper and "slower" to program/knob live for that reason)
-nothing pure analog (this is not really a con but Im very fond of analog synthesizers)


----

As you can see the DSI Evolver is a must for me, I've enjoyed all of the demos online and the possibility with polyrhytmic evolving textures with the sequencer *drool* and the crushed/grinded/distorted output combined and insane mod capabilities... what else can you ask for this tiny package to do?!
Yes i know the Virus and the Dark energy are TOTALLY different machines with different directions, but if cash allowed i would get both of them(maybe in the future).


Yes i know there are no clear proper questions in this wall of text post but any input is greatly appreciated.
dfegad//Jonlord
Old 29th December 2010
  #2
Gear Guru
 
Yoozer's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonlord View Post
2. Evolver & Virus C.
Cons
-Virus not suited for Progmusic (fill me in here please)..What are your subjective thoughts about the Virus pad-sounds?
Say what? heh

http://homepage.mac.com/mwalthius/PolarDemo1.mp3

(by forum member keybdwizrd)

(okay, that's cheating - it's a Virus TI, not a C, but I'm not hearing that much a C can't do - I mean, these are organ sounds from the Virus C)

As for pad sounds: these sounds are from forum member DIGITAL SCREAMS at VSE.
Old 29th December 2010
  #3
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jonlord's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoozer View Post
Say what? heh

http://homepage.mac.com/mwalthius/PolarDemo1.mp3

(by forum member keybdwizrd)

(okay, that's cheating - it's a Virus TI, not a C, but I'm not hearing that much a C can't do - I mean, these are organ sounds from the Virus C)

As for pad sounds: these sounds are from forum member DIGITAL SCREAMS at VSE.
ok let me stand corrected,or let me rephrase.

VIRUS HAS very nice pads, BUT they don't seem to be pads that are useful for my band (thinking of warmer pads like: alesis andromeda YouTube - Alesis Andromeda Synth) but they will be useful for myself when playing alone.

And thanks for the demos, seen most kbwiz demos but stopped watching since its not exactly the same virus version, but the other demos were new to me.
Old 29th December 2010
  #4
The Virus is on the surface, a very Trancey-type of synth, but dig a bit deeper, and the programming options are amazing. Loads of very useable/editable pads, basses etc.

I've got a Virus B (pretty similar but I have used the "c" too), and use it a lot in progressive tunes.

Love it.

Can't comment on the other 2 though.
Old 30th December 2010
  #5
Gear Head
 

Buy a Korg DW 8000 and a Dark Energy.
The DW 8000 is easy to program and u can get also a free VST-Plugin.
Old 30th December 2010
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
protoculture's Avatar
 

I may be selling my doepfer DE with glide installed. Mint.

reason for sale : I already have two monosynths. However I am really enjoying the bass I am getting out of the DE today. It actually seemed to go VERY deep and pop out....despite what some have said about its limited bass potential...ugh play with the filters guys!

Anyway, depending on my experiments, mood etc etc I may sell or not.

pm me.
Old 30th December 2010
  #7
If I understand correctly, you are choosing two of three synths - an Evolver desktop, a Virus C and a Dark Energy - There are more than one model of Evolver and there's a huge difference between the desktop and poly versions.

I've never owned the Poly Evolver, but I've owned the desktop and I also have a Virus C. I have total GAS for the Dark Energy, but as a modular synth, it is completely different from the other two and would probably fill a different purpose.

My take on the Desktop Evolver vs. Virus debate is that this is an apples to oranges debate. If you want great lush or aggressive pads and VA-style sounds then the Virus is one of the best and the C-version is better than the previous two (because of the analog filter models). It makes tons of sounds, and plenty that would be useful in prog. The knobs also make this more accessible than the Evolver, and I do think it's a deeper engine because of its polyphony, vocoder, outputs and built-in effects. It's also multi-timbral.

The Desktop Evolver has a more raw sound and is a better choice for wavetable synthesis, even though the Virus has it's own set of FM spectral waveshapes. I love the step sequencer and the huge power in a compact unit. The Dave Smith/Sequential sound is something that you either love or hate - way more extreme than it's vintage peers. I happen to love it, and it's a great fit for today's IDM and other "bleep-click" music. (as my friend calls it) In the end, though, I chose the Virus over the Desktop Evolver and sold the Evolver not because of the sounds, but because it wasn't as hands-on and accessible (for me - I hate grid menus).

Regarding the choice, the biggest factor, IMHO, is that the Virus is fully polyphonic and the Evolver isn't. If you want pads it makes the Virus a must, and the choice between the Evolver and the Dark Energy. If it were my choice (drum roll please), I would pick the Virus C and Evolver Mono keyboard, or if you could swing it, the Poly Evolver Keyboard. That combo of knobular beauties would keep you busy enough where you would probably forget about the Dark Energy completely, or at least until they are $295 on eBay. Then you can have it all!

Sluttiness Rules!
Old 30th December 2010
  #8
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ctrlshft's Avatar
I'd suggest a Virus TI and Evolver. I honestly don't see any reason to get a C other than if this is a price factor for you. If that is the case I'd suggest looking at the TI Snow. It's amazing what they've accomplished over recent years in regards to the flexibility and robustness of TI OS. Audio software rarely gets this much love and support for the users.

The Evolver is a real treat, Dark Energy while cool can't begin to dream of touching the possibilities an Evo has in the hands of a good programmer. I used one in studio/live for many many years (have a Tetra currently) and honestly never really got bored with it thanks to magnitude of awesome they managed to cram in it. DSI stuff obviously has a very signature sound, so it may not always be the right synth for the job, but really if you dig the curtis chip sound (I sure do anyway), you'll find it being useful in just about every song.

Cheers on your decision, can't really go wrong with any combination.
Old 31st December 2010
  #9
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jonlord's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonUnit View Post
Buy a Korg DW 8000 and a Dark Energy.
The DW 8000 is easy to program and u can get also a free VST-Plugin.
The thing is that i dont really need the keys, i will be using my roland xp-30 & Korg m3 as controllers for them (or both from korg propably). AND then i would have to find a used DW8000 from somewhere opposite to the Virus C which I've just found a guy selling one for around 500€ in mint cond.
And im more of a hardware guy than Software, i like having my knobs there to fiddle.

Edit: just checked out DW8000, i must say very nice lushpads, and its cheap! but seems a pain to program, and a pain to find here and my guess the rack version IS impossible to get. But I've added Dw8000 to my to get list in the future, cheers

Quote:
Originally Posted by protoculture View Post
I may be selling my doepfer DE with glide installed. Mint.

reason for sale : I already have two monosynths. However I am really enjoying the bass I am getting out of the DE today. It actually seemed to go VERY deep and pop out....despite what some have said about its limited bass potential...ugh play with the filters guys!

Anyway, depending on my experiments, mood etc etc I may sell or not.

pm me.
Right now im leaning towards the Virus/Evolver combo, and now GAS hit me again and I've been looking at the vermona lancet (Lancet VS DE anybody? ) but anyways that is something i might get in the future, if i dont change my mind during the following couple of days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ctrlshft View Post
I'd suggest a Virus TI and Evolver. I honestly don't see any reason to get a C other than if this is a price factor for you. If that is the case I'd suggest looking at the TI Snow. It's amazing what they've accomplished over recent years in regards to the flexibility and robustness of TI OS. Audio software rarely gets this much love and support for the users.

The Evolver is a real treat, Dark Energy while cool can't begin to dream of touching the possibilities an Evo has in the hands of a good programmer. I used one in studio/live for many many years (have a Tetra currently) and honestly never really got bored with it thanks to magnitude of awesome they managed to cram in it. DSI stuff obviously has a very signature sound, so it may not always be the right synth for the job, but really if you dig the curtis chip sound (I sure do anyway), you'll find it being useful in just about every song.

Cheers on your decision, can't really go wrong with any combination.
I was looking at the TI snow but soon dismissed the idea due the lack of knobs, and it being bit pricey (costs as much as a new Evolver + Used Virus C).

Ye my headline was abit confusing, its more like Virus C vs Dark Energy (or vermona lancet...which seems to sound nice but has worse mod. abilities). but thanks for the answers everybody.
And if i wasn't clear in the first post is that if i buy the VIRUS C it will be used, the rest would be bought from thomann.de



Quote:
Originally Posted by Helmey View Post
If I understand correctly, you are choosing two of three synths - an Evolver desktop, a Virus C and a Dark Energy - There are more than one model of Evolver and there's a huge difference between the desktop and poly versions.

I've never owned the Poly Evolver, but I've owned the desktop and I also have a Virus C. I have total GAS for the Dark Energy, but as a modular synth, it is completely different from the other two and would probably fill a different purpose.

My take on the Desktop Evolver vs. Virus debate is that this is an apples to oranges debate. If you want great lush or aggressive pads and VA-style sounds then the Virus is one of the best and the C-version is better than the previous two (because of the analog filter models). It makes tons of sounds, and plenty that would be useful in prog. The knobs also make this more accessible than the Evolver, and I do think it's a deeper engine because of its polyphony, vocoder, outputs and built-in effects. It's also multi-timbral.

The Desktop Evolver has a more raw sound and is a better choice for wavetable synthesis, even though the Virus has it's own set of FM spectral waveshapes. I love the step sequencer and the huge power in a compact unit. The Dave Smith/Sequential sound is something that you either love or hate - way more extreme than it's vintage peers. I happen to love it, and it's a great fit for today's IDM and other "bleep-click" music. (as my friend calls it) In the end, though, I chose the Virus over the Desktop Evolver and sold the Evolver not because of the sounds, but because it wasn't as hands-on and accessible (for me - I hate grid menus).

Regarding the choice, the biggest factor, IMHO, is that the Virus is fully polyphonic and the Evolver isn't. If you want pads it makes the Virus a must, and the choice between the Evolver and the Dark Energy. If it were my choice (drum roll please), I would pick the Virus C and Evolver Mono keyboard, or if you could swing it, the Poly Evolver Keyboard. That combo of knobular beauties would keep you busy enough where you would probably forget about the Dark Energy completely, or at least until they are $295 on eBay. Then you can have it all!

Sluttiness Rules!
my GAS says i want them all... help me, hehe. i know how this will end, a room full of synthesizers, fed by step-sequencers, just sitting there and drooning and turning knobs... Doepfer MAQ 16/3 anybody?

But ye the evolver i meant was a new from store Desktop evolver, hard to find any used DSI instruments here (i guess they are too good to sell) and the keyboard version is abit out of my price range (not to mention space which i dont really have), same with Viruses, just found one and thats why im posting this topic since i was already before that thinking of buying the Evolver desktop which has been in my mind for ages.

Last edited by jonlord; 31st December 2010 at 03:04 PM.. Reason: Doublepost so merged the questions
Old 31st December 2010
  #10
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jonlord's Avatar
 

Okay now the "bidding" has ended on the virus, which landed on 5200kr which should be around 570euros, is this too much for a Virus C in mint condition with manuals and cables but with overwritten A B banks (tho they can reset to factory with midi dump or something, not sure how hard that is).
Is that too expensive, should i buy it or skip it? and wait abit with the other synths for a while to not get overwhelmed. A fast answer would be appreciated
Old 31st December 2010
  #11
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonlord View Post
The thing is that i dont really need the keys, i will be using my roland xp-30 & Korg m3 as controllers for them (or both from korg propably). AND then i would have to find a used DW8000 from somewhere opposite to the Virus C which I've just found a guy selling one for around 500€ in mint cond.
And im more of a hardware guy than Software, i like having my knobs there to fiddle.
The DW8000 (EX8000) is much easier to handle than the Virus. Everything is printed on the front panel. The Virus has many menus containing many many parameters. The Korg sounds better than any plugin synth. The Virus sounds like a good VSTI. I sold mine.
Old 1st January 2011
  #12
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Carey M's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonlord View Post
Okay now the "bidding" has ended on the virus, which landed on 5200kr which should be around 570euros, is this too much for a Virus C in mint condition with manuals and cables but with overwritten A B banks (tho they can reset to factory with midi dump or something, not sure how hard that is).
Is that too expensive, should i buy it or skip it? and wait abit with the other synths for a while to not get overwhelmed. A fast answer would be appreciated
It's a good price IMO, the Virus series seems to hold their value rather well. Also, getting the original presets back via MIDI dump is very easy, though I recommend you program your own.

- CM
Old 1st January 2011
  #13
Here for the gear
 
jonlord's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carey M View Post
It's a good price IMO, the Virus series seems to hold their value rather well. Also, getting the original presets back via MIDI dump is very easy, though I recommend you program your own.

- CM
Yes true true, but have to have something to start on, the user said he had programmed own crappy sounds on them, i rather start from preset sounds than somebody elses

Quote:
The DW8000 (EX8000) is much easier to handle than the Virus. Everything is printed on the front panel. The Virus has many menus containing many many parameters. The Korg sounds better than any plugin synth. The Virus sounds like a good VSTI. I sold mine.
I will be most likely to pick one of those up if i find on the used market which i will keep an eye on.


Cheers for the input, will get my Virus this week hopefully and wait abit before getting the DSI evolver.
Old 8th January 2011
  #14
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonlord View Post
Okay now the "bidding" has ended on the virus, which landed on 5200kr which should be around 570euros, is this too much for a Virus C in mint condition with manuals and cables but with overwritten A B banks (tho they can reset to factory with midi dump or something, not sure how hard that is).
Is that too expensive, should i buy it or skip it? and wait abit with the other synths for a while to not get overwhelmed. A fast answer would be appreciated

according to the Syntacheles-list from Amazona.de (they were looking at Ebay-prizes for sold Synths for the last years) is the average for a Virus C 627 €!



by the way: hi to everybody


My personal issue; what should I get (first): DSI Mono Evolver or the Blofeld Keyboard?

I got:

-an USB-keyboard, but that sucks to play, because I've to connect my computer, interface etc.

- a Nord Rack 1 [not so long yet] but for me this is kind of too simple in mod-possibilities for me

I want to do interesting, evil, deep, experimental sounds but also effects or bleep-stuff (and drums would be nice as well)

I'm not playing piano yet (but want to get into it)

any other interesting alternatives around or what do you think about this issue?
(I'll may open a proper thread for that, but first I want to read both manuals and look (again) at all the YT-videos and interesting threads here)


so long, keep playing (and writing)

Dani
Old 9th January 2011
  #15
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by el_dani View Post

I want to do interesting, evil, deep, experimental sounds but also effects or bleep-stuff
hi dani, i owned both (just sold blofeld in order to buy sth. else)
both synths can do weird crazy things, but they are different beasts,

if you want polyphony/multitimbral take blofeld, but if you don't need it i would suggest evolver. 2 analog osc's + 2 digital wavetable oscillators, many modulation possibilities and effects:feedback, delay, distortion and high-pass filter. It's a monster if i only could have polyevolver...
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