IK Multimedia Syntronik Review – A Synthesizer Workstation For Studio & Live Musicians

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There Is A Preset Browser 

A preset / sound browser must not be missing in Syntronik. It features an advanced browser in the middle of the interface that allows fast and easy navigation of more than 2000 presets. The individual available sounds are nicely displayed on the right side. Than you have various filters with which you can browse the library simply to his liking. I like that the developers wrote a small text for each preset where you get a short information about the sound.

There is one minor critic for the preset browser. Even if my system is relatively old but also runs on a new SSD, loading of instruments takes a relatively long time. A simple switch between two instruments can take several seconds. In another place, it could be also improved. I want arrows at the top of the bar, so you can switch faster presets. Currently you have to call the whole browser and then select the next sound. Simple arrows on the left right would simply the workflow a lot.

Than you have a small sub-menu designed with faders where you can adjust different parameters of your patch. Volume, pan, mute and the master volume.

The Perfect Playground For Sound Designer – FX Section 

One of the core elements of the Syntronik instrument is the very versatile and varied effect department. Syntronik comes with 38 high-quality effects which are derived from the best-known products T-RackS mix & mastering suite as well as the AmpliTube guitar workstation. Here you can find modulation effects, EQ’s, filters, distortions, amps, reverbs and delays. On top of the existing effects from the previous products, IK Multimedia also developed some new effects like an excellent ensemble chorus.

Syntronik includes the following effects:

  • Modulation: AM Modulation, Ensemble Chorus, Chorus C1, Electric Flanger, FM Modulation,  Opto Tremolo, Phaser, Rotary Speaker, Small Phazer, Uni-V, AutoPan, Slicer
  • Dynamics / EQ: Black 76, White 2A, Model 670, Parametric EQ, Vintage EQ-1A, Channel Strip
  • Filter: LFO Filter, Env Filter, Multi Filter, Wah 47
  • Distortion: Distortion, Crusher, Overdrive, Overscream, Lo-Fi, Phonograph
  • Amps: Flexi Amp, Modern Tube Lead, SVT Classic, Jazz Amp 120
  • Reverb /Delay: Hall Reverb, Plate Reverb, Digital Delay, Spring Reverb, Tape Echo, Stereo Imager

The Syntronik engine allows users to combine 5 effects and to use them simultaneously. The FX section has a modular structure and allows users to build chains of their own effects. Each effect can be easily moved forward or backward. In addition, effects come with a very user-friendly interface which also looks good optically. Each layer can have up to 5 effects so basically, one single multi preset can have up to 20 effects at the same time.

Soundwise, the effects all sound great and offer a lot of possibilities to experiment. With a few simple steps, you can polish a sound very much and make the sound richer. Especially the reverbs, delay or the tape echo sound brillant and improves a lot a complete patch. Also the new designed ensemble chorus works perfectly soundwise with the J8 and J-60 but also with all other available libraries. So seen, you can design quick a Oberheim synth sound with the famous Roland chorus effect on it.

What I personally miss here is a dedicated preset browser for the effects chains. So you could immediately load your favourite FX combination in a patch without loading each individual effect first.

An Arpeggiator Not A Sequencer 

As the title suggests, Syntronik features also a relatively complex arpeggiator with advanced features and not as many thought a step sequencer.

Due of the 4 layer structure of Syntronik, musicians get for each layer one arpeggiator section. It allows not only to play single notes back but also to entire chord arpeggios what is super handy. Also you assign the range and different settings to get your own creative arpeggiator sound. In my opinion is the arpeggiator section very straightforward to use and but very powerful. Since ones likes to talk about a Synthesizer workstation here, it would have been interesting to have the possibility to use the arpeggiator section as parameter sequencer. With this additional feature, it could be possible to create even more new soundscapes with the classical synth sounds. Especially a great tool if you are in big pads with a lot movements inside.

Next to the arpeggiator section, you have a setting menu where you can change the disk path and remote of your sounds.

What’s On The Sound Menu Today?

The last interface section is almost a classic for IK Multimedia products. Here is the in-app-purchase shop. It should be mentioned here that a Syntronik Free with less sound content exist as well as a full version with all sound libraries.

In this shop, you can buy more sound libraries for the free version. If you have the complete bundle, the menu is not relevant for the users. But it will be interesting if IK Multimedia will release more sound libraries in the future. I could imagine a library for the Yamaha DX7 or various vintage analog KORG Synthesizers. We will see what the future brings.

In summary, I like the interface of Syntronik very well. It’s modern, simple and fun to use. There are some points that you can certainly improve but also in the first, it can convince me.


    • Hello Hosh
      I don’t have tested the full version of the iOS version. So I can’t say it sorry but i’m pretty sure the sound quality is on the same level 🙂

      • Sorry for the late answer: here is the difference: Basically the iPad version has a smaller, selected library and 37 effects instead of 38. The rest is basically the exact same as the Mac/PC.

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