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Modal ElectronicsCobalt 8M Desktop Virtual Analog Synthesizer

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Modal Electronics Cobalt 8M

The Cobalt 8M is a desktop version of Modal's Cobalt virtual-analog polysynth, and retains all of the features and power that makes it one of the most exciting polyphonic synthesizers in recent memory. Cobalt 8M's lush sound starts with it’s unique virtual analog oscillator implementation, with classic oscillator functions and shapes like sine, saw, and pulse, as well as additional 34 algorithm modules. These provide instant access to a suite of ring modulations, wave folding, shaping, sync functions, filtered noise and more, so these shaping and modulation aids can help push your sounds into new territory. Each algorithm loads up with a dedicated set of performance macros for immediate customization and expression. Generate massive super-saws, or detuned stacks of split square waves—the possibilities are near infinite when you take into account that you can assign two algorithms per voice, and control up to eight simultaneous voices!

Modal took great care in designing additional features that make the Cobalt line of synthesizers ooze character, including a morphing four-pole filter design with both resonant and balanced responses, and a suite of true-stereo effects are available for bringing your sounds and patches to the next level. On-board effects including multiple phasers, flangers, delays, reverbs, and others add that extra bit of magic to your sounds.

The Cobalt 8M has plenty of performance features, as well as quality of life considerations that make it truly a force to be reckoned with. A built-in modulation matrix allows for up to 12 parameters to mixed and combined with variable control from aftertouch, the joystick, or other sources, allowing control over the built-in effects, three modulation envelopes, and more. Modal has also put effort into crafting a companion app for Cobalt, available for PC, Mac, as well as smartphones and tablets, allowing you to make and automate dynamic changes, manage and create presets and sequences, as well as backup your data. The Cobalt 8M packs all the power of its keyed counterparts in a wonderfully compact and portable packaged, making it the perfect addition to your studio or live setup.

Cobalt 8M Features

  • Eight voice polyphonic synthesizer module
  • 64 High-resolution virtual-analog oscillators, with up to eight per voice
  • Three powerful stereo FX engines with Chorus, Phaser, Flanger, Tremolo, LoFi, Rotary, Stereo & Ping-Pong delays, and Reverb
  • 34 algorithms for complex sound shaping including cross modulation, wave morphing, sync, bit-crushing and many more
  • 500 slots for preset patch memory
  • Four-pole morphable ladder filter with resonant and balanced modes
  • Polyphonic sequencer with real-time, step-sequence, and programmable arpeggiator modes, with automation of up to four parameters and recall
  • Ergonomically laid out panel for ease of use
  • Outputs: 2x 1/4″ TS line outputs, 1x 1/4″ TRS headphone output, DIN MIDI, 1/8” analog clock
  • Inputs: 1x 1/8″ TRS stereo audio input, 1/4″ TRS expression pedal input, 1/4″ TS sustain pedal input, USB type B, DIN MIDI 1/8” analog clock
  • Power: DC-9.0V – 1.5A center-positive
  • Dimensions (L x W x H): 15.1″ x 5″ x 3.2
  • Weight: 4.6 lbs
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Product Demo Videos
Making HUGE Super Saw Sounds w/ the Cobalt8
In this video, Jacob explores the Modal Electronics Cobalt8, a modern take on virtual analog synthesis, specifically showcasing its excellent ability to craft supersaw sounds. After all, how super would your saws be if you had up to 64 oscillators at your disposal? The Cobalt8 even expands on the concept a bit further, offering Spread oscillator algorithms with not just sawtooth waveforms, but triangle and square waves too!

But of course, the Cobalt8 has a bunch of other tricks up its sleeve, and later in the video, Jacob showcases ideas for blending supersaws in with some of the other super cool oscillator modes. While we all love the huge, trance-inspired pads that supersaws are known for, but with some clever patch-crafting, you can find a way to bring these super-sounds into any kind of music.
Modal Electronics Cobalt 8M Desktop Virtual Analog Synthesizer Reviews