Signal Strength

Spark Ignites
the Art of Groove

Arturia has done it again and come up with another awesome product. If drum machines and groove boxes are your thing then Arturia's Spark may be just what you need. Like their Analog Experience, the Spark is another hardware/software hybrid combining an extensive control surface with advanced software that runs on your Mac or PC.

With 34 knobs, 8 drum pads, an X-Y ribbon and more, the control surface is so extensive it's rarely necessary to reach for the computer's keyboard or mouse, so you can give your beat production your undivided attention.

The soft-synth runs either stand-alone or as a plug-in for your DAW. It comes equipped with several sound-engines including Arturia's TAE analog synthesis, multi-layered sampling, and physical modeling. It offers an impressive 480 instruments and 30 drum kits (modeled on TR-808, TR-909, Simmons SDS-V, and Eprom based LinnDrum, Drumtraks, DMX, and more) and samples included from Sonic Reality, Ultimate Sound Bank, Ueberschall and Modern Beats. Still not enough for you? Well you can even import your own and create envelopes, looping and velocity layers.

The on-board drum-sequencer offers 64 steps per sequence. And 8 velocity-sensitive drum pads along the front of the control surface allow you to play drum sounds live with additional knobs above each to control exactly how the sound is played. Everything you do can be recorded in real-time for later tweaking.

The X-Y control ribbon allows for even more creativity with several modes. Depending on which is selected, it can control either filter cut-off and resonance, rhythmic delay effect, drum roll (similar to the Note Repeat feature of Akai's MPC), or other effects.

See it here:

Main Features

  • Pristine quality sound engines including: TAE analog synthesis, multi-layered sampling delivered by reference third-party companies, physical modelling
  • 480 instruments / 30 kits:
    - Vintage drum machines: analog recreations in the spirit of the TR-808, TR-909, Simmons SDS-V, and Eprom based LinnDrum, Drumtraks, DMX, and more*
    - Electronic kits covering the most popular modern music styles: Dub, House, Techno, Hip Hop, RnB, etc as well as experimental fields thanks to the physical modelling engine
    - Acoustic drum kits subtly mixing physical modelling and samples for high audio realism
  • 16 key, 64 step sequencer
  • 8 velocity and pressure sensitive pads
  • Touch sensitive FX Pad with Repeat, Tape, Reverse, Strobe, Pan, Mix, 3 mode Filter and Roller
  • Advanced loop mode with divide and move functions
  • Real-time automation on all parameters
  • 16 track mixer with 9 high quality effects: compressor, reverb, bit crusher, multiband EQ, chorus, delay, distortion, phaser, plate reverb
  • Song mode with up to 64 patterns by song
  • Shuffle and Shift modes to humanize grooves
  • Assignable encoders
  • Aluminum enclosure
  • Works as a universal MIDI controller with any third-party software

* The use of trademarks is only meant as a reference to clarify the instruments whose sound was modelled after and doesn't imply any endorsement.

Mac OS X: Mac OS X 10.5 or higher
Windows: XP/Vista/Seven

System Requirements
Mac (Intel only): 1 GB RAM; 2 GHz CPU
PC/Windows: 1 GB RAM; 2 GHz CPU

Price: USD 599 / 499 Eur

Launch date: June 1, 2011


Date posted: February 25, 2011


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