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Novation Nova 2

 



 


IN THE FIRST WEEK EVERY SYNTH SUCKS

At the very first moments I felt a real repulsion to the Nova, because, at first glance, all it could do well were just these stupidly-reverbed trancey supersaw and pointless massive pad patches. But it's just the common case of the factory preset programmers being retarded (or simply catering to the needs of the public / average customer back in the year 2000).

FAST FORWARD

Nova's architecture turns out to be deep and it seems to be designed for live action with multitimbral settings, because using multiple 'parts' is where the real strength of this synth starts to show off (I have 24 voices of polyphony). Apart from saying "wow" while listening to individual sounds (Unison is kind of BIG) I will also utter a big "wow" quite often when listening to "performances" with 6 sounds split across the keyboard or mixed within one patch. This is where it gets deep and where I like it the most - spectacular, multi-layered ambiences & arrangements and a huge array of raw electronica anger. I never took interest nor part in the "best dance / club / trance synth" debate, but listening to this kind of patches on this synth imprints a kind of appreciation on my mind too.

TECHNICALLY

Large polyphony, arpeggiator used as sequencer, independent effects blocks that need not be shared, and a big sound are the main characteristics of this synth. Quite obviously a "no compromises" attitude is at the core of this project. At times the hugeness of the sound is even stunning; I feel I could literally kill someone with the sound... speaking of which brings us to the unexpected, paradoxical downside of this synth; Nova sounds so powerful that it may be perceived as uncontrollable. Its low price on the market may simply be the result of people getting tired of its too-large, too-muddy sound. And could it be possible that I find the A-Station sound more harmonious?...

Editing is a bit awkward in certain places, for example: small mod matrix control panel with sources and destinations going from right to left. But once you get into the engine, you can tweak it inside out and achieve all the weird, synthy and non-synthy stuff. Deep stuff. Apart from that everything's cool ? No. I hope it's just a matter of the OS version (I've got 1.5, there's a 2.0 out there), but the engine slows down when receiving MIDI and twisting some knobs at the same time.

SO?

At the beginning I felt like I've gotten a tank to drive in a vast landscape, whereas what I needed was to cruise in a Ferrari in Pacific Heights. I didn't want a synth good for all, I wanted to meet an individuality. After a short while it turns out that the (Super)Nova is both!
It's a great piece and I'm sure the vast majority of users will be blown away and delighted, only if they accept the metallic quality and monoaural-ness of the general tone. I'm quite blown away at times, and certain patches sound splendid and fucking impressive. It's one of the best VA choices out there and certainly underpriced for the features it offers. 700 bucks out of your pocket and what you get for that is a huge weapon for electronic music, a workhorse, even a small stable. Novation Music is deep. It leaves the competition quite a distance behind. I command thee to pay serious attention to it or else die !!!!! Even so amen.

 

 

Watch the video demo part 1:

 

Watch the video demo part 2:

 

Or listen to the audio demo:
 [ mp3 demo - factory patches ]

 


 

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