Way Out Ware TimewARP 2600

Timewarp 2600 Image

Way Out Ware is a relatively new company to the world of software synthesis, but they bring to the table a leap forward in synth emulation technology! They have recreated the classic Arp 2600 with their software plug-in, the TimewARP 2600. Rather than adapting a general purpose synth-modeling algorithm to suite the needs of reproducing ARP-like sounds, WOW designed this software from the ground up to specifically recreate every nuance of the original 2600's look and sound. And they succeeded! The TimewARP 2600 is supported and endorsed by the 2600's designer and ARP founder himself, Alan R. Pearlman. Of course there are some updates to the 2600 that adapt it to life in the computer age as well (total MIDI control & automation should go without saying).

TimewARP 2600 is (as of this writing) an RTAS plug-in and will only work in Pro-Tools 6.1 or later. But VST, Audio Unit, TDM, and stand-alone versions will surely follow soon. While the original 2600 is monophonic, the TimewARP can support up to eight voices of polyphony, but this can be quite a CPU gobbler and is really dependent on the power of your computer. The plug-in's interface is a very realistic recreation of the original "grey-meanie", with only a few tweaks or modifications. Patching and creating your own sounds is done just like on a real 2600. And finally you can store and categorize your 2600 creations using the TimewARP's unlimited patch memory manager.

But this is where the TimewARP can let some users down. It ships with a rather boring and small set of presets. In other words, if you were hoping to browse through oodles of patches to find the perfect bass, lead, or pad, you will likely be disappointed. That said, however, if you are one to experiment, you can really get into creating some amazing sounds if you know how or are willing to learn. The TimewARP 2600 is definitely aimed at those of us who maybe once owned a 2600 and are looking for an inexpensive and practical way of getting one back, or anybody who wants to learn and experiment with analog synthesis the old-school way!

TimewARP 2600 comes closer to sounding like the real thing than any other software synth emulator out there! The three VCO's sound great, the filter is excellent with realistic self-oscillating resonance and almost no glitchy stair-stepping during slow gradual filter sweeps. The envelopes, LFO, keyboard controls, and CV/Gate options give the keen programmer lots of options for creating some really wild sounds just like on the original 2600. Even the original's built-in spring reverb and a virtual ARP 3620 keyboard are reproduced here. Perhaps the TimewARP 2600 is a little too good at reproducing the original - the plug-in seems to generate a little bit of noise at it's outputs while idle just like most real analog gear would do.

If you've got yourself a Pro-Tools rig and the chops to program such a beast as the ARP 2600, WOW's TimewARP 2600 is a steal! At $250, no aging 30 year-old 2600 can come close to offering what this little plug-in can! And WOW's plans to add support for more platforms and to create an on-line user patch library should make the TimewARP un-beatable in the future!

Check Way Out Ware TimewARP 2600 Prices on eBay

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13 Visitor comments
donnie
October 27, 2012 @ 6:50 pm
I own neither. Yet judging from the "a/b" sample, the plug sounds very video game-ish... While the hardware sounds very smooth, like a real instrument...so good! Just my .02!
ray
September 14, 2011 @ 3:47 pm
i found it quite anoying that the demo version was recording disabled in Protools, so couldn't hear what I'd played. This way it was simply impossible for me to make a decision on this synth. Instead I tried the demo of Arturia (and recorded it), of which I'm very satisfied.
cozmovox
October 28, 2010 @ 11:09 am
I own a few real analog synths. When I got my first ,
I never felt like working with analog emulating softsynths again. At this time analog emulations were simply not
good enough. I've never had the experience of working
with a real ARP2600 but the timewarp sounds really close
to analog to me (along with Arturia's moog modular V)
It catches the right kind of harmonic distortion and filter
resonance. It's the first good alternative to analog I've
ever heard. Sounds react to the tweaking in a realistic,
organic way. One downside may be that it hasn't got
floating oscillators, but it makes it easyer for some real
cool FM synthesis with the sine waves.
Me
May 20, 2010 @ 6:22 am
Older, you're right, there are a few improvements since Maudio version 1.15 but not soundwise.
Older
November 3, 2009 @ 3:58 pm
DR, you're right. Now, I have the latest version of Timewarp. It's more authentic than that of Arturia. I was wrong. As emulation is the height of Arturia Minimoog (for me, the best emulation that had been done in an analog synthesizer). Thank you! And thanks also to WaterDemon!
 
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  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Demos & Media
  • Audio Clip 1 - Sequencer/Lead demo. Listen to audio comparisons between the TimewARP 2600 and the original 2600 at Way Out Ware.

    Try / Buy - Visit Way Out Ware's website to download a free demo and try it out for yourself!

  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - Up to 8 voices (CPU dependent)
  • Oscillators - 3 VCO's and 1 Noise Gen (white or pink)
  • Modulation - 1 Sample & Hold driven by either an internal, external, or MIDI Beat Clock. Can also be used as LFO source.
  • Filter - 1 Lowpass resonant filter (self-oscillating). 1 Ring-modulator.
  • VCA/Envelopes - 1 VCA with 2 audio inputs. 2 Envelope generators: 1 ADSR, 1 AR. 1 Envelope follower.
  • Arpeg/Seq - None
  • Keyboard - Virtual Arp 3620 keyboard with 60 keys,
  • Effects - Stereo Spring Reverb, Portamento
  • Memory - Unlimited patch storage
  • Interfaces - RTAS
  • Macintosh - OS X 10.2 or higher, 1GHz processor, 256MB RAM
  • Windows/PC - Windows 98SE/2000/XP, 1GHz processor, 256MB RAM
  • Date Produced - 2004

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