In music, there are only so many times a sound can be used before it becomes recognized as a stereotypical sound. Snares and 808 kicks are fairly common and easy to confuse, but right next to them is synthesizers. Without proper knowledge of how a synthesizer works, it is easy to use one that falls in with every other popular synth sound out there. It can also be difficult to learn a new synth even if you have experience with others in the past.
That’s where Parallels from Softube comes in. Parallels is an easy to use synth with endless options for new sounds and dynamics that you can take advantage of.
How We Reviewed the Parallels Synthesizer
When we approach a new review, we like to show some of the key aspects that the company is proud of. So for our Review of Parallels, we looked at the usefulness and key aspects that musicians and producers can utilize.
Parallels is a synthesizer for the pro and beginner alike. It can build a soundscape to immerse yourself in for film, or you can create an amazing piece to an electronic song. The creativity lies in your hands and you can take it anywhere you want.
Here are some of the key features that Softube has put into Parallels.
Oscillators – Parallels has 2 built-in oscillators that you can choose to use both or just one. This lets you create new combinations
Mods – There are 4 modulators that can used and automated on top of your oscillators to build your sound. With these modulators you can change the sin wave, add in filters, and change the flowing patterns.
Presets – One thing that Softube wanted to encourage was using presets as stepping stones. There are literally hundreds of presets not just made by them but also by leading synth artists like BT, Richard Devine, Bjulin, and more!
Effects – The effects that are included are some of the easiest to add in that I have ever seen in a synthesizer. I love how easy it is to test out and decide on which effects you want to add whether it be distortion, chorus, delay, or whatever.
According to Softube, “any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.” That being said, I would use this more on a platform that is geared towards the creation of electronic music such as Reason or Ableton.
Softube Parallels comes as a digital download.
|Memory||8 GB RAM8 GB free disk space on the system drive||8 GB RAM8 GB free disk space on the system drive|
|Operating System||10.12 or newer||Windows 7, 8, or 10 (64 bit)|
In the realm of pricing, a high-end synthesizer is going to run fairly close and over the cost of Parallels. There are some synthesizers that are nowhere near as easy to use as Parallels and they are difficult to get unique sounds from that cost more than Parallels itself.
Bonus & Extras
If you love Parallels from Softube, you should check out the rest of their plugins. They have a deal where for $799 you can purchase a collection of their best plugins of all different types from compressors, to eq’s, to effects, and even more. This is Volume 4 of their plugin collection and it does include Parallels. If you were to buy all of these plugins separately, it would cost you over $3,700. Take my advice, if you love Softube, this is the best deal you could ever find.
Keep it Simple
In a market that is saturated with synthesizers, it is hard to stick out in any way. The way Parallels does so is by making themselves an easy to use and understand platform with a unique user interface. They have built up their sounds and have even received recommendations from artists such as BT (Brian Transeau) and Bjulin (Yoel Kumbolu).
Simplicity doesn’t mean cheap. Some of the simplest recordings have become the biggest hits. Everyone knows “Folsom Prison Blues” by Johnny Cash. The studio recording he did of it had all of the latest technology used and was a musical masterpiece. However, the live version is more well known. It may have been recorded more simply off of a live show but it ended up being a hit (and my favorite version of the song). Remember not to overcomplicate your sounds and recording methods because, in the long run, the simpler version could be more enjoyable.
If you would like to read more about other plugins and reviews, check out our catalog with a wealth of information available for you here.
Jarrett is a hardcore Lover-Jazz Lover-Rock Lover-Blues Lover-just a music lover. He has the hair to match — Jarrett and provides in-depth insight into all things guitar and music engineering.