Year of issue: 2020
Developer site: klevgrand
Platform: Intel only
Interface language: English
Tablet: Replacement Files | CODESHiNE
System requirements: macOS 10.9 or later, running a AU, VST3 compatible 64-bit host.
Description: Just listen! Klevgrand launches Pipa vocal synthesizer that generates incredibly realistic voice
The Swedish company Klevgrand has introduced a new plug-in – the Klevgrand Pipa vocal synthesizer. The instrument operates without the use of samples, relying on a mixture of wavetable and granular synthesis.
Synthesized virtual voices often sound too strange: they can be used in sound design, but it is rather difficult to find application for them in musical projects. Nevertheless, the Swedish Klevgrand managed to create a truly live and musical instrument. Listen for yourself, it’s fine
As the developers note, the instrument works at the junction of table-wave and granular sound synthesis. The signal created by Pipa continuously transforms formants, changes the dynamics and pitch of sounds. Although the synthesizer trailer appears to generate exclusively female voices, Klevgrand notes that Pipa is capable of producing sounds that resemble both male and female voices of any timbre.
The generated sounds are created based on wave tables extracted from vocal samples. Thanks to this approach, when reproducing sound, Pipa constantly changes formants, dynamics and pitch and, as a result, generates realistic-sounding vocals. Not without a fly in the ointment: realism requires significant computing power, so Pipa is quite hungry for processor resources.
In the settings section, the parameters of the signal envelopes and the operation of the low-frequency oscillators are available. You can control the settings using MIDI commands. Additionally, the synthesizer is equipped with a Legato mode, in which the synthesizer glides smoothly between sounds. The list of parameters is completed by the ability to distribute the voice over the panorama and stereo picture, as well as a number of settings for the reverb effect.
Despite the expressive video, Klevgrand Pipa is unable to generate words or speech phrases. The maximum available is melodies and chants, atmospheric vocal textures. The developers note that the published trailer shows everything that the synthesizer is capable of, but achieving such a level of performance will not be easy – you will have to tinker a lot with the settings and the synthesizer part.