Synthetic Sound Labs Tube VCA/Timbral Gate is a new VCA module from Russia that makes your Russian analog, saturated dreams come true.
Russian synthesizers still fascinate people today. This is mainly due to their love for uncompromised, analog instruments, They are raw, dirty, and full of character. There are also Russian developers in the Eurorack market who prefer it distorted rather than clean.
Synthetic Sound Labs goes so far and promises with its latest module Tube VCA/Timbral Gate making your Russian dreams come true. That sounds promising.
Synthetic Sound Labs Tube VCA / Timbral Gate
The SSL Tube VCA/Tinbral is a wild fusion of a Soviet vacuum tube warmth and distortion and a VCA. The core is a licensed circuit by Ken Stone (CGS) but further expanded to “make your Russian dreams come true”. The 2530 module uses miniature pencil-sized vacuum tubes which need low current and voltage devices. That’s handy because so you don’t need an extra beefy power supply like the latest Erica Synths tube modules.
The built-in VCA shows its strengths and unique character when it is overdriven, so the developers. Further, they say it rounds and folds the inputs like nothing else available. The module has two switches, one sets the bias to either clean or distorted, and with the second, you can switch on the feedback circuit perfect for crazy sounds. Optimized less for clean sounds and more for saturated, juicy analog textures.
Tube VCA/Timbral can be used as a regular VCA but also as a sound shaper. In some modes, it’s prone to crazy self-oscillations that can be made to lock onto the harmonics of the input waveform in cascading howls. All this is fully adjustable and controllable with the controls or via CV.
SSL also added pulsating LEDs behind the tube visible behind an acrylic window that simulates tubes as they are being driven by CV. Doesn’t look as “porno” as the Erica Synths / GameChanger Audio Plasma Drive but it definitely looks nice and retro. There is no demo of the Eurorack module but of the 5U version.
If you are looking for a VCA that heads up signals, even over-saturates them, you have come to the right place. Every Eurorack system needs some Russian analog love, even if it’s just a VCA.
Synthetic Sound Labs Tube VCA / Timbral Gate is available now for $295 USD.
More information here: Synthetic Sound Labs