ZEN by Dario Lupo is a beautiful, free subtractive Synthesizer for Reaktor

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ZEN is a new free subtractive virtual analog Synthesizer ensemble for Reaktor 6 (full) created by Dario Lupo you shouldn’t miss. 

The Native Instruments Reaktor 6 environment is an exciting synthesis paradise. Forgotten and underestimated by many. Especially what you can find in the Reaktor User Library is remarkable. It’s packed with free instruments and FX that explore different concepts.

And since Reaktor 6 went the blocks route, you can also find a lot of exciting modules here. The music producer and developer Dario Lupo has published this week ZEN, a free subtractive Synthesizer for R6 with a pretty impressive feature set.

dariolupo Zen

ZEN by Dario Lupo

ZEN is a free subtractive Synthesizer for Reaktor 6 (full) with three oscillators, each with waveform select, level, pitch, and detune. The second has pulse width control for PWM and the third oscillator a saws functionality for super saw-like sounds.

From here it goes then into two multimode filters (PRO, lowpass4, bandpass, and highpass) with cutoff, resonance, and envelope controls.

Modulation side, you can work with six envelopes, three are fixed and routed to the amp, filter 1, and filter 2, while the others are freely mappable. There are also three multi-wave LFOs with speed, sync, and reset functionality.

ZEN also hosts a bunch of effects. On the bottom, you get a stereo delay with time and feedback controls and a reverb effect with pre-delay. On the top of the interface, you can also find a unique broken tape-like effect knob (break), introducing gentle or heavier pitch variations. A bit like a vintage knob, but it can also go to extremes

Further, you can find a pre-FX EQ, saturation, spread, detune and glide. With the glide button, you can also modify the color of the UI for each patch. Now that we’re on the UI. This is very successful for a free Reaktor instrument. They are often very cryptic. In that case, not and Dario Lupo, the developer also color-coded the modulation which is neat.

First Impression

An excellent free Reaktor 6 synthesizer. I particularly like the UI. In the first short test, I noticed that the ensemble is rather CPU hungry.

ZEN by Dario Lupo is available now as a free download from the Native Instruments Reaktor User Library. It requires the full version of Reaktor 6. The Reaktor 6 Player version is not supported due to equal licensing reasons we know from the Kontakt Player. More on this here.

More information here: NI Reaktor User Library 


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