Groove Synthesis 3rd Wave 1.6, new firmware adds Prophet VS waves

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Groove Synthesis has published 3rd Wave 1.5, a new free firmware update for its mighty wavetable synth adding MPE support, poly unison, and more. 

Excellent news from Groove Synthesis and for users of the 3rd Wave. The new free firmware update 1.6 is out now and expands the 3rd Wave with the original wave set of the Sequential Prophet VS. 

According to Groove Synthesis, they added the original 96 single-cycle waves with wave mixing functionality like in the Prophet VS. You can combine up to 64 single-cycle waves to create a new wavetable from them. Additionally, you get 48 new storage spaces for so-called “Lo-Fi wavetables. 

Groove Synthesis 3rd Wave 1.6

Another new feature is a master global tuning parameter and a new sequencer play mode. In this, you can transpose your sequence with the keyboard. Hit the right arrow on the sequencer display and set play mode to transpose. Then, hit a key when a sequence is playing to transpose the notes.

There are also UI changes for the global, misc, and make waves buttons. Lastly, there are various bug fixes. 

The new Groove Synthesis 3rd Wave firmware update 1.6 is available now as a free download for existing users.


Article Update From August 23rd, 2023

A small addendum to the article on the new firmware 1.5 that interested parties from Europe will be happy about. The Groove Synthesis 3rd is now also available in Europe from Thomann. It took a long time, but it is now available for purchase outside the US without import taxes, etc.


Article From August 18th, 2023

The big Synthesizer star of NAMM 2022 was the Groove Synthesis 3rd Wave. The blue flagship synth was leaked sometime before and was then officially presented in Anaheim. It is a modern multi-timbral wavetable polyphonic Synthesizer. For many, it’s the spiritual successor to the legendary PPG Wave created by Wolfgang Palm, not only because of the optics but also because of the PPG-esque engine.

The 3rd Wave has been on the market for almost a year, went through a few YouTube rooms, and has found a new home in many studios. For the developers, the project is not finished. This week Groove Synthesis released firmware 1.5 with some new features, improvements and fixes.

Groove Synthesis 3rd Wave 1.5

Groove Synthesis 3rd Wave 1.5

A big highlight of the new firmware 1.5 is the MPE support. This fits perfectly with this very extensive digital Synthesizer. I can imagine the combo Expressive E Osmose and 3rd wave quite well.

Then, a new feature is the option to put the analog-style oscillators in free-running mode. So the waveforms don’t reset when you start a new note. In this mode, the oscillators will continue to drift from each other as they do on some fully analog synthesizers.

Another major new feature is the new poly unison mode. Here you can set the polyphony count in the second page of the unison mode. It will split the voices up automatically to use max voices per note. Other new features are:

  • shortcut buttons to easily set output routing per part
  • option in global menu to send midi program change messages
  • now saving unison chord mode settings with program
  • now pitch wheel, mod wheel, and pressure are independent per part when controlling in midi multitimbral mode + pitch wheel destination is settable per part
  • new options for longer LFO sync times
  • added smoothing to pan position changes to avoid audible stepping

There are also improvements and bug fixes

  • Slight adjustments to circuit drift envelope sustain variance – gets rid of jumps when going from decay to sustain in the envelope
  • Improvements to LED brightness settings
  • Added smoothing to pan position changes to avoid audible stepping
  • and various bug fixes. The full change log s available here.

I found a beautiful 3rd Wave demo with soundtrack covers showing that it can be more than just a PPG-style wavetable synth.

First Impression

This a nice update for the 3rd Wave Synthesizer. MPE with this engine is a perfect match. I’m curious if we’ll see a desktop version of the 3rd Wave at some point, that would be a logical second product from the still-young company.

Groove Synthesis 3rd Wave firmware 1.5 is available now as a free download for existing users. The synth is available now for $4995 USD.

More information here: Groove Synthesis 

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  1. Hi guys,

    Uodate to 1.6 or 1.5? Text says 1.5 – header says 1.6
    1.6 already updated as of 2023_10_29
    I just received my desktop model with 1.6 – no extra wavetables visible

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