Artium Instruments The Swarm, hybrid pedal with 8-voice polysynth and stereo effects, now on Kickstarter

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Artium Instruments The Swarm is an 8-voice polyphonic swarm Synthesizer and standalone stereo multi-FX box in a pedal, now on Kickstarter

Working with pedals that maintain a one-knob-per-function concept is simply fun. Small, compact, and you know exactly which knob does what—the “analog workflow,” as I like to describe it. These can have an analog or digital nature. 

The Hologram Chroma is an excellent example of a digital pedal with a great interface. Fun and intuitive to use. A lot of technology fits into pedals like this. A new developer, Artium Instruments, shows that even a polyphonic synth and effects can fit in simultaneously.

Artium Instruments The Swarm

Artium Instruments The Swarm

The Swarm is a new digital polyphonic Synthesizer with built-in effects housed in a guitar pedal. It has a knob-for-knob concept where every feature of it is directly mapped to a knob, button, switch, or jack, ensuring effortless control.

No menu-diving or complication button combinations, says Artium Instruments. What is intriguing is its hybrid design. It is a standalone polysynth and a stereo effects processor—two products in one. 

8-Voice Swarm Polysynth

The Swarm has a synth and effects section. The synth features an 8-voice polyphonic supersaw oscillator composed of seven individual saw waves stacked on each other. Of course, you can work with a magical detuning parameter to achieve the classic fat supersaw swarming sound.

Then, a filter and an AR (attack-release) envelope support it. Additionally, you get two distinct control modes. The polyphonic mode lets you simultaneously play the oscillator core to eight notes. 

Artium Instruments The Swarm

Arpeggiator Mode offers a comprehensive monophonic arpeggiator, automatically sequencing held notes in various patterns.

Stereo Multi-FX Box

The synth sounds can then be enriched and enhanced with effects. A multi-FX section is available for this, consisting of a freezer, stereo chorus, delay, and reverb. 

The highlight of this effects section is that you can use it as a traditional stereo multi-FX processor using the stereo input on the backside. In this case, you skip the synth engine and use the effect pedal. Alternatively, it also allows you to mix both signals, allowing for simultaneous processing.

To the facts: the freezer, as the name suggests, is an audio freeze, aka capturer. It records 1000ms of your current audio, then layers, and smears the sample, creating an infinite drone. It supports overdubbing and is easy to control via the touchpad. 

Artium Instruments The Swarm

Further, the sync-able delay is a digital analog-style delay with warmth. It has a multiplier, offering a range of unique subdivisions that complement the synced arpeggiator, including quarter notes, dotted eighth notes, eighth notes, and triplets.

Another FX is a stereo 4-voice chorus effect with a gradually shifting LFO, which adds smooth motion and dimensionality to the sound. And fourth and final FX is a stereo reverb controllable by a signal knob (mix + decay) that can realistically morph from realistic room or hall effects to rich cathedral-like soundscapes.


Take a look at the back. Here, you get a stereo input (6.3mm L/R) and stereo output (6.3mm L/R), a USB-C host port for MIDI, and another USB-C port for power. 

First Impression

At first glance, it’s a very nice, fat-sounding Synthesizer. In combination with the effects, you can create big sound walls. The effects also have great quality. It’s an interesting hybrid concept where, in my opinion, the effects section is more versatile than the actual synth. 

You can support the development of the Artium Instruments The Swarm now on Kickstarter for an early bird price of $359. The second batch will cost $379. Shipping will start in July 2024.

More information: Kickstarter


  1. Looks like a wonderful, powerful but easy to use synth. The build in fx also usable for external signals makes it a very nice device. I am really fighting with me….

  2. Very cool, even if I dont use the synth itself much the multi fx would be pretty neat on other things, could be good to make beds to play over with a mono in a nice little hands on formfactor.

    Do wish they had standard midi though in addition the the host midi, I understand that’s handy for smaller controllers but for me Id have to midi out into an adapter then usb to usb c, despite that – I have backed it.

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