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Creamware Minimax ASB

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One may not consider a synthesizer with three Oscillators and noise, a mixer as well as a filter followed by amplifiers and two envelopes, as being spectacular in sound. But we are not just talking about any kind of synthesizer but about “the" synthesizer that started it all.

MINIMAX ASB is a perfect emulation of one of the most popular synthesizers ever. Its ease of use and easy to learn sound technique made this instrument a role model for many other synthesizers. Its sound is famous. The oscillators and filters are extremely powerful and the envelopes extremely quick.

Many soft and hardware companies have tried to copy its features but have shattered by doing so. Its hardware duplicate had different built-in components taking away from its original sounding character. Most software programs emulated only parts of the hardware such as the filter. Significant elements like Oscillators and envelopes were for the most part forgotten.

MINIMAX ASB is different from anything available before. MINIMAX ASB not only emulates parts of the instrument. We consider it as being “the” synthesizer. Today, where most hardware components are difficult to get and software reached the limits, MINIMAX ASB has managed to go beyond.

Within the MINIMAX ASB, we have remodelled all significant sound elements after the original’s circuitry. In addition, a steady cross-check with the Original was made and now offers even identical knob positions as within the original. No reproduction has yet been that precise. Measurements and adjustments were only a part of the work. Beforehand there was another problem to tackle. The original analog model produces frequencies which when copied or emulated would produce aliasing. Those who are familiar with aliasing know how awful it sounds. The MINIMAX ASB’s sound generation is based on newly developed algorithms that are free of any aliasing. The MINIMAX ASB handles even the most complex Modulations, filter FM or Oscillator-Modulation. Moreover, the nice thing about this, the MINIMAX ASB will always sound like the original. Thus MINIMAX ASB tops today’s digital synthesis technique.

Setup and Layout

Just as the original, the MINIMAX ASB has one oscillator section with three oscillators. Oscillator 3 can also be used as an LFO or better said FO (Frequency Oscillator). Oscillators can be mixed with noise and an external signal within the mixer section. This is followed by the filter and an amplifier each using an envelope with attack, decay and sustain pro voice. In addition to the original model, equipped the MINIMAX ASB with an additional effects section featuring chorus/flanger and delay.

The quality of the synthesis algorithms in this instrument is remarkable. Because the oscillators use the frequency spectrum’s full bandwidth, more overtones are produced than in earlier algorithms. Even the saturation level in the mixer section for internal and external signals were taken into consideration. Saturation gives the sound more presence. Especially the filter profits greatly from the new algorithms. Existing filter-algorithms may have had resonance, but in general they weren’t that exciting like the analog archetype. Using digital filters caused high attention to avoid Aliasing when using filter sweeps. Many filters therefore reduce the amount of resonance or don’t open wide enough to not cross the borderline to Aliasing (half sample frequency). Filter sweeps with such filters have been so so, but normally were lacking kind of vitality. The filter implemented in your MINIMAX ASB now provides all the resonances and distortions, you desire. Filter resonance can be fully tuned on and sweeps can be performed without Aliasing, even when exceeding the half sample frequency border. This way also a Filter FM with all the possible side chains occurring is easily possible.

Besides that the envelopes of the MINIMAX ASB don’t need hideaway from the analog paragons. They’re not only fast, but also exactly modeled like the Original’s behavior. Although our major goal for the development of the MINIMAX ASB has been to reach out for getting as close as possible, we decided to also implement some of the never fulfilled dreams of the Original. The envelopes now have an adjustable velocity and the trigger behavior can be easily switched. Moreover the Low-Note-Priority can be changed to Last-NotePriority. You will note, that there’s an extended effects section included now, which can be switched off to receive the Original Sound. And additionally – the Original had only one, but beautiful voice, desperately waiting for others to join. Now it’s all in your hands – you can choose between playing monophonic or polyphonic – it’s up to you.

You will also find our adoration for the Original within the surface. All elements have been adjusted to fit the Original’s behavior. If you may have one of the rare sound sheets, you can even port them now one on one – and then: save them. And after all, you should take some time to touch the wooden parts, this is pure nature handcrafted for this fine instrument and using only natural materials and oil, to get that exiting surface.

Well – as mentioned before: we made this because we loved our work and we really hope you enjoy your MINIMAX ASB with the same intensity, we used to create it – for you.

Technical Specifications
Type: Digital
Synthesis: Virtual Analog
Oscillators: 3
Waveforms: Pulse, Pulse Variable, Saw Down, Saw Up, Sine, Square, Triangle, White Noise
Osc Modulation: Envelope, Glide / Portamento, Keyboard, Knob, Mod Wheel, Pitch Wheel, Sync Hard
Envelopes: 2
Evelope Paramerters: Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release
Filters: 1
Types: 24dB Slope (4-pole), Low Pass, Resonance
Filter Modulation: Envelope, Keyboard, Knob, LFO
LFO: 1
LFO Notes::
+ VCO 3 works at LFO
Polyphony & Tuning
Polyphony: 12
Timbrality: 1
Tuning: Standard
Modes: Mono, Polyphonic
Patches RAM: 128
Patches ROM: 128
Storage: Internal, USB
Editing: USB
+ chorus, delay, overdrive
Case: Desktop
Controls: Velocity, Buttons, Knobs, Mod - Wheel, Pitch -Wheel
Display Type: LED, Numeric
Display Count H: 3
Display Count V: 1
Dimensions (WxDxH): 4 x 21 x 5 (front) / 8 (back) mm
Weight: 3.4 kg
Audio Output Connections: 1/4" Phone Jack, Stereo Main, Stereo Headphone
Audio Output Count: 4
Inputs: 2 x 1/4"
DAC Bits: 32
DAC Frequency Rate: 44.1
Power: 12V DC 1.5 A
Year Released: 2006
Manuals & Documents
MSRP List Price: $899 - convert
Retail Street Price: $799 - convert
Used Price: $500 - $750 - convert
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