In the VST world there’s no shortage of virtual bass plugins, many of them sampled at an extremely high level of detail.
IK Multimedia got in touch with days a few days ago to announce MODO BASS, in their words “a breakthrough physical modeling technology that brings a completely new level of realism and playability to the world of virtual bass instruments. MODO BASS is a completely customisable physically modelled virtual bass that recreates the electric bass and how it’s played – from the physical instrument and everything that makes it sound the way it does, to the human technique of how the instrument is played and its sonic performance, to the entire sound signal chain – no detail is left out.
This pioneering approach to virtual instrument technology recreates the dynamic interaction between the player, the bass, effects chain and amplifier that until now has never been realized nor recreated with traditional virtual instruments. This intense evaluation and modeling process gives players and producers access to a limitless universe of bass sound, an unmatched level of playability and the most realistic, lifelike sounding dynamic performance. No other bass virtual instrument can even come close to offering what MODO BASS provides.
8 Years In The Making
Eight years in the making and developed in collaboration with one of Europe’s oldest universities, MODO BASS utilizes a breakthrough technology to breathe life into bass tracks. Unlike traditional sample-based virtual instruments, MODO BASS utilizes modal synthesis technology and an ultra-optimized sound engine to model each string as a nonlinear resonator where the string’s acoustic behavior is determined by its physical parameters as well as by the interaction of the string with fretboard, body and pick-ups of the instrument. The action of the player is then modeled as a nonlinear physical interaction with certain areas on the string surface. Then using IK’s cutting edge analog modeling expertise, the amp and effects rig of the electric bass is added to the sound chain.
All of this gives MODO BASS the ability to create sound in real time based on the construction and components of the bass combined with the player technique, finesse and the ever-changing dynamic interactions between the two. In short, MODO BASS brings – for the first time – ever-changing, hyper-realistic, living-breathing bass sound and performance to the world of virtual instruments. And since it doesn’t use samples, MODO BASS has an extremely small memory footprint.
Virtually every electric bass sound
The foundation of MODO BASS is a collection of 12 physically modeled iconic electric basses that span the history of bass sound in recorded music – more bass models than available in most other virtual instruments. Bass models include “60s P-Bass” based on an Alder body 60s era Fender Precision Bass®, “70’s P-Bass” based on an Ash body Fender Precision Bass®, “70’s J-Bass” based on an Alder body Fender Jazz Bass®; “Modern J-Bass” based on an Ash body Fender Jazz Bass®, “Devil Bass” based on Gibson® EB-0; “Bass Man 5” based on Music Man® StingRay 5-string; “Rick n’ Bass” based on Rickenbacker® 4003; “Studio Bass” based on Yamaha® RB5; “Violin Bass” based on a Hofner® Violin Bass, “Thunder Bass” based on a Gibson® Thunderbird, “Japan Bass” based on an Ibanez® Soundgear, and “Flame Bass” based on Warwick® Streamer.
Every detail of each bass has been meticulously analysed and modelled to capture the true sonic character of the original basses – the shape and type, the wood used for the body and neck construction, the hardware components like bridge and tuners, the original onboard electronics and controls – every aspect and detail has been modelled and recreated to provide the highest degree of sonic authenticity of the original. But the sounds available with MODO BASS extend far beyond the 12 modelled basses; with the available customisation features, users can craft virtually every electric bass sound imaginable.
Customised, ever-changing sound
MODO BASS is able to produce an unlimited palette of bass sounds because everything can be customised. Unlike other bass instruments, users are able to adjust and personalize each aspect of the instrument that contributes to its tone profile – playing style, strings, pickups, pickup placement, electronics, tone settings, action, stomp box effects and amp settings. The combination of these customisation options opens up a limitless universe of bass sound covering every imaginable and desirable tone. And just like a real bass player, every expression and interaction with the instrument will be unique.
Totally controllable in real time
MODO BASS also provides MIDI control of critical parameters that can be automated in real time. With the MIDI Control section, players control and adjust the application of vibrato, the playing style, the application of Mute technique and the amount of slide technique applied while playing. The frequency of the vibrato, the amount of the bend, plus the amount of slide and detach noise while playing can all be controlled in real time on the fly.
Keyswitching in MODO BASS allows players to switch on the fly between chord mode and note mode, the type of stroke used for playing, the fingers used and the method of playing, which provides the ability to completely customise the sound in real time.”
Pricing and availability
MODO BASS is available now from the IK Multimedia online store for a special introductory price of $/€149.99* until December 4, 2016. After that date, MODO BASS will be $/€299.99* and a crossgrade will be available for $/€199.99 ** to qualified users.
*Any previous purchase of an IK Multimedia software title with a value of $/€99.99 or more qualifies for crossgrade pricing.
**All prices excluding taxes.