Sound Quality of the Virus TI vs. Soft synths

  • Hello, I am wondering why when I A/B compare the virus beside any of the NI synths like Massive, Reaktor, and FM8, - who do these ones sound so thin compared to the Virus? They do not have that depth to them - after I got my TI, then those other ones just sounded like toys to me.

    But there are advocates for NI saying that the NI ones are as good too, but I really think they sound poor and cheesy compared to the Virus TI. Does anyone know why this is the case?

  • I'm not a huge fan of Massive or Reaktor - always sounded generally a bit muddy to my ear.
    I do love their FM synths, though - and more so when the programmer really knows what he's doing. Check out - usually all parts in the videos are made with multiple FM8 instances

    Generally speaking, I think there's two main reasons you find huge differences in the sound quality between the Virus and other synths, especially software:
    1: you've become accustomed to its sound being present in an enormous amount of tracks, so that it's what your ear has set as a standard
    2: the Virus has been worked on for years by Access and the code is so refined that they have an edge over people that are relatively new; it sounds like it does because they love their product, or at least that's what it sounds like to me. This is true for other hardware manufacturers and I'm pretty sure it's the same for other small software makers, like Lennar Digital (who makes Sylenth1) or even the free synth1 by Ichiro Toda.
    Just my 2 cents ofc.

  • For me it seems that virtual instruments sound bad mostly because the summing is bad. Sound card's DA converter has got nothing to do with it. There are very few who record their material from audio interface outputs to tape or something - that's the only way when DA is important. Otherwise it's all being exported/bounced to a file.

  • I have numerous soft synths and the Virus is unmatched for sound quaility. Having said that, there's an advantage of having a dedicated piece of hardware assisting that sound. The only softsyth that comes close to the depth and resonance of the Virus is U-he's Zebra 2.5. Phenomenal synth! Fun too!

  • The quality of the sound from the softsynths all depends on the quality of your soundcard and AD converters used.

    Partially true: a synth programmed like shite will sound shite on Apogee. It's the case for many commercial plug-ins.