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ARGON8M

8 voice wavetable synthesiser

Leaning on the heritage of our legendary OO series synthesisers, ARGON8M is a modern wavetable synth for music performers, producers and sound designers. With it’s transparent and rich sound, an array of realtime controls, MPE support, a clear structured user interface and integrated performance tools, ARGON8M is a unique instrument, designed to deliver an unmatched sonic experience.

The sleek desktop/rackmount aluminium enclosure design fits on every table or in every rack. MODALapp gives easy access to all AGRON8M functions and runs on macOS/Windows/iOS/iPadOS and Android devices and is also available in AU/VST3 plug-in formats as MODALplugin.

Perform with unique wavetable sounds, ranging from lush pads, soaring leads, moving soundscapes and earth shuttering basses

Create and save your own signature sonic textures with morphable waveforms, analogue-style morphable filter, an immersive modulation matrix and flexible digital effects

Bring performance to a new level with MPE support, the integrated 512-note Realtime/Step Sequencer, 32-step programmable Arpeggiator and hugely powerful Animation Lanes

Use the included rack brackets to mount ARGON8M into a 19” rack or use the synth on your producer desktop thanks to it sleek tabletop design

Integrate the ARGON8 wavetable synth into your production and live performances with the full-size MIDI connections and the 3.5mm Sync Ins and Outs

Access all synthesiser functions and update ARGON8 via the free MODALapp, available on macOS, Windows, iOS, iPadOS, Android and AU/VST3

Demos

Videos

A Universe of Waves

ARGON8M’s sophisticated wavetable synth engine generates thousands of different sonic combinations with its seamless waveform morphing feature. Explore ambient evolving textures, classic pads and modern chords, brutal basses, dark drones and psychedelic noise textures – ARGON8M is a true sound designer’s playground. Process and cross modulate the waves using either the 32 static wavetable modifiers and unlock additional wavetable variations. The Vintage and Oscillator Free Run parameters allow to alter the organic fabric of the wavetable textures by emulating the behaviour of vintage synths’ behaviours, and let digital wavetable patches sound more analogue than ever. With ARGON8M, virtually every sound imagination comes to life.

Synth Extravaganza

Eight morphable filter types deliver contemporary and classic options to shape your sounds in every direction. With multiple 2-Pole and 4-Pole filters available, drastic or subtle changes in the sonic wavetable content is at your fingertips. Two flexible audio-rate (1x polyphonic) LFOs can be routed to a huge number of destinations using the modulation matrix and sync to internal or external tempo. Three dedicated envelopes for the filter, amp and modulation provide excessive control over dynamics and expression. A sophisticated 12-slot modulation matrix supports easy assignments of complex modulation routes to keep the sound evolving. 4 common modulation routings are pre-set here to free up space for more interesting ideas.

On the Move

Bring performance to a new level with the integrated 512-note Realtime / Step Sequencer with 4 powerful Animation Lanes, that instils massive and complex transitions to the sound in a way that LFOs and Envelopes simply won’t provide. The polyphonic 64-note step sequencer mode enables easy step input for note and animation values to create exciting melodic patterns.  

Multiple sequencer trigger modes coupled with the powerful onboard arpeggiator (programmable up to 32 steps) and performance features such as Chord hold, Inversions, Transpose, Sustain Latch and the Joystick turn the ARGON8 wavetable synth a performers and players dream.

Feel the Sound

ARGON8M’s professional approach to serious artists finds perfect expression in the rugged steel and aluminium chassis. The desktop design fits on every producer’s table. Included rackmounts help to mount ARGON8M into a live or studio rack. For direct access of the parameters, ARGON8M features 13 switched encoders, 13 encoders, 9 buttons, and an X/Y joystick for pitch and modulation.

Your Own FX

Reshape your sounds completely with the onboard stereo effects engine. ARGON8M’s 3-slot FX engine enables in-depth programming and can combine up to 27 FX algorithms to add character and depth to your sound, including Distortion (waveshaping overdrive), Drive, multiple Chorus and Phaser variants, Flanger (Pos), Flanger (Neg), Tremolo, LoFi, Rotary, Stereo Delay, Ping-Pong Delay, X-Over Delay and multiple dense and spacious Reverbs.

Connections for any Environment

With a comprehensive set of connections, ARGON8M feels home in every environment. Control the synth using USB, monitor with headphones or using the dedicated line outputs, sync with external gear using the full-size MIDI in and out or the 3.5 mm Sync in or outputs and take control of your sound using the built-in Sustain and Expression inputs. Expanding the sound of ARGON8M is possible by polychaining any two ARGON8 units for 16 voices and 64 oscillators.

From the press

Sonicstate – “An instrument with character, and one that is easy to get lost in when tweaking away.”

Professional Audio Magazine – “…Such a package of hardware including app, performance features and effects has never existed before.”

Bonedo.de – “Easy to use, unique sounding instrument with premium hardware for an attractive price”
Audiostaja – “If someone is looking for modern sounds to refresh or expand their sonic palette, I highly recommend this instrument.”
Future Music Magazine – “One of those synths that feels like you could explore it for many years!”
Amazona.de – “Insane possibilities, and the Wavetable oscillators offer endless options.”

Free MODALapp for
immersive sound programming sessions

The free MODALapp brings the comfort of screen-based editing on your computer or mobile device. Available as a standalone app for macOS, Windows, iOS, iPadOS or Android systems and in VST3 and AU plug-in formats it is the perfect companion for synth enthusiasts looking to deep dive to all sound forming and performance parameters to create their own signature sounds, and to backup and manage patches and sequences.  

Specification

Polyphony

True 8 voice polyphonic

MPE

Supports MPE-compatible MIDI controllers, allowing you to apply polyphonic control and expression to individual notes

Oscillators

32 high-resolution wavetable oscillators, 4 per voice

180 carefully crafted wavetables split into 36 banks of 5 morphable waveform sets Additional PWM bank and 3 noise/modulation banks accessible on Oscillator 2

32 static wavetable modifiers including, de-rez, wave folders, waveshapers, phase shapers and rectify can be applied to the 180 wavetables to give a mind-boggling array of permutations and new waveshapes.

8 types of oscillator modifier including Phase Mod (FM), Ring Mod, Amp Mod, Hard Sync and Windowed Sync

Voice Drift and Width controls that help to create massive stereo soundscapes

Vintage Parameter and Oscillator Free Run to emulate the behaviours of vintage analogue synths

Filter

Eight Filter types

Two ‘Standard’ filters are 2-pole state variable filters, based on the resonant filter found in other Modal synthesisers, morphing through: LP > BP > HP or LP > Notch > HP

Two ‘Classic’ 2-Pole state variable with a more rounded character and a softer resonance response, morphing through: LP > BP > HP

‘Ladder’ – 4 pole resonant ladder filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: LP > BP > HP

‘Ladder Hybrid’ – 1 pole resonant ladder filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: LP + Notch > Notch > HP + Notch

‘Ladder Phaser’ – Resonant ladder filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: Notch > Phaser

‘Sallen-Key’ – 2 pole resonant Sallen-Key Filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: LP > BP

Modulation

3 dedicated envelope generators for AMP, MOD and FILTER that can be accessed independently or all three simultaneously including negative (reverse) versions and multiple envelope curve options

2 Audio rate LFO’s with tempo sync (one poly, one global). Polyphonic LFO can sync to frequency divisions

8 assignable modulation slots and 4 additional fixed modulation routings for common assignments with 11 modulation sources and 52 modulation destinations

Sequencer and Arpeggiator

Polyphonic Real-time sequencer with 512 notes and four recordable/editable parameter animations (Delay FX, LFO’s, sequencer and arpeggiator can be either clocked internally or externally)

Polyphonic Step Sequencer with 64 steps, 8 notes per step, 4 lanes of Parameter-Lock style animation, Step Input mode, multiple playback modes including gate modes and rest function

Built-In sophisticated programmable arpeggiator of 32 steps with rest capability with up to 2048 steps before repeating, multiple Arpeggiator direction modes 

FX

Waveshaping distortion

Three incredibly powerful independent and user-configurable stereo FX engines for 26 Effects algorithms, incl. Drive, Chorus, Phaser, Flanger, Tremolo, LoFi, Rotary, Stereo Delay, Ping-Pong Delay, X-Over Delay and Reverb.

User Memory

500 patch memories, all fully editable and ships with 300 factory programs

100 sequencer presets that can be linked to any patch for quickly loading arrangements

100 FX presets

8 Quick Recall slots accessible from the panel for quickly loading your favourite patches

Controls and Performance

13 switched encoders, 13 encoders, 9 buttons

4-axis joystick that can be assigned to a huge range of modulation destinations and virtually ‘locked’ when desired

Multiple voice modes, Mono, Poly, Unison 2, unison 4, unison 8, Stack 2 and Stack 4

Glide/Portamento with both legato and staccato modes

Chord Invert control to easily create chord inversions and variation 

Inputs and Outputs

6.35 mm / 1/4″ TS dual-mono line outputs

6.35 mm / 1/4″ TRS headphone output

3.5 mm / 1/8″ TRS stereo audio input

MIDI DIN In and Out

3.5 mm / 1/8″ TS Analogue clock sync In and Out

Class compliant MIDI over USB connection

6.35 mm / 1/4″ TRS expression pedal input

6.35 mm / 1/4″ TS sustain pedal input

Enclosure and Display

Tabletop-style enclosure, brackets for 19″ 3U rackmount included (requires 1U free space above or right-angled connectors)

1.54-inch large OLED display for instant visual feedback at all times of playing/editing

Power

Power: DC-9.0V – 1.5A centre-positive

Editor Software

Free MODALapp software editor available for macOS, Windows, iOS and Android

MODALapp can also be run within your Digital Audio Workstation (DAW), with VST3 and AU versions available

General

Dimensions (L x W x H): 384 x 127 x 81 mm / 15.1″ x 5″ x 3.2″

Weight: 2.1 kg / 4.6 lbs

User Manual

User Manual v3.0

flag-english

English

Quick Start Guide

Firmware

Firmware v3.0

Dein ARGON8 lässt sich ganz einfach über die kostenlose MODALapp updaten.

Features:

  • Added 15 new FX including a new reverb algorithm:
    1. Reverb V2
    2. Phaser V2
    3. Chorus V2
    4. Unisoniser
    5. Compressor
    6. Three Band EQ
    7. Mono Drive (Hard Clip)
    8. Mono Drive (Soft Clip)
    9. Mono Drive (Rectify)
    10. Mono Drive (Fold)
    11. Stereo Drive (Hard Clip)
    12. Stereo Drive (Soft Clip)
    13. Stereo Drive (Rectify)
    14. Stereo Drive (Fold)
    15. Utility
  • 4 New Filter Types: Distortion control is used to control filter drive when these types are active.
    1. Ladder – 4 pole resonant ladder filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: LP > BP > HP
    2. Ladder Hybrid – 1 pole resonant ladder filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: LP + Notch > Notch > HP + Notch
    3. Ladder Phaser – Resonant ladder filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: Notch > Phaser
    4. Sallen-Key – 2 pole resonant Sallen-Key Filter with pre-filter drive, morphing through: LP > BP
  • Vintage Parameter – Emulating the behaviour of vintage synths by introducing variation between the voices
  • Osc Free Run – Emulating the behaviour of analogue oscillators by allowing them to run freely
  • 7 new arpeggiator directions:
    1. Chord
    2. Pendulum 2 – Repeats the last note when reversing direction
    3. N-Pendulum 2 – Pendulum 2 in note number order
    4. Reverse Pendulum – A reverse version of Pendulum
    5. N-Reverse Pendulum – A reverse version of N-Pendulum
    6. Reverse Pendulum 2 – A reverse version of Pendulum 2
    7. N-Reverse Pendulum 2 – A reverse version of N-Pendulum 2

Improvements:

  • Improved internal gain staging for increased output volume in most cases
  • Improved the screen’s osc parameter pages / waveform display in the following ways:
    • The waveform display now has the selected WavMod processor applied to it
    • The Wave, Bank and WavMod parameter pages now display both the waveform and text value
  • Improved the screen’s filter graph / parameter pages in the following ways:
    • Improved the graph to be a more accurate representation of the filter
    • The Type parameter page now displays both the graph and text value
  • Improved Audio In sound quality

Fixes:

  • Fixed a potential arpeggiator note ordering issue when playing arps with an arp octave value of 2 or more
  • Fixed a potential arpeggiator note ordering issue when playing arp patterns using a pendulum direction mode
  • Fixed issue where the first loop of the arpeggiator sequence may not contain all pressed notes when using the ‘backwards’ direction mode
  • Fixed issue wheres some parameters would not be properly forwarded in polychain mode
  • Fixed an aftertouch to cutoff modulation scaling issue for classic filters
  • Fixed an FEG depth scaling issue
  • Fixed bug in polychain mode where DIN Thru could still be active on polychain slaves, leading to undefined behaviour.

Features:

  • Added 12 new Wavetable Banks (60 new waveforms)
  • Added OSC2 Tune Mode control which allows OSC2 tuning to be linked to OSC1 frequency

Fixes:

  • Fixed Tempo Synced LFO2 Rate mod assignment scaling
  • Fixed edge case DSP usage issues
  • Fixed modulation destinations not being cleared when setting a mod dest to ‘-‘ in the app or on screen

Fixes:

  • Fixed an issue that could cause LFO2 rate to be recalled incorrectly in some cases
  • Fixed issue where assigning modulation to PWM bank shape could cause audio glitches
  • Fixed sequencer names falling out of sync with the app in some cases

Features:

  • Added more LFO synced divisions
  • Added Extended Oscillator Drift to upper range of Drift control. Rescaled patches accordingly.
  • Added ‘Master’ Clock Source mode that always sends out MIDI clock

Improvements:

  • Updated factory sound-set
  • Improved MIDI reliability on macOS Big Sur
  • Improved arpeggiator sync when working with external sequencers
  • Improved expression pedal behaviour
  • Improved LFO1 sync when clocked from external MIDI

Fixes:

  • Fixed an issue that could cause Unison-8 levels to be inconsistent
  • Fixed issue where an external CC 0 (bank) message would cause the screen to switch to the ‘play’ page, if screen switching is enabled for external MIDI messages.
  • Fixed negative LFO1 Rate mod assignments increasing LFO speed
  • Fixed an edge case when loading a step sequence with 0 steps
  • Fixed Y+ to LFO1 assignment not always working as expected
  • Fixed negative modulation of LFO1 rate increasing the rate in some cases
  • Fixed app sync of XY lock parameter

Features:

  • Preset Auto Load Setting – Enable this setting (found in ‘Settings – General’ on the screen) to load patches, sequences and FX presets by scrolling and ‘hovering’ on a preset – no click required.

Improvements:

  • Improved the behaviour and response of the two screen encoders
  • Improved the ‘Glide’ parameter on screen to show when in ‘Auto Glide’ mode compared to ‘Legato’ mode
  • Improved the behaviour of the screen encoder when controlling synced delay times or synced LFO rates so that it increments in the same direction as the dedicated panel controls.
  • Improved interaction between Step Sequence Gate and Step Edit modes
  • Improved sustain pedal behaviour (prevented potential double triggering of sustain messages)
  • Improved the stream of MIDI messages from the joystick X axis when ‘Joystick Pitch Bend Out’ is disabled

Fixes:

  • Fixes for freezes when connected to an external device through USB
  • Fixed issue where a negative MEG Depth could cause issues with FX3
  • Fixed issue where chord invert wasn’t being saved to patches
  • Fixed issue where the ‘Joystick Mod Wheel Out’ setting couldn’t be disabled
  • Fixed issue on ARGON8M where the joystick axis calibration settings would control the incorrect axes (e.g. the X+ setting would calibrate X-, the Y+ setting would calibrate Y-)
  • Fixed issue where the onset / attack of MPE notes may randomly sound incorrect
  • Fixed issue where changing the ‘Keyboard Local’ setting value would incorrectly change the displayed ‘Arp/Seq Out’ setting value on the screen
  • Fixed issue where a burst of aftertouch messages was being sent to the MIDI DIN out on boot
  • Fixed potential issue with setting animator parameters from the app
  • Fixed issue where the screen control for the osc ‘Tune’ parameters wasn’t incrementing correctly
  • Fixed hanging notes issue when in MONO mode with the clock source set to MIDI but with no external MIDI clock present
  • Fixed issue where it was possible to crash the synth by sending it a large number of MIDI notes whilst renaming or confirming a preset save from the screen
  • Fixed issue where it wasn’t possible to hold the MOD EG button to momentarily perform mod assignments
  • Corrected synced LFO rates text on the screen
  • Fixed issue where the screen control for the LFO rate parameters weren’t incrementing correctly with synced rates or frequency division rates
  • Fixed issues with the LFO2 rate encoder behaviour on ARGON8M

Improvements:

  • Improved Audio In quality, volume and interaction with v2.0 gain structure
  • Improved stability in MIDI loop situations
  • Reduced envelope clicking
  • The ‘Randomise Patch’ function now uses a SysEx message instead of CC 121. CC 121 (‘Reset All Controllers’) has been implemented as per the MIDI specification – resets control values for mod wheel, expression pedal, sustain pedal, aftertouch and pitch bend. This improves compatibility with external MIDI software / hardware that transmits CC 121 for its intended purpose.
  • Randomising the patch from MODALapp now shows an alert on the screen (like when randomising the patch from the panel).

Fixes:

  • Fixed issue introduced in v2.0 where feedback for ping-pong and x-over delay types was too high
  • Fixed issue where assigning a mod slot with a MIDI loop present would create an infinite stream of MIDI messages
  • Fixed issues where LFO1 synced rate wouldn’t update when falling back from external clock source to internal
  • Fixed issue where changing patches when the sequencer is running could cause incorrect patch values
  • Fixed case where sequencer gate transpose offset wasn’t reset when loading another sequence
  • Fixed issue where it was possible to start step sequences containing no steps from MODALapp
  • Fixed issue where receiving a MIDI stop message when recording in Step Sequencer mode could leave the synth in an incorrect recording state, causing issues such as ‘previewed’ steps (pressing the ‘Edit’ encoder in Step Edit mode) being added to the step sequence.
  • Fixed issue where step sequence position LEDs would not clear when disabling recording from MODALapp
  • Fixed issue where disabling sequence recording whilst in the pre-roll would leave the sequence in an incorrect playing state
  • Fixed issue where enabling sequence recording from MODALapp wouldn’t show the pre-roll LED animation
  • Fixed issue where enabling any of the MIDI DIN in or out filters could result in aftertouch from the DIN-in not being processed or aftertouch not being sent out of the DIN-out
  • Fixed issue where some v2.0 features were not kept in sync when in polychain mode
  • Fixed issue where channel aftertouch from any source wasn’t being forwarded to polychain slaves correctly
  • Fixed issue where parameters that use MIDI CCs 32-63 may be completely ignored by the voice engine if sent directly after the parameter / CC numbered 32 less than it (e.g. CC#0 followed by CC#32), until another parameter / CC is sent.
  • Fixed issue where arp and seq MIDI notes may be sent out on the wrong MIDI channel
  • Fixed issue where randomising a patch wouldn’t display the ‘patch edited’ asterisk on the screen.

Other:

  • New content for factory reset process (2.0 patches, 2.0 sequences, 2.0 FX presets)

Features:

  • Envelope Types – 7 new envelope curves including longer envelopes
  • Gain Boost setting for automatic output gain increase
  • Polyphonic Step Sequencer
    • 64 Steps with 8 notes per step and 4 lanes of animation
    • Parameter-Lock Style animation with 1 value per step
    • Step Input mode – sequence notes and animation one step at a time
    • Step Sequence editing on screen and using MODALapp
    • Multiple playback modes including gate modes
    • Rest Function
    • Input Quantise when in clock mode
  • MPE Support – ARGON8 now supports MPE-compatible MIDI controllers, allowing you to apply polyphonic control and expression to individual notes
  • Chord invert – easily create chord inversions and variations
  • Delay Modes – adding cleaner delays and longer delay times
  • Headphone Volume control – allowing finer control over headphone output levels
  • Joystick Calibration Settings

Fixes:

  • Fixed some animator parameters not updating on the panel when synth is not on MIDI channel 1
  • Fixed ‘boot error’ occasionally seen when powering on the synth or after an update
  • Fixed issue where switching clock source when no MIDI clock is being received would cause internal clock to double or half in speed
  • ‘Inactive’ (crossed-out) screen params are no longer controllable from the screen controls
  • Fixed issue where turning the right screen encoder whilst a screen alert box is being displayed may cause incorrect MIDI messages to be sent out
  • Fixed issue where assigning modulation to envelope parameters could change the value slightly at 0 depth
  • Fixed LED glitch when holding the sustain button
  • Fixed issue where loading patches with linked sequences may have incorrect patch data values depending on the sequence animation lane parameters
  • Patch editing asterisk no longer appears when stopping the sequence
  • Fixed issue where sequencer hold and loop functions could be performed when sequence isn’t running
  • Fixed issue where saving a patch / sequence / FX preset into a new slot from MODALapp would result in the synth being out of sync in regards to the loaded preset number
  • Fixed issue where the modulation ‘Depth’ front panel control wouldn’t always work as intended
  • Fixed issue where initialising a sequence from the screen control wouldn’t put the sequencer into the correct state
  • Fixed issue where pressing the Play button would occasionally cause random LEDs to flicker
  • Y+ to LFO depth screen param now specifies it’s LFO1
  • Fixed issue where screen would sometimes display incorrect FX values after loading an FX preset
  • Pressing ‘ModSlot’ whilst in a ‘Smart’ Screen Switch mode will now result in the screen staying on the mod slot page

Improvements:

  • Improved audio quality and lowered noise floor
  • Increased range of Patch Gain control to help balance quieter patches
  • Animation lane parameters now editable on screen
  • Improved the location of the Delay Sync parameter on the screen so that it is now on the page of the FX slot that contains a Delay FX
  • Split settings page on screen into 4 separate pages (MIDI,  UI & Controls, Sequencer, General) to improve screen navigation
  • Renamed ‘Chord’ parameter to ‘Chord Latch’ on the screen (to prevent confusion with the new Chord Invert parameter)
  • Overhauled interaction between arp programming and sequencer recording (now mutually exclusive)
  • Added ‘Choice / Confirm’ pages on the screen for Sequence Init, Polychain Master and Settings Reset

Features:

  • Arp/Sustain Latch Mode – Press and release a note / chord to sustain it, press a new note / chord to overwrite the existing one. This functions as a classic arp hold that can also be used when the arp is off. Hold the ‘Sustain’ button for one second when turning on sustain to enable Sustain Latch Mode, turning off sustain will clear the latch mode.
  • Polychain Implementation
  • Added new global setting for allowing the keyboard octave parameter to also affect MIDI-in notes
  • Support for ARGON8M models
  • Added an on-screen MIDI monitor to help diagnose MIDI issues
  • Added some new aftertouch curves

Fixes:

  • Fixed bug where disabling sustain whilst holding notes in the arpeggiator would remove all notes and not just the sustained notes
  • Fixed issue where the screen would sometimes incorrectly display the modulation assign ‘latched’ alert box
  • Fixed issue where the ‘Edit’ encoder / switch wouldn’t work correctly when controlling the Mod Slot Status parameters
  • Fixed issue where it was possible to get hanging arp notes when creating arp patterns
  • Fixed potential note hang in sequencer when using arp and note input quantise.
  • Fixed some edge cases with sequencer note recording

Improvements:

  • Improved the patch randomisation algorithm

Software Editor

The free MODALapp brings the comfort of screen-based editing on your computer or mobile device. Available as standalone app for macOS, Windows, iOS, iPadOS or Android systems and in VST3 and AU plug-in formats it is the perfect companion for synth enthusiasts looking to deep-dive to all soundforming and performance parameters to create their own signature sounds.