To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

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man-009
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To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by man-009 » Wed May 01, 2013 2:01 pm

So I have read Virus B sounds warmmer and fuller then A and C. Some even said a bit better then TI. Your thoughts? Thanks for any help. I did see the TI and B post here that did help. Hope it's ok to reflect on this? If not, feel free to let me know. Will check it just to be safe. You can PM me with info.

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by acemonvw » Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:08 pm

I know the question was posted back in May, but I just ran across it.

I at one point had a C (so I can't comment on the comparison of B to A or B to C) and also had a TI polar. I felt that it sounded identical. My thought was that most people that said the TI didn't sound as good as the A, B, or C, were listening to it through USB, not the analog cables... I could be wrong though.

Personally, I couldn't tell the difference. I suspect you won't be able to either, you'll just have differences in polyphony.

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by meatballfulton » Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:55 am

My opinion is when people claim an earlier version of a digital synth sounds warmer I think that what they are hearing (if anything) is higher fidelity in the newer version...faster processor, better DSP algorithms, better D/A converters, wider bandwidth, higher sample rates, more bit depth.

As someone who owned a TI, the only reason I'd buy an A, B or C is because I can't afford a TI. The TI has more features, more polyphony and of course nice DAW integration. It can load and run any patch form the earlier models while the opposite is not true.

Do the TI and B sound the same? Of course not. I think the TI sounds better, others prefer the sound of the B. That's life.
I listened to Hatfield and the North at Rainbow. They were very wonderful and they made my heart a prisoner.

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by Hybrid88 » Fri Nov 15, 2013 5:56 am

I made a similar post about this not that long ago.

I think people always say they prefer the earlier versions of any synth, claiming it sounds better or "warmer". To me though I kinda have a chuckle about that as the B is the last thing I'd describe as warm, sure it can be big and full sounding but it sure as h**l doesn't have the characteristic wide sweet spot or creamy low end that the vintage analogs do.

I've had a B for a while and have messed around with it recently, but haven't really fallen in love with it. I've just bought a Snow which I love from the demos so when that arrives I'll be able to directly compare the two, but at this point I'm very much thinking I'll sell the B. :geek:

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by _dan » Fri Nov 15, 2013 6:18 am

I had an experience that was similar to this with the novation k station, and the next gen, which was the xio. At first listen the xio sounded dead and flat (to me). I pushed all of my k station patches into the xio via sysex, and did a side by side with the xio and k-station (same speakers and mixer all at once). Turns out both units sounded identical. Not sure if that's the case on the virus series, but its worth noting that your ears can play tricks on you, and people tend to believe whatever they want to (self included)
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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by Hybrid88 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:08 pm

^ Yep agreed.

Ok, so I've got the Snow here as well as the B. :)

I've used them both pretty extensively today and here are some of my thoughts;

- Something interesting I noticed was that the volume control on the B was a hard volume (ie post DAC) whereas the control on the Ti is a soft one (Pre DAC).

- Also the volume of the B was much hotter, this could explain any perceived sonic differences.

- Strangely I didn't mind the interface difference at all, the Snow is really quite good even as is, but especially with a computer connected. I found the B isn't that great anyway as there is still quite a bit hidden in menus and the overall layout isn't all that simple or logical (compared to similar synths).

- I really missed the power switch present on the B, annoyingly the Snow only goes to Sleep. :|

- Twice the Snow had a freakout which wasn't fixed with the panic button, (no sound and frozen) a little concerning, especially considering without an off switch you need to pull the cable.

- The B was rock solid, not an issue.

- I would have liked the very useful transpose buttons from the B, but as they are on the full Ti desktop I can see why they chose to drop them.

- It would have been nice to have a data encoder, pressing buttons all the time sucks.


Ok so, how about the sound? I've thought a lot about this. Now I didn't have them side by side on the same patch's so bearing that in mind, I'm loathed to say I heard any real meaningful difference.

Yes the B was much hotter and to me that is likely why some people find it has more presence, I still wouldn't call either "warm", my analogs are warm, to me the Virus sounds full, but not warm. the Ti did have a slightly more plasticky plugin type sheen to it, but that could be down to the higher resolution reverb in comparison to the B. If you want a warm VA though I'd look at the Roland JP8000, that one really surprised me with its depth of sound.

To me the added bonus of having the wavetables, hypersaw, USB and all the added features in the Ti makes it an easy decision, it really does sound incredible and was overall more inspiring to me. Saying that however I can see why people might hang onto the B, it is also a great synth. 8-)

Hope this helps somewhat. ;)

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by man-009 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:19 pm

I got a good price on a ACCESS VIRUS XL rack witch is actually a C and it sounds just as good I think as the B.

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by Hybrid88 » Thu Nov 28, 2013 1:10 pm

Ok cool, enjoy they are all nice machines ;)

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by acemonvw » Thu Nov 28, 2013 2:39 pm

I'm confused... You already had a virus kb, why did you ask about the b versus the snow? And then why get another Version of the C?

http://www.vintagesynth.com/forum/viewt ... =5&t=71978

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by man-009 » Sun Dec 01, 2013 1:51 am

i get a ton of gear a year and go back and forth on many is why. buy, sell...ect! i had the XL, b, A, KC, snow, and now xl rack againl. some of these i have 3 times even. lol. it's a problem i have....it's a sickness. i think i enjoy the ups truck. lol. i have a hard time trying to pick one to stick with. i have a virus xl rack now but it has issues. so many synths i wish i never sold as well. as i said, i have a problem. I'm addicted to buying and selling i think. i always change my mind. problem! I'm sure I'm not the only one here who does that!

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by acemonvw » Sun Dec 01, 2013 2:50 am

Lol, no, you're not the only one... I too had this problem. For some reason, I no longer do, not sure why. Maybe it's depression. Just remember to make the music, you can probably do a lot with not a lot of gear. Or just get something and stick with it a while. I ended up selling some things I regret, but I bought back the things I really liked, and didn't buy the things that didn't add a whole lot. One virus is enough, I'm sure... After you get something, don't look at what else is out there for a while!!!!

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by man-009 » Sun Dec 01, 2013 3:44 am

Thanks! That is my problem, always looking at gear! A sickness I tell you!!!!

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by Solderman » Sun Dec 01, 2013 5:16 am

man-009 wrote:So I have read Virus B sounds warmmer and fuller then A and C. Some even said a bit better then TI. Your thoughts? Thanks for any help. I did see the TI and B post here that did help. Hope it's ok to reflect on this? If not, feel free to let me know. Will check it just to be safe. You can PM me with info.
Bwaahaaahaahaaa! Anyone that tells you these things is either selling something or so full of s**t that they will next ask you to enjoy their ambient minimal compositions as if they are the next great composer of the 21st century. Don't fall for this kind of horseshit. The later models are the same software on different hardware. The sonic differences are subtle for similar patches.

The Virus b does indeed run a bit hotter and a simple change in levels can make alot of perceived difference. Truth is, it's a 2nd generation VA with aisling in the upper pitch register and a very digital nature when all is said and done. It won't fool you once you've heard the real deal.

Get access to play one, use your ears and don't ask these kind of questions expecting a straight answer.
I am no longer in pursuit of vintage synths. The generally absurd inflation from demand versus practical use and maintenance costs is no longer viable. The internet has suffocated and vanquished yet another wonderful hobby. Too bad.
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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by Bitexion » Sun Dec 01, 2013 9:17 am

Some Norwegian guy recorded alot of really good Jean-Michel Jarre covers on a Virus B and had them on a website. Replicated all the effects and everything.
Can't remember his name, I used to listen to those when I was wondering what synth to get as my first VA.

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Re: To B or not to B? that is the Virus....

Post by HUBA » Sun Dec 01, 2013 5:28 pm


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