QuadraSID 6581 -reviewed by Thomas Detert / August 2001

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When i stoped composing and releasing C64-SID Tunes in 1994 , it wasn't because i was tired of the sound, it was more that the C64 Game-Market dropped at once and the SID Chip had reached it's limit at this time for me.But in the last 5 years, i always wanted something that do sound like the SID in my commercial CD-Releases 'cos the SID-Sound itself was still in my ears!
Quadrasid Screenshots

But what to do ? Building up the C64 again ? Working in this very tiny Editor to create sounds and then to do a sampling of it ? Would have been a way , but its not really comfortable, is it? Another expensive way came along THE SIDSTATION but this is only available in Scandinavia and for a price of 1500 DM ?! Not really a real solution... So i did a few samplings for the 2'nd 666 - Longplay But i just sampled percussive Sounds and it proved to me that these unique sounds do fit in into popular music of today. Now,there seems to be the first real SID solution for me, the long awaited first C64-VST-Host- Instrument, called QuadraSID 6581 by reFX!

After listening to the DEMO-Tune, done by Chris Huelsbeck on the reFX - Website, i was really thrilled and i had to order a copy for myself. For all of you who are interested, ordering ONLINE is very simple and fast , without having any problems with SHARE IT or re FX! After paying the 59,99$ / 64,38 € per Bank-Swift, i recieved the MAC-Version as an EMAIL (1 MB).

Installation ,was as usual very easy on a MAC and it should be easy as well on a PC. Just put the the QUADRASID into the Logic / Qubase VST Plug-Ins Folder, start the Sequencer-Host, opening the Instrument-Enviroment then choose QuadraSID, double click on the Icon and the Main-Window appears (Screenshots available on the reFX WEBsite www.refx.net)
My Hardware/Software was a MAC G4 with MAC OS 9.1-384 MB RAM, LOGIC AUDIO Platinum 4.7.3 and the QuadraSID Version 1.2 !

The first impression is really great, it looks clear and everything can be located very well.What i really liked at first, was that there is a KEYBOARD at the button of the main screen,which is neccessary if you want to create sounds without having a Midi-Keyboard. The second plus for QuadraSID is that there are Sound-Patches on Board. This demonstrates the most important Issue of the QuadraSID - THE SOUND - !!

The first standard sound is a BASEDRUM (CH 808 Base), which is OK, but not that interesting for me, because Drums have never really been the strongest thing of the SID, even if big talents like Hubbard and Maniacs of Noise have proved that it is possible to create good and strong drums! My tip is to choose CH Arpeggio Synth to get a first real impression of the QuadraSID-Sound! My first thought was: YES!!!! this is what i have been searching for, it really does sound fantastic + very close to original SID!

After going through the rest of the SOUND-PATCHES you will see that QuadraSID is worth buying! But what about creating your own Sounds to make your SID-Tunes as unique as possible?( i remember me listing to CYBERNOID by Jeroen Tel, i was blasted away by it and thought how he did these sounds, not to talk about the composition!!)
And here we have the first little MINUS - NO MANUAL !!!! Uppps, in fact that i really do hate manuals, so this isn't that big of a problem, but for beginners and even for experts it's needfull anyway.
So you have to choose the trial and error principles which can be very usefull to get into a Synth 'cos it's learning by doing, what i prefer, to be honest!

I couldn't really locate any annoying bugs in this early version. Everthing works fine.Sometimes when you open more QuadraSID there are some Sound-init Problems,just press stop and start on your sequencer again and that solves the problem. I didn't have this problem on LOGIC 4.7.2, so i guess it's a little update problem by Emagic.
The CPU-use is on a very low level, even if you use more than one QuadraSID's at a time. For a user with little Hardware this is a big PLUS!

What do i wish for the future ? A better Load & Save option, a compare button is missing for the sound creation, but would be a nice feature and to change the values with + / - as well (Now you have to put in the values directly )

For me the QuadraSID is the next step into the future of SID-Music.It's a fantastic tool to create good SID-music without having any limitations. This is what we all wanted , combine SID -Sound with real drums and pads,putting a delay on the lead or a reverb on the Fx,put vocals on your sid track or just create normal SID-Music ... there is NO limitation. I am expecting a lot of new SID-music Styles with this SID-plug In.

Finally, i will recommend QuadraSID 6581 for everyone who is seriously interested into SID-Music.Please support this Software by ordering an original from reFX! Maybe this will be the first VST-synth with no Crack available,would be fine for further support! Remembering a good software is always worth buying!

8 / 10

It's a great piece of Software,really.

Remix64 Silver Seal Of Approval