Cool Free Stuff: Tube Ohm’s Alpha Ray Subtractive Soft Synth VST
If you’re looking for a new VST toy to play with, look no further than Tube Ohm’s Alpha-Ray. Released earlier this year, Alpha-Ray is a freebie they released in commemoration of their fifth anniversary. It’s essentially a stripped-down version of their monstrous Gamma-Ray plug-in. Alpha-Ray is a fully-functional stereophonic subtractive synthesizer that comes with two oscillators, three LFO’s, polyphonic overdrive, and aftertouch modulation which can easily be controlled via MIDI.
One catch to Alpha-Ray: it costs 5 Euro to access the built-in effects unit. However, this isn’t required in order to run the synth; plenty of sounds can be created from scratch without it. There’s a ton of presets to get you started in addition.
Alpha-Ray has been one of the top-ranking freeware synth VST’s on pretty much all of the roundup sites that gather such programs together. Mac users, I hate to break it to you, but you’re out of luck here. This is a Windows-only affair. Also, there aren’t many videos out there showcasing how Alpha-Ray works, and the best one is unfortunately in German. However, you may still be able to follow along to get a sense of what the dials do to shape the sound. If this is your first foray into the wonderful world of subtractive synthesis, Alpha-Ray is a great starter plug-in.