Native Instruments Vokator - a name to conjure with; an effect to conjure with. A classic vocoder effect superimposes the characteristics of one audio signal onto another. So, connect a microphone to Vokator's input A and you can use your voice to shape and control whatever sound is at input B. Speak into A and play a synthesizer chord into B, and your voice will be superimposed onto the synthesizer chord. Input A can be switched between live input to the plug-in and Vokator's file-player. You can use the file player to play sound files directly from the hard drive. Input B can be live or can be taken from the built-in synthesizer or sampler. These inputs are each passed via a compressor and a delay module into the frequency-analysis sections. From here, the signals pass to the spectral effects sections where further effects can be added. The signals are then both fed into the spectral vocoder engine to be combined according to the chosen settings. The output of this vocoder is fed to a compressor, then to an equalizer, then via a re-synthesis section before reaching the output section - at which point some of the unprocessed input signals can be added to the output mix if the Vokator is set to Mix mode. There are four modes. In AB and BA modes, the input at A shapes the sound input at B, or vice versa. Using Mix mode, signals from both AB and BA modes can be combined with the direct signals from A and B inputs to create some truly amazing effects. In A+B mode, the vocoder engine is bypassed to allow you to use the file player or the synthesizer without any vocoding being applied - and you can still use the effects modules. Vokator can be used stand-alone, as a virtual instrument plug-in, or as an effects plug-in. Using it as an effects plug-in provides the greatest flexibility, as you can feed any track from your host software through Vokator to add effects, or to use as input to the vocoding engine. It works with all the plug-in formats and audio interface standards, including VST 2, ASIO, Audio Units, Core Audio, and RTAS - although not TDM.


As a vocoder, Vokator is up there with the best. Previous vocoders used 8, 16, 20, or even 32 frequency bands. The more frequency bands, the smoother the effect. Vokator lets you use up to 1,024 bands - so you can use the full 1,024-band resolution for total transparency - or group the bands together to emulate vintage vocoder designs. But Vokator is far more than just a vocoder. The live inputs, the integrated file player, the full-featured synthesizer, the time-stretching granular sampler, and the effects can all be used independently - so you can think of Vokator as a complete recording toolkit in its own right.

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