X-WHEEL OF FORTUNE PRO
X-Wheel of Fortune Pro (Win, $38) is an algorithmic-composition tool from Günter Hager (www.flomo-art.de/se). Created in SynthEdit (www.synthedit.com), X-WoFP is a VST instrument plug-in and requires compatible Windows VSTi host software. X-WoFP automatically generates five audio parts — bass, solo, pad, voice-atmosphere, and percussion — that can be independently muted, mixed, and panned. Each part has its own synthesis engine, its own algorithm parameters, and its own feedback delay line, allowing individual parts to be as busy or as sparse as your taste dictates. Global parameters include transposition mode (keyboard, algorithmic, or both), transposition rate in bars, and a choice of scale (major, minor, whole tone, pentatonic, and so on). X-WoFP can be synchronized to the host's tempo or free running.
X-WoFP's bass and solo synthesizers feature a single oscillator followed by a lowpass filter with ADSR envelopes for output level and filter cutoff, as well as a multiple-waveform LFO for filter cutoff. The pad synth is more complicated, offering three oscillators, one of which takes its shape from a built-in sound font containing 22 waveforms. The percussion generator offers five tracks of sample-based percussion. Track 1, intended for kick or snare sounds, offers individual beat programming, whereas the other tracks generate their rhythms algorithmically and are best suited for percussion sounds. The fifth part combines a wavetable-based voice-atmosphere generator and a WAV file player with a multimode filter. A joystick-like x-y controller offers user-assignable control of all five parts.
X-WoFP is capable of giving you a wide range of styles, as is amply illustrated by the variety of factory presets, of which Web Clip 1 is an example. A multichannel MIDI-controller layout facilitates real-time interaction as well as host automation for each of X-WoFP's parts. X-WoFP is a great background generator, an interesting composition starter, and just plain fun. For a test-drive, download X-WoFP's free sibling, X-Wheel of Fortune, from www.algomusic.nl/freeware.