Arturia’s Pigments 4 plugin promises to explore “every shade of synthesis”

Arturia Pigments 4
(Image credit: Arturia)

Arturia’s Pigments already sits pretty high in the soft synth pecking order, but the free update to version 4 might help it to rise even further. This promises “an infinite spectrum of sound” and to enable you to “explore every shade of synthesis”.

Existing users will instantly notice some graphical changes. The interface has been made easier to navigate, the Play mode gives you an overview of your entire sound (it offers stripped-back modules and tweak-friendly macros) and you can brighten things up with a new Light mode.

Beyond this, there are more tangible workflow improvements. Modulation editing has been speeded up (you can now click and drag any modulation source to its destination and adjust its depth by hovering over it) and left-right buttons enable you to flick between options in the multimode modules.

Elsewhere, the LFOs now have six waveform presets, and if you want to focus on the synth engine alone, the FX and Seq sections can now be bypassed in both the Synth and Play Mode views.

New sync modes, meanwhile, enable you to experiment with different rhythmic ideas, and there’s fresh compatibility with the MTS-ESP microtuning software.

Improvements have also been made to Pigments’ voice engines, starting with a new Ring Mod feature for the wavetable engine and a Pulse Width mode for said engine’s Phase Transformation section. The Harmonic engine gets Phase Modulation, there are more unison options and, for those who want to dive deep, the Modulator Oscillator now has ratio options and an extended hertz range.

On the effects front, Pigments now has an MS-20-style filter, while the new Shimmer reverb promises “cathedral-in-outer-space ambience and cinematic detail”. Super Unison can be used to add extreme levels of width to a single voice, and improvements have been made to the Bitcrusher, Jup-8 filter, Multi Filter and Distortion.

Finally, the sound library has been expanded with new factory presets, wavetables, samples and noise types. There are also four new sound banks on the Arturia Sound Store (these are free for new users).

As we mentioned, Pigments 4 is a free update for existing users. Newcomers can currently purchase it for the introductory price of $99 (regular price $199). It runs on PC and Mac in VST/AU/AAX and standalone formats, and you can also download a demo.

Find out more on the Arturia website.

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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