Expressive E provides an update on the Osmose synth, and shows off another of its unique features

Expressive E has provided a reassuring update on the status of Osmose, its forthcoming super-expressive synth.

Announced in 2019, Osmose’s keyboard looks similar to that which you’d find on a standard synth; the difference is that each key offers three dimensions of control. 

What’s more, the instrument contains Haken Audio’s EagenMatrix sound engine, which it developed for its Continuum Fingerboard. This combines digital, additive, FM, virtual analogue and spectral synthesis, topped off with some physical modelling.

In a new post on the Osmose development blog, Expressive E indicates that development and manufacturing of the Osmose was delayed due to Covid, but the good news is that it currently anticipates that the first mass production units will be available in June.

The company has also whetted our appetite for what’s to come by posting a new video that demonstrates the Osmose’s pressure-weighted portamento feature. Previously exclusive to the Haken Audio Continuum Fingerboard, this enables you to define a pitch interval within which two keypresses are interpreted as a legato line instead of polyphonic playing.

Unlike regular portamento, pressure-weighted portamento reacts to the pressure ratio between the two notes. The pitch will dynamically glide between the notes in real-time, reacting to how the player distributes pressure.

The upshot is that you can control the likes of pitch slides, glissando and vibrato effects directly from your keyboard. Expressive E describes it as “the ultimate powerful performance pitch wheel that doesn't even require a second hand to play it”.

Osmose is set to cost €2,159. Find out more on the Expressive E 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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