Minimal Audio unveils Current, a subscription-based synth, sampler and multi-effects plugin that's "more than just another soft synth"

Minimal Audio, the developer behind Rift and Fuse Compressor, has announced the release of a new plugin. Minimal's first virtual instrument, Current comprises a number of synth engines alongside a sampler, effects suite and a Splice-style cloud-based content platform.

At Current's heart are four sound engines. These include a two-oscillator wavetable synth and granular synth (capable of FM and AM) alongside a sampler module and an additive sub oscillator. 

These run through a versatile dual filter, offering a number of filter types (morphing, comb, phaser and more) and into an effects section that houses Minimal's entire suite of audio effects, a list that includes the Rift distortion plugin, Morph EQ, Cluster Delay and Fuse Compressor, alongside a reverb, chorus, and phaser. 

Current also gives users access to a cloud-based content platform that Minimal have called Stream. This features a regularly updated library of presets, wavetables and sounds, alongside a steady stream of curated sample packs crafted by Minimal's sound design team.

The plugin also features a flexible, MPE-compatible modulation system, equipped with LFOs, envelopes, curve sequencers and envelope followers, alongside two MIDI effects, an arpeggiator and chord generator. 

Unlike Minimal Audio's effects plugins, Current is only available through a subscription that ranges from $10-$15/month. Minimal Audio's decision to make the instrument exclusively available to subscribers has provoked an overwhelmingly negative response among fans of the developer's software, many of whom have already shelled out for the effects included in Current.

"Damn this looks incredible. I own all your plugins fully and I’ve been looking so forward to snagging this too, but the subscription based model seems like a stretch for me and many others. Please do a version where we can own the synth!" says @watermelonxwizard in a comment on Current's launch video.

"Been a Minimal fan since day one and have purchased every effect and almost every pack," says fellow commenter @maxfield84906. "It's a bummer to see that not count for anything with this new model."

Similar views were aired in March when plugin manufacturer Waves decided to adopt a subscription-only model and prevent existing users from updating previously purchased software. After widespread criticism from the online community, Waves changed its mind and apologized to its customers.

Current is available now for Windows and Mac in VST2/VST3/AU/AAX formats.

Find out more about Current on Minimal Audio's website.

Matt Mullen
Tech Editor

I'm the Tech Editor for MusicRadar, working across everything from artist interviews to product news to tech tutorials. I love electronic music and I'm endlessly fascinated by the tools we use to make it. When I'm not behind my laptop keyboard, you'll find me behind a MIDI keyboard, carefully crafting the beginnings of another project that I'll ultimately abandon to the creative graveyard that is my overstuffed hard drive.

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