V-Machine VST plug-in player now available

V-Machine: fill it with all your favourite sounds.
V-Machine: fill it with all your favourite sounds.

SM Pro Audio has started shipping its V-Machine. This is the first in a range of standalone VST plug-in boxes that was launched at the 2008 Musikmesse.

Like Muse's Receptor, the V-Machine can be loaded up with your favourite instruments and effects so that you can use them away from your computer. Plug-ins can be combined, and parameters can be controlled via MIDI.

On the downside, the V-Machine's specs aren't exactly mind-blowing: it features a 1GHz processor, 512MB RAM and a 1GB flash hard drive. This means that it could struggle to handle some of the more power-hungry plug-ins on the market, though it is worth noting that sample content can be streamed from an external USB hard drive.

Making connections

Further USB sockets enable you to install plug-ins via your computer and connect up a MIDI keyboard/controller (a standard MIDI In is included, too). There's a pair of unbalanced TS audio outputs, plus a further mini-jack headphones out and a mini-jack audio input.

A dedicated software application enables you to manage your V-Machine's content - this is compatible with Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.

At $599, the V-Machine is certainly competitively priced, though we'll have to wait and see how it performs before we let you know whether it's a viable solution for keyboard players and DJs who want to take their plug-ins to the stage.

No news yet on exactly when the other products in the range - the guitarist-friendly V-Pedal and studio-orientated V-Rack - will be released, but the SM Pro Audio website states that they'll be 'available soon'.

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.