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What is it?

A software recreation of the legendary M-400 Mellotron keyboard in the form of a VST plug-in.

Which tape banks do you get?

  • Accordian chords
  • Base accordian
  • Trombones and trumpets
  • Brass 1
  • Brass 2
  • Choir 1
  • Choir 2
  • Choir 3
  • Eng accordian
  • Flutes
  • Mandolins
  • Mixed brass
  • Oboes
  • Rhythm 1
  • Rhythm 2
  • Rhythm 3
  • Rhythm 4
  • Rhythm 5
  • Rhythm 6
  • Rhythm 7
  • Sad strings
  • Saxophones
  • Strings 1
  • Strings 2
  • Strings 3
  • Vibes
  • Violins 1
  • Violins 2

How authentic does it look?

Very. It even comes complete with mug stains on it, and the re-release with important bugfixes (at least, it hasn't crashed on me since) has a plaque saying where it was refurbished.

How authentic does it sound?

Aside from the lack of a "thunk" sound as the tapes spring back into their dormant position, this is about as authentic as it gets. There are sample CDs of the Mellotron available, but due to the RAM limitations of samplers, I'd stick with this plug-in: each tape bank is approximately 20MB in size, indicating that every single note of each tape bank has been sampled at a decent resolution and samplerate.

One feature that goes beyond slavishly reproducing the original keyboard is the introduction of attack and release sliders, allowing you to slowly fade the sounds in and out if you wish. With a bit of reverb added, this can add a whole new dimension to the Mellotron's sound that you can't get with the real thing.

Add-ons

Three extra CDs of tape banks are now available featuring more sounds than you could possibly use, including a sublime voices bank for the Chamberlin.

Conclusions

It's a tiny fraction of the price of a real Mellotron, it won't break down on you and, as it's a VST instrument, it's easy to integrate into most studios. If you're looking for a quirky, ethereal choir or any other offbeat, ancient sounds, this is the first place to look.

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