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Molekular, from the Ambient Perspective

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  • Molekular, from the Ambient Perspective

    Ok, I drank the NI Kool-Aid and bought Molekular.

    Downloaded and installed without issues. Authorized without issues. I've never had an issue with NI authorization (cross fingers, toes, and eyes). A *very* small download, comparatively.

    Fired up Tracktion, opened my test project with one instance of Alchemy and long, long notes, dropped in Reaktor, drag n drop Molekular, and...


    The thing is pretty intuitive to an ex-guitarist. A sequence of effects modules with a cool display on the top showing you the modulation (or so it appears on first blush). Changing presets is a doddle. It's pretty obvious what's happening and how it's set up.


    HOLY CARP. This is so going to replace a pile of my single effects! I turned my long, flowing pads into a terrifying shaft of chaotic madness, then a trip-hop tune, then some serious dubstep-ambient, then what I swear was dance music (OMG)! Clear, clean when it needed to be, but some presets dirty it up a fair amount.


    I never saw the project spike over about 8% CPU on my dual-core i5 system with 8GB of RAM. I haven't yet tried every preset or made my own patches, but.. for my system, not a real CPU hog. Some of my Melda plugins are worse.


    Many of the presets are too rythmical for what I'd call ambient, but there are several that lend themselves to creative ambient sound mangling. I need to spend more time with Molekular (this is just "out of the box" first impressions) but I can see Molekular ending up as one of my top go-to effects, along with MMultibandHarmonizer, Akoustix, and MAGNETIC II.

    I'll post more as I spend quality time with it, but I wanted to get my "unboxing" impression out right away.


    Ok, certainly $149 is a LOT for an effect, but this ain't no one trick pony, folks. Given the large number of modules, the versatile modulation sources, and the flexibility of the thing I have to say it's probably going to replace $300 worth of standalone plugins! :eek:


    I'm happy with what I spent. I'm going to use this in the latest One Sample Challenge, and on my "Feathered Serpent" album project, and for a new tune called "Drown in Flesh" inspired by this scientist that predicted the human race would be extinct in about 100 years (I know, depressing much). It's flexible (well, can't fnd a use for it in country or metal yet), easy to use, I love the GUI.. so far, me likey!

    We'll see how it fares over the weekend in full-throttle production mode!
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  • #2
    Ok, I just finished my AO #16 challenge with 2 copies of Molekular, and I can add some practical experience comments.

    CPU IN USE - even with two Molekulars, a harmonizer, spacializer, sonic enhancer and other goodies Task Manager said I never went past 25% CPU, and this on my very much not leading edge Core i5 3230M. I suspect I could get away with 4 to 5 instances if I'm not running a CPU-heavy soft synth.

    THE SOUND - it's very distinctive in operation. Even drowned in reverb, it has a "Molekular" sound. This isn't bad, but I could see it becoming over-used quickly, in an Auto-Tune way.. "Just hit it with Molekular and it'll sound good" kind of thing.

    It does sit pretty well in the mix, if you don't go too far overboard.

    Mangling? I took the guitar playing and turned it into a creepy echoing, shifting soundscape of whispering terror. I'm going o have to run some of my field recordings through this next and see what pops out.

    So far.. no buyers remorse. Let's give it a couple of weeks, now.
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