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Microphone Month 4

KikAxxe First, Ask Questions Later

Some of you may be old enough to remember the ARP Axxe, a slightly stripped down, single-oscillator version of ARP’s more expensive synth, the duophonic Odyssey, which came out not long after the Minimoog made its debut. The KikAxxe is a software emulation of the 1970s original, created by Way Out Ware and distributed by M-Audio. Selling for just $49.97, it’s more fun than is actually legal in three states! But lest you think, “Ho-hum, another software synth,” we’d like to point out a few extras that have been programmed in that make this definitely worth your while to own.

First off, it’s an amazingly accurate recreation of the distinctive ARP sound. But beyond that, the programmers added an onboard drum machine, a 16-step sequencer, and even a built-in tape delay effect. But the real kicker here – and the KikAxxe’s secret weapon – is that you can actually process audio tracks through the its synth engine using the audio input and associated envelope follower! When you install KikAxxe, it installs two plug-ins on your host computer, one for the synth and one for the effects. What that means is that for a few pennies less than $50, you can easily find yourself spending lots of late nights both playing the KikAxxe, and using it to sweeten audio tracks in all sorts of interesting ways, limited only by your own imagination!

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