I plugged it in, powered it up, and I was in heaven.
When I unwrapped the Novation X-Station 25 chills went up my spine. Novation. Novation. Did I mention Novation? I plugged it in, powered it up, and I was in heaven. The blissful sounds of a hard trance synth were blowing through my speakers like a wall of sound and color. I also created some sweet Jungle and Drum n’ Bass patches too. I kicked on the arpeggiator, dropped a beat on my software and I was creating some of the most high tech sounding electronica I have made in years. The sound quality on this device is breathtaking. You know all of those cool synths you hear when you are dancing with your girl in the club? They are built in! 200 of them rip-roaring and ready-to-go. Heart-throbbing bass, deafening leads and a candy store of arpeggiators. I found all of these without editing a patch, or even tweaking any knobs, which takes me to my next point.
The number of knobs, faders, and controls on this thing were mind-blowing. As I explored the front-panel controls I noticed I could pull up a presets for Logic, Ableton, and Reason. My three favorite pieces of software. I was tweaking in all of my favorite DAWs right out of the box. As I dug deeper into the packaging, I found these cool template overlays. You place the overlays on top of the controller and they identify different controls for most of the popular soft synths out there. Malstrom, B4, and Kontakt just to name a few. It also has blank template overlays, one of which I customized for a free plug-in I downloaded called Buffer Override from Super Destroy FX. Everything is on the board, pitch, mod, ADSR, LFO’s, cutoff, resonance, it’s all there. I was addicted. Oh, by the way, did I mention the Joystick and XY pad controllers?