MOTU Volta Plug-in

Virtual Instrument Control Voltage Plug-in for Controlling Modular Analog Synthesizers - Mac - AU
MOTU Volta Plug-in image 1
MOTU Volta Plug-in image 1
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Software Compatibility

You'll need an iLok copy protection device in order to use this software. If you already have one, you're good to go. If you don't, you can buy one here. An iLok is a small USB gadget (about the size of a thumb drive) that plugs into your computer. It "unlocks" the software, allowing you to use it.

Most software is compatible with both Mac and Windows computers, but check to make sure.

If you're using Pro Tools, AAX plug-ins (or RTAS for older versions) are what you need. Most other Mac DAWs support AU plug-ins. VST is compatible with a number of Mac and Windows programs. Be sure you choose plug-ins that work with your DAW!

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MOTU Volta Plug-in
Special Order

This Plug-in Controls Your Modular Synths!

MOTU's Volta is a must-have virtual instrument for modular synthesizer enthusiasts. With Volta, you can now fluidly integrate your CV-controlled analog gear into your studio setup. This innovative AU plug-in receives MIDI notes and MIDI controller data and then converts that information to control voltages, which it sends out to your gear via your audio interface's outputs. You can automate effects and parameters, record perfectly timed parts - even instantly tune and calibrate your analog oscillators. You can use any TRS-jack-equipped MOTU audio interface with Volta.

MOTU Volta Control Voltage Virtual Instrument Plug-in at a Glance:
  • Use MIDI to control your CV-operated analog gear
  • Instantly tune and calibrate your oscillators
  • Operates as a virtual instrument
  • Supports track freezing
  • Allows for complete automation
  • Simple user interface

Use MIDI to control your CV-operated analog gear
Volta allows users to play CV-controlled oscillators with MIDI notes by simply "playing" Volta as they would any other virtual instrument via either MIDI track data or live input from their MIDI controller. Volta converts the MIDI note data to control voltage signals, which then trigger the external hardware. Because host software can pre-buffer MIDI data during playback, the timing between the external hardware audio output and the host software timeline can be sample-accurate (with hosts that support sample-level precision).

Instantly tune and calibrate your oscillators
Analog oscillators are notorious for being difficult to get in tune and keep in tune. In addition, not all oscillators adhere to the tuning standard of 1-volt per octave. But if the oscillator has a CV output, Volta can take care of these issues with one click of its Calibration button. By sending voltages and measuring the pitch response, Volta automatically creates a complete profile that addresses any non-linearities in both the audio interface voltage output and the oscillator. Volta can even tune self-oscillating filters using this closed-loop system. You can just click the calibration button at any time to instantly bring all your external gear back in tune.

Operates as a virtual instrument
As an instrument plug-in, Volta produces mono or stereo audio output to the host software, just like any other virtual instrument plug-in. Volta's output consists of the audio signal returned from the external hardware synth. This means that external hardware, which is already sample-accurate with (and tempo-synced to) the host software timeline, can then be mixed and processed with all of the powerful features of the host software's mixing and effects environment. For example, the host software could be used to arpeggiate the MIDI notes going to Volta (and the external oscillator), and then Volta's resulting audio output could be processed with the host's tempo-synced delay, phaser and reverb effects.

Supports track freezing
Because Volta operates as a standard virtual instrument plug-in, all external hardware oscillator output playing through Volta can be bounced to disk using the host software's track freezing features. This means you can conveniently "print" external synth audio output at any time for archiving, mastering or future reference.

Allows for complete automation
Volta allows you to automate continuously variable, CV-controlled parameters on your analog hardware (such as filter cutoff frequency, filter resonance or envelope depth) using MIDI CC data (sequenced in a MIDI track or played live from their MIDI controller). If you wish to achieve much higher resolution to avoid possible "zipper noise" and other pitfalls of MIDI resolution, you can instead control Volta using the audio track automation features in your host software. Audio track ramp automation can generate smooth, precise voltage changes at the resolution of digital audio. In addition to these external automation sources, the Volta plug-in itself provides LFOs, a pattern sequencer, a trigger sequencer and even MIDI beat clocks. These automation sources can be freely applied to any Volta CV outputs, and they can be synced to the host tempo and timeline.

Simple user interface
The Volta plug-in window displays 24 sockets at the top of the window that represent audio outputs on your audio interface. Control sources (MIDI notes, MIDI CCs, ramp automation, LFOs, etc.) are displayed as icons across the bottom of the window. You then drag any desired control source icon onto any output socket you wish to control with it. You can access settings for each control source simply by clicking it. Each instance of Volta supports up to 24 output slots, and you can invoke as many instances of Volta as that your hardware allows. For example, a MOTU PCI-424 system with four 24io interfaces provides 96 channels of output.

MOTU Volta Control Voltage Virtual Instrument Plug-in Features:
  • Operates on Macs as an AU plug-in
  • Works with all MOTU audio interfaces with TRS outputs
  • Makes it easy to use CV-controlled analog gear in the computer-based studio
  • Total recall of all Volta-controlled parameters are saved with the host session
  • Volta tunes and calibrates the pitch of external hardware oscillators at any time with the click of a button
  • The timing between the external hardware and the host timeline can be sample-accurate (with a supporting host)
  • All parameters such as LFOs, etc. can be tempo-synced to the host software
  • Through Volta, external hardware oscillator output can be captured as digital audio using the host software's standard track freezing features
  • Play or sequence MIDI CC data to control your external hardware
  • Use host ramp automation for smooth changes without "zipper noise"
  • The Volta plug-in itself provides tempo-synced LFOs, pattern sequencers, trigger sequencers and even MIDI clock as control sources
Control your analog gear with the innovative Volta plug-in from MOTU!

What Does "Special Order" Mean?

A special-order product is one that we don't normally keep in stock. We order it from the manufacturer as soon as you order from us. We have great relationships with all the manufacturers we carry, so we can get your special order to you as fast as or faster than anyone else. Remember that special orders are non-returnable and non-cancelable, so make sure the item is right for you. A Sweetwater Sales Engineer can help you decide — call (800) 222-4700 for assistance!

Tech Specs

Software Type Virtual Instrument Control Voltage Plug-in for Controlling Modular Analog Synthesizers
Platform Mac
Upgrade/Full Full
Download/Boxed Boxed
iLok Required Yes
Format AU
Hardware Requirements - Mac 4GB RAM
OS Requirements - Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later
Manufacturer Part Number 7700

Customer Reviews

Based on 1 review
Write your review

Works Great with DP and MS-20 Kit!

After picking up a MS-20 Kit I wanted to beat sync and automate it with my DAW (Digital Performer 7.2), it works flawless! Does exactly what MOTU says it will. Now all my filters sweeps are in sync, and have MORE LFO options that provided with the MS-20. The Pattern Generator is very handy too. Really expands my MS-20. If you have a modular or semi-modular (like the MS-20) this is a MUST have!
Music background: Semi-Professional

Sweetwater Advice

Carson McClain

Computer control of analog synths! Simply amazing. It's simple - combine Volta with any MOTU interface capable of outputting DC voltage (any MOTU FireWire, USB2, or PCI audio interface with 1/4" TRS outputs), plug the cables in to your modular or analog keyboard and don't leave your labratory for a month. If you are an analog synth junkie, you have to own Volta.
See also: MOTU, MOTU Utility & Other Software