Producer Bundle Blog
Our conclusion? Nexus2 is great for producers of all skill levels, but especially useful for beginners. Skill level aside, Nexus2 does have a large quantity of quality samples available.
10 Free ReFX Nexus Expansion Packs You Should Download
Shares Our Verdict It’s not a radical update, but this is a solid refinement, adding useful functionality to a sonically first-rate instrument. Pros Tons of superb-sounding patches. Easy on the eye and CPU, and easy to use. Lovely new analogue phaser. Dance Vol. Modulation matrix now more useful. Enhanced trancegate and arpeggiator. Cons Some minor bugs in v2. No user modulation envelopes. Image 1 of 2 Nexus2 comes with four skins. This amounts to 4GB of content created by Manuel Schleis, the golden-eared sound-wizard behind the acclaimed Vengeance series of dance sample discs.
The manual says that “prohibitively expensive analogue hardware devices” have been sampled, and the kinds of synth patches that are tricky to recreate in software are much in evidence, such as Roland JP and Access Virus leads and pads. Nexus2 remains a dance-music-focused product, and this is affirmed by the inclusion of an all-new expansion: This is in addition to the factory bank outlined above and adds bang-up-to-date dance patches that are especially suited to trance, electro house and hard dance styles.
The latest two are Dance Vol. If you really feel like flashing the cash, you can buy new GUI skins, too. That said, Nexus2 now comes with, ahem, four skins as standard. Tweaking potential You can’t create sounds from scratch using Nexus2, or import samples into it, but there are sound-shaping options aplenty.
The front panel knobs and buttons are unchanged since v1, yet the LCD panel offers some neat new tricks. This now has over destinations, and all effects except ensemble have at least one modulatable parameter. Mod sources include the mod wheel, aftertouch, pitchbend, CC and host automation, and twin user LFOs. When we used the first version of Nexus we grumbled about the lack of those user LFOs they eventually debuted in v1.
Nexus2’s arpeggiator and Trancegate each have their own page and are among the best we’ve seen. As well as the usual arpeggiator modes for up, down, order, and so on, Nexus2’s has a mini-sequencer in which you can set the octave and – new for v2 – semitone transposition per step.
Sequences can be up to 32 steps long, and you can set the note length and velocity for each. The display zooms in and out as you adjust the length, so that the sequence always occupies its full width. Markers above the sequencer area show quarter-note beats and the current play position, and there’s a movable loop-point marker.
Fans of funk will enjoy the new Shuffle option, although we’d like eighth-note swing, too. Strangely, the random mode didn’t work – it gave the same results as the ordered one.
Whereas the arpeggiator triggers notes within the synth, the trancegate is an effect – it modulates the volume level, and can create choppy, gated trance pads. The length is now freely adjustable and new Delay and Fadein controls can introduce the gate effect gradually when a new note is played we’d like this on the vibrato too.
The marker and shuffle functionality of the arpeggiator are replicated here as well. There are lots of preset patterns for the arp and trancegate, and you can also set odd pattern lengths for each to create shifting, prog-tastic polyrhythms. Mix screen and effects The Mix screen offers perhaps the most useful new features. Nexus patches are built from up to four layers, and you can now mute layers and set their volume, panning, transpose and detune parameters.
This is most welcome, and by stacking Nexus2 instances, you can effectively combine layers from separate patches. As well as the front-panel delay and reverb, you now apply two global effects, rather than just one. They are: The stereo enhancer is handy and works on a given frequency range, but the analogue phaser is the real star. It’s licensed from ArtsAcoustic who also supplied Nexus’s fantastic, pro-quality reverb and gives a lush, smooth tone that distinguishes it from the existing phaser.
With the Speed set to 0, the phaser’s position can be directly manipulated using the lower frequency value, which is a destination in the mod matrix. A proper parametric EQ has been added, with eight filter options for each of the four bands.
Oddly, the values in the display don’t correspond to the frequencies affected – when we dialled in a 5kHz boost, the peak was actually at 1kHz. A few other minor glitches surfaced, though we should point out that the software was entirely stable. Summary Some computer musicians are quick to knock Nexus, and while it isn’t a full-on synth, there is plenty of scope for taking a factory patch and twisting it into something different.
Many of v2’s additions are conducive to this, so the upgrade makes sense for existing users who want to get more out of the instrument. For a huge bank of high-quality, ready-to-go synthetic tones for contemporary genres, it’s hard to beat Nexus2. Many of the sounds are instantly inspiring in themselves, and the slick interface and preset categorisation help to keep that inspiration flowing. We can’t say that about every virtual instrument and the majority of them don’t sound as good as Nexus2, either.
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Back Issues Review: Arsov makes the case why sampled instruments somehow sound better than virtual analog ones — can this heresy be true? Read and decide for yourself. At least that has been the case ever since sampled technology literally exploded in the last two years, making significant improvements in sound authenticity, especially regarding the additional programming abilities that sampling hosts can provide nowadays. Virtual analog synths still have their advantages, offering some extra programming options, but I regret to inform you, my dear reader, that reFX nailed all those extra options in their Nexus 2, so we now have the impressive wide and ultra-fat sound of sampled instruments along with all the programming flexibility of the virtual analog ones.
VIDEO: reFX releases FX and (free) Halloween expansions for Nexus2 + 2.4.0 update now available
I am owner of Nexus already now for over 7 years, I started with that it’s written ” update required . you need to update NEXUS in order to use this file. With a purchase you’ll also be able to use the support offered by refx. I got nexus 2 back around this time last year, legit. In order for your expansions to work in the updated version of Nexus2 (version or Yep, log in to your refx account and make sure all your purchased expansions are. How To Install Nexus Expansions / Presets – If you have problems to install your custom ReFx Nexus Expansions or Presets you have.