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Dreadbox | Abyss


Launched at the NAMM Show 2017, the new Abyss synthesizer from Dreadbox builds upon the company’s already well established Erebus and Hades and more recent NYX mini synthesizers. Handmade at the Dreadbox Factory in Athens, Greece. The Dreadbox range of synthesizers complement each other in a way that provides different unique design and routing operations across the range whilst underpinning that extremely recognizable Dreadbox character. This character can be summarised by the names associated with the synthesizers. An aptly named reference to Greek mythology from the Greek based Company.

Designer and Dreadbox founder, Yannis Diakoumakos has built upon this design concept to now offer the Abyss 4-Voice Polyphonic Synthesizer.

4 global modes are available that each utilize the 4 available analogue voices built around the same oscillators used across the Dreadbox range. The 4 global play modes include Multi for 1 voice per midi channel, Unison, all voices together. Polyphonic for playing multiple notes together and lastly chord mode where a root key will play a chord of the 4 voices with a selectable rotary switch to select the root key.

The 4 voices are made up of 1 Oscillator and 1 Sub Oscillator per voice with a clever rotary knob that allows the user to sweep between waveforms allowing hybrid waveforms to be generated including a white noise generator. The VCO section also offers detuning and vibrato modulation and there is a polyphonic glide slider to allow smooth envelope transitions between notes. There is also a modulator available on the VCO with independent rate and depth controls.

The Voltage Controlled Filter is based upon the highly respected Dreadbox Murmux Synthesiser offering a 24 dB/Oct – 4 pole resonating low pass filter. The filter also comes with a digital ADSR envelope generator to further shape the sound of the filter. The Abyss also features a dedicated Voltage Controlled Amplifier with digital ADSR envelope generator allowing very percussive snappy sounds through to long evolving soundscapes and includes and OTA drive circuit knob for saturating the VCA.

Things start getting very interesting with the Abyss once you start incorporating the 3 built in effects stages. There are 2 independent LFO’s that can be assigned to any of the time-based effects with independent rate and 4 x LFO waveforms to choose from. The Abyss offers a 1024 BBD reflector effect for chorus/phaser and static flanger effects. Also included is the awesome lo-fi delay effect found in the Erebus synthesizer and lastly a 4-stage analogue phase shifter. Effects are controllable via CV.

The Dreadbox Abyss comes in a dedicated aluminium flight case.
Engine TypeAnalog
Voices (max)4
LFO4 Saw Up, Saw Down, Square, Triangle
Engine Detailed1 VCO Pulse, Saw Down, Square, Sub Oscillator, White Noise
Filter (VCF)1 24dB Slope (4-pole), Low Pass, Resonance
Envelope (VCA)2 ADSR
FXDrive, Delay, Flanger, 4 stage phase shifter
Key typeN/A
AudioStereo Out
CV-gateCV In
Legend: Obvious Y: Yes, N: No, N/A: Not Applicable
VCO Voltage Controlled Oscillator DCO Digital Controlled Oscillator
LFO Low Frequency Oscillator Sub Sub Oscillator
VCF Voltage Controlled Filter VCA Voltage Controlled Amplifier
Velocity As with a piano, the harder you hit a key, the louder the sound, unlike most organs which always produce the same loudness no matter how hard you hit a key. Aftertouch Pressing a key after you activated it. Channel Aftertouch, no matter which key, it will send a Channel message. Poly Aftertouch, sends the pressure per key instead of the whole channel.
Values for OSC, LFO, Filter, Envelope are per voice unless stated otherwise.

Manuals, patches etc.


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