Reason has reached the next level. Stronger, swifter and smoother to work with, Reason 4 will alter the way you create your music. Reason’s new devices and features will not only inspire you to produce great tracks, they will provide you with new ways of doing so.
If you’re already a Reason user, trying out Reason 4 will most likely stun you like you haven’t been stunned since your first Reason encounter. If you’ve never used Reason, there has never been a better time to start.
Thor sounds like no synthesizer you’ve ever heard before – and every single one of them. Where other synths use one specific form of synthesis and one single filter, the Thor polysonic synthesizer features six different oscillator types and four unique filters. What does this give you? Simply the most powerful synth ever created; an unstoppable monster of a sound generator that utilises synthesizer technology from the last 40 years.
Six open filter and oscillator slots let you load up three different synth filters and three separate oscillators simultaneously, allowing you to dial in synth sounds that are completely…new. An all-powerful modulation matrix gives you complete control over your signal flow, letting you modulate anything within Thor with anything within Thor. Sound deep enough for you? It gets deeper.
At the bottom of this synth sits an analog style step sequencer with more than one twist. Being every bit as modular as the rest of Thor’s components, this step sequencer does more than just play melodies – use it as a modulation tool, trigger phrases from specific keys, create intense arpeggios, generate piercing percussion lines. With its unique selection of oscillator types and synth filters, the Thor polysonic synthesizer is a veritable synth museum. But believe it, there’s nothing dusty about this instrument; Thor may have one foot in history, but its sound is pure future. Take the Thor tour to find out more.
Reason 4 ships with RPG-8, a brand new unit dedicated to the art of arpeggiation. Some arpeggiators are quite content with simply transforming chords into wandering rhythmic melody lines. The RPG-8 monophonic arpeggiator is not. With a wide range of on-panel controls and mode selectors, a pattern section for muting selected notes in an arpeggio and a large display showing values and positions, this device gives you full creative control over your arpeggios.
Although very hands-on and user friendly, the RPG-8 boasts some very advanced features under the surface. Features that will change how you play Reason’s instruments. The ‘Single Note Repeat’ function engages the arpeggiator only when two or more simultaneous notes are held down – letting you add sudden bursts of arpeggio to your melody lines. The ‘Manual’ mode will arpeggiate notes strictly in the order they were input, for realtime arpeggio control. The RPG-8 monophonic arpeggiator is a creative workhorse that can – and should – be used with all of Reason’s sound sources; try arpeggiating your breakbeats, your orchestra samples, or your ReCycled vocals. Only in Reason 4.
Want your music to sound less rigid, less programmed? Need your drums to move and groove as if played live by actual musicians? If you want your tracks to flow with that loose, yet tight feel, a regular shuffle control just doesn’t cut it. That’s why we created the ReGroove mixer, Reason’s own realtime groove management device.
The ReGroove mixer in Reason 4 gives you more than just a set of sequencer swing parameters – this is a unique device dedicated to one thing: the groove.
The ReGroove Mixer applies its timing magic non-destructively and in realtime, giving you freedom to adjust its settings – and fine-tune your groove – as your music is playing.
You can lock all your tracks together into one unified feel. Or you can apply different settings to up to 32 musical elements in your song, for ultimate control. Each of the groove channels feature controls for groove amount, slide and shuffle plus more detailed settings. The Reason soundbank comes with a great selection of groove patches, many of them created from analyzed recordings of real musicians as well as classic groovy tracks.
With a whole new look, a ton of fresh features and a completely new way of handling sequencer data, the Reason sequencer has matured. Dedicated to turning your ideas into great music, the new sequencer is swifter, stronger and more intuitive than ever. The key word here is workflow. A sequencer device or instrument now gets its own dedicated track, with separate lanes for note, performance and automation data, opting for a better overview and less clutter. All sequencer data – notes, automation, the works – is now housed in clips, musical building blocks that can be opened, sliced or moved. When a clip is moved to a new location, all its internal data follows right along with it, always ending up exactly where you intended it to. For safe, speedy sequencing.
The new features and functions added to the Reason 4 sequencer all strive toward making your Reason experience smoother and snappier. Like the new Tool window, an ever present floating window that provides lightning fast access to those detailed editing functions you use all the time; quantize, transpose, note velocity, note length and legato. Always in sync with your flow, forever adapting to you and your working methods, Reason’s new sequencer simply gets you there faster.
Reason now comes in four different flavors. When you install, you can choose between four different language versions: English, French, German or Japanese.
The language options means the entire application, from installer to menus and help files, will speak the chosen language!
Factory Sound Bank – Reason wouldn’t be Reason without it’s huge Factory Sound Bank. The Sound Bank holds patches for all devices in Reason to help you get going instantly. These are the additions in version 4:
– Thor patches
– More Combinator patches, including arpeggio-driven patches using the RPG-8 arpeggiator. – Groove files for ReGroove
– New ReDrum drum patches
– Song starters
Signature patches – Having the best sounding synth on earth is a lot more fun if you have a set of great patches to play with. We invited some of the world’s leading synthesists and sound developers to add their own Thor patches to the Reason Sound Bank. They are:
– Daniel Wang
– Morgan Geist
– Pascal Gabriel
– Richard Barbieri
– Richard Devine
– Sonic Boom
– Two Lone Swordsmen
– Gordon Reid
Tool Window – One new feature that will quickly ease its way into your workflow is the new Tools Window. This is a floating window containing all your most frequently used tools. Using the Tools window, you can create new devices by choosing from a device palette, fine tune your sequencer data from the Tools pane, or set groove parameters using the groove pane.
The device palette (pictured to the left) lets you drag-and-drop instruments and effects directly to the rack and place them just where you want them.
The Tools pane contains all of Reason’s sequencer editing tools, allowing for quick access to everything from Quantization to vector automation cleanup and legato adjustments.
When you hit a channel’s Edit button in the ReGroove mixer, the selected groove’s parameters show up here for instant editing. Here is also where you can save your own groove files.
Combinator & NN-XT updates – The Combinator and NN-XT devices have both had minor revisions to make programming patches easier and more powerful. If you are not into making your own sounds, these changes may not mean much to you. If you do like to create your own Combinator setups or NN-XT patches, then you will like this.
The NN-XT has been given new features to edit multiple samples simultaneously, to chromatically auto-map samples and a new Group Mono function to let samples play polyphonically, but still be silenced by other samples in the same sample group.
The Combinator now has a transpose function that transposes notes sent to a device. Very handy to create splits. Other additions include performance data filters to stop certain types of data from being sent to a device, more flexible choice of Sources in the programmer and a function to automate the receive notes option, making it possible to switch between instruments in a Combinator patch
There is no release date set yet. Reason 4 will be released when it is done. Reason 4 entered beta testing on 19 June 2007 and testing will continue until all bugs have been fixed. We can’t say for sure how long this will take, but in the past we have usually done this in 8 to 10 weeks.
When the beta testing is over, it takes about 8 weeks for production and shipping before the new version becomes available.
The price for the full version of Reason remains the same at EUR449 / USD 499.
There is also a discounted upgrade available for owners of previous versions of Reason. The upgrade is EUR99 / USD129.