Anukari Music Introduces an Upcoming Interactive Physics-Based Synthesizer

Today Anukari Music unveiled an early prototype of the Anukari software synthesizer, based on the idea of creating a network of masses (like little ball bearings or marbles) connected by springs. The masses can be vibrated by striking them via MIDI input, or they can be vibrated directly via audio input so Anukari can act as an effect processor or reverb plugin. Anukari enables musicians and sound engineers to create new instruments in a tactile and kinesthetic way, assembling arbitrary mass/spring systems with any desired three-dimensional shape.

Anukari can simulate vibration being added to these systems via striking and audio input, but in the future, more inputs are planned, such as basic oscillators and harmonic oscillators, to simulate bowed strings or wind instruments. The physics parameters that are currently supported include mass, damping, spring length and stiffness, and striker hardness and impulse, as well as the angle and gain of the strikers and microphones/pickups. In the future, further physics parameters will be added, including for more sophisticated spring and microphone models.

Anukari is meant to be highly interactive and playful. The user
can interact with the system with the mouse or touchpad while
it’s being played with a MIDI keyboard; for example, by changing the system’s shape by dragging around masses, plucking it, or changing its parameters.

Some more facts about Anukari:

  • The physics simulation in Anukari is so processor-intensive that it has to run on a Graphics Card (GPU). This means that the work is offloaded from the CPU to the GPU, thus leaving the user’s CPU available for other CPU-based instruments and effects.
  • The number of masses and springs is limited only by the user’s GPU hardware. On a relatively modern Windows machine, up to 750 connected masses can be reliably simulated in real time at 48kHz. This can be smaller or larger depending on the user’s hardware.
  • Due to the nature of the way Anukari uses GPU hardware, multiple up-to-750-mass systems can be simulated in real time in parallel, as long as they are not connected to one another with springs. This means that multiple Anukari instances can run together in the same DAW at maximum system size without problems.
  • Anukari will be released as a standalone software synthesizer as well as AU/VST3/AAX plugins. The initial prototype runs under Windows but has been built to be easily ported to Mac before release.Currently, no release date for Anukari is available. Everything described in this article as well as shown in the demo video is fully functional, but “We won’t release Anukari until it is absolutely rock-solid stable and has quite a few more features, some of which will, hopefully, be based on feedback from the community after our first demo,” said Evan Mezeske, founder and sole proprietor of Anukari Music.


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