Waldorf IRIDIUM Synthesizer 49-keyboard


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16-voice Digital Dual Timbral Polyphonic Synthesizer Module with Modulation Matrix, 3 Stereo Oscillators, Dual Filter, 6 LFOs and 6 Envelopes
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  • Description

Having introduced Iridium Desktop as a high-quality 16-voice synthesizer in a compact desktop form factor, Waldorf is proud to take the concept further by announcing availability of its Iridium Keyboard counterpart — radically redesigning its namesake around an all-new 49-key FATAR TP/8SK semi-weighted polyphonic aftertouch keyboard.

Alongside this fantastically expressive new keyboard action, Iridium Keyboard offers an expanded front panel with one-knob-per-function control as a workflow-raising result of this high-class synthesizer’s palpable physical makeover, also allowing for six freely programmable Macro buttons with which users can define functions from a wide range of features for additional performance control.

The all-new FATAR TP/8SK keyboard features polyphonic aftertouch and three contacts per key for new levels of response and playability. Best of all, tremendous tonal changes flow freely when playing the Iridium Keyboard live since polyphonic aftertouch is transmitted individually for each note played. Performers can conceivably play and hold down any number of keys simultaneously, subsequently moving each finger individually. In other words, individual keys are affected by the pressure applied by each finger, thereby creating, for instance, individual data streams for modulation purposes, whereas with monophonic (Channel) aftertouch all notes played will respond in the same way.

With a powerful Modulation Matrix offering 40 independent modulation assignments, each with individual settings for Source, Amount, and Destination, Iridium Keyboard brings tremendous modulation options, of course — just like its Iridium desktop synthesizer namesake. Notably, Iridium Keyboard is also capable of processing MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression) data, duly making multiple parameters of different notes separately controllable to effectively enable it to behave more like an acoustic instrument in terms of spontaneous, polyphonic sound control.


The one-knob-per-function control approach afforded by its expanded front panel along with its industrial-grade highly responsive touchscreen display provide all the hands-on control and visual feedback you need to create incredible sound.


The Macro buttons adjacent to the Pitch and Mod wheels can perform a wide range of user-selectable features for additional performance control, combining enhance its performance pedigree.

Iridium keyboard ships with specifically created new sounds and samples in addition to all those included in the Iridium desktop from the likes of Kurt Ader, BT (Brian Transeau), Richard Devine, Thorsten Quaeschning (Tangerine Dream), and Howard Scarr, to name a few.

Its specification otherwise mirrors that of the original Iridium — itself described by Waldorf Music as “...a high-class desktop synthesizer featuring a wide range of unique sounds with approved Waldorf quality — made in Germany!”

Sounds from Waldorf Music’s Quantum synthesizer flagship — an eight-voice, hybrid affair because of offering two analogue low-pass filters per voice — can conveniently be loaded into Iridium Keyboard and vice-versa.

Iridium Keyboard’s design is owed to Axel Hartmann, one of the most respected synthesizer designers in the industry, also responsible for the company’s wavetable synthesis-based Microwave debut back in 1989.

Explore  five  different  synthesis  models  for  each  of  its  three oscillators: Wavetable — a table consisting of single-cycle waveforms; Waveform (virtual analogue) — a standard oscillator model to create typical analogue waveforms; Particle (sampling and granular sampling) — allowing for extensive manipulation of sample-based sounds; Resonator — manipulates multi-samples  from  the  internal  (2GB)  sample  flash  memory  or  noise  via  an  exciter  and  various  spectral  parameters  that  can  be  modulated,  matchless  for  generating  awe-inspiring animated sounds and drones, and Kernels —  effectively  enabling  one  oscillator  to  become  up  to  six  sub-oscillators  that  can  be interlinked through FM at audio rate and arranged in user-definable constellations.

Other fanciful features include three true stereo path digital filters per voice that convincingly cover all conceivable classic filter variants — various digital filters are additionally  offered  by  the FORMER section,  such  as Comb,  classic Waldorf high-  and  band-pass,  and  notch  filters  from Waldorf  Music’s Largo and Nave  software synthesizers,  plus  PPG  models,  alongside  signal  enhancer  effects, such  as Drive and BitCrusher,  and  more;  six  envelopes,  six  LFOs,  and  much  more  besides  are available for use as sources in the Mod Matrix, routable to almost any numerical value in Iridium Keyboard.

Connectivity-wise, the well-spec’d Iridium Keyboard communicates well with the outside world, thanks to two audio inputs (for processing external signals); CV inputs as well as Gate In and Trigger In connections (for forwarding external signals to the Mod Matrix); Clock In and Clock Out connections (to synchronize with other gear); USB and DIN MIDI connections; USB Host port (provided for MIDI devices and also handling data exchange); Control and Sustain Pedals inputs; a headphone output (with dedicated volume control); and last, but not least, two audio outputs.

With a performance pedigree fit for taking its wide-ranging unique sounds further forward, the reassuringly-rugged Iridium Keyboard certainly more than lives up to its billing as a high-class synthesizer with an extraordinary polyphonic aftertouch pressure keyboard featuring a wide range of unique sounds with approved Waldorf quality — made in Germany!