It doesn’t cover everything Arturia makes, but the V Collection 8.2 update shows a ton of modernization for their software synths – including tuning support, faster GUIs, faster presets, and for the Mac folks, that all-important M1 native compatibility. That coincides with their Black Friday sale pricing, too.

New in this release:

  • M1 native compatibility
  • ODD sound support for Clavinet V, Stage-73 V, Piano V, and DX7 V
  • GUI and animation improvements / JUCE 6 framework
  • Faster preset loading for libraries

And it’s included in their sale for 50% off. (So are the excellent FX Collection 2 and – if you prefer one modern synth to a bunch of recreations – Pigments 3, in a bundle with Spectrum.)

Arturia V Collection Overview

V Collection is a bunch of instruments now – including the new Vocoder, Emulator II, Jun-6, and OB-Xa. That includes some total gems like the ARP2600, Synthi, Buchla Easel, Modular, and CZ.

There is one noticeable omission to keep in mind, though – the bundle doesn’t include the recently released SQ80 V, which I’ve slightly fallen in love with (still owe y’all a review, any day now). Presumably, that’ll get added in at some point (one might notice how the number nine follows the number eight); it just hasn’t happened yet.

In detail:

Tuning support

Tuning support is the feature I didn’t expect here, but I’m sure glad to get it. It’s just four instruments – Clavinet V, Stage-73 V, Piano V, and DX7 V – but they now work with ODDSound MTS-ESP, in a trend I hope continues (both for Arturia and other plug-ins). I already wrote them asking for Pigments support, please.

DX7 maqams, I’m ready.

Improved performance

A lot of users will be looking for Apple M1 support on macOS, and rightfully so. It does mean enhanced performance and improved compatibility with DAWs running on the new Apple machines.

But the funny thing is, a lot of the time what you notice breaking in non-optimized plug-ins isn’t computational performance. It’s stuff like the GUI fails to appear or scales incorrectly or behaves strangely or sluggishly.

It seems the Apple Silicon compatibility drive is turning into a “shake the tree” moment for a lot of plug-in developers. It’s either part of other performance optimization they’re doing, or in some cases, I’m sure it’s causing them go back and do a little cleanup, refactoring, and updates. (They’re not going to tell me that, but it is a pretty safe bet.)

Whether that’s what happened here or not, V Collection does get some performance improvements. And as a heavy user of some of their other instruments and effect plug-ins, I hope those follow suit shortly, too – that seems likely.

For V Collection 8.2, you get support for the new JUCE 6 framework, bringing 4K interfaces and smoother performance. And Arturia also updated preset loading; the company says you’ll load factory libraries up to twice as fast. Those improvements reach Windows users as well as macOS users.

A tuning footnote:

So the industry to sell this does two things – they call this “microtuning,” and apparently for some reason have to mention Aphex Twin every time. I won’t do that, because 12-tone equal temperament isn’t even universal inside western classical concert music, let alone most of the world’s music traditions. Okay, I might occasionally say “microtuning” just to be clear, but it’s not the right word – it’s not only subdivisions of a tuning system (which is what microtonal usually means) but also different tuning systems. With the exception of recent pop, almost no music limits itself to a single tuning.

Gosh, there is some other company that makes a ton of instrument and effect plug-ins and I wish would do a proper M1 update for their stuff, too. I can’t remember who they are, but it feels like it rhymes with Dative Schminstruments. It’ll come to me.