The Quilcom Unison is a free VST synthesizer instrument and was made specifically to explore the sounds which could be created with many oscillators running in unison. The synth is capable of much more of course.
Listen on headphones so you can properly enjoy the amazing spacial effects that this technique can produce.
There are 4 identical unison generators. In each one the source can be a range of waveforms and if you choose Wave Draw then the window appears which allows you to do just that.
You can also save and load waves to use in other generators or presets. Double right-click to zero the waveform. If you select Pulse then you get a pulse width knob appearing. There is an amplitude envelope, with velocity response selectable, and a filter with its own ADSR and again velocity response is optional.
Each generator can have its stereo width set going from full stereo down to mono and this has quite an effect on the results, going from spacial to beating effects. There are 7 oscillators permanently configured. The phase knob sets the deviation from zero to maximum and the Detune knob sets the range of detune.
With both controls the “centre” oscillator is always at phase zero, detune zero and centred in the stereo field, the other oscillators deviating from this according to the settings. You can set the amount of FM from the FM bus and AM from the AM LFO.
The off/on button for each generator is used for muting but in this synth will save CPU usage if turned off. In many cases just 1 generator will produce a great sound on its own.
Below the generators are 2 FM modulator synths which are mixed onto the FM bus. The left one has an optional pitch envelope. The pitch ratio for each can be freely entered.
Next down are 2 basic synth strips to add noise or basic sounds into the mix. Again, the left one has an optional pitch envelope.
The effects row at the bottom of the front panel provides 2 filters which are connected in parallel. These then feed left to right into the remaining Reverb, Delay and distortion effects. You’ll note that there’s no chorus effect since chorus is achieved by the unison arrangement!