The KORG Trident Mk II is one of the most important vintage synthesizers in the history of electronic music. Released in 1982, it has come to define an entire generation of sounds with its lush sounds and sophisticated synthesis structure. Thanks to Full Bucket, a detailed recreation of this classic synth is now available as a plugin in the form of the Tricent Mk III.
Coming from Full Bucket’s impressive line of analog synth recreations, the Tricent is a faithful and realistic recreation. It even added some extra features that expanded on the Trident’s previous limitations, making it a useful instrument in any producer’s toolbox.
Specs and Features
Like the original Trident, the Tricent has three main sections, the synth, brass and strings section. The Tricent masterfully recreates the rich sound of the strings section which made the Trident a well-respected device.
While the original Trident only allows 8 voices, Tricent pushes it to 64 voices. Nonetheless, a switch is available so you can toggle between 8-voice mode and 64-voice mode with ease. Other enhancements that Full Bucket included in their recreation is a flanger effect, individual stereo outputs for all three sections (including panning), detuning capabilities, and MIDI CC support.
There are also 64 presets available for use, making it easier to just launch the plugin and get right into the action. Most of the presets are made for general purposes, but there are some interesting and wild ones that can be used as a launching pad for more experimental creations.
Visually, the presentation of the Tricent follows the original layout. The oscillators are on top, followed by the filters. Below them are the delay vibrato and flanger controls. Also note the presence of the stereo controls on the far right side beside the preset menu.
While the Tricent leaves a lot of space for improvement in terms of the visual detail, we also think that keeping everything as low resolution as possible helps in terms of CPU efficiency.
As expected, the plugin’s parameters can be mapped to a controller. Response time between synth and controller is lightning fast, so there is practically no latency. This makes the Tricent a good option for live performances, too.
Because the plugin was written in native C++, the plugin consumes very low CPU power. It is then possible to use multiple instances of the Tricent without much consequence on your machine’s performance. This effectively makes it possible to create thick layers of multiple Tricents in one track. Imagine the possibilities!
Right off the bat, the Tricent sounds almost like the real thing, if not even better, thanks to the added features that Full Bucket included. The oscillators, sans any filtering or modulation, do not sound cheap and derivative. We usually judge synths based on the quality of the oscillator sound, so by that standard at least, the Tricent passes with flying colors.
We need to mention the attention given to the strings section, particularly the detail of the Tone Bowing parameter and the Vibratory parameter. It’s satisfying to play with these parameters when crafting a string sound. The plugin captures the subtlety of the original synth.
Full Bucket mentioned something about ‘double precision audio processing.’ While in terms of quality, the difference between normal vs double precision is almost negligible to human ears, we imagine that it also helps in keeping CPU consumption low.
The individual stereo outputs for each of the three sections are perhaps the most interesting part of this recreation. Having three outputs means we can route any of these outputs to at least three post-processing routes. This opens up the synth to wilder sonic possibilities which would not have been possible with the hardware version.
User impressions on the Tricent seem to be unanimously positive. Most focus on the faithfulness of the plugin to the original synth while some rave about its CPU efficiency.
The Tricent is a powerful synth that can be used for a wide variety of uses. If you’re looking for vintage tones, the Tricent is a good option. But the updates that Full Bucket included also makes it possible to use the plugin for modern-sounding projects.