Synthesizer Workhorse with Stripes
Zebra is our wireless modular synthesizer. It combines many different types of synthesis with a powerful modulation engine. Imagine — you can create any additive, freehand or spline-based waveform you like, apply a vast selection of spectral effects, morph between those waves and send them through classic synth filters. Perhaps use that entire sound as modulator for an FM oscillator, or route it through a comb filter — the building block of physical modeling synthesis. All generator modules, all signal paths, all effects are stereo.
Although the possibilities are practically infinite, you will never be overwhelmed by needless complexity — Zebra's adaptive interface only shows the modules you are actually using. It's a fascinating playground for sound designers! That's what Zebra is all about, that's why it has become so popular. That's why thousands of free presets are available online.
For the full HD-cinematic experience, click on the YouTube logo in this image, then activate YouTube's full-screen switch
Point your mouse at the stars and learn more about each feature
Data DisplayQuickly step through patches or instantly load a patch from the current directory. Show parameter values, unlock the demo (using your registration code) or switch between compatibility modes.
Generators RackControl panels for any generators you use — wave and FM oscillators, noise generators, comb filters, standard and x-modulation filters, sideband filters, mixers, ring modulators, waveshapers.
Unused generators will not appear in the rack— What you use is what you see!
Main GridCreate and organise your synth structure here. No cables or pins, but an ingenious 2D grid in which you place and reposition generator modules.
The signal flows automatically from top to bottom, but sidechains can also be defined (via right-click).
Performance PadsFour XY pads give you instant control of up to 64 parameters, each with a user-definable range.
Because they effectively bundle parameters together, XY positions are the perfect targets for automation within your DAW!
Patches WindowLoad factory presets or select from literally thousands of free patches as well as several commercial sound sets available online.
Hide/unhide or mark/unmark patches as personal favourites.
Undo, Info & StyleStep backwards or forwards through your edits (unlimited depth). Show individual patch information, load alternative skins, select GUI size from minuscule to cinematic!
Modulators RackControl panels for all modulators you use — envelopes, LFOs, mod mappers and modulation mixers.
Use a modulator (e.g. Envelope 4 or LFO 3) anywhere, and its panel will instantly appear in this rack.
Mod MappersUnique and highly flexible processors containing up to 128 discrete values each.
Radically reshape modulation sources, create trains of sound (or round-robin effects) by stepping through values, add individual offsets across the entire MIDI note range — hundreds of uses are just waiting to be discovered!
Patch MixerFour channels, one for each lane of the Grid. Mute buttons, envelope selectors, modulatable pan and volume controls, effects bus routing selectors.
Oscillator EditorLoad, create and store oscillator waveforms in this comprehensive Wave Editor — the heart of Zebra2!
16 morphable waves per oscillator, 4 waveform modes including spline and freehand drawing as well as additive synthesis (128 partials).
TuningSupport for "Scala" format (.tun) microtuning, two Glide rates (for odd/even numbered modules), truly global swing generator affects LFOs as well as arpeggios.
Effects Grid & PanelDefine your effects structure here. The signal flows from top to bottom, sidechains can be defined.
Effect control panels appear to the right of the grid. Not only chorus, delay and reverb, but also compressors, filters, EQ and more.
MSEGFour loopable Multi-Stage Envelope Generators with up to 32 segments each. Several drawing aids include magnetic positioning (vertical or horizontal).
Also velocity, trigger mode and rate controls, template load/save.
Music made with Zebra
Here are some tracks by artists who use Zebra prominently in their music:
I Am Zebra
An amazing composition by Mike Leghorn. 100% Zebra, plus Uhbik-A for reverb effects.
The Concept of Eternity
A club piece courtesy of Sonic Element. All synth sounds are Zebra. Additional drums and processing.
A Berlin School track by Urs Heckmann himself. 100% Zebra,
no external processing.
A cinematic demo by NedFX.
A chill-out piece by Tanzpartner.
DY7 + Crimson Flutes
A short demonstration of two realistic presets, by Howard Scarr. All Zebra, no post-processing.
This is an epic score by Arthur Hendriks. It shows Zebra in context with orchestral and drum libraries.
Ambient piece by Stephan Baer.
"All Zebra" and a vocal track. Patches from Matt Bowdler's "Continuum" set.
Energetic trance / club track from Sonic Element
All sounds from Zebra except some drum samples.
The Concept of Eternity
Epic club / trance track from Sonic Elements. All sounds from Zebra except some drums samples.
Why we think you'll love Zebra
- the unique patching system is a bliss to work with, complexity never gets in your way
- it is renowned for crystal-clear quality... which can turn dark & dirty if you want
- no static samples here – pure synthesis delivers more expressive & natural sounds
- heavily featured in blockbusters The Dark Knight, Inception, Transformers, Tron:Legacy...
- the editor window is resizable, and there are some nice alternative skins available
- it has an independent charm, with a vibrant community of helpful users in the KVR forum
- the clever design and adaptive UI keep everything you need on a single page
- ...and so much more!
Want to learn more about Zebra?
See every detail of every feature
Watch the Zebra2 video tutorials
Of course the best way to learn all about Zebra2 is to download and install Zebra itself. You will find links for the current version (Mac or PC) at the top of this page. The demo mode is very user-friendly: after a while it replaces your notes with c-e-b-r-a ("r" is a random note). You can check out the presets, even save and load your own patches...
Saddle up your own Zebra now, and enjoy the ride!
Urs & the team