Liven XFM is a $ 199 groovebox for ’80s fetishists


The sequencer itself has 64 steps, and you have 128 different patterns and string them together in complete arrangements. Plus a number of punch effects for live manipulation of your pattern, including stuttering and randomization.

As for the sounds, well, on paper it sounds like an interesting one, but actual sound samples and demos are hard to come by. The embedded video above likely features a song composed on the XFM, but that’s our only indication of what it actually sounds like.

There is a library of 300 presets FM sounds on board. But you also have full access to the four operator FM engine from the front panel with a minimal dive menu. This should give you enough power to create everything from glassy pads to classic ’80s electric piano sounds to plunky bass sounds.

What makes the XFM unique is what it calls its “fusion FM” engines. Essentially, these modes have led you to mix two different sounds to create new multitimbral sounds. X-Lab literally combines sounds to create a new sound, X-Form transforms from one sound to another, while X-LFO cycles through two sounds continuously.

Again, on paper, it looks interesting. And the price of $ 199 is hard to beat. But we’d probably be slow to hit that Pre-order until a few more demos and reviews start to wrap up.

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