Vintage mechanical bass instruments constructed from a multisampled vintage
analog synthesizer, physical actuators, noise artifacts, and amp/cabinet impulses.


“It gives the instrument a satisfying “thunk” when you play it, sounding like a real physical instrument instead of a digital synth. Rootbass sounds dirty, raw, and is a joy to play.”

Thorsten Meyer, Strong Mocha

“It oozes character and it can be a timesaver for those producers and beatmakers into ’70s influenced music, hip hop, ‘contaminated’ electronica and all that jazz [...]
Pornofonic Instruments and Rootbass definitely stand out from all the rest and deserve your attention. You won’t regret it.”

This is RootBass.

What separates a digital instrument from a mechanical one is the sound and feel of striking a key and sensing a mechanical actuator working the string or tine or electric contact. That unmistakeable, satisfying *thunk* is at the root of this new instrument.

Blending carefully modeled, velocity-sensitive multisamples from a vintage analog synthesizer with both velocity-sensitive physical actuators—keys, switches, old circuitry, and others—and articulations from analog waveforms—sine, saw, pulse, white noise, and others—RootBass recaptures the sound and feel of classic bass keys, electric basses, and bass synths from the 60s and 70s: smoky tines, fuzzy basses, funky clavs, electric fuzzbox pianos, deep synth arps, broken rock organs, and old noise boxes that never existed yet sound like they should have.

Custom noise textures, which include different tape hiss and flutter styles, amplifier hum, vinyl crackle, VHS tracking, and electromagnetic noise, add just the right amount of fuzz, dirt, and unpredictability. Routed through classic tape echo, amp/cabinet impulses, and effects, RootBass has a distinctive sound that feels solid, real, and deliciously mechanical.

Free download: 40 new snapshots for RootBass and RootBass TANG.

RootBass: Custom mechanical bass instruments

Mechanical Bass

Independently selectable key-down and key-up articulations offer separate decay, filter, tuning, and velocity sensitivity controls, including fine control over their position relative to the bass's attack and release. Similarly, control the noise type, volume, envelope, filtering, and velocity sensitivity. The instrument offers poly/mono modes and a simple, classic legato mode. Each element can be bypassed.

RootBass: Classic tape echo impulses & effects

Tape Echo/FX & Mixing

The unique character of tape echo pairs up beautifully with classic rotator, phaser, flanger, and chorus effects to color the bass tones. Three output mix types shape the instrument's essential style: overdrive + amp/cabinet impulse, classic tube amp, and classic UK guitar amp. Finally, tape saturation and compression give warmth and body while classic mono and modern stereo reverb impulses put space around it.

RootBass: Classic arpeggiator

Classic Arpeggiator

Analog articulations dominate RootBass's arpeggiator, which recalls the iconic style of classic 70s electronica. Filtering, noise modeling, effects, and subtle modulation are central to capturing the feel of vintage analog synths with their fluctuating voltages, scratchy pots, failing transistors, and aged circuits. The humanization feature (instrument mode) adds another dimension by shifting note volume, pitch, and filtering.


*RootBass requires the full version of Kontakt 5.8.1 or higher (the instruments cannot be used in the free Kontakt Player).