Music For Picture: The Top 5 – Software for Superb Synth Soundtracks

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Synth soundtracks have become increasingly popular in recent years, with titles like Drive, Stranger Things and Blade Runner 2049 rejuvenating the electronic score. So, if you’re looking to emulate those classic sounds, here’s 5 great bits of software to help along the way. Don’t forget to check out our roundups for the Top 5 Software for Soundtracks and Top 5 Orchestral Software for Soundtracks and our huge Music for Picture feature…

synth soundtrack

Spitfire Audio – BT Phobos


synth soundtrack

Price £269
Contact Spitfire Audio

With an engine designed by BT, plus a load of presets, this is one of the most out-there synths we’ve looked at, making it perfect for sci-fi soundtracks. “The big atmospheres definitely have a space in space, but the little nuances and experimental aspects mean it can be applied everywhere… It is simply excellent.”

UVI – Falcon


synth soundtrack

Price €349
Contact UVI

Some synths try to emulate the old, some try something that is out and out new. This falls into the latter category (with some old stuff thrown in there too, to be honest). We said: “If sound design or creating unique timbres appeals to you, this is a package that should be high on your list to test-drive. A sonic powerhouse”

IK Multimedia – Syntronik


synth soundtrack

Price €59 each; €359 for the collection
Contact IK Multimedia

So, you want some vintage-synth sounds for a Stranger Things-style soundtrack? Look no further. “There is pretty much everything you need for electronic music making but the addition of the layering, the effects and some digital classics means that you can take its sound well beyond that of just vintage.”

Softube – Modular


synth soundtrack

Price from £69
Contact Softube

Modular synthesis is all the rage, yet few are going for this hardware dream of wires when it comes to composing soundtracks, probably because it can be a nightmare. This version takes a lot of the strain by doing it in software. We said: “If you’re an electronic musician who likes to experiment, this will most likely open new horizons.”

Rob Papen Predator 2


synth soundtrack

Price £124 (upgrade from Predator 1 €49)
Contact Time+Space

This isn’t the easiest synth to wrestle with, but it will pay dividends if you put the time in. We said, “The vast selection of waveforms and filter types is bewildering and comprehensive and it could fit a number of musical genres with ease. For many this will be a great synth to work with.”

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Andy Jones

Andy Jones has an MA in Music Technology and has been writing about it for 25 years. He has launched and edited several magazines on the subject and was editor of MusicTech for the last four years. Naturally, he has far too many synthesisers...