The original Nord Lead and Nord Lead 2 are among the most popular synthesizers ever built. Debuting in 1995, the first Nord Lead virtual analog synthesizer took the music world by storm. It instantly became an industry standard and has secured its place among the most revered classic synthesizers.
The beauty of simplicity
Its warm analog sound coupled with cutting-edge digital technology moved the Nord Lead into a “leading” position in the synthesizer community. Musicians from all over the world loved its simplicity, intuitive design, and its musicality and expression offered with the virtual analog concept.
The Nord Lead 2 improved upon the original Nord Lead, including expanded polyphony. A decade later, the Nord Lead, and its descendant the Nord Lead 2, are still among the most popular synths ever built. Used worldwide on stage and in studios, the Nord Lead series has contributed to the signature sounds of some of the most popular musicians and producers known today ... and we want to keep it that way!
The Nord Lead 2X has the same characteristic sound and functions as the Nord Lead 2, except for some very nice improvements:
The Nord Lead 2X comes with 20 voices polyphony - very useful when creating layered sounds, "power pads", awesome leads and booming basses. 20 voices are also very beneficial in sequencing situations when you use more than one sound at a time.
The Nord Lead 2X comes with a large internal memory holding 4 x 99 user Programs, 100 user Performances and 4 x 10 user Percussion Kits plus 6 x 99 factory Programs and 3 x 100 factory Performances! The Nord Lead 2X is 100% patch compatible with the Nord Lead 2 which means that you can transfer sounds directly between the models via MIDI.
X-tra high resolution:
The awesome sound in the Nord Lead 2X is refined even further thanks to the brand new, crystal clear 24-bit DACs running at 96kHz.
Why change a winning concept? We didn’t! With the Nord Lead 2X, we simply upgraded the hardware, maintaining the same concept and sound. Virtual analog sound will live on for years to come, and the Nord Lead 2X is part of that legacy.
The Nord Lead 2X features all the characteristics of its predecessor, and incorporates many new features as well. The “in your face” sound of the Nord Lead 2X has been enhanced with 24-bit D/A converters. The preset memory houses 7 x 99 factory Programs, 3 x 100 factory performances, and 7 x 10 Percussion Kits. Additionally, the user banks give you room to store your own sounds - 3 x 99 Programs, 3 x 100 Performances, and 3 x 10 Percussion Kits. The polyphony has been upgraded to 20 voices as well.
The Nord Lead 2X is compatible with the Nord Lead 2, so you can transfer your custom sounds directly via MIDI. The Nord Lead 2X preserves all the essential parts of the Nord Lead 2, including the user fast and easy interface and its characteristic sound.
The Nord Lead 2X continues the tradition of Nord’s unique method of sound generation. Mathematical simulations of the signals generated by analog oscillators are the basis for the incredible sound that speaks for itself. People know Nord by its sound, and the Nord Lead 2X gives you that certain quality that is unmistakable!
The Stage and Studio Synth
The compact and smart design of the Nord Lead 2X makes it equally perfect for live performance and for production studio work. With 26 knobs and 27 buttons - all sending MIDI controller data - the Nord Lead 2X communicates with every piece of MIDI gear in your setup.
In your studio, the Nord Lead 2X can be used as a sound design tool and a MIDI controller in one. Every production studio needs a synth, and what can be more reliable than a dedicated hardware synth that allows realtime sculpting of custom sounds?
Part of the allure of classic synthesizers is the physical control of the sound. If you want to change the shape of the sound, you turned a knob. Then digital technology changed synthesizers, replacing those knobs with a handful of buttons, a small LCD, and a top panel graphic that displayed the sound engine’s routing.
Virtual analog brings the technology and physical control together, recreating the warm, thick sound of analog synths without the overheating or tuning deficiencies. Modern technology allows the knobs to not only digitally manipulate the internal sound, but also send MIDI information to be captured in a sequencer or change a parameter on another MIDI-enabled device.
Nord is known for many things, including the unique Pitch Stick and modulation wheel combo. With the Pitch Stick, you can create your own vibrato, much like a guitarist or violinist, without the “dimple” resting place other pitch benders use. The “dead zone” has been conquered! The ergonomic handling adds another dimension to your performance.
Sporting 20 voices of polyphony, the Nord Lead 2X is perfect for layered pads, screaming leads, and thick booming basses. The keyboard version can be split; it can have two sounds layered on either side of the split point. You can have four simultaneous programs playing at once, and with a movable split point, the possibilities are captivating.
Both the keyboard and rack versions of the Nord Lead 2X are 4-part multitimbral, and these four parts are used together in the Performance Mode. The Nord Lead 2X also has four assignable outputs, so each Performance voice can be routed to its own analog output. Imagine the 2X in a multi-monitor studio setup, or in a creative multi-speaker PA system, and you can begin to see how much fun the Nord Lead 2X can be.
A special Velocity Programming section can be controlled by the Modulation Wheel, making it possible to continuously morph between parameter settings. This feature is a musically expressive tool that allows you to shape your sound in realtime.
Let’s go MIDI controlling! In the studio, the Nord Lead 2X offers real time MIDI recording of knob settings and special “MIDI patches” to recreate many of the effects produced by external patching on traditional units. For example, let your pre-recorded drum pattern trigger filter and amplifier envelopes, where the hi-hat pattern triggers the filter envelope and the kick drum pattern simultaneously triggers the amplifier envelope.
...is four synths in one!
There are four parts which are directly accessible from the front panel. This makes it possible to instantly create layers with up to four different sounds, where each separate sound in the layer can easily be edited in real time. Each sound can have its own independent output. Make up super patches in the Performance section. Create monster basses and mega pads.
Nord Lead Anniversary Limited Edition
To celebrate and commemorate the 25th anniversary of Clavia in 2008, a limited production run of 299 units was produced of the Nord Lead Anniversary Model.
The Nord Lead Anniversary Model Ltd. Edition shares the specifications with the Nord Lead 2x and was easily recognizable with a custom printed front panel and the inverted color scheme on the keyboard. The individually numbered units were delivered with a certificate of authenticity, signed by Mr Nordelius.