Clavia Nord Lead 2X Synthesizer

Clavia Nord Lead 2X SynthesizerThe Clavia Nord Lead 2X is something of an unusual synth. The original Nord Lead was released in 1995 and I was instantly reminded of ancient analogs, not because of the sound but simply because it only had the same polyphony as the Jupiter 4 (4 voices). Updated to the Nord Lead 2 and then Clavia released the Nord Lead 3 (in 2001) but many people actually prefered the sound of the Nord Lead 2. Clever people Clavia, they released the Nord Lead 2X (in 2003) which had more memory and the superior DACs (digital to analog convertors) allowing for a pristine sound. For years I didn't see the Nord Lead as part of my collection, I had tried friends ones but after a bit of preset surfing it never really did it for me. I started to get a little more interested when they released the 2X and eventually took the plunge and bought one in June 2013.



More About The Clavia Nord Lead 2X
Nord Lead 2X Specifications
Notes About The Nord Lead 2X
Famous Nord Lead Users
Nord Lead 2X Samples


More About The Clavia Nord Lead 2X

We own loads of virtual analogs but in my own collection I usually added them because they were available for a ridiculously low sum of money and I can't pass on a bargain. I am of the opinion that virtually every synth ever made has its strengths and its weaknesses and once you discover the strengths of a synth it is incredibly difficult to part with it. So it happened and the Nord Lead 2x was made available for me to buy at such a ridiculously low amount of cash that I could try it out for a few months and, if I didn't like it, I could sell it on at an enormous profit. Of course when it arrived I did my usual preset surfing but maybe some wax had been cleared cleared from my ears or, rather, the new 24-bit DACs take it to the next level.

The overall sound is like a 21st century version of analogue it can emulate basic patches of many of yesteryear's analogues and many would argue that it emulates even complex patches. You can get it to sound similar to some vintage synths but it has its own sound (maybe a bit too precise for some).

If you want digital sounds you can achieve this with oscillator 2 which has variable coloured noise with a unique sync option. Other features include hard sync, osc 2 can frequency-modulate Oscillator 1 and a ring modulator to create some atonal effects.


Nord Lead 2X Specifications

  • Polyphony: 20 (16 notes on the 2 and as few as 4 on the original)
  • Multitimbral: 4 part
  • Oscillators: 2 Osc [VSM] analogue-modelling with sine, triangle, sawtooth or pulse waves with adjustable width
  • Filter: 1 Digital multi-mode filter [12 dB 2-pole lowpass, 24dB 4-pole lowpass / bandpass / highpass, with envelope]
  • LFO: 2 available [Triangle / Sawtooth / Square / Random / Sample and Hold]
  • Effects: None (not really needed)
  • Output: 24-bit DACs running at 96kHz
  • Control: MIDI
  • Controllers: Many slider, pots and buttons (one per function but also options in menu)
  • Memory: 594 ROM patches [single sounds], 396 RAM patches, 300 ROM Performances, 100 RAM Performances, 40 kits.
  • I/O: audio outs for each of the synth's four 'slots' [A, B, C & D], phones, control ped, sustain ped, midi in & midi out.
  • Manufactured 2003


Nord Lead 2X Notes

Although it has only gained an extra 4 notes of polyphony since the earler version these prove absolutely crucial when layering up to 4 layers [which reduces polyphony to 5 notes].

Interestingly [& highly useful] the 2x performances have copies of the sounds which can be edited without altering the original patch. Therefore it ensures that other perfs which use that sound will not suddenly have a completely different sound. So you could have totally different sounds in the performances than those individual sounds/patches.

The Clavia Nord Lead 2x is a virtual analogue/analogue medelling synth but like few others it has a certain prescence which means that it can stand on its own feet without the need for effects. While clever editing can give an effect like reverb or delay the only effects this would need is a very, very small amount or a quality reverb/delay.

If you are upgrading from a Nord Lead 2 you can save your sounds to the computer and load them into your 2x as it is 100-percent compatible with the Nord Lead 2.

I've had some excellent results running the 2x through high quality valve preamps, analogue chorus (but only lightly applied) and analogue delay/reverbs. Amazing sounds can be had when running it through genuine analogue filters (again only lightly effected). If you really want to make this beast scream classic analogue then run a VCO synth underneath acting as a sub-oscilator or at the same pitch just to add that extra bit of fairydust to the sound.


Nord Lead 2X Famous Users

Many many top recording studios will have the Clavia Nord Lead in at least one of its variations so the list of users below is not fully comprehensive. A Guy Called Gerald, Astral Projection, ATB, Autechre,Boom Boom Satellite,s Cirru,s The Crystal Method, Deftones, Depeche Mode, Dr. Dre, Fatboy Slim, Fluke, Front Line Assembly, Laurent Garnier, Jean Michel Jarre, KMFDM, Ken Ishii, Leftfield, Maroon 5, Mirwais, Mouse on Mars, Nine Inch Nails, Mike Oldfield, The Prodigy, Skinny Puppy and Underworld are all known to have used the Clavia Nord Lead.


Nord Lead 2X Samples

Below is our Nord Lead sample collection which is part of our Budget range of sample collections. To discover more about this sample collection visit our page: Nord Lead Sample Collection where you will find comprehensive details including a list of all 99 of the patches we have sampled for this samplepack.




Nord Lead 2X BUDGET SAMPLE PACK 001 - 010

Clavia Nord Lead 2X Synthesizer   KONTAKT / EXS24 / WAV


990 Nord Lead 2x sound patches at 24-Bit resolution

PRICE: £44.99

P&P: £9.99 (UK ONLY)

TOTAL: £54.98