• Staying Power ★★★★★
    After a year+ of use, I'm still frequently surprised and delighted by the sonic magic (sounds) I'm able to create with iVCS. It's a true joy to experiment with and the results speak for themselves. A number of my 'hardware purist' friends have been similarly 'impressed'; to the point of argument - convinced that I've used analog gear when in fact it was my iPad. Shame on me. Shame on ApeSoft. 😉 TEN STARS! Love the update - everything looks a lot cleaner, more polished. And I certainly don't have any problem paying for the additional features and supporting continued development. Especially considering that a similar piece of software for desktop computer would cost 10 times this amount.
    By Selectedacre for Version 2.2
  • Amazing tool and very fun ★★★★★
    I can't believe nobody else has reviewed this app yet. It easily makes the top five best synth apps for iOS. I have most of them. This is easily as interesting as anything moog is putting out if not more so. There is a lot of variety and programmability and its well worth the price in my opinion. I have not yet encountered any bugs but will report if I do.
    By chili_palmero for Version 2.2
  • Every sound you could ever think of, and many you can't!! ★★★★★
    What an amazing app. I've had it for I think a year now and it just keeps getting better. There is simply no sound that can't be made with this unique, old school modular synth with the kitchen sink thrown in. Not sure what they are charging, but way back I think I paid $6.99. I purchased all the sound packs and downloaded the free as well, which is quite generous of the factory. The additional presets provide's hours of working out my own. Simply, nothing else is quite like this app. It is very easy to attach via midi adapter and Bluetooth so I appreciate that as well! Great job, no matter what the price is up to now!
    By Film less Soundtracks for Version 2.1
  • Test ★★★★★
    Cool app
    By Catpizza for Version 2.1
  • Worth Every Penny and Then Some ★★★★★
    The best VCS3 emulator hands down. Not just the best VCS3 app, the best across the board.
    By 0xAether for Version 2
  • One of the best ios synths, and probably the best sounding. ★★★★★
    Especially impressed with v2.
    By jayjayevans for Version 2
  • IVCS3 ★★★★★
    Every picnic needs a Synth. You might think from its skeuomorphic design that it's behind the times, but this is now my go to Synth for FX soundscapes, and pads.
    By TooMuchTo for Version 2
  • Absolutely Brilliant! ★★★★★
    iVCS3 as an iOS AUv3. AU Instruments: Noise and VCO. AU Effects: Envelope, Spring Reverb, VCA and VCF. Mix and match as you wish inside your favorite AUv3 Host in addition to the full iVCS3 standalone through IAA or AudioBus. I think this will be extremely interesting introducing iVCS3 AU Instrument & Effects modules inside Sven Braun aka mobile only zMors Modular app as it host both AU Instruments & AU Effects.
    By Philowerx for Version 2
  • Having never read the user manual... ★★★★★
    This is still some of the best sounding, most incredible fun I've had with exploring sound (on iOS or otherwise)! The version 2 features are impressive. As a Brian Eno fan, this app helps me understand much more about how the EMS synths were used in the '70s. Brilliant!
    By chiefbucknell for Version 2
  • This thing is wild ★★★★★
    Apparently this is a very accurate recreation of the VCS3. I've never heard one, so I can't speak to that. However, it does sound authentically 70s analog crazy. Nothing else like this out there. Moog Model 15 is also great, but lacks the insane West Coast vibe of this thing. The interface is great (even though I'm not usually a fan of this style of interface), and easy to navigate. It feels authentic when you're playing with this thing. What is particularly impressive is how they've modernized certain features, while keeping it old skool. So you can feed in external sounds and feed them into anything, and you even can use samples. And it just works. Obviously midi just works There are some oddnesses with this thing, but as far as I can tell these are authentic to the VCS3. Check out the videos on youtube to help with those (particularly to get the keyboard working, and to get the most out of it's capabilities. The essential EMS modifications are just that.
    By Cianoc123 for Version 2
  • Fantastic recreation of a classic ★★★★★
    I had the good fortune of using an original vcs3, well actually a synthi, in college and have long since looked for one to add to my studio. I tried other soft synth emulations and none came close to recreating that sound. Within minutes of getting this I was able to start dialing in all of those great sounds from my past uses with the real hardware. It may not be for the faint of heart but nothing else sound anything like it. You can route external audio through the unit just like the hardware which is great. This version also adds many new useful features that I always wanted and some I never knew I needed. I think the essential mods are a must buy. So consider that when you get it. They do seem to continue to support the software. They recently announced a new 2.0 version that is due in the coming months which I am excited about. I am vey rarely impressed with software recreations of analog synths. This may be my my first time to actually be completely content with one. I even bought a new ipad and sound card to go along with it.
    By SneakyT for Version 1.6.4
  • Wonderful VCS 3 port to iPad - out of the ballpark!!! ★★★★★
    This is a labor of love recreating the VCS3 synth used on many tracks over time. Its sonic possibilities are endless and it provides a wealth of aural soundscapes to be discovered. One of the best vintage synth recreations apps to hit the iPad. Great job! Well worth the cost. Will take some learning if you are used to presets, but the investment in time to do so will pay off. The addition of LFO modulation potential to almost every parameter expands the sound creation possibilities well beyond the orignial hardware. The add-on IAPs are fantastic additions too. Highly recommended!
    By MusicInclusive LLC for Version 1.6.4
  • Still incredible! ★★★★★
    Still my main go to synth app for original sound creation. With iVCS3 and Moog Music's Model 15 Modular Synth, the world is at my fingertips! Update: The developer is very responsive and willing to do whatever he can to resolve my crashing on startup that started two updates back. I ended up deleting iVCS3, backed up my iPad Air 1G and then did a hard reset removing everything (manually sync'd my photos off too) from my iPad. Then I restored the backup and reloaded iVCS3 from the App Store and it's finally working again (it's playing in the background while I write this)! 🙂 I couldn't be happier! 🙂
    By Eriptron for Version 1.6.4
  • Won't Get Fooled Again ★★★★★
    I purchased this app a few weeks ago along with a set of presets. Long story short. I'm noodling with this thing and discover that one of the presets is a dead ringer for the synth. solo right out of the who song in the title above. I defy anyone to to load this preset and not start adding Keith Moon's drum fill while you mess with the joystick. Killer. I'm also digging the old school look of this thing.
    By trickboy for Version 1.6.4
  • Synth even better ★★★★★
    The addition of Link support and the other recent updates have only made this an even better and more manageable synth. Definitely worth the time to get a handle on how it works.
    By polarpaul for Version 1.6.4
  • ...And Now For Something Completely Different ★★★★★
    No problem with the update here (Air 2). Many make the claim that their synth app is different from the rest, but in this case, it is most assuredly true! This thing is raunchy! I mean that in a good way... It feels and sounds like a vintage hardware synth and makes no apology for the kind of chaos that entails. If you want wild, "out there" sounds, this is the synth app for you.
    By ZenLizard for Version 1.6.4
  • Simply amazing ★★★★★
    This is an unbelievable recreation. Breathtaking!
    By F2959 for Version 1.5
  • A labor of love ★★★★★
    ...and a laboratory of love. I probably won't ever own the real thing, and I've always had GAS for one. Especially watching the likes of Brian Eno play it! Exceptional sound, and yes very odd. If you just want quick electronic dance sounds ermm...this is Not your synth. Surely those sounds can be coaxed, but this is a wild sonic monster that is best used to unleash mayhem and to make grown men cry. iVCS3 has to be one of - if not THE best sounding synths I've heard on iOs. In fact I bought a sonic couture version of this synth and while very nice I much preferred this experience and dare I say sound. ----UPDATE---- The update is outstanding in the most SICK way possible. I don't even use the word SICK as a slang word but it's an appropriate description of the sound. This synth creates other worldly sounds. Use it in the forefront or even in the background to transform your tracks into another dimension. When you hear the real thing and this lovingly made official emulation the sound is more than comparable. Of course I still lust after the real thing, but who is to say this isn't real when sound is the most important result.
    By 1dionysus for Version 1.5
  • Fantastic ★★★★★
    This is a mind-blowingly interesting synth for anyone who loves the magical relationship between controls (knobs, switches, pinboard) and sounds. I've been using this app for more than a year, and it always functions great. The sounds one makes are unusual, surprising and sonically high quality. And I keep discovering new ways all its features can play off each other. Whenever I get bored of all the other music apps, I always come back to this one.
    By HereJam for Version 1.4
  • Awesome ★★★★★
    It could possibly be my favorite iOS synth. Deep, flexible, sounds amazing. Perfect recreation of a classic!
    By 7Z7 for Version 1.4
  • AWESOME ★★★★★
    Get everyone of their apps... they are amazing!
    By theconceptofzero for Version 1.3.1
  • Deep ★★★★★
    This one gets me into scientist mode.
    By Long words for Version 1.3.1
  • Awesomely Fun and Useful! ★★★★★
    I've only been using the app for a day, and already I'm finding it an integral addition to my workflow. Well-built and fun to use. I can't speak to the quality of the emulation of the original hardware, since I've never had the opportunity to use one, but this app is spectacular on its own, and I really enjoy working sounds out of it. Visually it looks spot-on. It took me a bit to figure it out, but it comes with a decent manual to help you figure out all the knobs and such.
    By sirsquishalot for Version 1.3.1
  • Unbelievable!!! ★★★★★
    Amazing sound quality! I have been programming for hours on this and just listening to the sound. I could live inside this synth! My iPad will only need one synth from now on.... The iVCS3. Thank you guys so much for your labor of love, so that I could finally experience THEE monophonic classic!
    By digiscene for Version 1.3.1
  • Wow!! ★★★★★
    Tremendous!! Fantastic!! Mind blowing!!!
    By Mikes jello for Version 1.3.1




iVCS3 Official EMS VCS3 emulator The VCS3 was created in 1969 by Peter Zinovieff's EMS company. The electronics were largely designed by David Cockerell and the machine's distinctive visual appearance was the work of electronic composer Tristram Cary. The VCS3 was more or less the first portable commercially available synthesizer—portable in the sense that the VCS 3 was housed entirely in a small, wooden case. The VCS3 was quite popular among progressive rock bands and was used on recordings by The Alan Parsons Project, Jean Michel Jarre, Hawkwind, Brian Eno (with Roxy Music), King Crimson, The Who, Gong, and Pink Floyd, among many others. Well-known examples of its use are on The Who track "Won't Get Fooled Again" (as an external sound processor, in this case with Pete Townshend running the signal of a Lowrey Organ through the VCS3's filter and low frequency oscillators) on Who's Next. Pink Floyd's "On the Run" (from The Dark Side of the Moon) made use of its oscillators, filter and noise generator, as well as the sequencer. Their song Welcome to the Machine also used the VCS3. The bassy throb at the beginning of the recording formed the foundation of the song, with the other parts being recorded in response. The VCS3 was also a staple at the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop, and was a regular (and most frightening) sound generator for the Dr Who TV series. Many fo the monsters and atmoshere;s created for the show came directly from the VCS3. Description The VCS3 has three oscillators (in reality, the first 2 oscillators are normal oscillators and the 3rd an LFO or Low Frequency Oscillator), a noise generator, two input amplifiers, a ring modulator, a 18dB/octave (pre-1974) or 24dB/octave (after 1974) voltage controlled low pass filter (VCF), a trapezoid envelope generator, joy-stick controller, voltage controlled spring reverb unit and 2 stereo output amplifiers. Unlike most modular synthesizer systems which use cables to link components together, the VCS3 uses a distinctive patch board matrix into which pins are inserted in order to connect its components together. Keyboards controller DK1 keyboard controller Although the VCS3 is often used for generating sound effects due to lack of built-in keyboard, there were external keyboard controllers for melodic play. The DK1 in 1969 was an early velocity sensitive monophonic keyboard for VCS3 with an extra VCO and VCA. Later it was extended for duophonic play, as DK2, in 1972.…

Release Notes

+ AUv3: Audiobus 3 view size, issue solved
+ AUv3: ENV AUv3 Note Off Fixed
+ AUv3: ENV Multiple instances Lamp fixed
+ AUv3: VCO and VCF MIDI parse improved
+ AUv3: VCO MIDI Pitch Bend support

App Details

  • Version 2.2
  • Created by apeSoft
  • Sold by Alessandro Petrolati
  • Released on March 6, 2014
  • File Size: 108 MB
  • Price: $14.99
  • universal This app is designed for both iPhone and iPad



Zinovieff preface


Hazel Pascua Video Tutorials


Ryouichi Harada

Music Maker & Sound On Sound Reviews

Facebook iVCS3 group