GSi VariSpeed is a new plugin that GSi offers free of charge to everybody. It's a simulation of the WEM Copicat IC-400 Belt Drive VariSpeed model, the first tape echo machine made by WEM with a DC capstan motor capable of changing speed, thus varying the delay time. GSi VariSpeed replicates the hardware instrument “as is” with all its pros and cons, without any additional feature except the fact that it is digital and MIDI-controllable. This can be considered as the second chapter of a tribute to the genius of Mr. Charlie Watkins that GSi began back in 2008 with the release of the freeware "WatKat", which was a simulation of the "Custom Copicat".


WatKatはWem Watkinsの"Custom" Copicatをデジタル"クローン"したものです。それは非常にローファイで騒々しい、不規則性のあるサウンドです。オフにしてテープをロードしたままにすると、テープはキャプスタンに近接して曲がり、このことでエコー再生中に周期的なピッチの低下が起こります。プラス、暑くなるとバックグラウンドハムは時間とともに悪化してゆきます... あなたは時々それを消すべきです。テープが完全に消去されることはなく、キャプスタンモーターが動く...そして回転している間にテープに触れるとさらに悪化してゆきます。ヘッドはすぐに汚れてしまうので、実際には頻繁にクリーニングする必要があります。これは実際のハードウェアユニットにもデジタルシミュレーションにも当てはまります。

WatKat is a digital "clone" of a Wem Watkins "Custom" Copicat. It sounds very lo-fi, noisy, irregular. When you turn it off and leave the tape loaded, the tape bends in proximity of the capstan, and this turns into a periodic pitch fall during echo playback; plus, it gets hot and the background hum gets worse over time... you should turn it off every now and then; the tape is never completely erased, and the capstan motor flutters... and it gets worse if you touch it while it's spinning; heads tend to get dirty very soon, in fact you should clean them often. This is true for the actual hardware unit, and for the digital simulation as well.