iZotope Iris is AudioSculpt turned spectral sampler
When AudioSculpt was first released by Ircam back in 1994, it offered ground-breaking new possibilities for spectral analysis and processing of sound. Since then the program has been maintained and updated, and is still available on a yearly subscription basis as part of Ircam Forum.
Related software has been released later on, such as Spear (development might seem to have stalled back in 2009), Raven (mainly geared towards bioacoustic research), MetaSynth and Spectro. Acousmographe from GRM is yet another option that I discovered in the process of writing this post. Adobe Audition also has advanced spectral processing capabilities, and I guess this list is far from extensive.
Anyway, one of the newest kids on the block is iZotope Iris. Iris combines up to three samples that can all be spectrally filtered and combined with an optional syntesised signal (e.g. noise or “dirty” sine tone) that can be spectrally processed as well. With easy to use capabilities for setting in and out points for each sample, looping properties, envelopes, transpositions, time stretching and some common FX processing (distortion, delay, chorus and reverb) Iris offers possibilities for some pretty nifty sound design.
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