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Pacarana—Supercomputer for Sound

Most powerful sound design workstation on the planet

That’s what Electronic Musician magazine calls the Kyma sound design environment. Future Music calls it the Holy Grail of sound design. Kyma's strength arises from its unique set of algorithms, the ease with which you can create endless combinations of those algorithms, and the unprecedented degree of real-time responsive control over the sound parameters.

You’ve already heard the sounds of Kyma in films like WALL•E, The Dark Knight, Master and Commander, Finding Nemo and in games like Quake II, Mirror's Edge, Dark Messiah, and Mage Knight. And you've heard the interactive musical sounds of Kyma both on albums and in live sets by legendary musicians and producers like John Paul Jones, A.R. Rahman, Rich Costey, BT, and many others.

In 1990, Symbolic Sound first revolutionized the sound design and music software industry with the introduction of Kyma, a graphical modular software sound design environment accelerated by the software-reconfigurable Capybara multi-processor sound computation engine. The Pacarana is the fifth in a series of increasingly powerful sound computation engines designed and produced by Symbolic Sound to work in conjunction with the Kyma sound design environment (now in its sixth major release, not counting the hundreds of free updates between each major release). Symbolic Sound is committed to bringing the most advanced and flexible sound design technology to sound designers, musicians, educators, researchers, and creative professionals through its innovative hardware and software offerings.

What comes next?

A supercomputer designed for sound

The flagship model Pacarana is 150% the power of a fully-loaded Capybara-320 for less than half the price. The entry-level Paca costs less than a Basic Capybara-320, but the new entry-level model is 5 times more powerful.

Falling in love with Kyma

What is it that people love about Kyma? For some people it’s having an unbounded environment for creating sounds that have never been heard before. Others cite outstanding technical support and the super-stability and reliability of the Kyma software during live performances. Still others rave about the continuous stream of free software updates full of new features and synthesis/processing algorithms. And everyone loves the legendary Kyma sound.

What’s the secret behind the ‘Kyma sound’? The secret is in the software. When you have a supercomputer dedicated entirely to capturing, processing, and synthesizing sound, you have the luxury of being able to do things right. We don’t cut corners, and you can hear the difference.

Bright, warm, and touchable

The warm and friendly orange OLED display is easy to read under any lighting conditions and from any angle. A light touch or flick of the finger is all it takes to quickly select or scroll through control and status display menus.


On the back of the Pacarana—all the high-speed connectivity you want and need for digital audio production: two FireWire 800 ports, 2 USB ports, 100-base T Ethernet jack, and more…

A DC power plug connects the Pacarana to an external power supply that auto-senses voltage and frequency of the AC power source no matter where in the world you travel.

The Pacarana communicates with the Kyma X software running under Mac OS or Windows via FireWire 800 (IEEE1394B) or an 800-to-400 adapter cable.

Audio and MIDI input and output is handled via an external FireWire or USB converter or, for current Kyma owners, through a Capybara-320 with Flame FireWire I/O. Connect additional USB MIDI controllers like keyboards or fader boxes via the second USB port.


Control the Pacarana with any USB-MIDI device, FireWire-MIDI controller, or MIDI-generating software. Symbolic Sound has been working closely with Haken Audio ( to create seamless plug-and-play operation with the new MIDI-based Continuum fingerboard. Other controllers with a high degree of Kyma integration include the Wacom tablet, the CM Labs MotorMix, and the controllers supported by Camille Troillard’s OSCulator ( software, including the Nintendo Wiimote, the Jazz Mutant Lemur, the Logitech Space Navigator, and others.


Pacarana is one rack-unit high and weighs approximately 1.7 kg (about 3.7 lbs). The entry-level Paca is the same width and height as the pro model but is a few inches shorter. The dimensions are:

Model Millimeters Inches
Pacarana 357 X 249 X 45 14 X 10 X 1.77
Paca 281 X 249 X 45 11 X 10 X 1.77

Designed for sound

The Pacarana is a powerful multiprocessor computer that runs alongside your Macintosh or PC. Like other computers, the function of the Pacarana is defined by its software. Unlike other computers, the Pacarana doesn’t have to run a huge general-purpose operating system with elaborate GUIs and multiple independent processes that can interrupt each other at any time. With the Pacarana, all compute cycles are dedicated to sound; you don’t have to share it with any other tasks.

You can’t run software without a computer. This computer was designed for sound computation. At Symbolic Sound, audio signal processing is our first priority and our only priority.


Slip the Pacarana into a laptop sleeve (pictured here wrapped in the Brain Cell by Tom Bihn), and you’re ready to hit the road. It’s small enough and light enough to bring along on tours, to move from your personal studio to a sound stage, to transport between work and home, or to shift from one studio to another. Use a USB headset to work in hotel rooms, airports, or in the green room just before you take the stage: wherever and whenever inspiration strikes.

May we suggest an entrée?

For those with lighter appetites, might we suggest supercomputer-lite? A Paca is 5 times more powerful than the basic Capybara•320 and it comes with the full Kyma sound design software environment making it the perfect entrée into the world of professional sound design in Kyma.

Kyma on board


The Pacarana is not just another pretty OLED. Every Pacarana comes with the Kyma sound design software with its thousands of patches, hundreds of plug-ins and an infinite variety of ways these can be combined together. Registered Kyma owners enjoy frequent free software updates, including new sound algorithms, editors, and features. The result? Your Pacarana actually improves with age.

Take your favorite outboard processor, add in the cost of a full suite of plug-ins, and you’ll agree: Kyma on the Pacarana is not just the most powerful sound design workstation on the planet; it’s also extraordinarily cost-effective.

No more barriers

With the new entry-level model costing less than a Basic Capybara-320 (while packing 5 times more power) now you can gain full access to the same sound design environment used by top sound designers, musicians, and researchers all over the world. If you are serious about sound and sound design, you can’t afford not to get into Kyma.

Now shipping!

Order your Pacarana direct from the Symbolic Sound web site. We will ship it directly to you at your address anywhere in the world.

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Symbolic Sound, Kyma, Pacarana, Paca, and Capybara and their respective logos are trademarks of the Symbolic Sound Corporation. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners.