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Nord Lead 3 or Lead 4?
Old 21st May 2015
  #1
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flat's Avatar
Nord Lead 3 or Lead 4?

Stupid question.

Which of these 2 synths would you take? Nord Lead 3 or 4?

Although I started a thread saying I was happy with my setup, I finally decided to let the JD800 go as tbh, I have played it out and want something different to take its place.

Both the Lead 3 and 4 seem good candidates, but I can't decide which. I already have a Lead 2x.
For a while I considered the A1, but ultimately, I don't think its a programmers synth, which is what i'm after.

Anyone owned/played both with an honest opinion?

Lead 3's seem to have a reputation for dicey power issues which is worrying.
Old 21st May 2015
  #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flat earth View Post

....I don't think its a programmers synth, which is what i'm after....

Clavia G2.

Between the 3 and 4, I like the 3 better. Goes against popular opinion, but that's my choice.

For a programmer's synth though - G2, for sure.
Old 21st May 2015
  #3
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BTByrd's Avatar
If you already have a 2x, I wouldn't get either. Especially if you also already have a Virus and a JP8080.
Old 21st May 2015
  #4
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muziksculp's Avatar
 

The NL4 is a great synth, especially if you are into sound design, and want more synth editing power under your fingers.

I have the NL4 (Rack) and love it

I used to own a NL3 a while back, which I sold. It was a good sounding VA-Synth, but I don't think it can compete with the NL4 when it comes to diversity, programming features.

I highly recommend the NL4 if you love programming your sounds, experimenting, and creating unique sounds.

You can hear some demos I made using the NL4 on my Muzikaltek blog. link in my signature below.

cheers,
Muziksculp
Old 21st May 2015
  #5
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Soothing Sound's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by flat earth View Post
Stupid question.

Which of these 2 synths would you take? Nord Lead 3 or 4?

Although I started a thread saying I was happy with my setup, I finally decided to let the JD800 go as tbh, I have played it out and want something different to take its place.

Both the Lead 3 and 4 seem good candidates, but I can't decide which. I already have a Lead 2x.
For a while I considered the A1, but ultimately, I don't think its a programmers synth, which is what i'm after.

Anyone owned/played both with an honest opinion?

Lead 3's seem to have a reputation for dicey power issues which is worrying.
I would get a V-Synth V2 Original instead of the NL4.
Old 21st May 2015
  #6
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sovietpop's Avatar
Clavia G2.
Hard to find a hardware synth with more options and an amazing GUI.
Old 21st May 2015
  #7
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DJRAZZ's Avatar
 

Sorry. I think something from DSI would be the best.
Old 21st May 2015
  #8
I own the Nord Lead 4 and am totally in love with it. Would not trade it for a NL3.
Old 21st May 2015
  #9
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BTByrd's Avatar
I'll elaborate a bit. I owned the NL2X and NL3 and currently have a G2. I don't think that the NL3 or NL4 would give you a great deal over what you already have in your current setup. The NL3 offers some nice FM options, but it's nothing like the implementation on the G2. The NL4 is a great synth, and you get some additional filtermodes over the 2X (as well as some effects and other bonuses) but it's not like you'll get a radically different synth. I love the Nords and all of them are worth owning, but unless your funds are unlimited or your tastes are narrowly bounded by the Nord sonic palate, you'll be much better off getting something different. If you do get a Nord, the G2's architecture is almost limitless... you can go as deep as you could possibly want (and then go deeper if you wanted to). The V-Synth is an excellent alternative suggestion. It sounds nothing like the Nord and has plenty of tricks up its sleeve. There are other options as well... but you haven't said what kinds of sounds you're looking to achieve or what kind of synthesis you're especially attracted to. That might make all the difference.
Old 21st May 2015
  #10
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Signifier's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sovietpop View Post
Clavia G2.
Hard to find a hardware synth with more options and an amazing GUI.
Er.... The UI on the computer is amazing, but on the synth itself it is a bit underwhelming.
Old 21st May 2015
  #11
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flat's Avatar
Thanks for the suggestions. I just love the Nord sound. I heard some demo's of the 3 recently which had a very different flavour to the 2x. Quite wide and creamy.

JP8080 might leave soon so VA strings and paddage are important. Its a shame the 4 doesn't have some of the A1 features as its close to my ideal synth in terms of interface sound and size. I may well loose the 2x to fund an A1 rack later on if a 4 turns up.

I nearly pulled the trigger on a Lead 3, but all these stories of flaky power issues and them suddenly stopping booting up has me worried.

To the suggestions of the V-Synth. I have played it a fair number of times and although I was impressed with what it could do, it never struck me as being very 'musical'. I don't know why, but I didn't gel with it.
Old 21st May 2015
  #12
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Signifier's Avatar
 

Have you considered the DSI Pro2? Not Poly, but the paraphony can sound really good and its got some crazy deep modulation options. Otherwise, NL4 for sure.
Old 21st May 2015
  #13
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Kraut's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by muziksculp View Post
The NL4
I used to own a NL3 a while back, which I sold. It was a good sounding VA-Synth, but I don't think it can compete with the NL4 when it comes to diversity, programming features.
I love the NL4's sound (in demo's anyway, I haven't had the joy to try it my self), but I was in the impression, that the diversity and programming features was not such a selling point...at least compared to the NL3? What have I missed?
Old 21st May 2015
  #14
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flat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Signifier View Post
Have you considered the DSI Pro2? Not Poly, but the paraphony can sound really good and its got some crazy deep modulation options. Otherwise, NL4 for sure.
Nice synth, but totally different sound and out of the price range. Having 4 6-voice synths with seperate f/x channels of Nord sound, kind of sways it.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #15
roc
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I'm a bit confused about the NL4 , I was really excited about it and all the cool modulation features but it has been slammed repeatedly over on the nord forum , as sounding to harsh and metallic . Most over there seem to prefer the A1 , they say the sound is much better and closer to analog Than the NL4 . But this is all opinion and taste
of the users , it's sad because I really wanted to like the NL4 .

Musiksculp demo above did sound good tho .
Anybody have anymore demos of the NL4 not sounding harsh ?
It's weird most demos sound like they all have some type of high pitch filter on them or maybe that's just how it sounds .
Old 22nd May 2015
  #16
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I LOVE the nl3. fantastic synth. the led encoders are pure candy. sonically you're getting a VA, and I'm not going to tell you what your ears like.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #17
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muziksculp's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by roc View Post
I'm a bit confused about the NL4 , I was really excited about it and all the cool modulation features but it has been slammed repeatedly over on the nord forum , as sounding to harsh and metallic . Most over there seem to prefer the A1 , they say the sound is much better and closer to analog Than the NL4 . But this is all opinion and taste
of the users , it's sad because I really wanted to like the NL4 .

Musiksculp demo above did sound good tho .
Anybody have anymore demos of the NL4 not sounding harsh ?
It's weird most demos sound like they all have some type of high pitch filter on them or maybe that's just how it sounds .
Hi roc,

I will be posting a new NL4 demo soon on this forum, in a new thread. I plan to make more NL4 demos in the near future as well. Hopefully the demos will show how diverse, and great sounding the NL4 is.

Cheers,
Muziksculp
Old 22nd May 2015
  #18
roc
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roc's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by muziksculp View Post
Hi roc,

I will be posting a new NL4 demo soon on this forum, in a new thread. I plan to make more NL4 demos in the near future as well. Hopefully the demos will show how diverse, and great sounding the NL4 is.

Cheers,
Muziksculp
great can't wait your demos are some of the best I heard yet .
Old 22nd May 2015
  #19
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flat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by roc View Post
I'm a bit confused about the NL4 , I was really excited about it and all the cool modulation features but it has been slammed repeatedly over on the nord forum , as sounding to harsh and metallic ..

check 4:55

Old 22nd May 2015
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by roc View Post
I'm a bit confused about the NL4 , I was really excited about it and all the cool modulation features but it has been slammed repeatedly over on the nord forum , as sounding to harsh and metallic . Most over there seem to prefer the A1 , they say the sound is much better and closer to analog Than the NL4 . But this is all opinion and taste
of the users , it's sad because I really wanted to like the NL4 .
I do find myself doing a lot more surgical EQing on the NL4 to get rid of the harshness, but so what? Sometimes you need to polish a diamond to see it`s true beauty. Other times it needs no surgical EQing at all. It depends on what kind of sounds you are trying to create on it. Dont get discouraged by such negative statements. NL4 is a beast!
Old 22nd May 2015
  #21
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EvilDragon's Avatar
If I could only have one Nord and one Nord only, I'd get a Lead 3. The only one that has aftertouch and LED rings around knobs (awesome feature). Alternatively, G2X - rare as hen's teeth, but daaaaamn!
Old 22nd May 2015
  #22
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MinoCan's Avatar
I would get NL3 if I had a 2X already (and I have, but another branded synth takes NL3's duties for me at the moment)
Old 22nd May 2015
  #23
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flat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post
If I could only have one Nord and one Nord only, I'd get a Lead 3. The only one that has aftertouch and LED rings around knobs (awesome feature). Alternatively, G2X - rare as hen's teeth, but daaaaamn!
I agree the Lead 3 looks amazing, but visuals are not the issue here (I actually think the Lead 4 looks just a cool).

I'm also struggling to find much I really like about the Lead 3's sound.

The lead 4 seems much more up my street. Don't think it sounds like a 2X at all.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #24
Gear Addict
 

I have the Lead 2 and the Lead 3. From what i heard the 4 sounds a lot closer to the 2 than the 3. The Lead 2 has a much more warmer sound than the 3 but at the same time its a lot more limited than the 3.

The 4 on the other hand has the impulse morph buttons which are extremely powerful especially if you play live plus the 4 has the effects as well..

If i had to buy again and i was deciding between the 3 or the 4 i would get the 4.

As it is now, i am actually looking to sell the lead 2 and put that towards the 4.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #25
Quote:
Originally Posted by flat earth View Post
I agree the Lead 3 looks amazing, but visuals are not the issue here (I actually think the Lead 4 looks just a cool).

I'm also struggling to find much I really like about the Lead 3's sound.

The lead 4 seems much more up my street. Don't think it sounds like a 2X at all.
agreed, they are only similar on paper. 4 is a new generation of VA, and sounds like it, cleaner clearer high end, sweeter more "analoguish" and liquid filters than any other Nord before. all filter options sound great, the ladder and diode ones, and its standard filter sounds much after likes of early80s roland tones. here's a few demos i've done with it: Nord Lead 4 demos

i also tried the A1 in the store, its basically scaled down NL4. same core sound character, some extras in effects section. altough some ppl coaxed some wonderful tones out of it, day to day i'd never want to be as limited programming wise. i am not denying its huge fun to play, but i wonder for how long. separate delay and reverb are huge for a live situation, but in the studio where one usually has other toys, not as much.




PS how come you aren't looking at re-buying a Waldorf Q ? i know you loved it dearly, and mentioned how you miss it. i mean, with NL4 budget you could buy it easily, even the keyboard version. it is more complementary/different to 2X that any other nord.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #26
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monstermusiker's Avatar
Love the 4, it sounds more defined than the 3, IMO!

But I`m am I the only one who would take the Nord Wave over any of the other Nords? Never had a more versatile and easy to use synth, and I`ve had quite a few over the years
Old 22nd May 2015
  #27
Gear Maniac
 

Here's a track I made where all the sounds are form the Nord Lead 4. I'm new to the synth thing and midi clock etc, so it's not super good but I think it shows some versatility. https://soundcloud.com/auver-gaaren/wub-wub/s-jruSm
Old 22nd May 2015
  #28
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Had the NL4 for a couple of weeks and I hated it. Most boring synth I ever used. The sound was boring, the interface I didn't like. The digital display from the 80s sucked. People are paying upwards of $1000. I can't believe it. I would take any soft synth over a nord. The most exciting thing from that nord was the red color. Sorry, I just can't say anything positive about a digital synth with tech from the early 90's that's being sold today for thousands. That's just crazy.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #29
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flat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
PS how come you aren't looking at re-buying a Waldorf Q ? i know you loved it dearly, and mentioned how you miss it. i mean, with NL4 budget you could buy it easily, even the keyboard version. it is more complementary/different to 2X that any other nord.
Excellent question. And indeed a thought I have pondered over. Thing is, the Nord offering 4 separate 6 voice synths would add a lot more to my musical arsenal. I also (at my age) am wanting to explore new instruments. Apart from a Trident, I don't think I would realistically re-visit any synth I have sold. The Q was amazing. I am just very proud to have owned one in my time.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #30
Deleted 2ecf148
Guest
id either wait until nord lead 5 came out and be super duper ultra modern or go totally vintage oldschool and get nord lead 2
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