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Warm (organic?) digital synths
Old 7th February 2019
  #1
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Warm (organic?) digital synths

My Waldorf XTK is definitely warm but not my Nord Rack 3 ( although it can be if programmed to sound warm).

I don’t know what makes the XTK sound warm to me...

Maybe some imperfections that makes the sound have micro unpredictabilities.

Any of you find some of your digital synths "warm"?
Why and how do you define "warm" in a musical instrument?
Old 7th February 2019
  #2
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NEXUS-6's Avatar
 

Add bass = warmer.. Older convertors = warmer..
Old 7th February 2019
  #3
M32
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I wouldn't say it's warm, but a prophet 12 has a very interesting character, it can have this grimy grainy character which is very organic. All the modulation possibilities, FM/AM, tuned feedback and modulateable 4 chorus/delays can create a lot of sounds that you wouldn't associate with digital synthesis.

Ad an analog bucket brigade chorus and some tape delay to that, and you can have weird dark and lush textures for days.
Old 7th February 2019
  #4
well definition of what is warmer in digital synth realm is of course in the ear of the beholder, or how they utilize instruments. but generally i tend to agree,, there are elements to XT tone i'd qualify as warm.

it can also be harsh, shrill and dirty to hell, but compared to some other machines it always retains certain warm rusty feeling while doing it. for example, its brother Q is not warm, more like icy nothern winds and interplanetary pads. but that is why i love their combination. they complement each other so well.


another example of digi warm, albeit in its own sonic universe, i find in Virus B. then Kurzweil K2000, Casio CZ serie, Monomachine, Synthtech E350 wavetable, Harvestman mk1 modules etc.



indeed there is something about older converters and subdued, musical top end full of artifacts.
Old 7th February 2019
  #5
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Quote:
Why and how do you define "warm" in a musical instrument?
It's completely subjective to begin with. How "warm" is a violon compared to a saxophone? Makes no sense.
Old 7th February 2019
  #6
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j3rk's Avatar
 

The XT and Digitone would be my picks. There are others, but these ones can get into that territory. (subjective of course) The Q and Blofeld maybe too, though in the Q's case, I'd say it wasn't its strongest suit. Plenty of overlap though.
Old 7th February 2019
  #7
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Have you tried adjusting your thermostat?
Old 7th February 2019
  #8
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autoy's Avatar
Both the D-50 and JD-800 qualify as warm to me.
Old 7th February 2019
  #9
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I find things sound warm if I play them through a tube amplifier. If the sound isn't warm enough, I need to get closer to the amplifier. A couple inches above the amplifier and it's nearly too warm to bear.
Old 7th February 2019
  #10
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Ensoniq ESQ-1/ESQ-M is the warmest sounding synth I've ever heard, digital or analog.
Old 8th February 2019
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camus2 View Post
It's completely subjective to begin with. How "warm" is a violon compared to a saxophone? Makes no sense.
so, for you, you never use the word "warm" to qualify a kind of sound?
how do you qualify the tones in sound?

of course it's subjective. I'm not uncomfortable with that.
discussing subjectiveness is an enriching intelectual exercise for me.
Old 8th February 2019
  #12
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Stevism's Avatar
I don’t own one but demos I’ve heard of the micromonsta are pretty warm
Old 8th February 2019
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by autoy View Post
Both the D-50 and JD-800 qualify as warm to me.
yeah i was just gonna chime in on the JDs. 990 to my ears is both digital as hell and also hella warm.
Old 8th February 2019
  #14
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ARR1's Avatar
Another vote for the JD-990.

Would say the same for the K2000 series (had a K2VXs).
Old 8th February 2019
  #15
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grasspike's Avatar
My JV880 sounds warmer than my JV1080 and JV1010
Old 8th February 2019
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevism View Post
I don’t own one but demos I’ve heard of the micromonsta are pretty warm

It can sound nice and warm. It can also do harsh and brittle. Lovely machine and a bargain really at the price.
Old 8th February 2019
  #17
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xanderbeanz's Avatar
Honestly, the Waldorf Microwave XT and II (which I own) is THE coldest synth I have ever owned in my history of owning synths.

That’s not bad, it has its place, a wonderful Ice Queen paradise. The second coldest is the Vsynth, in which, I have to use the internal comp/EQ on every patch I make to thicken it/saturate it ever so slightly to make it golden to my ears. That’s ok, it has COSM per note effects before you even get to the actual effects. On the topic of golden ears, I do not quite think I have them, I favour harsh sounsa a little too much for the palette of most people, but I do appreciate warmth.

If we want to talk warm, let’s talk Korg 01w. All the waves are at 32khz, dark baby, darkness for days. You can waveshape, but man, unless you totally overdo it, it never gets out of that dark syrupy world. It’s like a 1992 goth love letter written in deoxygenated blood.

Now, also good to mention are the Ensoniq VFX and EPS16+, no resonance sadly, but man, really authentic weighty bottom end if you want it, bottom end for days. They knew what they were doing with those synths.
Old 8th February 2019
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by grasspike View Post
My JV880 sounds warmer than my JV1080 and JV1010
you are not the first i hear saying that.


seems there is a pattern over the years going thru roland romplers... 880 to 1080 to 2080 and 3080/5080.

from hazey early 90s top and warm mids, to no mids at all and brilliant and cold cutting top.


i definitely liked roland romplers less and less with each generation. regardless of memory upgrades and cosm bullcrap.



agree with Xander on 01W it is one of the if not the warmest rompler i ever heard. i'm not that fond of its waveshaping, so i am debating btwn picking 01R/W, or 03R/W instead just to have that tone as they are 2-3 times as cheap.

another ROMpler i find warmish but distinctly different from Korg, is also early 90s, Yamaha SY85 and TG500. i got the latter and its a lovely sound. totally usable in 2019.
Old 8th February 2019
  #19
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i find TX802 to be present and energetic. does that qualify as warm?
kicks JV in the nuts for equivalent sounds.
an authentic synth, makes me curious about SY/TG77.

Last edited by whatever17; 9th February 2019 at 12:08 PM..
Old 8th February 2019
  #20
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rasseru's Avatar
i dont get the Q is not warm statement. Maybe you can make cold sounds with it due to wavetables and other tricks - but generally its a cloud of thick lower mids with no top end. even when its harsh its tonal colour is so yellow (they got the paint right on that one, didnt they) - that to me is not a cold sound.

but i'm just talking sonics atm as its the easiest thing for me to class 'warm' as.


i have recently been using my kawai k5000r - now that is a cold synth


oh ps. are the JV-880s any good? still really cheap
Old 8th February 2019
  #21
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Muied Lumens's Avatar
Have you tried gloves? Waterproof ones for the organic tones.
Old 8th February 2019
  #22
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xanderbeanz's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
you are not the first i hear saying that.


seems there is a pattern over the years going thru roland romplers... 880 to 1080 to 2080 and 3080/5080.

from hazey early 90s top and warm mids, to no mids at all and brilliant and cold cutting top.


i definitely liked roland romplers less and less with each generation. regardless of memory upgrades and cosm bullcrap.



agree with Xander on 01W it is one of the if not the warmest rompler i ever heard. i'm not that fond of its waveshaping, so i am debating btwn picking 01R/W, or 03R/W instead just to have that tone as they are 2-3 times as cheap.

another ROMpler i find warmish but distinctly different from Korg, is also early 90s, Yamaha SY85 and TG500. i got the latter and its a lovely sound. totally usable in 2019.
You have to try giving the waveshaping a good go it can be really subtle.
Old 8th February 2019
  #23
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grasspike's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
you are not the first i hear saying that.


seems there is a pattern over the years going thru roland romplers... 880 to 1080 to 2080 and 3080/5080.

from hazey early 90s top and warm mids, to no mids at all and brilliant and cold cutting top.


i definitely liked roland romplers less and less with each generation. regardless of memory upgrades and cosm bullcrap.
To me the JV-880 is my favorite Roland Rompler, I just love the way it sounds. There is something with the convertors and over all electronics that I dig more than later units.

I also have the individual 1U rack units that Roland came out with based on the JV expansion cards. They have that same mojo and warmth and I am pretty sure are based on the 880. The Roland M-VS1 "Vintage Synth" module sounds really good, and the samples Eric Pershing made of all those vintage synths are amazing.

Edit:Patchbase for iPad now has a JV-880 editor. Makes editing patches a breeze
Old 8th February 2019
  #24
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badmark's Avatar
I'd pay top dollar for a Behringer VFX!
Old 9th February 2019
  #25
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
seems there is a pattern over the years going thru roland romplers... 880 to 1080 to 2080 and 3080/5080.

from hazey early 90s top and warm mids, to no mids at all and brilliant and cold cutting top.
I thought this too when i was doing my research on which one I wanted to get. the 5080 has the feature set, but going through tons and tons of posts (including Don Solaris' comprehensive articles) I just couldnt believe how thin sounding the 5080 was. how anybody could compare it to the previous generations as a progression escaped me. it sounded like a completely different family to the previous units. in the end i settled on a good deal on a 2080.
Old 9th February 2019
  #26
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John01W's Avatar
Korg 01/W warm, phat, lush!
Old 9th February 2019
  #27
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John01W's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
i'm not that fond of its waveshaping, so i am debating btwn picking 01R/W, or 03R/W instead just to have that tone as they are 2-3 times as cheap.
.
01R/W has all the same waveshaping and everything as the key version, sequencer and interface too. Don't bother with the 03r/W ......even if you don't like the waveshaping(love it), the interface is tons better....just turn it off if you don't like it.
Old 9th February 2019
  #28
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string6theory's Avatar
E-mu can be luke warm in that Z-E-mu-plane filtering kinds way, iykwIm.
Old 9th February 2019
  #29
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“Warm” and “organic” as descriptors for (purely) digital synths does my head in, lol. Just makes no sense whatsoever. To me.

But I’m sorta curious what others perceive here. So I’ll keep an eye on this thread. Might learn something!
Old 9th February 2019
  #30
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Dequadix's Avatar
Any d-synth through this:

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