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Analog synth with standard size keys
Old 4 weeks ago
  #1
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loziodavid's Avatar
 

Analog synth with standard size keys

Hi all,
a few weeks ago I came here for an advice on a small (virtual) analog synth. I decided for a Novation Mininova, arrived 3 days ago, tried yesterday and today, but I discovered minikeys are not for me. My hands are quite big and playing chords and scales is difficult.
I also have an M-Audio Oxygen61, and playing there is definitely easier, I can keep my hands in a more natural position over the keyboard. The difference in feeling and playbility it's huge, like chalk and cheese.

I think to resell the Oxygen61 and do the free return on the Mininova, add some extra-money and get my first real synth
In short:
- analog/virtual analog synth
- standard size keys
- 3-4-5 octaves, but I prefer 4 or 5
- at least 6 voices polyphony
- 500-1000€/$ budget, but I prefer to stay low in budget if possibile
- if possibile, a PC editor or smartphone/tablet editor to create patches and save them into the synth

The only options that come in my mind are: Behringer Deepmind6 and 12 (it seems to have noise problems due to fans), Korg Prologue (very expensive), Argon8, Waldorf Blofeld.
Other ideas?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #2
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Are you looking to buy new, or are used synths an option?

Would a MIDI controller + synth module be an option, or do you want it all in one?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #3
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Deepmind fangate is overblown

Like Kronos, it may have been an issue when it first came out, but it has since been fixed. Unless maybe if you're using it in an uncomfortably warm room, or maybe on a hot stage in the sun, where there'll be lots of other screaming fans

Sorry for the fan puns, I couldn't help it. I've seen Prologues on sale for 1000 bucks. There are used options for less, including other Novas (Ultranova, Supernova 2). The ASM Hydrasynth is a very interesting new option, but costs $1300.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #4
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The Prologue-8 is less than 1000 bucks
Studiologic Sledge too (new, used of course even less)
Used Nord Lead 2/2X
Used Yamaha AN1X
Old 4 weeks ago
  #5
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Mini keys are awful

I know many disagree but don’t feel like you’re alone.

I don’t like the slim keys from korg either.

To each their own!

Also if you liked everything else about the mini nova, how about the ultranova?

I would look at the dsi rev 2 or even a used older model
Old 4 weeks ago
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevism View Post
Mini keys are awful
I know many disagree but don’t feel like you’re alone.
I don’t like the slim keys from korg either.
To each their own!

Also if you liked everything else about the mini nova, how about the ultranova?
I would look at the dsi rev 2 or even a used older model
Glad to hear I'm not the only one on planet Earth who doesn't love mini-keys

The Prophet5 REV2 is fantastic as I love the Prophet5 tone, but it's too expensive. It's in the 1500-2500$ range.
The Ultranova has standard size keys, but as I'm getting a new synth, I prefer something more analog-sounding. The Ultranova, as well as the Mininova, is 100% digital.
I prefer something like this, with a fatter tone, distorted and with a lot of harmonics.




Quote:
Originally Posted by ToyBox View Post
Are you looking to buy new, or are used synths an option?
Would a MIDI controller + synth module be an option, or do you want it all in one?
I will use it only at home, so MIDI controller + synth module, as long as it doesn't introduce latency problems, is an option. Why not?!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spider76 View Post
The Prologue-8 is less than 1000 bucks
Studiologic Sledge too (new, used of course even less)
Used Nord Lead 2/2X
Used Yamaha AN1X
Hi, thanks a lot for the advices.
I didn't know the AN1X and the Nord Lead.
The Sledge is interesting, but a little bit too deep. I have not so much space in depth on my desk. The Nord Lead 2/2X and Prologue could fit better to my desk.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #8
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Mastropiero's Avatar
New or second hand?

My two cents:

New synths:

King Korg (maybe the best option for 1000)
Korg Prologue 8 (it's 990€ in Europe, so still fitting your budge).
Behringer Deepmind 12 (It won't dissapoint you, no matter what you heared about it).
Modal Argon 8 or 8x (not exactly a virtual analog, but very close, and much powerful).
Waldorf Blofeld keyboard version (sound engine is very similar to Sledge, but smaller).
Korg Wavestate (it can be used as a VS synth although its main strength is the wavetable sequencing).


Second hand synths:

Alesis Fusion 6HD
Alesis Micron / ION
Yamaha AN1X
Roland Alpha Juno 2
Roland JP-8000
Oberheim OB-12
Old 4 weeks ago
  #9
Gear Nut
 

Deepmind 12. Take all the the money you save and buy a couple sets of patches like below, and still have money left over to buy other stuff.



Old 4 weeks ago
  #10
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loziodavid's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero View Post
New or second hand?

My two cents:

New synths:

King Korg (maybe the best option for 1000)
Korg Prologue 8 (it's 990€ in Europe, so still fitting your budge).
Behringer Deepmind 12 (It won't dissapoint you, no matter what you heared about it).
Modal Argon 8 or 8x (not exactly a virtual analog, but very close, and much powerful).
Waldorf Blofeld keyboard version (sound engine is very similar to Sledge, but smaller).
Korg Wavestate (it can be used as a VS synth although its main strength is the wavetable sequencing).


Second hand synths:

Alesis Fusion 6HD
Alesis Micron / ION
Yamaha AN1X
Roland Alpha Juno 2
Roland JP-8000
Oberheim OB-12
I consider both new and second hand, in fact I prefer a used unit, because I don't get used to synthesizers, so I prefer something I can resell without losing money if it doesn't satisfy me.

You listed me a lot of options, but if I concentrate on true analog synths, so no digital emulation, no virtual analog...just 100% analog synth, I wonder: are there tonal differences, for examples, between a Deepmind12, a Korg Prologue, the ARP Odissey and the Prophet5 REV2?
I'm only talking about "tone", so not polyphony, octaves, or other stuff.
Because a friend of mine who plays guitar, but synth and bass also, told me that synths are like overdrive pedals for guitar: each has its own flavour. This is why many players have 5-6 synth in their studio.

Probably with virtual analog (VA) and modeling synths there's a bigger difference between each one. For example a Blofeld and a Nord Lead2X, or an Argon8 and a KingKorg, they sound different due to a different emulation tecnhology, but this is true for analog synths also?
In short, is it correct to say that the Behringer Deepmind, Arturia Minibrute and Korg Prologue can generate the same tones if setted properly? With the same fatness and harmonics? Or even here, there are some fatter sounding instruments, and other that sound dull and tiny?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
...
In short, is it correct to say that the Behringer Deepmind, Arturia Minibrute and Korg Prologue can generate the same tones if setted properly? With the same fatness and harmonics? Or even here, there are some fatter sounding instruments, and other that sound dull and tiny?
To a point they could do similar sounds; however, as an example, the single oscillator in the MiniBrute can do some interesting wave folding, giving sounds the others can't. Its Steiner-Parker filter is also going to sound different than how the others sound.

And conversely, the deeper programming matrix of the Deepmind is going to give sounds (even monophonic) that the MiniBrute can't do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
This is why many players have 5-6 synth in their studio.
Currently, I've got eight synths (not including samplers), some digital, some analog, and they all sound different.

Edit: I miscounted-- nine synths

Last edited by MarvinDog; 4 weeks ago at 04:56 PM.. Reason: I don't know how to count
Old 4 weeks ago
  #12
Gear Addict
 

Yes, there can be quite a lot of difference (in timbre) among even analog polysynths that feature VCOs. Let alone the differences between DCOs and VCOs, or digital oscillators and VCOs, etc.

Note: I am firmly in the “oscillators matter” camp, regardless of the fact that it’s not at all a popular camp to be in!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
You listed me a lot of options, but if I concentrate on true analog synths, so no digital emulation, no virtual analog...just 100% analog synth, I wonder: are there tonal differences, for examples, between a Deepmind12, a Korg Prologue, the ARP Odissey and the Prophet5 REV2?

I'm only talking about "tone", so not polyphony, octaves, or other stuff.
Because a friend of mine who plays guitar, but synth and bass also, told me that synths are like overdrive pedals for guitar: each has its own flavour. This is why many players have 5-6 synth in their studio.

Probably with virtual analog (VA) and modeling synths there's a bigger difference between each one. For example a Blofeld and a Nord Lead2X, or an Argon8 and a KingKorg, they sound different due to a different emulation tecnhology, but this is true for analog synths also?

In short, is it correct to say that the Behringer Deepmind, Arturia Minibrute and Korg Prologue can generate the same tones if setted properly? With the same fatness and harmonics? Or even here, there are some fatter sounding instruments, and other that sound dull and tiny?
There certainly are differences, sometimes fairly significant differences, in the sounds various synthesizers can produce. The Prologue's 12 dB filter is going to sound fundamentally different than any 24 dB filter. The oscillator designs of the DeepMind and the Prologue and the rev2 have significant differences, too; and it's possible to do things with one that are just plain impossible with another. A sound that uses a custom digital oscillator on the Prologue would not readily be generated by the others. A patch exploiting the extensive modulation capabilities of the rev2 (or DeepMind) would be impossible to recreate on the Prologue, which has quite limited modulation.

That being said, they're all capable machines, and all can produce many of the same sorts of sounds, or put another way sounds that fulfil a similar musical role or purpose. All of them are entirely capable of making a traditional synthesizer sound, as well (basically a filtered sawtooth).

Similar differences exist between various VA synths, for some of the same reasons and also for some other underlying reasons.

It seems to me that so-called "fatness" and "thinness" of the same general sound often come down to stuff like equalization, levels, and a little bit of distortion.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #14
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Mastropiero's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
You listed me a lot of options, but if I concentrate on true analog synths, so no digital emulation, no virtual analog...just 100% analog synth, I wonder: are there tonal differences, for examples, between a Deepmind12, a Korg Prologue, the ARP Odissey and the Prophet5 REV2?
Sure there are. The ARP Odyssey is not a polysynth, by the way.

So, your personal taste should be the most important factor to take your decision. I recommend you to watch tons of videos and recordings of all of them so can decide which one you like the most. My favourite one in that list is the Prophet '08 REV2 ( I guess you made a mistake there with the Prophet 5, a vintage synth you won't find for less than $5,000 nowdays).

If you prefer Juno-ish kind of sounds, go with the Deepmind 12.
  • If you like new wave or italo music, you will probably like the Deepmind.
  • If you prefer Toto, Van Halen or The Police, you will prefer a Prophet or an Oberheim.

Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
For example a Blofeld and a Nord Lead2X, or an Argon8 and a KingKorg, they sound different due to a different emulation tecnhology, but this is true for analog synths also?
I think the difference is even greater for analog synths because analog sound is more chaotic and unpredictable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
In short, is it correct to say that the Behringer Deepmind, Arturia Minibrute and Korg Prologue can generate the same tones if setted properly? With the same fatness and harmonics? Or even here, there are some fatter sounding instruments, and other that sound dull and tiny?
I would say that, even if you set them equally, all of them sound different. Some of them sound brighter, others sound fatter, and others just sound... ehh... different. Each synth has its own character. Of course, there are some bread & butter patches that may sound very similar on all of them, especially if you don't do an A/B comparison.

But, on an A/B test, you will find relevant sound differences for sure.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero View Post
So, your personal taste should be the most important factor to take your decision. I recommend you to watch tons of videos and recordings of all of them so can decide which one you like the most. My favourite one in that list is the Prophet '08 REV2 ( I guess you made a mistake there with the Prophet 5, a vintage synth you won't find for less than $5,000 nowdays).

If you prefer Juno-ish kind of sounds, go with the Deepmind 12.
  • If you like new wave or italo music, you will probably like the Deepmind.
  • If you prefer Toto, Van Halen or The Police, you will prefer a Prophet or an Oberheim.
I like so much Prophet and Oberheim tones, together with another old classic like the Moog.
Tones like these for examples, fat and with a lot of distortion







but all these synths goes on sale for 4.000-5.000$. eBay prices are often inflated by 50 or 100%, but even on Reverb I have never seen an Oberheim or a Prophet for less than 3.000$, so I have to consider a cheaper alternative.

I love also the hammond and strings tones, but I already know what to get: Walford Streichfett. I can control it through the MIDI output of the syth.

I'm listening to some demos, and I'm starting to understand what you mean with "juno-ish" referring to the Deepmind. Am I wrong or the Korg Prologue is closer in tone to the Proph and OB? (2:25)
Old 4 weeks ago
  #16
The Prologue actually has a great tone...its nowhere near as flexible as the DM12 (whose fans can be turned off) but its raw tone is excellent.

If youre staying under $1k (and iwn an ipad) Id plump for an Alpha Juno 2 and a JX8p...get the ipg800 app to edit them though the alpha wheel is fine imho...great strings, pads, and the AJ does a decent bass and lead too
Old 4 weeks ago
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
but all these synths goes on sale for 4.000-5.000$. eBay prices are often inflated by 50 or 100%, but even on Reverb I have never seen an Oberheim or a Prophet for less than 3.000$, so I have to consider a cheaper alternative.
A modern Oberheim (OB6) is still expensive, but much much cheaper than a classic OB-Xa.

A clone of the OB-Xa is under development by Behringer right now (and I'm getting one as soon as it's released).
Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
I love also the hammond and strings tones, but I already know what to get: Walford Streichfett. I can control it through the MIDI output of the syth.
If you like string machines, you will love the Behringer VC340. It's a perfect clone of the Strings/Choir/Vocoder Roland VP-330.


Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
Am I wrong or the Korg Prologue is closer in tone to the Proph and OB?
You're not wrong, you got it right, and there is a powerful reason for it: the Deepmind and the Juno family use DCO oscillators, while the Prophet, old Oberheims and the Prologue use VCO oscillators. Both types of oscillators sound very different.

Which one sounds better? Again, that depends on everyone's personal taste.
I tend to prefer VCO-based synths such as the classic Prophet family (Prophet-5, Prophet-10, Prophet-100, Pro-One, Prophet-6), although there are some DCO synths that sound great (Oberheim Matrix-6, Roland JX-8P, all Junos, Prophet '08 / '08 REV2, etc.).

DCO oscillators are still analogue, but have some digital controlling for a more stable tuning. VCOs are fully analogue and usually have tuning issues, but exactly because of that, they sound more 'organic' and imperfect in a good way.

Focusing on purely analog synths, and according to the demo's you've already watched, what kind of sound do you think you prefer? DCO or VCO?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kcearl View Post
The Prologue actually has a great tone...its nowhere near as flexible as the DM12 (whose fans can be turned off) but its raw tone is excellent.

If youre staying under $1k (and iwn an ipad) Id plump for an Alpha Juno 2 and a JX8p...get the ipg800 app to edit them though the alpha wheel is fine imho...great strings, pads, and the AJ does a decent bass and lead too
In my experience, flexibility is often associated with poor tones. A piece of gear that can do 1000 things, often does all these 1000 things in a bad way.
With the guitar I got the way of "few but good", with the synths I have in mind to get the same way.
I prefer something that does very well leads, pads and bass, and something else that does well in strings, hammond and electric pianos. This is why I avoided the masterkeyboards like MX49 or MOXF6.
In short a very good analog synth with MIDI output, to control external synth modules.

About the AJ, I prefer something with a USB connection that I can manage and tweaks on my desktop PC. Moreover, I dont' have (and I neverd had) an iPad/Iphone. I'm an Android user from 2010!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero View Post
You're not wrong, you got it right, and there is a powerful reason for it: the Deepmind and the Juno family use DCO oscillators, while the Prophet, old Oberheims and the Prologue use VCO oscillators. Both types of oscillators sound very different.

Which one sounds better? Again, that depends on everyone's personal taste.
I tend to prefer VCO-based synths such as the classic Prophet family (Prophet-5, Prophet-10, Prophet-100, Pro-One, Prophet-6), although there are some DCO synths that sound great (Oberheim Matrix-6, Roland JX-8P, all Junos, Prophet '08 / '08 REV2, etc.).

DCO oscillators are still analogue, but have some digital controlling for a more stable tuning. VCOs are fully analogue and usually have tuning issues, but exactly because of that, they sound more 'organic' and imperfect in a good way.

Focusing on purely analog synths, and according to the demo's you've already watched, what kind of sound do you think you prefer? DCO or VCO?
I understand what you mean. In fact, in musical environment, imperfections, out-of-tune, lo-fi, is often associated with more pleasant tones. This is why a tube amp sounds better than a digital amp, whose behaviour is linear, constant and more predictable.

Based on your description, I would say VCO. Juno sounds are quite "clinical", while Prophet, Moog, Oberheim have more raw tones.
So, the question is: are there VCO synths <1000$, maybe with a USB connection + PC/tablet editor software/app?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #19
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Deepmind 12, you can turns the fan down, maybe off even, I have mine turned down and never notice it, it is a great synth, but I wouldn't want it to be my only one, great for pads, lead and also get some really good bass sounds from it, best bang for buck in my studio though!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #20
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If you dig the sound the Deepmind is the best bang for buck, I have one myself.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero View Post
If you like string machines, you will love the Behringer VC340. It's a perfect clone of the Strings/Choir/Vocoder Roland VP-330.
I second this-- gorgeous sounding machine!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
Based on your description, I would say VCO. Juno sounds are more "perfect", clear, while Prophet, Moog, Oberheim have more raw tones.
So, the question is: are there VCO synths <1000$, maybe with a USB connection + PC/tablet editor software/app?
Not many options.

VCO vintage synths for less than 1000, just forget about it.

However, there are some alternatives:
  • The Korg Prologue is about 1000 in many European shops. It seems that you're based in Italy. Look at Microfusa. It's a Spanish shop that sometimes offers good deals. Right now, they're selling the Prologue 8-voice for 995 € (I don't know whether they ship to Italy and how much shipping cost is, though).

https://www.microfusa.com/tienda/es/...rologue-8.html

Of course you may get a second hand unit, it will cost under 1000 for sure.
  • The MFB Synth Pro is an upcoming synth, it would be available in a few weeks. It costs the same as the Prologue, it's a desktop module (you have to use a MIDI keyboard), BUT is more powerful than the Korg. It is perhaps the first synthesizer featuring both VCO and DCO oscillators. I'll probably buy it.

https://www.thomann.de/intl/mfb_synth_pro.htm
  • The King Korg. Ok, it's NOT a VCO synth... it isn't even a real analogue synth, it's virtual analog. But its sound is warmed by passing through a genuine valve preamp and can really sound great.

https://www.thomann.de/intl/korg_kin..._black_ltd.htm

Old 4 weeks ago
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero View Post
Not many options.

VCO vintage synths for less than 1000, just forget about it.

However, there are some alternatives:
  • The Korg Prologue is about 1000 in many European shops. It seems that you're based in Italy. Look at Microfusa. It's a Spanish shop that sometimes offers good deals. Right now, they're selling the Prologue 8-voice for 995 € (I don't know whether they ship to Italy and how much shipping cost is, though).

https://www.microfusa.com/tienda/es/...rologue-8.html

Of course you may get a second hand unit, it will cost under 1000 for sure.
  • The MFB Synth Pro is an upcoming synth, it would be available in a few weeks. It costs the same as the Prologue, it's a desktop module (you have to use a MIDI keyboard), BUT is more powerful than the Korg. It is perhaps the first synthesizer featuring both VCO and DCO oscillators. I'll probably buy it.

https://www.thomann.de/intl/mfb_synth_pro.htm
Not a "vintage" synth. In fact, I don't absolutely want a piece of gear coming from the 80s or the 70s, with a small screen, software on floppys, and a 200pages manual. This is why I said no to the Alpha Juno 2, for example, even if I'm sure it's good sounding.
I prefer a modern analog synth with USB connection and PC editing.
For the moment, the Prologue8 seems the best. In the used market I found it for 600GBP in UK, and 800€ here in Italy.


Moving on, how about the MIDI keyboard + external synth module solution? It was suggestd by ToyBox....well, why not?!
So, is there an analog synth module with at least 6-8 voice polyphony at a reasonable price?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post

The only options that come in my mind are: Behringer Deepmind6 and 12 (it seems to have noise problems due to fans)
You can turn the fans down in the system menu to pretty much silent . I’ve done this and it works fine.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
Not a "vintage" synth. In fact, I don't absolutely want a piece of gear coming from the 80s or the 70s, with a small screen, software on floppys, and a 200pages manual. This is why I said no to the Alpha Juno 2, for example, even if I'm sure it's good sounding.
I prefer a modern analog synth with USB connection and PC editing.
For the moment, the Prologue8 seems the best. In the used market I found it for 600GBP in UK, and 800€ here in Italy.


Moving on, how about the MIDI keyboard + external synth module solution? It was suggestd by ToyBox....well, why not?!
So, is there an analog synth module with at least 6-8 voice polyphony at a reasonable price?
Not having USB doesn't mean you can't edit on the PC. Most MIDI-equipped synths (essentially, any synth from 1982 onwards) can be edited and managed from any modern computer and a simple MIDI interface, or with a MIDI controller such as the BCR2000 or a Novation SL. In other words, except for samplers, the USB connection on modern synths is usually just a built-in MIDI-over-USB interface.

You can edit, save patches, build your own library, etc. with a piece of software such as Midiquest, Ctrlr, etc. even if the synth is old yet MIDI-enabled.

For example, watch this video of how a Roland MKS-50 (rackmount version of Juno Alpha 2) can fully edited via MIDI with a BCR2000 (obviously you can do it also from a PC)



Another good demonstration: editing an Oberheim Matrix-6 (1986) with Midiquest on Windows. You don't need to mess with floppies or tapes, just use the MIDI interface to communicate with the synth and send programs, banks, etc.



Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
Moving on, how about the MIDI keyboard + external synth module solution? It was suggestd by ToyBox....well, why not?!
So, is there an analog synth module with at least 6-8 voice polyphony at a reasonable price?
The upcoming MFB Synth Pro is a powerful 8-voice sound module with 3 VCO and 3 DCO oscillators per voice. I would buy this (it's priced slightly over your 1,000 bucks limit, but if you wait a few weeks after the release, you will easily find one on the second-hand market for about 900€).

But, even if you (like me) love the VCO sound, don't get stuck strictly to it. There are some DCO or hybrid synths that sound excellent and maybe you can find one in your price range.

For example:
  • Oberheim Matrix-1000. It's a DCO analog synth based on the Matrix-6 that can't be edited from the synth panel; you need a PC or a MIDI controller. Soundwise, it's a powerful beast.




  • DSI Prophet '08 Desktop: https://www.sequential.com/product/prophet-08-module/ It's the Prophet '08 "rev1". As it has been succeeded by the REV2, it is easier to get one for less than 1,000.

    https://reverb.com/item/30939208-dav...desktop-module

  • Cheetah MS-6, is based on the Oberheim Matrix-6, but with some improvements. It sells normally about USD750.
  • The Behringer Deepmind 12D, you can bet it will make you happy
    https://www.thomann.de/intl/behringer_deepmind_12d.htm
  • The Hydrasynth is a recent beast. I haven't tried it yet by myself, but the ones that could play it are crazy with it. The desktop version is just 900 €.
    https://www.thomann.de/intl/asm_hydrasynth_desktop.htm

  • The Ensoniq ESQ-M (rackmount version of the ESQ-1). It's a hybrid synth featuring analog Curtis filters with wavetable oscillators. It's one of my favourite synths in my studio (well, I have the SQ-80, a revised version with polyphonic aftertouch keyboard. It sounds FAT. You can get one usually at a very low price.

Old 3 weeks ago
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero View Post
Not having USB doesn't mean you can't edit on the PC. Most MIDI-equipped synths (essentially, any synth from 1982 onwards) can be edited and managed from any modern computer and a simple MIDI interface, or with a MIDI controller such as the BCR2000 or a Novation SL. In other words, except for samplers, the USB connection on modern synths is usually just a built-in MIDI-over-USB interface.

You can edit, save patches, build your own library, etc. with a piece of software such as Midiquest, Ctrlr, etc. even if the synth is old yet MIDI-enabled.

For example, watch this video of how a Roland MKS-50 (rackmount version of Juno Alpha 2) can fully edited via MIDI with a BCR2000 (obviously you can do it also from a PC)

------CUT------
[*]The Behringer Deepmind 12D, you can bet it will make you happy
https://www.thomann.de/intl/behringer_deepmind_12d.htm
Hi MastroPiero, thanks a lot for your reply and precious suggestions.
After a lot of samples, reviews and demos, I'm sure at 90% that my first synth will be the Korg Prologue 8, and this for many reasons:
- the tone is not so far from a Prophet-5
- it's a real analog
- split function
- it's very knobby

The last point is really interesting to me. I recently purchased a Kemper Profiling Amplifier, and I liked so much the fact that every parameter can be set directly on the machine, without deep diving in the menu.
In every moment you can adjust immediately mix and decay of the reverb, mix and feedback of the delay, rate and depth of your modulation, gain and volume of the amp, as well as bass/mid/treble/presence. The same for Noise Gate and Master Volume.
Lot of knobs and buttons in the front panel, so no:
Menu -> Edit -> Performance -> Effects -> Modulations -> Chorus
1 knob -> 1 function!

This feature is really cool on the Kemper, and I liked a lot the fact that Korg used the same approach on the Prologue. Oscillators, ADSR, effects and so on, have each their dedicated knob.


I liked also the versatility and the tone of the KingKorg, it's a VA but it sounds like a real analog, probably thanks to the vacuum tube, but I read a lot of complaints about the keybed quality

- I couldn't get past the krappy keys.
- The keys are really awful. Even my VR-09 has better keys than this! They are loose allowing sideways motion and the pivot point is set too far forward. I have seen toy keyboards from radio shack with better keys
- Walked up to one at GC yesterday, played an Ab triad, and the only note that sounded was middle C. The Ab and Eb keys wouldn't play because the blacks are hinged so poorly. It has absolutely the worst keybed I've ever played on an instrument costing over $1000. The King Korg is for all practical purposes unusable in any kind of professional setting.
- And this is supposed to be a performance keyboard? Doesn't matter how good it sounds if you can't play it properly.
- And I thought my Radias keybed was bad...
- The keybed did feel amateurish to my fingers
- The keybed is certainly not the most attractive feature of the KingKorg, as you will know, having played it


There's a 10% of chances I get a KingKorg, but I have to try at a musical instruments shop or from a private who sells it.
Obviously the same applies to the Prologue, it's not an amplifier but something I will get my hands on, so a try-before-buy is mandatory. I just sent back to the seller the Mininova for its aweful keys, so I don't want to repeat the same mistake again


As said above from other users, the Prologue has a distinctive character, definitely analog-sounding, but it doesn't have a wide palette of tones. They range from Prophet to Moog-like, but doesn't cover tones from 1985 to modern days.
The KingKorg overcomes this problem, but if its keys are really awful so the only option is the Prologue 8, I can expand its tones later with an external synth module. Not today, but in 6 months or 1 year, as I have a lot to learn on white and black keys
Well, the Deepmind 12D you suggested me suits me better! Large display, 12 voices polyphony, very knobby, cheap. I could gain experience with a good synth, and the day I need modern tones or simply a wider palette of tones (hammond, rhodes, etc...) I can connect the Prologue to a Deepmind 12D or another synth module.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #27
Lives for gear
 
Mastropiero's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
As said above from other users, the Prologue has a distinctive character, definitely analog-sounding, but it doesn't have a wide palette of tones. They range from Prophet to Moog-like, but doesn't cover tones from 1985 to modern days.
It should. The Prologue has, in addition to 2 genuine analog VCO, 1 digital oscillator that is a wavetable sound source. And it can load further digital implementations to emulate a range of different sounds. Maybe the demos out there don't do it justice, but it should be capable of much more modern sounds that a plain Moog or Prophet. Search 'Prologue Custom Osc' and will find lots of demos of what can be achieved with it:



Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post
Well, the Deepmind 12D you suggested me suits me better! Large display, 12 voices polyphony, very knobby, cheap. I could gain experience with a good synth, and the day I need modern tones or simply a wider palette of tones (hammond, rhodes, etc...) I can connect the Prologue to a Deepmind 12D or another synth module.
The Deepmind is a great machine. It's very close to the Juno family (it's somehow inspired by Juno's architecture) but it has tons of improvement over the vintage models. And with a bit of work, it can also sound like a big poly monster:

Old 3 weeks ago
  #28
Gear Nut
 
loziodavid's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastropiero View Post
It should. The Prologue has, in addition to 2 genuine analog VCO, 1 digital oscillator that is a wavetable sound source. And it can load further digital implementations to emulate a range of different sounds. Maybe the demos out there don't do it justice, but it should be capable of much more modern sounds that a plain Moog or Prophet. Search 'Prologue Custom Osc' and will find lots of demos of what can be achieved with it:
Ohhh wow!!
I absolutely didn't imagine the Prologue can sound like this.



Thanks a lot for mentioning the digital part and the custom oscillators. They expand a lot the possibilities of the synth, becoming more versatile than at first sight.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #29
Lives for gear
 
seamonkey's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by loziodavid View Post

The Prophet5 REV2 is fantastic as I love the Prophet5 tone, but it's too expensive. It's in the 1500-2500$ range.
!
I don't normally like to point out mis-typed things in someone's comments, so apologies beforehand.
I think you meant Prophet Rev 2, not Prophet 5.
sorry......
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