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Recommend me a budget MONO analog synth. Keyboard Synthesizers
Old 16th December 2009
  #1
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Recommend me a budget MONO analog synth.

In the true spirit of Christmas I'm getting myself a new synth.

I'm looking for a budget analog mono synth. I want something more or less intuitive, with a nice bunch of knobs and a grungy, heavy sound. Patch memory is not a requirement.

I want to use it to create a depressed, heavy, synth sound (not sure if that will make a lot of sense). NIN kinda comes to mind. I don't really use arpegiators.

I want it mainly for basses. Inbuilt FX would be sweet (i like choruses). Nice filters would also be sweet.

What should i be looking at?


Cheers.
Old 16th December 2009
  #2
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badmark's Avatar
Mopho? Budget in price. Quality sound. No effects to speak of though.
Old 16th December 2009
  #3
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/elect...nce-music.html

i ended up going with a moog lp and a sherman filterbank

trent uses an abundance of distortion boxes btw, so you might want to get some
Old 16th December 2009
  #4
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Have you looked at the Spectral Neptune? It might fit.
Old 16th December 2009
  #5
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badmark's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe View Post
trent uses an abundance of distortion boxes btw, so you might want to get some
Yeah, I've got a Blackstar distortion box, which is really sweet (in a distorted way).
Old 16th December 2009
  #6
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Doepfer Dark Energy. Im tempted myself, although I have several vaguely similar analogue mono synths already! No inbuilt effects as such, but seems to tick all your other boxes.
Nice review/demo vid of it over on Sonicstate too..
Sonic State - News (Video Item) Sonic LAB: Doepfer Dark Energy Analog Synthesizer, Desktop monosynth with USB/MIDI interface
Old 16th December 2009
  #7
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mono-poly's Avatar
 

New SEM?
Old 16th December 2009
  #8
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Roland SH-2

Roland SH-2
Old 16th December 2009
  #9
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If you can stretch to a (2nd hand?) Moog Little Phatty, i think it's got what you want. There's a function to overdrive/overload the filter, which gives it the aggressive bite you seem to be looking for. The stage 1 version is quite cheap secondhand, and is identical to the stage 2 apart from midi-usb feature. Some analogs are good at sounding pure and organic, the LP is more driven and aggressive, to your taste.
Old 16th December 2009
  #10
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raid's Avatar
 

Pro One is the ultimate analog monosynth if you want nasty industrial sounds. Great for aggressive in-your-face basslines however you can also do some fairly complex drones and freaky noises on it due to its mod routings.

NIN and Skinny Puppy used it! Check out the first few seconds of this, I'm pretty sure it's Pro One...


Old 16th December 2009
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badmark View Post
Mopho? Budget in price. Quality sound. No effects to speak of though.
Good suggestion but I'm thinking I might get a Tetr4 some day which would make it kinda redundant.
Old 16th December 2009
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mobius.media View Post
Have you looked at the Spectral Neptune? It might fit.
Yeh. I love the layout. Very intuitive. I just can't figure out whether it sounds right for me or not. All the demo videos I've seen are kinda... too nice (?) sounding. Definitely a contender though. I'd love to know if the distortion on it is any good.
Old 16th December 2009
  #13
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Waldorf Pulse: relatively cheap, easy to edit, piercing sound, filter sounds nice when overdriven. Very different sound than DSI stuff, in case you eventually buy the Tetra.

Actually, I bought a Pulse and a Prophet 08 rack almost at the same time. I enjoy programming the Pulse more.

Other than than, the Neptune II, Dark Energy, and SEM are probably good options, although more expensive than a Pulse.
Old 16th December 2009
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe View Post
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/elect...nce-music.html

i ended up going with a moog lp and a sherman filterbank

trent uses an abundance of distortion boxes btw, so you might want to get some
Interesting thread. Got me researching the Microwave I. I'm liking the sounds from the Microwave, but it is one ugly beast (!) and i wonder how easy it is to program. Something intriguing about it even though it's not fully analog. More research to do i guess.

The Little Phatty is a tiny bit too expensive for what i need right now though.
Old 16th December 2009
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raid View Post
Pro One is the ultimate analog monosynth if you want nasty industrial sounds. Great for aggressive in-your-face basslines however you can also do some fairly complex drones and freaky noises on it due to its mod routings.

NIN and Skinny Puppy used it! Check out the first few seconds of this, I'm pretty sure it's Pro One...
Some day....
Old 16th December 2009
  #16
Oli
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Oli's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by herokiller View Post
Got me researching the Microwave I. I'm liking the sounds from the Microwave, but it is one ugly beast (!) and i wonder how easy it is to program. Something intriguing about it even though it's not fully analog. More research to do i guess.
Hi,

I have a uWave 1a. I think it's not really fun to program. Interesting sounds though. The filters aren't as fun as the analogue monos listed here. On that note, I also don't think much of the Pulse filter.

As you like the uWave, you may like to look into a Monowave(X) as well. It would be a DIY project. It is a mono wavetable synth with analogue filter. Also has interesting sound. Depending on how one sources parts, it may be a little out of budget though, and of course DIY is not for everyone.

I think the Dark Energy is definitely worth considering. I think it can sound modern, and also reasonably edgy. I guess the Pro 1 is a little out of your budget.
Old 16th December 2009
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Llitsor View Post
Doepfer Dark Energy. Im tempted myself, although I have several vaguely similar analogue mono synths already! No inbuilt effects as such, but seems to tick all your other boxes.
I have an irrational fear that the dark energy's awesome exterior is overcompensating for what's otherwise a rather characterless synth. I have no idea why. I guess I should actually research the thing and stop being such a tard!
Old 16th December 2009
  #18
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Llitsor's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by herokiller View Post
I have an irrational fear that the dark energy's awesome exterior is overcompensating for what's otherwise a rather characterless synth. I have no idea why. I guess I should actually research the thing and stop being such a tard!
Each to their own It seems to have as much character as you can dial into it, as that little demo vid shows (did you see/hear it?). Keep in mind that most all synths without inbuilt effects can often sound rather bland, raw and dry. Nord Leads used to get similar criticism to begin with, yet they are great and very popular synths.
That Dark Energy will need some effects for sure.
Now that I think about it.. I doubt many analogue mono synths have inbuilt effects? Currently I don't recall any.

The Waldorf Pulse is a good suggestion too though.

Good luck in your quest thumbsup
Old 16th December 2009
  #19
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ctrlshft's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Llitsor View Post
I doubt many analogue mono synths have inbuilt effects? Currently I don't recall any.
Future Retro Revolution and DSI Evolver come to mind, but yeah in general the words 'analog' and 'built-in effects' aren't usually affiliated with each other for monosynths.
Old 16th December 2009
  #20
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nicogrubert's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by shadowfac View Post
Waldorf Pulse: relatively cheap, easy to edit, piercing sound, filter sounds nice when overdriven. Very different sound than DSI stuff, in case you eventually buy the Tetra.

Actually, I bought a Pulse and a Prophet 08 rack almost at the same time. I enjoy programming the Pulse more.

Other than than, the Neptune II, Dark Energy, and SEM are probably good options, although more expensive than a Pulse.
+1 for the pulse!
Old 16th December 2009
  #21
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flat's Avatar
Affordable analogue mono doesn't leave alot of options.

On the vintage front:

Moog Rogue



Jen SX-1000




More up to date;

DSI Mopho

Old 16th December 2009
  #22
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pr0gr4m's Avatar
I'm a fan of the Roland SH-101. The blue ones are far better than the red or grey ones.
Old 16th December 2009
  #23
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Mike6581's Avatar
 

I'd vouch for all three of Flat Earth's shout. The Rogue is a little monster, especially when you knock the oscillators slightly out of tune or use the sync. It's so agressive it's like a wild animal at times. It might be worth looking for a Realistic Concertmate MG-1 as well as that's quite a similar synth to the Rogue and they tend to go for less.

The Jen SX1000 has the best PWM I've ever heard on a synth, it's great for really lo-fi bass drones - think Being Boiled by the Human League. The filter and envelopes are absolute rubbish though!

The Mopho's a great allrounder. It lacks a keyboard but it's a cracking piece of kit. The software editor is essential but you can still edit parameters like the filter cut off and resonance on the fly and assign four others to the other knobs on the front. It's a bit less wild sounding than the other two but it's a lot more versatile.
Old 16th December 2009
  #24
Oli
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pr0gr4m View Post
I'm a fan of the Roland SH-101. The blue ones are far better than the red or grey ones.
Are they actually any different inside? I thought they were just different colour cases.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike6581 View Post
It might be worth looking for a Realistic Concertmate MG-1 as well as that's quite a similar synth to the Rogue and they tend to go for less.
I have an MG-1, and don't really think much of it. It's OK, and can sound good with detuning. It's not so good for punchy bass; not sure if that's an issue for you. I think these are a bit overpriced, really. Mine has required a fair bit of maintenance too. I think it was a cheap synth when new, and feels fairly cheap now. It's certainly not terrible, and has some character. I value it, as one of my few analogue synths, but I wouldn't recommend it.
Old 16th December 2009
  #25
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alexp's Avatar
Korg MS10. Best pulse width in the biz, patchable, and sounds fantastic!

alexP
Old 16th December 2009
  #26
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kreeper_6's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oli View Post
Are they actually any different inside? I thought they were just different colour cases.
Old 16th December 2009
  #27
Oli
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Oli's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kreeper_6 View Post
Did I say something wrong?
Old 16th December 2009
  #28
dunno if you would consider it a "budget" or not, but SH2 is just phenomenal. and blows away just about any dsi, dark energy or the likes. imo there is just no comparison. big oscillators, phenomenal filter. also, its UI is highly intuitive, slider per function. easy to do smoooooth tweaks while playin.

and as suggested bfr, pair it with a nice pedal of fuzz/od variety. pro co rat, big muff, fulltone stuff, zvex, etc.. i sometimes used it with a tube pre, and it was pure sonic mayhem, bloody screaming resonance etc.


additionally, check the current "Source vs. SH-2" thread for some more info on SH2. or use the search function, this board was discussed here several times.
Old 16th December 2009
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herokiller View Post
In the true spirit of Christmas I'm getting myself a new synth.

I'm looking for a budget analog mono synth. I want something more or less intuitive, with a nice bunch of knobs and a grungy, heavy sound. Patch memory is not a requirement.

I want to use it to create a depressed, heavy, synth sound (not sure if that will make a lot of sense). NIN kinda comes to mind. I don't really use arpegiators.

I want it mainly for basses. Inbuilt FX would be sweet (i like choruses). Nice filters would also be sweet.

What should i be looking at?


Cheers.
With these requirements, and if you want it in time for Christmas, I'd vote for the Doepfer Dark Energy. Sounds good (VCO), room to expand and looks like a tactile feast. The Microwave is definitely not fun to edit and has a rather small 'sweet spot'.
Old 16th December 2009
  #30
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I didn't read the whole thread but I would recomend a Yamaha CS-5. They are really cheap and have not hit cult status yet. Suprisingly flexible and awesome sounding synth with multi filters hi pass, band pass and low pass with resonance. PWM, sub osc and the snappiest adsr this side of a pro 1.

Also it has a filter input which you could use to process your vsti synths through using the audio as a trigger for the adsr to filter etc.
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