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First Analog Poly Synth - Which one?
Old 19th October 2013
  #1
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walker1's Avatar
 

First Analog Poly Synth - Which one?

So I have £2000 put aside and could extend it a bit more, and I'm thinking of buying an Analog Poly keyboard synth.

What is available for that price and can you convince me that it's a worthwhile investment? Or should I go cheaper and buy something else as well like a mini Mono bass synth?
Old 19th October 2013
  #2
Gear Maniac
 

A6
Old 19th October 2013
  #3
Gear Nut
 

prophet 08 and a korg ms20 mini/second hand slim phatty/mini brute/second hand mopho keyboard

there's also juno60's with midi going on ebay for like 750 quid or so, which is always a good option.
Old 19th October 2013
  #4
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Prophet 08 and ms20 Mini sounds like what I will go for.
I need to watch ebay more... did not realise you could get a MS20 for so cheap.

Will I be able to plug these straight into an audio interface and use with MIDI in logic?
Old 19th October 2013
  #5
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Also kind of nervous about buying any rack based stuff, have been looking at a few reverbs.
What to do I need to connect it together?
Old 19th October 2013
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walker1 View Post
Also kind of nervous about buying any rack based stuff, have been looking at a few reverbs.
What to do I need to connect it together?
In all seriousness, before you lock in to a purchase plan on the synth/synths, first research the hardware you'll need to connect everything up AND MAKE IT WORK the way you want it to. And how. You will find that your synth budget is about to take a hit if you are starting from square one.

I recently crawled out of the box into the world of hardware and am undergoing that education from the wrong side. I have had to buy a lot of things that i had not even realized I would need 'for my application' and my purchases.

And it was not inexpensive. Seriously, go into hardware with a plan.

Edit: Cabling. You will need more cabling than you think you will depending how much hardware you get and how you intend to use it. It adds up the costs quickly. $20 here and there suddenly becomes $100 and pretty soon you're talkin' real money

Last edited by Normie; 19th October 2013 at 04:39 PM.. Reason: Added info
Old 19th October 2013
  #7
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Regarding hooking things up, what do you have currently? I.e. what kind of audio interface, other gear (mixer, etc)?

Hooking up hardware is not that big a deal. Assuming your audio interface has at least a couple input channels and a MIDI-in, you can easily hook up any hardware synth.

As for analog poly keyboard synths, there aren't too many options these days unless you shop used. FWIW, I have a Prophet 08 and love it. That or a Mopho 4x are probably your best bets.
Old 19th October 2013
  #8
Id recommend listening to some demos and deciding from those - or even - trying some out if you can...someone you know or buying and trying...

It really depends what type of sound you like so consider:

Juno 60/106
Prophet 08
Andromeda A6
Oberheim OB8
Prophet 5
Oberheim Xpander

Most of those you'll need to buy second hand but so long as you make sensible choices its not too much to worry about...
Old 19th October 2013
  #9
Gear Addict
 

I know you want a keyboard buuuuut.... I just got a mks80 with programmer for under £2k, and it's literally the best synth I've ever heard. I had a prophet 8 and sold it within a couple of months. Loads of problems with the pots and I thought it sounded a bit pants too, tho the seq was a nice touch. Ppl say the mks80 is like a cross between the Jupiter 6 and 8, I've not used either so haven't a clue if that's right, but one thing for sure, it's a beast.

Rar....
Old 19th October 2013
  #10
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shponglefan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by SWAN808 View Post
Id recommend listening to some demos and deciding from those - or even - trying some out if you can...someone you know or buying and trying...

It really depends what type of sound you like so consider:

Juno 60/106
Prophet 08
Andromeda A6
Oberheim OB8
Prophet 5
Oberheim Xpander

Most of those you'll need to buy second hand but so long as you make sensible choices its not too much to worry about...
Just one caveat about older (80's gear), is not everything has built-in MIDI.
Old 19th October 2013
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by CountingToes View Post
I know you want a keyboard buuuuut.... I just got a mks80 with programmer for under £2k, and it's literally the best synth I've ever heard. I had a prophet 8 and sold it within a couple of months. Loads of problems with the pots and I thought it sounded a bit pants too, tho the seq was a nice touch. Ppl say the mks80 is like a cross between the Jupiter 6 and 8, I've not used either so haven't a clue if that's right, but one thing for sure, it's a beast.

Rar....
yea for a 2 grand budget. MKS80 gets my vote too. you'll need some sort of programmer. without a programmer, they can be found very cheaply. but with will bump up the price.
i guess the ideal is still the MPG-80. but their's many to choose from, even the iPad. worth getting an older iPad to use exclusively with the MKS80 IMO.
Old 19th October 2013
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golden beers View Post
i guess the ideal is still the MPG-80. but their's many to choose from, even the iPad. worth getting an older iPad to use exclusively with the MKS80 IMO.

Absolutely. I have a first gen ipad I use with my Integra editor and it definitely makes life a lot easier. Beats menu screen editing by a mile.
Old 19th October 2013
  #13
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NEXUS-6's Avatar
 

Prophet 08
Old 19th October 2013
  #14
Quote:
Originally Posted by walker1 View Post
So I have £2000 put aside and could extend it a bit more, and I'm thinking of buying an Analog Poly keyboard synth.
MKS-80 rev4. Still best bang for the buck and super underrated synth. There is a software editor available:

RAZ Audio - Home
Old 19th October 2013
  #15
Good call on the MKS80 - I agree over the Prophet 08 in terms of pure sound...

However for £2k you can get a OB8 if you wait - and having had an MKS80 I traded up to a OB8 and I much prefer it. Aside from having a full machine I found the MKS80 is comparatively thin and s*****...its IMO the current best deal in getting that fat american poly sound...but slightly less that the big battleships...
Old 19th October 2013
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
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I have an Apogee Duet interface so going to need something with MIDI. Also worried about buying a Juno because of reliability but it does have the dirty kind of sound I want. so it looks like the MKS-80 and a MPG 80 or the software might work for me.

Thanks for all the help, am going to take it slowly and start with a smaller synth maybe a Minibrute.
Old 19th October 2013
  #17
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cdog's Avatar
A6 or prophet12. If you want to go vintage there are more options but honestly just go for the A6 and be done with it... if I could only keep one synth it would be that.
Old 19th October 2013
  #18
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I must be the only person on the planet who cant stand the A6. Its got more features than can be but the sound is so sterile to my ears. Xpander for sure - the best synth ever made (well the Obx Matrix 12). And my other two recommendations would be go eurorack and start off with something like the pittsburgh modular cell 48 - That will give you a complete synth voice and add a couple of modules for supremem flexibility - Or MI Ambika Mutable Instruments | Electronic music instruments - Choose the filter type or types - individual outs for each voice - fantastic modulattion maxtrix - under a grand for the most expensive (thats Aud so 700 pound)
Old 19th October 2013
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
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If i'm correct the MKS-80 Rev 4 is similar to a JP-8 but has SH-101 filters, difficult to ignore but are these reliable and working?

For some reason more tempted by a DSI than the Alesis, already have some great soft synths so I can do complex I am really paying for the sound than complexity.
Old 19th October 2013
  #20
Gear Guru
Isn't there some advantage the Rev.5 had over the Rev.4 ??

I'm still deciding between an MKS80 or Microwave 1 as my last polysynth.
Old 19th October 2013
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walker1 View Post
So I have £2000 put aside and could extend it a bit more, and I'm thinking of buying an Analog Poly keyboard synth.

What is available for that price and can you convince me that it's a worthwhile investment? Or should I go cheaper and buy something else as well like a mini Mono bass synth?
No the current offer isn't good enough imho for analog poly synths.

If you really want a poly synth, a Nord lead 4 is awesome. It's a VA but i sounds close enough to read analog, and has the best interface. It's in your budget too.

You could also go for multiple analog mono synths. For 2k you can easily get a bass station 2 + minibrute + microbrute + pulse 2 + a good poly VA.

Anyways, i like modern synths because they're reliable, affordable, with more connectivity and practical use.

Vintage synths imho have the classic sound we liked for many years but they are often overpriced and they lack connectivity. Also you are never sure if they're gonna die soon. They're closer to need a repair than if you buy a modern synth anyways.
Old 19th October 2013
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiniDX View Post
No the current offer isn't good enough imho for analog poly synths.

If you really want a poly synth, a Nord lead 4 is awesome. It's a VA but i sounds close enough to read analog, and has the best interface. It's in your budget too.

You could also go for multiple analog mono synths. For 2k you can easily get a bass station 2 + minibrute + microbrute + pulse 2 + a good poly VA.

Anyways, i like modern synths because they're reliable, affordable, with more connectivity and practical use.

Vintage synths imho have the classic sound we liked for many years but they are often overpriced and they lack connectivity. Also you are never sure if they're gonna die soon. They're closer to need a repair than if you buy a modern synth anyways.
The Ambika is an absolute beast and its new and you can get one built for under a grand. So you can mix and have 2 ladder filters for bass, 2 x SMR4 or LP4 for mids and 2 x SVF for its lp/BP/HP for leads. All in the one box and it sounds incredible. The other suggestion about multiple monos is great - you can then use a midi plumbing utility and hae them as polys by assigning them to different midi channels and dpending on how you set it up, have a monster poly completely of your won making.
Old 20th October 2013
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dogma View Post
The Ambika is an absolute beast and its new and you can get one built for under a grand. So you can mix and have 2 ladder filters for bass, 2 x SMR4 or LP4 for mids and 2 x SVF for its lp/BP/HP for leads. All in the one box and it sounds incredible. The other suggestion about multiple monos is great - you can then use a midi plumbing utility and hae them as polys by assigning them to different midi channels and dpending on how you set it up, have a monster poly completely of your won making.
About the Ambika, i agree it sounds great. I liked every demo i heard.

But doesn't it lack knobs in the interface ? it seems you have to dig a lot in the menus. I could be wrong but can you tell me what you think ?
Old 20th October 2013
  #24
Gear Guru
I thought that too.. But with 8 knobs it seems pretty easy.

I think I'm gonna just get that.. What filter is the best?
Old 20th October 2013
  #25
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Jupiter 6 would be good or a Juno 106
Maybe an OB8 if you want something a bit smoother and fat
Old 20th October 2013
  #26
Quote:
Originally Posted by djugel View Post
Isn't there some advantage the Rev.5 had over the Rev.4 ??

I'm still deciding between an MKS80 or Microwave 1 as my last polysynth.
some say the Rev 5 was better at pads because of the softer Osc...there is a good comparison mp3 knocking around the web...having had the Rev5 Id go for the Rev4 - from the demo I heard it was much punchier which was more advantageous than any difference Ive heard in the Osc...
Old 20th October 2013
  #27
Gear Guru
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobJB06 View Post
Maybe an OB8 if you want something a bit smoother and fat
I had one.. loved it but it was too damn big.
Old 20th October 2013
  #28
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DJRAZZ's Avatar
 

PO8 or Tempest get's my vote.
Old 20th October 2013
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djugel View Post
I had one.. loved it but it was too damn big.
If by that you mean, it sounded too big then yeah, if that's a problem.. Otherwise, make some space
Old 20th October 2013
  #30
Gear Guru
Hahaa... I've used a jd800 and Jupiter 6 and they were not too big... ob8 couldn't fit in my car
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