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Would you do it?
Old 9th July 2017
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
A.I. Batule Chee's Avatar
 

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Would you do it?

Hi everyone!

Recently I've been circling the idea of a downsize/upgrade of gear. The concept is to sell most of what I have in order to buy a more professional setup. But I'm not exactly conviced of the benefits against the cons.
Currently I own around 16 synths/drum machines/samplers, from VA to Grooveboxes and Analogue synths. Anyway, the goal after selling all that's worth something (according to my math), would be to buy:

- Mopho X4, analogue poly
- Peak, hybrid poly
- Analog Rytm mk2, analog drum machine/perc sampler
- Sub 37, analogue mono

And complete with software/apps. My idea is that this gear is more professional sounding than the things I own, thus, it will be simpler to make it sound good. Now, before you jump on me, I'm not saying I will make better music just because of this gear, just saying that the same music/harmony/noise I produce could sound much better with less effort. See, I'm really lazy when it comes to cabling/plugging/unplugging/switching-on my gear, plus I've have been trying to stop just producing music, I want all my tracks to be performances - live jams! I like it better and have great fun when doing it, so I need a setup I can actually handle.

Now, here's the conflict, the gear I have is versatile enough that I basically ignored software and DAWs to the point that my computer is 10 years old and I do everything in my iPad, so I would have to get into an hybrid setup of HW and SW. Also, there's no way this could happen fast, as the gear I have has to be sold first, and that would probably take a while, so there's a chance of an undefined hiatus on producing/performing, as I would have an incomplete setup both ways. Of course this is all hypothetical, and that's why I'm consulting you guys, you will probably see/think things I have not considered well.

So, ladies and gentlemen would you do it?!

Thanks!o
Old 9th July 2017
  #2
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choond's Avatar
Nice. I'd add some good effects if money can stretch.
Old 9th July 2017
  #3
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Cornish1999's Avatar
For what my home hobby noob opinion is worth is get set up with Ableton Live, even in the light versions to start with, to use as a bit of a ideas scratch pad and hub for performances that are either software or hardware led

You may wish to consider a hw sequencer to run things live perhaps? Check out Squarp... I have serious gas for this

Maybe a MX1 as a performance mixer to blend it all live , you can use this as an ableton surface also so it has lots of uses and works as a audio interface

I'm a bit of a jammer myself and I've arrived at this from the fun factor perspective. I currently use a midi synched dj mixer/Traktor/ableton/mackie mixer to make my noise
Old 9th July 2017
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by choond View Post
Nice. I'd add some good effects if money can stretch.
Thanks, i was actually thinking of using SW fx, I've got loads on my iPad, and so far I find them good sounding. But i honestly haven't looked for hardware Fx, aside from Eventide stuff and the DP4 is there something I should consider?
Old 9th July 2017
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cornish1999 View Post
For what my home hobby noob opinion is worth is get set up with Ableton Live, even in the light versions to start with, to use as a bit of a ideas scratch pad and hub for performances that are either software or hardware led

You may wish to consider a hw sequencer to run things live perhaps? Check out Squarp... I have serious gas for this

Maybe a MX1 as a performance mixer to blend it all live , you can use this as an ableton surface also so it has lots of uses and works as a audio interface

I'm a bit of a jammer myself and I've arrived at this from the fun factor perspective. I currently use a midi synched dj mixer/Traktor/ableton/mackie mixer to make my noise
Thanks for your response!

I actually run everything from HW sequencers right now, and in my idea I was considering getting Modstep, as it is kind of a live use sequencer. Plus each of the synths I would buy except for Peak have a sequencer and/or arpeggiator on board, and I was thinking to take advantage of this and just send them clock signal from the iPad and use modstep to sequence the synth apps, which would be the ones that are less hands on. But that's just the general idea, I'm sure there oversights there.
Old 9th July 2017
  #6
Gear Addict
 

It seems tough to try this all at once. I would replace the gear gradually. Figure out what bigger purchase will replace each chunk of your gear. In my opinion, you are currently going for a very hard and harsh sound, with the Sub Phatty, the Peak and the Mopho X4. All offer a lot of distortion/feedback to their tone. You are also neglecting any vintage gear. Maybe that is what you want, but there's stuff out there like the Minilogue, the Deepmind 12, the Prophet 6, OB-6. A lot more colorful tones to my ears.

I don't see why you'd want a hybrid unless you mean a classic like the Prophet VS. I'd personally go with something like: OB-6 module (to save money), Deepmind 12 for the Roland DCO sound, a bass synth like Minitaur, and then use computers as the "hybrid" or digital side.
Old 9th July 2017
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
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Thanks for your response!
Quote:
You are also neglecting any vintage gear. Maybe that is what you want
Yeah, I know that there's a lot of vintage gear that sound great, but in my case "new is better".

Quote:
I don't see why you'd want a hybrid unless you mean a classic like the Prophet VS.
I was actually referring to the Peak as hybrid, as I am under the impression it is. Maybe I'm wrong.

Quote:
I'd personally go with something like: OB-6 module (to save money), Deepmind 12 for the Roland DCO sound, a bass synth like Minitaur, and then use computers as the "hybrid" or digital side.
The OB6 is great no doubt, but I think it would surpass the budget, I haven't made the math. The Deepmind hasn't impressed me so far, nothing that I have heard has make me think of analog richness. It's a good synth for sure, but at this point I still think it's more about the plethora of Fx it has than the actual sound engine. Not that it's wrong, just maybe not the sound I look for (yet). The minitaur is indeed tempting, I like what I heard, and have been about to pull the trigger several times! What has stopped me is the thought that it's a one trick pony, a great trick, but still.
And what about the percussion? Do you think the ARmk2 is ok? Thanks for your input!
Old 9th July 2017
  #8
I would also suggest focusing on one new piece of gear at a time - I can't imagine anything slowing down music production more than getting a bunch of new kit at the same time. Maybe keep a drum machine/groovebox and a poly from your current selection and start with buying the Sub 37. Then when Rytm mk2 comes out in October, start thinking about replacing your drum machine with that etc etc. Or vice versa - start selling stuff now so you can have enough cash ready to (pre) order the Rytm and start with that. Anyways, you get the idea. Slowly.
Old 9th July 2017
  #9
Lives for gear
I can't say that there is one piece of gear in your current gear list that really stands out to me. You've bought a lot of cheaper stuff and yes, I think you'd ultimately be better off with a few really good pieces. I also think the Analog RYTM MK2 looks like the best choice for drum-programming these days. For analog monos, I personally don't like the sound of the Sub series, so I'd go for a Minitaur or used Little/Slim Phatty. Then I'd probably be looking at the Prophet Rev 2 for my main poly if I didn't have enough to buy an OB-6 or P6. With one analog poly, one mono, and a drum machine you'd have a nice setup to complement your plug-ins.
Old 9th July 2017
  #10
The mopho x4 would not be my choice for an analog poly. Much as I like DSI, had a mopho and have an 08, I wouldnt like them being my only choice...the DM is good, v good, but it doesnt scream analog richness if thats specifically what you want, besides youve already said it doesnt impress you. I didnt like the A4...though for a poly I want at least 6 voices anyway.

If it was me trimming the heard Id go for a JDXA I think...Ive seen minty used in the $1200 region. Just my 2 cents.
Old 9th July 2017
  #11
There are plenty of "professionals" using "dated" gear. Are you happy with your workflow now?
Old 9th July 2017
  #12
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choond's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by A.I. Batule Chee View Post
Thanks, i was actually thinking of using SW fx, I've got loads on my iPad, and so far I find them good sounding. But i honestly haven't looked for hardware Fx, aside from Eventide stuff and the DP4 is there something I should consider?
For my Mopho X4 and sub phatty, I started with a zoom ms-70CDR, its a cheap but good pedal full of emulations of more expensive effects from eventide, strymon, lexicon etc. Its maybe $100 or so where you live? After using it I chose some dedicated Strymon effects based my favourites from the zoom.
Old 10th July 2017
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor Refix View Post
I would also suggest focusing on one new piece of gear at a time - I can't imagine anything slowing down music production more than getting a bunch of new kit at the same time. Maybe keep a drum machine/groovebox and a poly from your current selection and start with buying the Sub 37. Then when Rytm mk2 comes out in October, start thinking about replacing your drum machine with that etc etc. Or vice versa - start selling stuff now so you can have enough cash ready to (pre) order the Rytm and start with that. Anyways, you get the idea. Slowly.
Thanks! That's actually good advice, a sudden change could freeze my creativity. I wouldn't know where to start, and yes I would keep a groovebox with me.
Old 10th July 2017
  #14
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arcadia View Post
I can't say that there is one piece of gear in your current gear list that really stands out to me. You've bought a lot of cheaper stuff and yes, I think you'd ultimately be better off with a few really good pieces. I also think the Analog RYTM MK2 looks like the best choice for drum-programming these days. For analog monos, I personally don't like the sound of the Sub series, so I'd go for a Minitaur or used Little/Slim Phatty. Then I'd probably be looking at the Prophet Rev 2 for my main poly if I didn't have enough to buy an OB-6 or P6. With one analog poly, one mono, and a drum machine you'd have a nice setup to complement your plug-ins.
Thanks!
In my defense not all was that cheap when I bought it, many of the things I got were new in their day. That said, yeah, I have a weakness for tiny boxes, I don't know, they just kinda look cute toghether. And it's that very weakness that made me think that instead of all these little things (that even if not exactly professional most sound good to me) I should've bought high end pieces, that achieve what I want and more.
Speaking of the Prophet Rev 2, the 8 voice one looks nice and its well priced, I'm gonna look into it.
Old 10th July 2017
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kcearl View Post
The mopho x4 would not be my choice for an analog poly. Much as I like DSI, had a mopho and have an 08, I wouldnt like them being my only choice...the DM is good, v good, but it doesnt scream analog richness if thats specifically what you want, besides youve already said it doesnt impress you. I didnt like the A4...though for a poly I want at least 6 voices anyway.

If it was me trimming the heard Id go for a JDXA I think...Ive seen minty used in the $1200 region. Just my 2 cents.
Thanks for your input kcearl.
Hypothetically would you change the DM12 for JDXA if they were evenly priced?
Old 10th July 2017
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ihearanewworld View Post
There are plenty of "professionals" using "dated" gear. Are you happy with your workflow now?
Thanks for you response!
You know I've given thought to all this workflow thing that I see mentioned here frequently, and I've come to realize that I don't think I have one. See, I don't usually start composing following a particular method or chain, and that has to be, in part, because I don't use the same instruments in all my songs. I tend to use what I think would work with what I began playing first. So for instance, if the first synth I grabbed was the minibrute, and I came up with something that I like, then I try to complement with something else, like say the Fizmo, if that works, then iI follow it with other synth and so on, but it's a different choice most of the time. Sadly I don't have that Zen of the workflow. It's a severe lack of discipline clearly. Maybe that's why I should downsize, so I can acquire a workflow, given that there wouldn't so many alternatives in my setup.
Old 10th July 2017
  #17
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by choond View Post
For my Mopho X4 and sub phatty, I started with a zoom ms-70CDR, its a cheap but good pedal full of emulations of more expensive effects from eventide, strymon, lexicon etc. Its maybe $100 or so where you live? After using it I chose some dedicated Strymon effects based my favourites from the zoom.
Thanks!
I've come think that some specific pedals for each would be a great idea. To exploit their highlights and give them more tone if needed.
Old 10th July 2017
  #18
Lives for gear
 

I know some folks get caught up on having "more" stuff, and must have "one of each flavor just because," and sometimes really idealize "everything must be running at once, live, with no computer* sequencing for me to enjoy it" but I'd rather have a couple great things than a bunch of random stuff. At the end of the day no one cares if you used a Moog on bass and a Fizmo pad and a Roland stab or whatever.. Having it all centrally go to the computer for recording and sequencing generally works easiest for me versus using MPCs or whatever.. And something I've learned, the best tools to have are those that are plugged in, ready to go, and within arm's reach when I have an idea (or a deadline).

*unless it's a proprietary computer with a small screen that just sequences


So I agree with the idea of pitching some 16 devices in favor of a few more, important thing is to have tools that work the way you want to and enjoy...would probably be careful though especially close to NAMM...
Old 10th July 2017
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
So I agree with the idea of pitching some 16 devices in favor of a few more, important thing is to have tools that work the way you want to and enjoy...would probably be careful though especially close to NAMM...
Oooo... I completely forgot about it, better keep an eye on it!

Quote:
I know some folks get caught up on having "more" stuff, and must have "one of each flavor just because," and sometimes really idealize "everything must be running at once, live, with no computer* sequencing for me to enjoy it"
LOL! That would be me! It's not that I haven't tried to use DAW to sequence, I have Logic 9 installed in my 10 year old laptop, I also have an old Ableton Live there too. At some point in this musical journey I really tried to get ITB, but ultimately it didn't work for me, maybe it's that I'm too stubborn. But after spending hours and hours of precious music time, trying to configure the MIDI on the thing to accept the hardware or to do the simplest things that I give for granted on my HW sequencer, I gave up and opted to use the DAW as a tape recorder.
The iPad has given me a new light on this, somehow I find my way easier around it, maybe it's because it has less functions and therefore it's less complicated. Figures.

Quote:
And something I've learned, the best tools to have are those that are plugged in, ready to go, and within arm's reach when I have an idea (or a deadline).
Yep. That's why I don't really have a workflow, and the main reason for the downsize.

Thank you for your response!
Old 10th July 2017
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by A.I. Batule Chee View Post
Thanks for your input kcearl.
Hypothetically would you change the DM12 for JDXA if they were evenly priced?
Yup, definitely. Ive got some of the supernatural stuff covered in my FA-06, but even more of the DM covered in other synths I reckon. When I get a bit of space Ill add one, I havent played one in the flesh but I havent heard anything I dont like.
Old 10th July 2017
  #21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kslight View Post
I know some folks get caught up on having "more" stuff, and must have "one of each flavor just because," and sometimes really idealize "everything must be running at once, live, with no computer* sequencing for me to enjoy it" but I'd rather have a couple great things than a bunch of random stuff. At the end of the day no one cares if you used a Moog on bass and a Fizmo pad and a Roland stab or whatever.. Having it all centrally go to the computer for recording and sequencing generally works easiest for me versus using MPCs or whatever.. And something I've learned, the best tools to have are those that are plugged in, ready to go, and within arm's reach when I have an idea (or a deadline).

*unless it's a proprietary computer with a small screen that just sequences


So I agree with the idea of pitching some 16 devices in favor of a few more, important thing is to have tools that work the way you want to and enjoy...would probably be careful though especially close to NAMM...
All I need is my TI....but where the hells the fun in that?
Old 10th July 2017
  #22
Btw "trimming the heard"? lol @ my new band name
Old 10th July 2017
  #23
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kcearl View Post
Yup, definitely. Ive got some of the supernatural stuff covered in my FA-06, but even more of the DM covered in other synths I reckon. When I get a bit of space Ill add one, I havent played one in the flesh but I havent heard anything I dont like.
That's the thing with the DM12! It's not that it's a bad synth or that it doesn't sound good, it's just like... grey, you know? Like it won't add anything new to the palette. Anyway it's just my opinion and I'm probably wrong.

So, I'm curious as to why you prefer the JDXA to something like the Prophets or the OB6? Wouldn't the system 8 provide a fuller sound?
Old 10th July 2017
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by A.I. Batule Chee View Post
That's the thing with the DM12! It's not that it's a bad synth or that it doesn't sound good, it's just like... grey, you know? Like it won't add anything new to the palette. Anyway it's just my opinion and I'm probably wrong.

So, I'm curious as to why you prefer the JDXA to something like the Prophets or the OB6? Wouldn't the system 8 provide a fuller sound?
Ive got a system 8 and a prophet 08...the OB6 is probably a little too pricey for me. The prophets quite brassy, the system 8...well its whatever synth you play on it. But I like the idea of marrying four analog voices with supernatural sounds in the JDXA. I dont know how familiar you are with supernatural engine but it sounds great imho...Im a big fan of old Roland romplers and this just seems like the 21st century version
Old 10th July 2017
  #25
Old 10th July 2017
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djugel View Post
Old 10th July 2017
  #27
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boombapdame's Avatar
@A.I. Batule Chee sell off everything but keep 1 piece of gear you plan to use often and go hybrid.
Old 10th July 2017
  #28
Gear Maniac
 
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by kcearl View Post
Ive got a system 8 and a prophet 08...the OB6 is probably a little too pricey for me. The prophets quite brassy, the system 8...well its whatever synth you play on it. But I like the idea of marrying four analog voices with supernatural sounds in the JDXA. I dont know how familiar you are with supernatural engine but it sounds great imho...Im a big fan of old Roland romplers and this just seems like the 21st century version
I'm gonna watch some demos of it. To be honest it didn't even crossed my mind to check it. It was sorely dismissed.
Old 10th July 2017
  #29
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boombapdame View Post
@A.I. Batule Chee sell off everything but keep 1 piece of gear you plan to use often and go hybrid.
Thanks!
So you wouldn't buy any more hardware? I don't know, jamming with SW doesn't look that appealing...
Old 10th July 2017
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by A.I. Batule Chee View Post
Maybe that's why I should downsize, so I can acquire a workflow, given that there wouldn't so many alternatives in my setup.
FWIW, Aphex Twin talks about not having a workflow, either. Or at least he talked about it at one point - perhaps he's more focussed now. Don't get rid of the Fizmo, though!
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