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2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #1
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2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?

Gotta say, the EMI forum has been an amazing place in 2017!


I started mid-2016 planning for and slowly upgrading my home studio, organizing and focusing my gear research & demoing on specific functional areas that needed expanding and improving for my new hybrid setup.

Preamps, EQ's, compressors, converters, fx processors, microphones, mixers, active and passive monitors/amps, gobos & diffusors, control surfaces (PT S3 & Dock), a new 2013 MP setup with NI and Waves updates, custom ergonomic wood racks (6 x 13-RU, slanted when using or adjusted straight for loading & unloading), etc ...

Then on to guitar & bass instruments, amps & FX, which are my main wheelhouse. (many new, excellent stomps out there since I last shopped around)...

And then, finally, on to synths by mid-2017... which I was saving until last - because it would require the most extensive research & demoing. I had big, long awaited (and delayed) desires & plans to add analog synths to my studio and music.

I had a Slim Phatty then V-RME, which I loved, and of course NI & soft-synths, but always wanted a Moog Voyager keyboard, so that was my main target. And, then a more modern synth. I also planned to see what DSI and our friends across the oceans were offering. I wasn't really paying attention to the synth market at all, being focussed on the other stuff. I also never planned to search and buy used, vintage synths like an old Mini D.


I wasn't prepared for the analog synth renaissance in full bloom.


Not prepared for all the re-issues and re-imaginings of some of the best analog synths (and recorded synths) of all time and that I grew up listening to and loving; the Mini D, the Prophet-6, the MS-20/M, the Odyssey FS, the OB-6.

It's as though it was all perfectly timed for me (and I know many of you feel the same about yourselves). Somewhere along the way I got stuck here in electronic land, giddy like a teenager when I started setting up my first guitar rig. I didn't expect to be pulled in so hard by these amazing new synths. Nor spend so damn much!



So, thank you to all the long-time GS Forum members pushing these synth makers all these years to bring back the tried and true analog VCO-based synths that most of us never got over (and never will)!

And, thank you synth makers for getting it so well!

All of which has ultimately led to a huge market of new and innovative analog synths, like the new MatrixBrute, for example. And, it positively effects the hybrid and digital areas too, as we're all seeing now.

All that whining, bitching and moaning paid off!

I kid, but it's kind of true!


What's your analog synth renaissance story?





P.S. I've also attached a few Studio & Synth Setup Renders, which show my setup goal for my casual family room setting. I use these renders to plan out my studio updates. My main space will be a garage conversion.


Synth "Renaissance Additions":

Moog Mini D Reissue (what really started it all for me)
Moog Voyager Select Blue (Once Of A Kind, Lmt Ed. Antique Tiger Oak - deserves it's own post)
Moog Voyager RME (had prior, as you can see, I love adding modules & keys )
Moog Slim Phatty (had for several years)
Moog Sub-37
Moog Minitaur

DSI Prophet-6 Keys & Module (Prophet 6+6 ) - my guys
DSI OB-6 Keys & Module (an OB 6+6 ) - my gals

Korg MS-20M
Korg ARP Odyssey FS Rev.3

Arturia MatrixBrute
Tom Oberheim TVP (Black Beauty)


This place rocks!
Attached Thumbnails
2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?-synth-studio-renders_01.jpg   2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?-synth-studio-renders_02.jpg   2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?-studio-renders-fr_01.jpg   2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?-analog-synth-setup_01.jpg   2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?-analog-synth-setup_02.jpg  


Last edited by string6theory; 3 weeks ago at 10:21 PM.. Reason: little correction
Old 3 weeks ago
  #2
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24dB's Avatar
Old 3 weeks ago
  #3
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Thread Starter
^ Oh yeah!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #4
It's a great time to be slutty!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #5
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Old 3 weeks ago
  #6
I'm trying to get my story going, and have for the past few years now.
I got into synths in the mid-late 80's thanks to Nick Rhodes and Patrick O' Hearn, then went back to bass clef in my 20's(started out on trombone before keys, then switched to bass guitar afterword). I was an early subscriber to iOS tech and been growing with it including synths, drum machines and sampling. I've been really productive, and because of that I started hanging out here on the EMI forum. True to the nature of gearslutz, I've been yearning to re-assemble a studio. It's not happened yet due to constuction work needing to be done to the music room. So I continue tapping away on my iPad and studying posts here.
The change of attitude with the younger generation has been so inspiring to me. Gear I never gave a 2nd thought to back in the 80's and 90's are seen as great tools now. I was just on my local craigslist and put together a base system for around $750; a Kurz K2000, Emu E64 and Emu Mo Phatt command station. Nowhere to put it, but fun to dream.
Thanks for the inspiration!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #7
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Old 3 weeks ago
  #8
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24dB's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by superstupid View Post
songs for f*cking and all night long is great
Thanks man!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #9
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2016 - Had no synths
2017 - Has lots of very expensive synths. Brags the sh*t out of that fact.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #10
Gear Addict
 
playstation's Avatar
 

Well, I got the Model D re-issue which is not really renaissance but is 1972 tech to be honest.

Re-solidified my Virus TI action which is not renaissance, but yesterdays news, but it is still my true love.

Sounds just pour out of the TI non-stop like this and yeah I'm an addict

Old 3 weeks ago
  #11
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For me, the renaissance began around 2011, after buying a Doepfer Dark Energy—my first new analog synth since 1986.

The Dark Energy was followed by a Moog Little Phatty… then a tom oberheim SEM… a Vermona Mono Lancet… then a Macbeth Micromac-D… a Voyager XL… and most recently a KARP Odyssey.

I also put together a Doepfer A-100 modular system during this time.

All new gear… all analog. During the 90s, I honestly thought analog was done--that virtual analog would be the future. I never would have imagined I could buy all of this great gear new.

Long live the Renaissance!


Last edited by maisonvague; 3 weeks ago at 07:36 PM.. Reason: added pic
Old 3 weeks ago
  #12
PES
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it's not about the synth ynth nth th

2010 and the Mopho Keyboard. That was the end of VA and beginning of proper analog for me.

Of equal importance was that it also led to BBD delay pedals, as I needed something to play that dry synth through.

Analog synths with BBD delay has been my weapon of choice (and low-mid mud) ever since.


Along the way DCO became VCO.

And BBD delay seems to be turning into tape delay, as I recently got a cassette recorder that I modified for the task. Which I've mostly used to play an iOS FM synth through so far.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #13
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string6theory's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by xanderbeanz View Post
2016 - Had no synths
2017 - Has lots of very expensive synths. Brags the sh*t out of that fact.


I had a Slim Phatty and Voyager RME in 2016...

So, I went a little slutty in 2017 and thought I'd share, cause it's a once in a lifetime event. No bragging, just really excited and happy.

The back story to the story is that I haven't been able to play and record for over 5 years straight do to multiple injuries leaving me disabled. I'm just now getting back into it and trying to make up for lost time.

So ease up there beanz.

What's your story?

Old 3 weeks ago
  #14
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string6theory's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by maisonvague View Post
For me, the renaissance began around 2011, after buying a Doepfer Dark Energy—my first new analog synth since 1986.

The Dark Energy was followed by a Moog Little Phatty… then a tom oberheim SEM… a Vermona Mono Lancet… then a Macbeth Micromac-D… a Voyager XL… and most recently a KARP Odyssey.

I also put together a Doepfer A-100 modular system during this time.

All new gear… all analog. During the 90s, I honestly thought analog was done--that virtual analog would be the future. I never would have imagined I could buy all of this great gear new.

Long live the Renaissance!

You've got great taste!

Long live the Renaissance!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #15
TNC
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I don't know if you noticed but there is a Two Voice Pro on your door. Do synthesizers just appear randomly around your house after a while?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by string6theory View Post
2017 Synth "Renaissance Additions":

Moog Mini D Reissue (what really started it all for me)
Moog Voyager Select Blue (Once Of A Kind, Lmt Ed. Antique Tiger Oak - deserves it's own post)
Moog Voyager RME (had prior, as you can see, I love adding modules & keys )
Moog Slim Phatty (had for several years)
Moog Sub-37
Moog Minitaur

DSI Prophet-6 Keys & Module (Prophet 6+6 ) - my guys
DSI OB-6 Keys & Module (an OB 6+6 ) - my gals

Korg MS-20M
Korg ARP Odyssey FS Rev.3

Arturia MatrixBrute
Tom Oberheim TVP (Black Beauty)


This place rocks!
Have to ask - in your opinion, how well does the Matrixbrute hold its own among all those other great synths? I played one in a music store and it was pretty much the best monosynth I've ever touched, but there wasn't much else there to contrast it with in real-time.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lavadisco View Post
Have to ask - in your opinion, how well does the Matrixbrute hold its own among all those other great synths? I played one in a music store and it was pretty much the best monosynth I've ever touched, but there wasn't much else there to contrast it with in real-time.
I'm honestly blown away by the MB. It absolutely holds its own with the classics and deserves to be in the same company - because it's a modern classic in its own right.

I posted in another thread that I think the MB has enough mojo to wait out all the naysayers put off by Arturia's dropping the ball on previous products. They really brought it with a very solidly-built, brilliantly implemented and versatile flagship synth.

The matrix is awesome, for preset management, sequences and modulation. So intuitive and simple to use. Creating cool sequences with funk and motion is a breeze. The drum and percussion sounds are also excellent, which really make for some great rhythmic sequencing. You can addition a dozen different modulation routings in seconds, where it takes much longer on my MS-20M, for example. The end result is that it keeps up with your imagination and your creative flow and inspires with its sonics.

It looks the part too!

My only complaint is that I wish they went with a Fatar keyboard, but it's still good.

Old 3 weeks ago
  #18
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by TNC View Post
I don't know if you noticed but there is a Two Voice Pro on your door. Do synthesizers just appear randomly around your house after a while?
Along with a correspondingly random theft of my bank account funds. Oh the shipping boxes we've had to deal with this year! My wife has been very understanding.

The instrument & gear upgrades are almost over, then it's on to making music, and nobody knocking at my door anymore.

Old 3 weeks ago
  #19
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Analog Rob Lowe's Avatar
Just a quick thought on the Matrixbrute, it really is a pleasure, in fact the only reason I haven't popped for a Oddy reissue it's got some funk and in ya face, great piece classic imo
Old 3 weeks ago
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by xanderbeanz View Post
2016 - Had no synths
2017 - Has lots of very expensive synths. Brags the sh*t out of that fact.
maybe, but in grand scale of things, is that really so bad? everyone's got to start somewhere. and is allowed to be extatic about it. i am happy for him.




and besides, if you can't beat them join them,,


so, i loved analogs ever since early age from seminal eletronic and prog albums and finally got some during high school in mid80s. this interest carried on when music became my career. however, only after the very sampler heavy nineties, where i had mks70 and ajuno2, i could say my true analog "renaissance" followed after i bought Andromeda in 2002.

a vco poly was a revelation on many levels, and old dreams of owning vintage polys resurfaced, but now i could finally afford some. so, after trying few, i completely flew off the handle over gorgeous tone. culmination of this period was during 2005 when i spent every last dime i had on the following:

Oberheim OBXa, Prophet5 rev2, Jupiter 8, CS80, Solina, SH2


in years that followed i ocassionally added some monophonics, hybrids, digitals etc. but still have all of the above, except yamaha.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #21
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enossified's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by string6theory View Post
What's your analog synth renaissance story?
I owned vintage analogs 30 years ago when they were considered worthless, then modern Moogs, modern modulars, Volcas, Brutes...all long gone. I'll miss my DSI Evolver which I still think is the most innovative analog of the 21st century to date. All of them were fun to play with but I just don't need hardware any more, especially analog hardware.

I just sold my last hardware synth today (it was digital). Now totally ITB until I'm in the ground.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #22
Quote:
Originally Posted by string6theory View Post
All that whining, bitching and moaning paid off!
No it didn't. where's the modern full featured hardware samplers?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #23
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord View Post
maybe, but in grand scale of things, is that really so bad? everyone's got to start somewhere. and is allowed to be extatic about it. i am happy for him.




and besides, if you can't beat them join them,,


so, i loved analogs ever since early age from seminal eletronic and prog albums and finally got some during high school in mid80s. this interest carried on when music became my career. however, only after the very sampler heavy nineties, where i had mks70 and ajuno2, i could say my true analog "renaissance" followed after i bought Andromeda in 2002.

a vco poly was a revelation on many levels, and old dreams of owning vintage polys resurfaced, but now i could finally afford some. so, after trying few, i completely flew off the handle over gorgeous tone. culmination of this period was during 2005 when i spent every last dime i had on the following:

Oberheim OBXa, Prophet5 rev2, Jupiter 8, CS80, Solina, SH2


in years that followed i ocassionally added some monophonics, hybrids, digitals etc. but still have all of the above, except yamaha.

Awesome. Yeah, I like hearing how others went slutty over sounds too!


I've been sort of "doing it all" for years... I'm now 54.

I grew up listening to and loving the analog synths we've all been fortunate enough to see re-issued new in the last year or so. They're in my blood and brain. I started as a mostly self-taught musician with sax (alto, tenor, baritone) then went on to guitar, then later bass.

I started recording music with a passion back in 1998 - and for the next few years - with Sonic Foundry's Vegas, Acid & SoundForge, a Dell PC, an MAudio Delta 1010, an SM57 & CS1000, a SansAmp PSA-1, a Boss GT-5, an American Strat, a Mexican Jazz, a '65 Twin RI I couldn't afford (replacing my Peavey Heritage Combo which got vandalized), no bass amp, just DI and a few stomp pedals (Tube Screamer, Blues Driver & Phase-90).

But, ever since I stared recording in my slowly expanding home "studio", I've always loved to record keys, organs, pianos, B3's, Rhodes, Clavs, Moogs, and all manner of acoustic instruments, sample-based instruments, electronic instruments and soft synths. Electronic instruments have always been a part of my music, but, I could just never afford to start buying the ones I wanted to own and play. Nor, did I have the space.

Fast forward to about a dozen years ago and my life takes a difficult turn from an injury. Then, 5 years ago an even worse turn with more serious injuries, and all of a sudden, my passions are put on hold. It's a long time and a brutal period Im just getting over. Lot's of rehab for back/nerve injuries still ahead. But, I'm optimistic by nature.

And, if there's one thing I've learned, it's that life really is short. Now that I'm in my first home, I'll be damned if I'm not gonna do everything in my power to follow my dreams of building a kick-ass home studio space, even kick-assier gear to play and record with, and making the (kick ass ) music that I want to make - which sure as phuck will always include mono and polysynths!

Now that I have a little window of opportunity to get some things done - finally and after so many years - I'm trying to make the most of it.

It may sound silly, but these new instruments are part of my healing process. I'm focusing on select, awesome sounding "keeper" items that I will care for and make music with for the rest of my life. But, music and relaxing and playing music and relaxing, playing music through wonderful-sounding instruments, is really something that I find very beneficial to my health.

So, I had a choice of dumping a bunch of money into the endless black hole that is old home remodeling (some of which is inevitable, but much of which is dubious at best as far as a ROI) or re-prioritize and steer some more of those very hard-earned $$ towards my long-held and long-put-on hold dreams.

While I'm in my home, would I rather be staring at a new floor or playing my new Moogs? You know, that kind of thing!


Old 3 weeks ago
  #24
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I've always found myself owning synths that were never quite what I actually wanted. About a year ago my mother passed and I received a small amount of money. I decided to loan myself money against what I had received with the stipulation that I would pay back way better interest than I was getting in savings (not hard). I already had a T.O. SEMpro but had been eyeballing the TVSpro and the black had just come out (drool). That was my synth. It was an amazing feeling to get "a dream synth".

I started thinking about ultimate synths (IMO) and at the very top of that list were the ARP 2600 and a Buchla.

I had been cruising the DIY forum over at Muffs and spotted talk of a new TTSH run. When it happened, I was lucky enough to squeak in just before they ran out. It's about as close to a 2600 as I'll ever get and if it sounds as good as others I've heard when I'm done it will absolutely fit the bill. When I ordered, I didn't get in on the case and have been toying with some ideas for having one made. I've got a design in progress for a case with keys and sequencer built in to make it feel like a complete instrument and I believe... when it's done I will only love it more.

As for the Buchla... Roman, the guy doing a majority of the Buchla clone stuff at the moment, had a limited run of black Easel boards so I jumped on that. This has also renewed some interest in some black Serge panels I had purchased the previous year. I'm thinking about selling parts of or all of my Make Noise system in addition to some other synth stuff laying around to help fund these builds (and to thin the herd).

So... while there is an obvious resurgence of analog synths for people to buy, there are some very very cool things happening in the DIY areas too (if only for a limited time, sometimes). There's been a WASP clone or 2, an EMS Synthi clone, the TTSH and the forthcoming Dekkards Dream. There's more affordable and easier to build Serge stuff out and on the way (Serge is also penetrating the Euro market).

Here's my most recent progress on my TTSH case design with included 1601 and 3620.
Attached Thumbnails
2017 Synth Rennaisance - What's Your Story?-ttsh-ksq-v2-case-cleanup-v5.jpg  
Old 3 weeks ago
  #25
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Besides a Crumar Multiman, I'm all modern. Never ending work in progress, but I'm pretty excited about the current state:


Last edited by donato; 3 weeks ago at 06:53 AM..
Old 3 weeks ago
  #26
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ionian's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by xanderbeanz View Post
2016 - Had no synths
2017 - Has lots of very expensive synths. Brags the sh*t out of that fact.

Quote:
Originally Posted by string6theory View Post

So ease up there beanz.

What's your story?

Lol ignore him. He's got some issue where if someone has an expensive keyboard he can't cope or has to run to his safe space or something. He routinely pops up to talk about or brag the sh*t out of what he owns and the minute someone owns something better, he gets triggered. Don't take it personal, it's his issue, not yours.

Anyway, for me, I got back into analog hardcore in the early 2000s...maybe 2002 or 2003? I remember distinctly why - I had an Access virus (the old red one) and I was doing a lead on something and made this sine lead and there was horrible aliasing. I also had a nord at the time, and tried to do the lead on that, and it also had horrible aliasing. And that was it - I just had enough of the aliasing.

Now I own a Pro-One, an SEM, two Matrix 1000s, a Jupiter 8, an Oberheim OB-8, and a Prophet 5 rev 3 and you know what? When I play a really high lead there's no aliasing at all! Just pure tone! Makes me happy.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #27
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I've always had some synth around but before the renaissance it was always one at a time. First synth I bought myself in my life was an SK-20, got bored of it real quick (blasphemy to some) but only because I pretty much always wanted an ARP or a Moog. Had a Juno 6 after the SK I bought closet clean and doubled my money when I sold it. My uncle had a Jupiter 8 when I was a kid and none of the cheaper Poly synths really touch that, so I've never had a huge interest in them.

I did an album using a Wurli 200 and the timewarp 2600 when I had no synths. A few years later I found out about the Korg Odyssey reissue coming out. I was talking to a family friend about it and they lent me their mk2 until the Korg was released. After the KARP it was game over... Eno, Gottsching, Schulze, Yello, Cluster, Kraftwerk - I could finally make those sounds on something that was mine. 2 Moog mothers took care of the Berlin School sequencer stuff I was missing but also opened my eyes to noise making, patch up a mess and do it all "wrong."

Now I just fill reels of 1/4" 2 track up with improv most of the time. Very liberating when you've spent your whole life making structured pop/prog rock music on a guitar or piano. Only problem is when the motor in your Revox gives up and you didn't bother with test tones.

The only new thing I bought this year was the O coast. It's easily my favourite of all, but the recent SH-2 purchase has taken up all my attention lately. The dual square wave lead sound is something else... I've only heard something that nice from a 2600 (Basically the Todd Terje lead sound.)

It still blows my mind that my whole synth collection is only around 4k worth. Maybe not even that much, what a time to be alive.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #28
Man, at first my gut was to say I've gone way backwards. I've sold off so much great vintage gear. Gone over the years are my Jupiter 6, CS50, EML 200, Arp Odyssey, Sh09, Juno 106, EX5R and 1 of my 2 Andromedas.

Thanks to the industry analog renaissance though because after awhile cheap fun analogs are in my stable with the precious few collectable worthy synths I managed to keep. Also learning what vintage synths are awesome and cheap helped. Led me to my Casio Cz1 and Esq1. Amazing times we're in with the Minilogue and Minibrute, Korg Ms20 mini and Volcas, Drumbrute etc. I have all those little toys for less than I sold my JP6 for.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #29
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shalimo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 24dB View Post
Got divorced, kept the house, expanded the studio. My output has gone up %200...



(the output: https://soundcloud.com/angels_with_cellphones)
The odds of a man keeping the house in a divorce are the same as winning the lottery I love ur setup...hope you learned ur lesson young man.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #30
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I love all gear, analog, digital, high end and even low end - I have spent since 2008 putting my little studio together - guess what I'm now finished
It feels good knowing I don't need another synth or compressor even at a time when there is so much to be had. So I suppose my story is just focus on using the gear that I have - cause I have it all and couldn't be happier
Can't believe I'm saying that i will end by saying that I no longer think....oh but I need that to produce that sound, oh but what if! No more such thoughts...Ha ha ha
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