Korg Minilogue by VST
I almost gave this lil pup 5 stars across the board but felt compelled to ding it one on sound quality due to some clicking somewhere in the VCA that currently cannot be eliminated fully by the usual means of turning up the attack and/or release. Being a somewhat experienced synthesist, I find it to be a minor annoyance but would not fault others for feeling it's a bigger issue.
Other points of contention for me would be a somewhat noisy built-in delay and the fact that the single LFO is affecting the pitch down stream from the actual pitch knobs. For instance you dial up a great ring mod sound on VCO 2 and get wonderful effects by sweeping the pitch of VCO 1. The sweeping of that pitch would be ideal for an LFO but it doesn't work that way. And although you can assign the pitch of VCO 2 to the 2nd envelope, assigning the pitch of VCO 1 would seem to offer more sonic variation but again it's not offered. The final shortcoming would have to be only 16 steps for the sequencer. Thankfully that's about where all complaints stop.
This is a 37 slim key, dual VCO(with wave shaping on both), auto-tuning, 4 voice polyphonic wonder toy. It's lightweight, curved aluminum top and wood rear is sleek to the max and reminiscent of the Apple design aesthetic.
Innovative voice modes are brought up to date and right to the fingers offering Poly(with chord inversions[although I would have prefered detune]), Duophonic(with detune), Unison(with detune), Monophonic(with variable sub oscillator volume), Chord mode(with a number of different chords to choose from) Delay mode(where it fires all 4 voices in a delay of chosen time), Arp mode(various directions and types) and Sidechain mode(Hold a note or chord and the new notes or chords will duck the held ones)
Another innovative feature is the single bender bar where you can assign pitch bend to your cent liking but the kicker is that almost all other parameters can be assigned instead of the global pitch bend. Would I have liked more than one assignment? Yes. Would I like to be able to set min and max values on assignments? Yes.
The filter is surgical and rich, offering 4 pole and 2 pole operation. I'm typically a 4 pole guy but I'm really liking the 2 pole mode. It certainly lets more top end through. Self oscillation is pure sinewave, tracking across all octaves. There's a high pass filter as well that injects a bit of pleasant noise but stops a ways from removing the signal entirely.
There's an onboard OLED display/oscilloscope that provides fun and useful feedback from wave shape to parameter value to automation lane data.
USB and DIN MIDI, with all knobs sending and receiving CC messages(albeit on non-standard numbers), Sysex dumping and loading and an auto off function round out this joyous little synth.
Perhaps one of the greatest things about the ML(other than affordability) is the assumption that Korg in their infinite wisdom will be adding features to it as time goes by. I have faith that this thing will get better with age just like the Monotribe did.
Thank you Korg!