Yamaha AN1X by foge
The Yamaha AN1X is a great analogue modelling synth.
It is easy to program when using the AN1X edit software (pc only) but works find from parallels and vmware on a mac.
It is fundamentally a two oscillator synth with a multi mode filter but with a series of nice functions which make it seem more than that.
Oscillators one and two can be all the usual saw, square etc. and they have a useful edge parameter which sounds like a gentle lowpass filter to gain variations on those waveforms.
The AN1x is capable of oscillator sync, it does pulse width modulation well and the 10 notes of polyphony covers you nicely for chords. It also has a reasonable stab at FM synthesis allowing the usual EP sounds and slightly aggressive analogue fun too. The noise source is useful and is on top of the existing oscillators. To get a better idea of the AN1x architecture simple have a look at its PC editor 'AN1x edit' screenshot.
The effects are pretty good and have the VARIABLE EFFECT > 3band EQ >DELAY > REVERB structure where by the variable effect gives you a reasonable choice of modulation effects such as chorus , or distortions such as amp modelling, and overdrive effects to choose from.
The thing which really sets the AN1x apart from alot of its competitors of the time is the depth you can get into when programming it. THis means it really can sound pretty incredible.
THe best demos of the AN1x are JayBs on youtube.
JayB's Yamaha AN1x patches (Old Video) - YouTube
It is capable of great dance sounds, good simple FM sounds, good organs and some really responsive rhodes emulations.
Mine was 200 pounds second hand in mint condition for such a great sounding synth it is a bargin, I bought mine because I didn't want to buy another poorly made USB controller keyboard, I didn't expect to love the synth this much.
Positive : Good quality synth action keyboard, great sound easily one of the best analogue modelling examples,Unison mode, FM and OSC sync, 4 effects in a chain, Great library of existing sound at the AN1x user group.
Downside : programming from the controls is not as easy as one control per function and requires you to stop playing and really think about where you need to navigate to. The lack of a data wheel is also irritating. Onec you start programming 128 slots starts to feel small!