Sep 12

Amongst the new recent products released by Roland, I couldn’t help but notice a colourful green synth from their AIRA range – the new System 8. This is the second Plug-Out synth from Roland that features their Analogue Circuit Behaviour Technology (ACB) to create a wealth of sounds. Have a listen to the great Scott Tibbs at Kraft Music demo the System 8 in the Youtube clip above.

The System 8 however, can control up to three Plug-Out software synths. Two of which are included in the price. One of which is the Jupiter 8 and the other which will not be available until Spring 2017 is the Juno 106 Plug-Out. This will leave a space for a future Plug-Out synth that they may release or one of their existing ones already available such as the SH-01 or SH2. You should note that the Plug-Out synths are separate from the internal engine. These plug-outs of these classic synths have been recreated with all their analogue character using ACB.

The Roland System 8 has a 49 note velocity sensitive key-bed, 8 voice polyphony, three powerful oscillators, powerful hi-res filters, very versatile LFOs, a built-in vocoder, an arpeggiator, polyphonic chord memory functions, CV/GATE outputs, a large selection of great effects, and it can be used as a USB/MIDI interface for easy integration with your DAW – all sounds good to me. But, how much does it cost I hear you say?. Unfortunately, this will set you back £1239.00.

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Jan 24

No it is not Kylie Minilogue it is another little GEM from Namm 2016 from Korg – the new Korg Minilogue Analog Poly. The information on this synth was leaked before the Namm show. It’s an all-new 37-key, 4-voice true analog polyphonic synthesizer with onboard delay and 16 step poly sequencer.

Korg believes that the Minilogue is the first of its kind in design, virtue and affordability. They say that newly developed analog synth circuitry provides a rich, diverse sound palette, instantly recalled from its 100 factory presets plus 100 user programs.

Specifications:

Keyboard: 37 keys (slim keyboard, velocity sensitive)
Maximum Polyphony: 4 voices (8 voice modes inc unison layering)
Controls: 41 dedicated panel controls deliver immediate parameter access
Sequencer: 16 step polyphonic sequencer with automation of up to four synth parameters
Connectivity: MIDI IN / OUT, USB B, Sync IN / OUT allows you to jam with volca and electribe series
Sound Generation: 2 VCO (saw / tri / sqr), 1 VCF (2 / 4pole), 2 EG, 1 VCA, 1 LFO, DELAY
Input / Output Jacks: Headphone Output, Line Output, Audio Input
Oscilloscope: Real-time OLED oscilloscope provides visual feedback of parameter changes

Display
Real-time OLED oscilloscope provides visual feedback of parameter changes

Dimensions (W x D x H)
500 x 300 x 85 mm / 19.69″ x 11.81″ x 3.35″

Weight
2.8 kg / 6.17 lbs.

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Jan 15

PD*60708286

Hi,

I am very sorry but 2016 has started badly with my website out of action. I am very pleased to announce that it is now back up and running again and I appologise for any inconvenience this has caused you.

It may well be half way through the month but we are getting very close to The 2016 Winter NAMM trade show in Anaheim, California which begins next friday . Already the excitement has started with the anouncement of a new synth from Korg called the Minilogue, a 37 slim-key fully programmable analog polyphonic synthesizer costing £435.

Also, there are the rumors of a new synth from Yamaha called the Montage. Speculation as to whether or not this will become the successor to the Motif is being discussed in Yamaha forums.

We may also see a new Roland sampler added to the product line-up, possibly as part of the AIRA series.

It seems that all the main companies have been recently bringing out products regressing back to yesteryear recreating sounds from the 70’s and 80’s. Personally I wish one of these companies would build a synth for 2016 that would produce sounds like Spectrasonics Omnisphere which are right up-to-date but not rely on a computer to store all of its sounds and have problems of latency. The Korg Kronos is probably the best at this at present but it is still heavily loaded with presets that look to recreate real instruments. Whilst this is good to have, it would be nice to have a synth that recreates solely the software synths sounds that we have today.

Anyway, let’s see what Namm brings us next week.

Jul 8

***** 384 Patches *****

Hi, if you have an Access Virus and are looking for some fresh new sounds, don’t forget to check out my 3 Pack Special at a great price.

These three Access Virus Ti Soundsets were designed for use on the Virus Ti and Virus Ti2 Synths are now available for download as a 3-pack set giving you three complete banks of 128 at a reduced price. This epic adventure into sound design extends your sonic palette with a massive range of Genres and Sound Types and provides you with 384 new patches.

Just click the image for further information, demo , patch list and order. For the 3-Pack simply scroll down the Access Virus page.

Jan 26

Nord Lead A1 – Namm 2014

Namm 2014 and Clavia showed its latest analogue modelling synthesizer, the Nord Lead A1. My first thoughts on this was that how different is this from its other Nord Leads. It certaily looks very similar and for a 49 Note keyboard it still carries the hefty Nord Price of $1799. Nord say it has been made to “encourage experimentation with quick and easy programming and is very different from the Nord A4 as it has a completely diffent oscillator section”, but what does it sound like as it is not true analogue. The YouTube clip above allows you to hear some of its sounds without the noise of the Namm crowd.

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Jan 24

Namm 2014 – Waldorf 2-Pole Analog Filter

waldorf-2-pole-analog-filter

Well, we did not have to wait long – The new Waldorf 2-Pole Analog Filter is here for Namm 2014. The new Waldorf 2-Pole Analog Filter is an interesting beast because it is simply that – an Analog Filter for you to manipulate your sound(s) whether they are from a raunchy guitar or a synth or used by a DJ. I suppose if you are going to have a filter it may as well be one of the best, and Waldorf make some great filters. Looking at it my first thoughts are it is just like the Waldorf Rocket as it has the same size metallic case. The new Waldorf 2-Pole Analog Filter has a completely analog signal path and its Filter can be modulated by LFO, envelope follower or an external signal.

You get quite a bit to play with as it has extensive controls which are an input Gain with level LED; Rectify pot for mixing-in the rectified input signal; Filter Cutoff pot; Filter Resonance pot; Bipolar Filter Env Mod pot; Filter Type switch; Overdrive pot; Activation switch; Output Level pot; LFO Range switch with 3 positions; LFO Rate pot with LED; LFO Mod Depth pot; Trigger Button with LED; Trigger Threshold pot; Trigger Hold pot; Envelope Follower Source switch with 3 positions; Envelope Follower Attack pot and an Envelope Follower Decay pot.

Connections around the back give you Audio In and Out, Cutoff CV In, Envelope Follower CV In, Trigger In and a 12V DC Power input.

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Dec 14

I have a bit of a softspot for Waldorf Synths as they are always a little bit different from the rest.

waldorf_pulse_2_analogue_synth

The Waldorf Pulse 2 is an exciting analog subtractive mono synth with 500 Patches. It has three powerful oscillators and a filter. I found it quite heavy for its size but there again its solid metal chassis built like a tank will not be lightweight.

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Sep 26

waldorf-pulse-2-analogue-synthesizer

Its here at last – what a wait – the new Waldorf Pulse 2 Analogue Synthesizer. Do you remember my post from the NAMM show back in January 2012? Well I really didn’t think we would be waiting until September 2013 before the first of these became available. What have Waldorf been up to? I did however have a little go on this at Musikmesse this year – great fun especially the arpeggiator.

Sometimes you just have to wait if you want something good and the new Waldorf Pulse 2 Analogue Synthesizer certainly looks worth it. Waldorf have grown and grown and their products today are well liked and if you know of their previous products in the Pulse Range you will know they are legendary. With a newly designed Pulse 2 for 2013 (should have been 2012), Waldorf are about to give you all what you desire in this great, powerful and strong metal box of tricks.

It has for starters three analogue oscillators which seem to be right at home with my favourite – the VCF (Voltage Controlled Filter). This is no basic VCF and offers 12dB Highpass and Bandpass modes in addition to 24dB/12dB Lowpass for providing some real beef to the sound.

There is so much more to this synth, with a 128×64 character backlit LCD, a powerful arpeggiator, a Noise Generator, VCA, Ring Modulator, Analogue Filter FM, Pulsewidth Modulation, LFO, two Overdrive circuits and hard Sync, an Alternating Pulsewidth Modulation mode, an XOR Osc mode, CV Out, Gate Out, USB, Midi In and Out

If you want to create those sort-after sounds – you need a Pulse 2 which you can purchase direct from Waldorf €461.00 EUR/$610.00 USD (excluding tax). I have seen some UK prices as low as £406.

Jul 13

m-audio-venom-50-sound-patches-10-multi

Don’t forget if you are looking to put a bit of bite into your M-Audio Venom, get Snakedance today at only £7.99 (approx $12 or 9.25 Euros), great price for 50 Aggressive Single Patches and 10 Infectious Multi-Patches.

Combining beefy analog sounds with modern digital processing. You get everything from filthy leads, glossy sweeping filters to Bone-Shaking Bass. Simple Download – Just click on the image.

Jun 28

arturia_minibrute_synth

INTRODUCING THE ARTURIA MINIBRUTE

It is good to see that manufactures are still bringing out new Analogue Synths. Many of them are small and compact with sufficient knob-tweaking controls for you to create your next Dubstep sound or effect for a movie soundtrack. Arturia are one such company and have taken the step in producing their first Analogue Synth – the Arturia Minibrute.

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