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Analog synth recommendations?

Mark Schmieder

Senior Member
I've owned dozens of synths over the years. The only one I kept was the Moog Voyager.

I've moved away from poly as I prefer to split the voices to different sounds and avoid block chords, so I find a mono-synth is enough. Having three oscillators also makes a huge difference!

I have one full bank of custom patches that I did myself, but I also use some of the ones provided. The search-by-category feature is really helpful for quickly going through patches to make a good decision on bass, lead, etc., based on resonance and other factors. Overall, a very quick interface to work with.

I also use the synth as a MIDI controller when working with computer-based sounds that don't demand a fully weighted keybed. The semi-weighted keys are quite expressive, and it has the most complete MIDI spec and smoothness (no missing values or jumps, whether for velocity, aftertouch, etc.), of any that I've ever owned.

Only Arturia's KeyLab series got similar marks, but I didn't really have desk space for even the older slim-line version so it was redundant to keep it when the Voyager suffices for most purposes.
 

Mark Schmieder

Senior Member
For the original budget of $500 however, the Voyager won't cut it. :)

An interesting option, that I plan to buy as soon as my next GC Bucks Certificate arrives, is the Arturia MicroFreak, which actually implements PolyAT and thus makes it an interesting MIDI Controller for hardware and software synths that support that feature.

It's often only $269, and has a button accordion style design to it (especially if one thinks of Cajun/Zydeco accordions), with non-moving sensor zones instead of standard keys, a la Don Buchla. An unusual synth, with mixed reviews, but probably a good learning tool.
 

vitocorleone123

Active Member
Not sure about a rec, but also check out synthtopia for gear news. There's some interesting stuff (less expensive overall) coming out in the nearish future. Like the Modal Argon8.
 

dgburns

summer of pickles and IPA beer
Prophet 6 desktop module. For $500 more you get true poly and a sound that blows away the sub 37 imo. It is such a wonderful synth for film scoring because of the cinematic sound and inspiring playability.

If you want interesting sounds, you need the harmony that poly gives you. Modular can't really do that well without spending A LOT.
Actually I think the Sub37 complements the Prophet 6 well. They just don’t cover the same ground, imho.
 

dpasdernick

Senior Member
The Roland JD990 is not analog but it sounds larger than life. Especially with the Vintage Synth card installed. I turned mine on the other day and the sound was so fat I gained 20 lbs just playing a Bb chord.
 
The Sub 37 seems to be really a good option for you. May have you tried the Grandmother? It can not save presets and it's not paraphonic but the sound is gorgeous.
The arturia Minibrute 2 is also a beast in sound design.
If you want a truly goog VA synth there is the novation Peak. you can do all sorts of things with this, very very powerfull and full midi controlled.
The new korg minilogue XD is also good but just 4 notes polyphony.

But if you don't do much pad sounds and if you use the synth on a studio environnement i strongly recommend the sub 37. It has a soft for use it like a VST synth into a DAW, and you have a duo paraphonic beast. :2thumbs:
 
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Mark Schmieder

Senior Member
Oh wow, I didn't notice this is a zombie thread. We've probably thoroughly confused anyone who is hoping to use this to make a decision, with so many completely contrary recommendations. :)
 

ed buller

Senior Member
Oh wow, I didn't notice this is a zombie thread. We've probably thoroughly confused anyone who is hoping to use this to make a decision, with so many completely contrary recommendations. :)
same as anything creative really. Synths are hard now cos there are soooo many options. But i'm old school , grew up on a VCS3...so I really don't care for a lot of the modern stuff...sounds thin and harsh. The new OB-6 is a blasts from the past..and the Behringer clones are amazing...

best

ed
 

DerGeist

Active Member
Since this is a zombie thread and it didn't exit at the time The Behringer model D is also a contender. Mine sits beside my phatty and has no trouble hanging.
 

Mark Schmieder

Senior Member
I'm surprised to keep reading such high praise for Behringer's Model D knock-off. I'm almost afraid to check one out, lest I regret the $$$ spent on my Voyager. :)
 

Mark Schmieder

Senior Member
Don't underrate the utility of mono-synths for effects and pads either. I lean more towards digital synths for long evolving pads and poly pads, but I get a lot of action out of my Voyager for such duties. With OSC de-tuning, you often can achieve the illusion of poly anyway.
 
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slateandash

Member
Prophet 6 desktop module. For $500 more you get true poly and a sound that blows away the sub 37 imo. It is such a wonderful synth for film scoring because of the cinematic sound and inspiring playability.

If you want interesting sounds, you need the harmony that poly gives you. Modular can't really do that well without spending A LOT.
Personally prefer the Rev2 to the 6. You can get way more interesting stuff out of it.
 
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