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What's up with the return of analog synthesizers?


rocketman

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So I've been meaning to post this for a while. I see that everyone is selling the old analog synthesizers again. Moog is back. I think it's great that people want them again. I had many of them in my youth but got rid of all of them. I never really liked their sound. Keep in my mind I'm a keyboard player first; guitar is my second instrument.

 

They are fun from an engineering point of view. But, their sound can easily be emulated by digital systems. I know we've argued the whole tube amp vs. amp modeling thing. I can understand that argument. But I just don't see buying a very expensive analog synthesizer. I cannot tell the difference between an analog one and a digital one.

 

Like I said, I think it's great that people are buying them, but I have no reason to get one.

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I think, at least part of it, has to do with programmability. Digital FM, subtractive, virtual synthesis is great, but analog is awesome. I also believe that analog has, in many ways, reached the state of the art. I still have a few analogs from earlier days (Memmorymoog, Sequential Circuits Six Trak etc), as well as, some newer products (DSI Evolver, a lot of analog modeling synths)...above all, I like the depth of selection of analog synths. Hell, even modular systems are coming back (and they ain't cheap). Though I am on equal footing with guitar and keyboards, I prefer synths for much of the ambient stuff that I do.

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Like I said, I think it's great that people are buying them, but I have no reason to get one.

 

I used to have a Sequential Circuits Prophet V. It was fun to mess with the waveform, which was easy to do with all those knobs! Took quite a while to learn what did what. But I'm more a player than a tech. Fast forward some number of decades, all I need is my Motif XS. Check this demo by Burt Smorenburg!

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGS_O0LRnCA

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As I have been saying for years and long before Joe Walsh wrote a song that used the very expression that I have been using all these years "Ì`m an Analogue Man In A digital World",I don`t suppose he has been frequenting music sites that I`ve been on for the past few years,but I digress.Since I have very little luck with operating anything that`s more complicates than crayons, an analogue synth would be more useful to me than one of these new programmable digital synths.Even though the new synths are far more versatile in their functions,voicing and performance possibilities,all that isn`t much use to anyone who doesn`t have experience with digital gear.I have an early `80s Yamaha CS-01 Mini Synthesizer that`s purely analogue and has a tiny tinny sounding 2`speaker but when it`s put through a large amp or a PA system,it sounds as impressive and any Moog or ARP Odyssey etc. even though it may not have as many voicing possibilities and it`s monophonic.I`m glad that the builders of synthesizers are going back to the analogue format because not only are they simpler to use,they have an organic warmth that`s comparable to the tube amp tone over that of a SS amp.

 

BTW: Back in the mid to late 70s all the musicians in our immediate neighbourhood-and there was an inordinately large number of us-used to jam at either the basement of a house where the guy`s mother was deaf or in my back garden.One day one of the guys showed up with a well used synth that naturally was analogue but it sounded incredible.This particular synth was the only one of its brand that I have ever seen,I can`t remember the exact spelling of the brand name but it was Davilescent Divaliscent or something similar to these names.I have Googled these names and tried alternate spellings but haven`t had any luck I have even gone on forums dedicated to synths with no results.Do these names ring a bell with anyone? I would love to be able to track one down because at the time there was hardly anything except a Moog etc. that could come anywhere near the sounds that came from that cool old synth.

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http://cdn.korg.com/us/products/upload/ec52de7763f630daecd83349e3d08ea3_pc.png

 

Yesterday my teenage son (whom I've always tried to get interested in guitar) suddenly announced that he wants to buy a Korg Monotron. It's a tiny analog synth that makes big sounds. I think dubstep music has influenced him.

 

That's a neat little device. Watching the demo led me to this one too... Korg Kaossilator.

 

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Davilescent Divaliscent or something similar to these names. I have Googled these names and tried alternate spellings but haven`t had any luck I have even gone on forums dedicated to synths with no results. Do these names ring a bell with anyone?

 

I think you mean Davoli Davolisint.

 

davolisint.jpg

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So I've been meaning to post this for a while. I see that everyone is selling the old analog synthesizers again. Moog is back. I think it's great that people want them again. I had many of them in my youth but got rid of all of them. I never really liked their sound. Keep in my mind I'm a keyboard player first; guitar is my second instrument.

 

They are fun from an engineering point of view. But, their sound can easily be emulated by digital systems. I know we've argued the whole tube amp vs. amp modeling thing. I can understand that argument. But I just don't see buying a very expensive analog synthesizer. I cannot tell the difference between an analog one and a digital one.

 

Like I said, I think it's great that people are buying them, but I have no reason to get one.

 

I am a prog fan and really dig the sound of analog synths. I have yet to encounter a Virtual Analog that can emulate Moog bass tones well. They don't sound bad at all and I have gotten similar tones, but they never seem to sound as dense as a Moog or nail the Taurus sound. I'm not sure how well that translates to a recording, but in the room I never seem to get as "big" a sound from the digital gear I have tried. I have nothing against digital gear, I'm also they happy owner of an Alesis ION which nails most of the polyphonic tones I want.

 

If I were primarily a keyboard player then I'd probably want something a lot more versatile and portable than the rig that I have.

 

If someone wanted to get into analog synths but not deal with the hefty price of a Mood then I'd probably suggest the Dave Smith MoPho. Less than $500 for a new desktop model.

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