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help me pick a poly synth!
Old 10th November 2009
  #1
help me pick a poly synth!

well i know i just got a little phatty but i want..



im basically looking for something to replace sylenth 1 and vanguard with

loads of knobs and buttons
6 or more voices
unison detune
unison stereo spread
at least 2 oscillators
noise generator
at least 2 lfos

here's the options that i know about

dsi tetra (only 4 voices and the interface blows, prophet 08 tabletop would solve that but it is a bit pricey and the encoders are unreliable?)

alesis andromeda (way too expensive for now)


virus ti tabletop (digital but just has this sound i love)

nord lead 2x or 3 (not too crazy about it but them but can sound very good)

jp8080 (pretty awesome but not as good as the virus or nord lead)
Old 10th November 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
NWSooner's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I would go with the Virus or Andromeda. Since the Andromeda is out of your price range that leaves the Virus TI Desktop. It's a great synth.
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #3
i'd like to go analog though

i gotta find out more about sunsyn and omega-8
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
i'd like to go analog though

i gotta find out more about sunsyn and omega-8
Both of those cost way more than a used Andromeda. I'd say save up for the Andromeda, as opposed to settling for a digital synth.
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #5
oh crap well nevermind the sunsyn and omega

id really like something tabletop/rack and i read the andromeda bug list and the fact that they say they wont be updating the os anymore is kinda eh

i guess i could settle for a virus ti if i find a good enough deal
Old 10th November 2009
  #6
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
the JP-6 has all that except for the stereo part. They can also be had for cheaper than some of the ones you have mentioned.

I love my JP-6.

Yes the prophet encoders blow.

Go analog.

Digital synths... well, all I have to say is that computers do digital better than digital synths do.. they have faster processors, more memory, are more flexible... etc. I personally don't see many reasons to own MOST digital synths (although I do like the old FM synths as they have that 12-bit processor character that computers can't really mimic.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
well i know i just got a little phatty but i want..



im basically looking for something to replace sylenth 1 and vanguard with

loads of knobs and buttons
6 or more voices
unison detune
unison stereo spread
at least 2 oscillators
noise generator
at least 2 lfos

here's the options that i know about

dsi tetra (only 4 voices and the interface blows, prophet 08 tabletop would solve that but it is a bit pricey and the encoders are unreliable?)

alesis andromeda (way too expensive for now)


virus ti tabletop (digital but just has this sound i love)

nord lead 2x or 3 (not too crazy about it but them but can sound very good)

jp8080 (pretty awesome but not as good as the virus or nord lead)
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Oh, and rack... don't forget the MKS-80.

If you are looking for cheaper (and I mean MUCH cheaper) there is also the Matrix-1000 and the MKS-30 which are both dual oscillator and have some nice/deep programming for their price range...

can be had REALLY cheap too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
oh crap well nevermind the sunsyn and omega

id really like something tabletop/rack and i read the andromeda bug list and the fact that they say they wont be updating the os anymore is kinda eh

i guess i could settle for a virus ti if i find a good enough deal
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
oh crap well nevermind the sunsyn and omega

id really like something tabletop/rack and i read the andromeda bug list and the fact that they say they wont be updating the os anymore is kinda eh

i guess i could settle for a virus ti if i find a good enough deal
I have an Andromeda and an Omega. I've never once run into any bugs on my Andromeda. The Omega has been pretty reliable the whole time I've had it, except for one weird bug which seems to have been related to the way one of my Cubase projects was set up.
Old 10th November 2009
  #9
Lives for gear
 
shadowfac's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
im basically looking for something to replace sylenth 1 and vanguard with

loads of knobs and buttons
6 or more voices
unison detune
unison stereo spread
at least 2 oscillators
noise generator
at least 2 lfos
If you want analog, I think the Prophet 08 rack may be the only synth with all the features you want, including unison detune and stereo spread, but I only have experience with a few analog polys so I'm not 100% sure. It's also cheaper than the TI desktop, so I don't know why you consider it out of your budget but not the TI? Regarding the unreliable encoders... no, they're not the best, but they're not that bad, either. Lots of people haven't had a problem with them.... and you will eventually be able to buy or upgrade to a potentiometer edition, which is more reliable.

If you're ok with VA's, there are many more to choose from. I would look into the second hand first-generation VA market. You can get something like a Virus A, Novation Nova, or JP-8080 for not much dough these days ($300-$500). Then you would have enough leftover money to buy a good FM synth (e.g. SY-77 / SY-99 / FS1R) and cover a wide territory.

Or, if you want a really powerful VA that will cover a wide range of sounds, including some FM and/or wavetable, I would go for something like a Nord Lead 3 or a Waldorf Q or the TI desktop.
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #10
jupiter-6 would be awesome, but the stereo part is one of the things i really want

im not sure if the super jupiter is stereo or not, but either way i'd have to get the controller for it which would be a little more than i want to spend

if i can get a prophet 08 rack for less than $1k i'd suck up the encoders problem and get me some deoxit
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Robonaut's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I don't think that you'll be happy with any VA if what you want is analog sound.

The Prophet 08 is really very good, especially the rack version, which seems to be a steal for the money.

If you are concerned that you won't like it, you can always get it from one of those places with a 30-day guarantee and return it if it disappoints.
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
bs333's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Tetra and BCR2000. FTW
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
Jarkko's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
If you are comfortable with the VST world, it's going to be hard to pick up something that makes a real difference. Andromeda, or some vintage monster maybe. Then you of course need other external HW to match that quality, audio interface, effects, monitoring, you know. And it never ends. Happened to me.... Welcome to GS .
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Yes, I understand the lust for unison spread. Big sound!

But stereo unison automatically crosses off MOST vintage instruments, and definitely a lot of amazing ones!

And there are also a ton of stereo effects processors... chorus, flange, phase, delay, verb... that can bring a mono signal into the stereo domain.

Allow me to throw another option onto your list that is about the price of an Andromeda, but in my eyes FAR superior:

Oberheim Xpander.

In a lower price range you might also consider the Prophet 600. Meets a lot of your requirements.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
jupiter-6 would be awesome, but the stereo part is one of the things i really want

im not sure if the super jupiter is stereo or not, but either way i'd have to get the controller for it which would be a little more than i want to spend

if i can get a prophet 08 rack for less than $1k i'd suck up the encoders problem and get me some deoxit
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #15
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Oh and BTW. Tetra is only four voice.

The Matrix 1000 is much cheaper, and EXTREMELY flexible with it's Mods. DCO, like the Tetra, with Analog VCF. Lots of storage. And same as the Tetra, just grab a Behringer Controller or a Kenton Control Freak.. and you have knob control of everything.

Only a Mono out... but if you buy two of them (which is STILL cheaper than a single Tetra) you can chain them together for a nice stereo spread!

I have been wanting to do this for a while! But I won't be any time soon as I have sworn off buying any more gear for a LONG while.
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #16
yeah first thing i did was cross of the tetra because of that and the lack of interface on the first post

im trying to stay away from the computer as much as i can

oberheim looks pretty interesting! lots of buttons on it though and it seems a bit confusing
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Yes, but as mentioned earlier a midi controller will easily give you all of the knobs and sliders you need!

I use a Kenton Control Freak Studio ed. It's dope. It has profiles for my E-Mu Emax, TX-81Z, Sherman Filterbank, my drummers Akai S-3000, ASR-X, and Novation Bass Station... and even for the Matrix 1000 if I get around to getting one!

What I mean is maybe you shouldn't rule out "knobless" machines just yet. You could be missing out on some great machines that you could easily control with a Control Freak or other midi controller.

Oberheim Matrix 1000 is a prime example!
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
yeah first thing i did was cross of the tetra because of that and the lack of interface on the first post

im trying to stay away from the computer as much as i can

oberheim looks pretty interesting! lots of buttons on it though and it seems a bit confusing
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #18
Lives for gear
 
flat's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
If you are considering the Virus, then I'd also take a look at this too. Its nuts, and can create some surprisingly good analogue sounds.

Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #19
Deleted b788fee
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
jupiter-6 would be awesome, but the stereo part is one of the things i really want
To me, that seems like a pretty small feature to be a dealbreaker ... Like other poster said, effects -- which you'll need most likely, though I'm running my JP-6 dry at the moment -- will make it more stereo ...

Personally, I think stereo is overrated ... but that's a concept I'm still working through ...

good luck ... (my other choice would be to save and get the A6) ...
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #20
Moderator
 
golden beers's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
if you're tracking you can make it stereo after the fact. yes the MKS80 is stereo.
just want to add the MKS70 to your list.
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #21
Gear Nut
 
Wake's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Sick deal

I just got an absolutely SICK deal on a brand new Access Virus Ti2 Keyboard.... $700 off MSRP and $1k off list...

I went to RainbowGuitars.com and saw that they offered the Virus at 2560 or so but it was listed as special order only and that it'd take 2 weeks, so then I called guitarcenter and had them match the price PLUS 10% of the difference. I had it on my stand the next day... GC list price is 3175 and I got it for 2506.

The synth is great and the new TI OS 3.0 has been totally streamlined. The action on the keys is really great and beats the aciton on my Axiom49.

BTW, I DID order a MOOG Little phatty st. 2 for 1065 on rainbowguitars... i get that this week with free shipping. They have a limited selection but the prices on pro audio are great there.
Old 10th November 2009 | Show parent
  #22
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
True. Buy some quality stereo pedals and you can do alot. I am running my P5 through a Mooger Low pass, into a Mooger phaser, with the phaser LFO sweeping the cut off of the Lowpass. Then it all runs through my Red Witch stereo chorus. Sounds super wide. The chourus sweeps it all from side to side.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diametro ➑️
To me, that seems like a pretty small feature to be a dealbreaker ... Like other poster said, effects -- which you'll need most likely, though I'm running my JP-6 dry at the moment -- will make it more stereo ...

Personally, I think stereo is overrated ... but that's a concept I'm still working through ...

good luck ... (my other choice would be to save and get the A6) ...
Old 13th November 2009 | Show parent
  #23
the search goes on
Old 14th November 2009 | Show parent
  #24
Lives for gear
 
gregwar's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
@wake, sick deal dude thats amazing!

at op, i'm considering selling my mks-80 if you're interested pm me so i don't have to spam the board too too much...
Old 14th November 2009 | Show parent
  #25
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
To the OP... if the MKS-80 is ANYTHING like my JP-6... and they say it is... then you should consider what this man says!

GET IT!

Quote:
Originally Posted by gregwar ➑️
@wake, sick deal dude thats amazing!

at op, i'm considering selling my mks-80 if you're interested pm me so i don't have to spam the board too too much...
Old 14th November 2009 | Show parent
  #26
im not a fan of the interface, for hands on control i'd need another $1000 for the controller hah
Old 14th November 2009 | Show parent
  #27
Deleted 0fc8128
Guest
I think you want the virus...
Old 14th November 2009 | Show parent
  #28
im lusting for analog though.. the filters at least
Old 14th November 2009 | Show parent
  #29
Lives for gear
 
Odey's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe ➑️
im not a fan of the interface, for hands on control i'd need another $1000 for the controller hah
I'm the same. And I haven't picked one of these up for that reason.
Old 14th November 2009 | Show parent
  #30
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
ensoniq esq-1 or sq-80. no knobs at all but dead easy to program as there's a dedicated page button for everything. 8 voices, 3 oscs, 3 lfo's (oscs and lfos can be set to free running), 4 enveolopes, 4 vca's (1 each on the oscs like a minimoog and one final vca with independant pan control). it has no unison detune but... it has 3 oscs and you can layer 2 patches for very wide 6 osc detuning and still get 4 voices poly. plus they are dirt and i mean dirt cheap. you can probably source one locally on craigslist if you're in the U.S.A. for $150. Ebay is around $250.

akai ax-80. again no knobs but a very wacky 5 screen interface that looks freakin cool and it's fairly easy to program due to dedicated buttons for each function. also can had really cheap.

novation nova desktop is probably the closest to sylenth you'll find. osc skewing, dual saw osc and 3 of them = supersaw. unison type detuning and you get to keep all the voices when doing so. it has a nice sync feature where all 3 oscs will sync to a ghost osc so no loss of osc count when doing sync sounds. lots of knobs etc... around the cost of the oberheim matrix 1000. which by the way has crappy envelopes and too many mods in the mod matrix drags it down too and makes it laggy.

the matrix 1000 does have a very nice sound and is great for pads and fx but isn't very good at percussive sounds due to the crappy envelopes.


for the cost of a virus or Q or andy you could get a ton of gear that all sounds as good. another better option in the higher price range instead of the andy is the oberheim expander.
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