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Nova vs SuperNova 2
Old 13th March 2013
  #1
SEED78
Guest
Nova vs SuperNova 2

Nova vs SuperNova 2?

I know all the stuff about voices, outs, and knobs per function - am more interested in the raw sound, and general programming ease?

have read that the Nova is meant to have same sound as SuperNova 2, but you never know until you still the 2 together, anyone here had both??

with the lack of rack space, I would prefer to have the Nova desktop - but if I have to I'll get the SN2 rack.

I got a decent amount of VA already (and real analogue), but I really like SN demos I've heard, recon it'll add something I don't have. only other choice I was thinking of was a Nord lead 1...
Old 13th March 2013
  #2
Gear Addict
 
SynthesizerPatel's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I'd be interested to hear opinions on this too. :-)
Old 13th March 2013
  #3
Gear Head
 
squarebox's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
If I'm not mistaken, one of the main differences is that the Nova doesn't have FM.
Old 14th March 2013
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
Nijuro's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Everyone seems to be thinking nova/supernova recently, even me. :p

I'd also be interested in this comparison.

Sent from my XT910
Old 14th March 2013
  #5
Lives for gear
 
HrastProgrammer's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I own/owned:

Nova Desktop
Supernova II Rack
Nova II XL Keyboard

Sold the first two after buying Nova II.

Never noticed any differences in sound between them (if you don't use features present on newer models, of course) and patches from the older machines translate to the new ones without problems.

But I am not particularly picky when it comes to small differences, anyway, so take this as a pure personal opinion.
Old 14th March 2013
  #6
SEED78
Guest
with the Nova desktop I read some place that the buttons to change what the encoders effect cause a 'click' noise you can hear in speakers etc?

I'm thinking a SN2 rack would be nice as it has so many knobs and will and will be easier to program.
Old 14th March 2013
  #7
Gear Addict
 
Kraut's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
X-Station is also a nice alternative if you can live with only one timbre.

I sold my SN2 rack, but eventually missed it and thought that perhaps with X-Station I could get one slice of Supernova back. And did too.
Old 14th March 2013 | Show parent
  #8
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Spectral Climax's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kraut ➑️
X-Station is also a nice alternative if you can live with only one timbre.

I sold my SN2 rack, but eventually missed it and thought that perhaps with X-Station I could get one slice of Supernova back. And did too.
...the X-Station is a KS series Novation synth...it's quite different from the Supernova series. I had a K-Station and a Supernova 2 rack. The Supernova had a richer sound, more bottom end and a marginally better filter.
Old 14th March 2013
  #9
Gear Maniac
 
SlutButtMcNabb's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Get the Nova. The SN2 has serious problems with MIDI jitter/lag/crapness. Nova is not perfect, but at least stays fairly tight unless things really get busy. That said, if you are just going to use it monotimbrally and play slow eveolving pads etc - THEN get the SN2 as the sound quality is much better (less aliasing).
Old 14th March 2013 | Show parent
  #10
Gear Maniac
 
SlutButtMcNabb's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by SEED78 ➑️
with the Nova desktop I read some place that the buttons to change what the encoders effect cause a 'click' noise you can hear in speakers etc?

I'm thinking a SN2 rack would be nice as it has so many knobs and will and will be easier to program.
This is an easy fix. You just open up the unit and pull out the beeper. You don't have to de-solder or anything - just get a screwdriver into the little metal 'speaker' part and pull that bad boy out!
Old 14th March 2013 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Rusty_OHara's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by SEED78 ➑️
with the Nova desktop I read some place that the buttons to change what the encoders effect cause a 'click' noise you can hear in speakers etc?

I'm thinking a SN2 rack would be nice as it has so many knobs and will and will be easier to program.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SlutButtMcNabb ➑️
This is an easy fix. You just open up the unit and pull out the beeper. You don't have to de-solder or anything - just get a screwdriver into the little metal 'speaker' part and pull that bad boy out!
As above, a quick easy fix to stop that annoying beep/click. On the SN2 it is a menu option...

Quote:
Originally Posted by SlutButtMcNabb ➑️
Get the Nova. The SN2 has serious problems with MIDI jitter/lag/crapness. Nova is not perfect, but at least stays fairly tight unless things really get busy. That said, if you are just going to use it monotimbrally and play slow eveolving pads etc - THEN get the SN2 as the sound quality is much better (less aliasing).
I'd respectfully disagree on that point. I've used the SN2, all eight parts with lots of notes and shes been fine for me.
Old 14th March 2013
  #12
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
There may be something broken in SN2 if it experiences midi lag or similar. I've got one faulty knob, which makes my SN2 work weird when ever it is used, for example midi starts jumping around. I can't remember experiencing anything when it was working well.
Old 14th March 2013
  #13
SEED78
Guest
some good advice guys many thanks!

I am still having trouble deciding - am also on market for a JD-990 - and they would both be fighting it out for the rack space... not sure which i should get yet.
Old 14th March 2013
  #14
BMD
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by raymondwave ➑️
There may be something broken in SN2 if it experiences midi lag or similar. I've got one faulty knob, which makes my SN2 work weird when ever it is used, for example midi starts jumping around. I can't remember experiencing anything when it was working well.
I have a similar thing on my nova. A couple of the pots make the values jump around when I turn them fast, and sometimes the arpeggiator drifts or drops notes. I still use it a lot but sometimes have to record a couple of takes. Not sure whether to see if I can get it fixed or just buy another one.

Sent from my GT-I9300
Old 14th March 2013 | Show parent
  #15
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by BMD ➑️
I have a similar thing on my nova. A couple of the pots make the values jump around when I turn them fast, and sometimes the arpeggiator drifts or drops notes. I still use it a lot but sometimes have to record a couple of takes. Not sure whether to see if I can get it fixed or just buy another one.
Exactly like mine. Seems to be quite common fault. I already had my SN2 on repair once and they sent it back to me without finding any fault. They didn't actually play it and probably turned the knobs relatively slow and that way it seems like it works when in reality the knob is broken.

My faulty knob is the data knob, which makes using the unit quite impossible.
Old 14th March 2013 | Show parent
  #16
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Arksun's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by SlutButtMcNabb ➑️
Get the Nova. The SN2 has serious problems with MIDI jitter/lag/crapness. Nova is not perfect, but at least stays fairly tight unless things really get busy. That said, if you are just going to use it monotimbrally and play slow eveolving pads etc - THEN get the SN2 as the sound quality is much better (less aliasing).
Thats a bit of an over exaggeration I think, you have to push all the parts pretty hard for the timing to start messing up, so I wouldn't go so far as to say 'serious problems'. Using 2-4 simultaneous parts it can play perfectly fine. Was your SN2 on the last OS update made?

But anyways, I would say if you really want to buy a Novation hardware synth, out of those get the SN2, its still my favourite synth by them even though it lacks the wavetable stuff of the newer ones, the 18db filter resonance on that synth sounds utterly gorgeous!.
Old 15th March 2013 | Show parent
  #17
Gear Maniac
 
SlutButtMcNabb's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arksun ➑️
Thats a bit of an over exaggeration I think, you have to push all the parts pretty hard for the timing to start messing up, so I wouldn't go so far as to say 'serious problems'. Using 2-4 simultaneous parts it can play perfectly fine. Was your SN2 on the last OS update made?
Not an exaggeration at all. Maybe I'm just more sensitive to timing issues than most?

I've owned 2 SN2's over the years and have used them with Cubase and Midex 8 on Win XP, a QY700, a Commodore Amiga and even the good old Atari ST. The issue was serious enough for me to sell both of them after nothing helped the timing problems.

Yes - latest OS etc. Believe me, I tried everything. Drums on channel 1 and a bassline on 2 and it was already starting to jitter for me. Maybe I was just unlucky. Twice.

Nova has much better MIDI response.
Old 15th March 2013 | Show parent
  #18
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Arksun's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by SlutButtMcNabb ➑️
Not an exaggeration at all. Maybe I'm just more sensitive to timing issues than most?

I've owned 2 SN2's over the years and have used them with Cubase and Midex 8 on Win XP, a QY700, a Commodore Amiga and even the good old Atari ST. The issue was serious enough for me to sell both of them after nothing helped the timing problems.

Yes - latest OS etc. Believe me, I tried everything. Drums on channel 1 and a bassline on 2 and it was already starting to jitter for me. Maybe I was just unlucky. Twice.

Nova has much better MIDI response.
Which OS number was it exactly?. Sounds like you were unlucky, or using huge amounts of automation. I too have a midex8, not the best midi timing on that, recording especially is pretty iffy, started off with hardware sequencers and well aware of the improved tightness of timing
Old 16th March 2013
  #19
Deleted User
Guest
Never had a problem with SuperNova 2 midi. Its possible your setup overloaded it, but I have no clue. I think its a great sounding synth. It mixes well with all my music. Every sound out of it seems golden. I wouldn't get a regular Nova over the 2.
Old 2nd December 2016
  #20
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lawrence_o's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
But are the sounds of the nova 2 the same as those in the supernova 2?
Old 2nd December 2016
  #21
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
I had Nova desktop and Nova XL (36 voices) keyboard, which has a Supernova 2 engine.
There is a difference in sound and I'm not talking about FM capabilities of SN2, but something else;
The mk1 series (so to speak) have a slightly "warmer" sound due to 18 bit DACs and they clip less. It seems the gain staging is different. It is very easy to clip mk2 series and that bothered me so much that I sold it. Mk1 are more forgiving about this, but they also clip if you're not careful. I somehow find the chorus on mk1 series to be more lush. But I never made A/B comparison with one next to the other. The clipping difference was obvious, though. I'd say that the filters sound identical, and so do oscillators.
Old 2nd December 2016 | Show parent
  #22
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by SEED78 ➑️
some good advice guys many thanks!

I am still having trouble deciding - am also on market for a JD-990 - and they would both be fighting it out for the rack space... not sure which i should get yet.
I have the nova desktop and a 990 with vintage synth expansion board. I feel like I'm still learning them both.

If you get the 990, get the vintage board too, and a blank memory card.

Both instruments sound good (each in a different way) and both are surprisingly smooth for old digital synths.

The knoblessness of the 990 is a little bit of a buzzkiller for me, although it's not a bad interface. The nova gives you dedicated controls for almost everything (pet peeve: only one set of envelope controls).

The 990 with the vintage board is more versatile sonically, but if you like that characteriztic nova flavor, just get the nova. The timbres have a certain distinctive feel, especially with the arpeggiator and onboard effects added.

Interesting to think about choosing between them. Two different animals.
Old 3rd December 2016
  #23
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
the supernova 2 was a bit laggy/temperamental over the supernova.

think... trying to run windows 7 on a 266mhz machine

the machine could not cope with the SN2 firmware too well.
Old 3rd December 2016 | Show parent
  #24
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Preston135 ➑️
the supernova 2 was a bit laggy/temperamental over the supernova.

think... trying to run windows 7 on a 266mhz machine

the machine could not cope with the SN2 firmware too well.
Yeah, I forgot to mention this. SN2 series have this nasty arpeggiator bug that when you run the arp and at the same time move any of the knobs the arp will have some hiccups. It skips a bit. This drove me nuts.
Old 3rd December 2016
  #25
Gear Maniac
 
Nijuro's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
My Supernova 2 has never experienced this. Had one a few years now after owning a Nova (wanted the whole keyboard) and it's handled all midi and arp stuff with no glitching whatsoever.

You guys SN2's running OS V2.0? Maybe I haven't been taxing mine much but I constantly use all 8 channels from my RS7k with no issues.
Old 3rd December 2016
  #26
Lives for gear
 
lawrence_o's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Well I just got me a nova 2 keyboard. It's got 12 voices only but I never use them in multi-timbral mode anyway. Plenty of other keys jere and I combine all the time.

Sounds are the same as the supernova. I used to own one and recognise a lot of them. Hoping to find a supernova 2 at an affordable price. There are some for sale but this guys ask too much. We'll see how it goes.
Old 4th December 2016
  #27
Gear Nut
 
🎧 15 years
Be really sure you like the sound of the Nova series, though.

Although it's labeled as "Virtual Analog" it's actually quite digital sounding, I'd say.
Going in with this mindset, you can have a lot of fun with a Nova, though..

(For warm sounding stuff, just don't ever put any of the OSCs over 100 in the mixer, or it will start distorting in a very bad digital way. Also, try to avoid using any of the internal effects.)
Old 4th December 2016 | Show parent
  #28
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GeminIAm's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Needle201 ➑️
Be really sure you like the sound of the Nova series, though.

Although it's labeled as "Virtual Analog" it's actually quite digital sounding, I'd say.
Going in with this mindset, you can have a lot of fun with a Nova, though..

(For warm sounding stuff, just don't ever put any of the OSCs over 100 in the mixer, or it will start distorting in a very bad digital way. Also, try to avoid using any of the internal effects.)
Ahh maybe that's what I was doing wrong! I hated my SN1 with a passion for anything other than bass, harshness in the upper registers was nasty. I probably should have turned down the osc levels!
Old 4th December 2016 | Show parent
  #29
Gear Nut
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeminIAm ➑️
Ahh maybe that's what I was doing wrong! I hated my SN1 with a passion for anything other than bass, harshness in the upper registers was nasty. I probably should have turned down the osc levels!
The Nova series was kind of famous for its digital trash sound in the late 90ies and early 00ies.

Most of that had to do with the OSCs horrible digital overdrive and its bad internal effects.
If you mind those two things, you can get some decent and interesting digital sounds out of it. Each and every sound has a certain plasticky "novaish" colouration to it, though. If you don't like that certain sound, you won't ever get happy with a Nova, I'd say.

Compared to what we have these days in digital Synthesis it's sounding like a joke, though.

I considered getting a Nova again, since I spent so much time with it in the early 00ies, just for nostalgic reasons. But then I remember how plastic it sounded, and refrain from spending the money on it again.
Old 6th January 2017 | Show parent
  #30
Lives for gear
 
lawrence_o's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by SlutButtMcNabb ➑️
Get the Nova. The SN2 has serious problems with MIDI jitter/lag/crapness. Nova is not perfect, but at least stays fairly tight unless things really get busy. That said, if you are just going to use it monotimbrally and play slow eveolving pads etc - THEN get the SN2 as the sound quality is much better (less aliasing).
Have a SNII. Never had any MIDI issues at all. None.
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