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Mellotron Micro?
Old 6th April 2017
  #1
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retractablezing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Mellotron Micro?

Anyone attending knows whether Mellotron have a stand on Musikmesse of if they're even there? Really curious to know if anyone spotted the new Micro and if there's any added information. Mellotron is supposed to be releasing it this month.
Old 6th April 2017
  #2
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🎧 5 years
vintage king is showing price of $950.

Mellotron Micro Digital Synthesizer - Vintage King Pro Audio Outfitter
Old 6th April 2017 | Show parent
  #3
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retractablezing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Right, thanks for that. It's been up for quite a while though, seems to be a pre-reserve kind of thing and the picture is of the prototype. I'm hoping they at least dropped the idea of making it with only 2 octaves.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mack ➑️
Old 6th April 2017 | Show parent
  #4
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by retractablezing ➑️
Right, thanks for that. It's been up for quite a while though, seems to be a pre-reserve kind of thing and the picture is of the prototype. I'm hoping they at least dropped the idea of making it with only 2 octaves.
Oh I didn't know the price was out there until now.

Yeah I understand the appeal of pricing it less than 1,000 but only 2 octaves is kinda lame. Id probably just continue saving to have the full size.

I wonder if its possible to widen the two octaves from each other. So that it is not just 14 notes in a row. For example you could program the bottom octave very low and program the high octave as high or as middle as you want. that would be cool.
Old 6th April 2017 | Show parent
  #5
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retractablezing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mack ➑️
I wonder if its possible to widen the two octaves from each other. So that it is not just 14 notes in a row. For example you could program the bottom octave very low and program the high octave as high or as middle as you want. that would be cool.
That would be a good idea indeed, i'd be very surprised if it was implemented, though, the company seems hell bent on making weird decisions, like the price of those sound cards or for instance what he talked about in NAMM regarding the Micro - the ability to change the light colour of the logo. I really don't see the point, especially if that reflects on the final price.

The greatest appeal to me is not having to pay 500$ for each added sound card, which i find borderline offensive. In my opinion, it completely defeats the purpose of this whole thing being digital, regardless of the gear he used to sample those original tapes or what sampling frequency he's doing it at or how much money he's losing making the keyboards. One would think this whole thing being digital would make it more affordable, not less. I understand the actual instrument costing an arm and a leg, i don't get the silly sound card prices though.

It seems he mentioned a number of times in the NAMM videos that the Micro wouldn't work with sound cards, so i'm hoping the sounds won't be as expensive. But that's just wishful thinking on my part. Regardless how ridiculous this whole concept and the prices are, i still want the damn thing.
Old 6th April 2017
  #6
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🎧 15 years
I have a 4000d and a 4000d mini and I wrote to Markus and asked him three questions about the micro: 1) Does the Micro have an expansion slot for the additional sound cards? Or will it be otherwise expandable? 2) Does the Micro respond to Aftertouch via MIDI? 3) When will these be shipping?

His answers were: 1) no, sorry. 2) no, sorry. 3) In about 4 weeks.
Old 6th April 2017 | Show parent
  #7
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retractablezing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by musicalnyc ➑️
I have a 4000d and a 4000d mini and I wrote to Markus and asked him three questions about the micro: 1) Does the Micro have an expansion slot for the additional sound cards? Or will it be otherwise expandable? 2) Does the Micro respond to Aftertouch via MIDI? 3) When will these be shipping?

His answers were: 1) no, sorry. 2) no, sorry. 3) In about 4 weeks.
Thanks for info! Well, that's brutally underwhelming, unless this has a very neat trick or two up its sleeve (a colourful logo is certainly not one), i guess that ends my interest in his products.
Old 10th April 2017
  #8
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🎧 5 years
Which Mellotron recreation is this now, 20th?
Old 15th April 2017
  #9
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zinzin's Avatar
price is utterly over the top. come on, it's just cashing in on the mellotron legacy...
Old 15th April 2017 | Show parent
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zinzin ➑️
price is utterly over the top. come on, it's just cashing in on the mellotron legacy...
What exactly is this product?

Does it actually replay little tapes or is it just samples in which case what's the actual point of it.

I have some great Melletron VI's that are samples of original tape collections that cost a few hundred dollars.

What do I get for my $950 - if not an actual mini Melletron tape player?

I feel I'm missing something here.
Old 15th April 2017
  #11
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all i know is from the link in post #2 . it's digital and the keys don't seem to be of high quality. i mean you can get a midi keyboard for under 100€ and the ik multimedia sampletron for cheap ...
Old 16th April 2017 | Show parent
  #12
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retractablezing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by zinzin ➑️
you can get a midi keyboard for under 100€ and the ik multimedia sampletron for cheap
In a way, what Mellotron is doing is vastly overpriced and borderline insulting, but i'm starting to think that it's simply a case of the vast majority of home recordists not being their target, same with Clavia Nord. These things and their respective prices are made for the working musician that gets paid to be on tour and needs a reliable and durable instrument.

While that's utterly frustrating but fair enough, what you're suggesting (midi keys + Sampletron) is what i've had for a number of years and it gets very old, very fast. Plus, Sampletron has hundreds and hundreds of sounds, to the point where it's overwhelming if you're looking for something new on a whim. The interface is also very cumbersome and outdated, it literally gets in the way of your workflow. To me, it doesn't even get to the point where i'm thinking about sound quality, of which Sampletron has plenty and i'm fine with its sounds, but the interface is so horrific i just end up not even using it. You can now use those sounds through the reworked Sampletank, but it's it's a marginal improvement in terms of interface, if that. The midi keyboard + software doesn't feel like an instrument, not to me anyway, it's absurdly counter-productive.

The problem is that there's nothing to fill the gap, it's either high end or software, and to me, software feels like work. I need an instrument, not stare at a computer screen after 8 hours of doing so at my day job. This Microtron looked like it could be a contender for that, but it looks like he managed to f_ck it up beyond anything imaginable and not really provide a valid alternative to his overpriced high-end stuff.

Last edited by retractablezing; 16th April 2017 at 03:53 PM..
Old 26th April 2017 | Show parent
  #13
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by retractablezing ➑️
Microtron looked like it could be a contender for that, but it looks like he managed to f_ck it up beyond anything imaginable and not really provide a valid alternative to his overpriced high-end stuff.
but the logo lights up in different colors!

such a bummer...
Old 12th June 2017
  #14
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by retractablezing ➑️
Anyone attending knows whether Mellotron have a stand on Musikmesse of if they're even there? Really curious to know if anyone spotted the new Micro and if there's any added information. Mellotron is supposed to be releasing it this month.
Well I have one in hand and it's brilliant. I'd played and loved the M4000D but couldn't afford it (also wanted something I could easily bring back and forth between NYC and Amsterdam) and so this fits the bill perfectly. I'm not sure what to say to the folks who seem set against it, but it sounds great, feels solid, and the UI is beautifully done. A week of constant use and there's nothing about it I don't like.

Happy to answer specific questions if anyone has any...
Old 12th June 2017 | Show parent
  #15
Deleted c40a31f
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Quote:
Originally Posted by somnasr ➑️
Well I have one in hand and it's brilliant. I'd played and loved the M4000D but couldn't afford it (also wanted something I could easily bring back and forth between NYC and Amsterdam) and so this fits the bill perfectly. I'm not sure what to say to the folks who seem set against it, but it sounds great, feels solid, and the UI is beautifully done. A week of constant use and there's nothing about it I don't like.

Happy to answer specific questions if anyone has any...
Where did you buy it from? I didn't think they were shipping yet?
Old 12th June 2017
  #16
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🎧 10 years
I'm not opposed to this product existing by any means, but I really don't understand the price point for being a small keyboard playing back a very limited number of samples. For example, Roland recently bottled up a digital Juno 106 into a little module and sells it for 300 bucks. That makes sense to me.
Old 12th June 2017 | Show parent
  #17
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deleted c40a31f ➑️
Where did you buy it from? I didn't think they were shipping yet?
There are a few out there. I'm in Amsterdam, so got it here. But yes, you're right - I don't think they've begun shipping in earnest yet.
Old 13th June 2017
  #18
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1 Review written
🎧 10 years
For those who can't wait - the EHX Mel9 is a serious great little pedal. It's obviously not literally the same, but they have nailed the Mellotron vibe for me. And the cool thing is that it works even better on simple keyboard sounds than it does on guitar ... so any synth at all will do.

If these guys are serious - I think they should put their genuine Mellotron sample libraries - full 8 seconds per note - no compromise - into a small pedal with DIN and USB midi inputs. let the User choice which keyboard they wont - nobody will ever agree. Some want 2 octaves, some want 88. Some will want to trigger them with a guitar. Just give us the full sampled sounds in a small box and I will pay for quality genuine Mellotron sounds. For those with DAWs, it would be great if the audio could stream via USB as it is being trigger with midi - whether DIN or USB.

I would suggest a simple LED display with 128 patches and have it respond to midi patch changes. An increment and decrement button, or rotary encoder would be all that is required. Maybe a volume control.
Old 13th June 2017 | Show parent
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi ➑️
For those who can't wait - the EHX Mel9 is a serious great little pedal. It's obviously not literally the same, but they have nailed the Mellotron vibe for me. And the cool thing is that it works even better on simple keyboard sounds than it does on guitar ... so any synth at all will do.
I really like the pedal, too. It has an interesting, choked "9" sound like all of the EHX9 pedals, but they are absolutely awesome. It's definitely like a little skinny goblin living in the wall.

For Mellotron, I have the GForce MTron Pro, the Pinder Akai samples and even a few iPad apps. All of which are great. The GForce MTron sounds amazing, but it would be nice if they updated their interface.

Considering that the Mellotron keyboards are just playing samples, why not just use a computer and get the vast GForce MTron Pro library? You get a lot more bang for your buck.

That said, the standalone Mellotron keyboards have appeal. Especially if you are in a band. It gives you limitations that might be attractive.
Old 14th June 2017 | Show parent
  #20
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by baskervils ➑️
I really like the pedal, too. It has an interesting, choked "9" sound like all of the EHX9 pedals, but they are absolutely awesome. It's definitely like a little skinny goblin living in the wall.
A little off topic sorry, but a valid option for anyone wanting something meeting the general description of a "micro Mellotron" ...

All the 9 pedals are audio processors, so the quality of the input signal has a lot to do with the outcome. If you've only heard them only electric guitar (and typically with fret buzz and everything that goes with it) then you may not realize how good they can sound. Plus - I find they are voiced with exessive highs and lows (from the pitch shifting) - I guess unfiltered so they will sound fat on mid-rangey guitar amps.

I've found they really respond to EQ and compression and hard gating (for guitar especially) - both before and after - and there is a world of unexplored tone - I view them as raw oscillator expanders.

But the Mel9 in particular is rather interesting on synths - the simpler the tone the better. I've been a fan of Mellotron-esque sounds for decades, and I think they have really made something that captures the essence of that vibe. For example, I have plenty of romplers of cellos and flutes and choirs and things, but none of them make me think "Mellotron!" ... but this little box may not be faithful or even remotely similar technology - but the sounds just take me to a similar place. I think it's because - to me anyway - the Mellotron is ear-catching because it is real and yet un-real at the same time - making it a little surreal. I get the same vibe with the Mel9.

They have gone mad with the vibrato though - that's my main criticism - but it is what it is, and I like it.

But I would definately be interested in a small, faithfull, keyboard-less Mellotron hardware module.
Old 14th June 2017 | Show parent
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi ➑️
A little off topic sorry, but a valid option for anyone wanting something meeting the general description of a "micro Mellotron" ...

All the 9 pedals are audio processors, so the quality of the input signal has a lot to do with the outcome. If you've only heard them only electric guitar (and typically with fret buzz and everything that goes with it) then you may not realize how good they can sound. Plus - I find they are voiced with exessive highs and lows (from the pitch shifting) - I guess unfiltered so they will sound fat on mid-rangey guitar amps.
Thanks Kiwi! This is great advice. I really love all of the 9 pedals. I should try messing with the incoming signal more and see what comes out.
Old 19th June 2017
  #22
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retractablezing's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
It's kind of surreal not checking this thread for a while and having also purchased an EH Mel9 in the meantime.

I haven't had a great deal of success using it with a keyboard (MicroKorg), somehow it only plays single notes, not chords (almost certainly user error), but playing strings and brass with a guitar is really awesome and a lot of fun, very intuitive for me anyway, much more so than triggering Sampletron with a keyboard since i'm not primarily a keyboard player. I really like this pedal and the possibilities seem endless, setting wise.

The Mel9 is not going anywhere, but i must admit i still find myself thinking about the Micro, despite its very clearly overpriced and disappointing final version. Still nowhere to be found for sale either, it seems.
Old 20th June 2017
  #23
Gear Addict
 
🎧 5 years
This guy used to trigger M-Tron Pro with his Starr Labs Ztar, but nowadays he uses an iPad with the M3000 app...a bit more portable.

Old 20th June 2017 | Show parent
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tronman ➑️
This guy used to trigger M-Tron Pro with his Starr Labs Ztar, but nowadays he uses an iPad with the M3000 app...a bit more portable.
Those iPad apps are quite good. While the VST GForce MTron or DAW samplers are much deeper in terms of sound design, the 'super power' that the iPad has is that you can play it like a Stylophone, giving a swirling "Space Oddity solo" effect but with Mellotron sounds.

Imagine this, but with Mellotron (Stylophone starts at 2:45):

Old 20th June 2017 | Show parent
  #25
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by baskervils ➑️
Those iPad apps are quite good. While the VST GForce MTron or DAW samplers are much deeper in terms of sound design, the 'super power' that the iPad has is that you can play it like a Stylophone, giving a swirling "Space Oddity solo" effect but with Mellotron sounds.

Imagine this, but with Mellotron (Stylophone starts at 2:45):

Love Wakeman's Tron part in that song. Didn't realize there was a Stylophone in it though.
Old 20th June 2017 | Show parent
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tronman ➑️
Love Wakeman's Tron part in that song. Didn't realize there was a Stylophone in it though.
Check This Out:
Old 20th June 2017 | Show parent
  #27
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by baskervils ➑️
Check This Out:
Hmm...do I need one of those? That new GenX-1 is looking good.

Old 20th June 2017
  #28
Deleted c40a31f
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Stylophone into a Mel9 might be fun?
Old 21st June 2017 | Show parent
  #29
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deleted c40a31f ➑️
Stylophone into a Mel9 might be fun?
My Mel9 will arrive on Friday, then I'll see what a Mellotron sounds like through a Mel9.
Old 22nd June 2017 | Show parent
  #30
Deleted c40a31f
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tronman ➑️
My Mel9 will arrive on Friday, then I'll see what a Mellotron sounds like through a Mel9.
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