JU-06a vs JUNO 60

Roland just came out with the JU-06A – an update to the JU-06, which now includes a model of the JUNO-60, in addition to the 106. Do they sound the same? Can you tell the difference? TIMELINE: 0:00 Intro0:30 Features vs.1:10 JU-06A vs 061:45 Saw2:10 Square/PW3:00 Sub osc4:05 Envelopes4:55 High pass5:25 Low pass7:05 Chorus8:05 LFO8:40 Pad sound9:35 Misc10:15 Pros & consRead More →

Hydrasynth loopop review

Here’s my full review of both the keyboard and desktop versions of ASM’s new Hydrasynth. They have the same synth virtual analog / fm / wavetable / wave shaping synth engine, and the keyboard version has both polyphonic aftertouch and a ribbon controller, while the desktop has pads that are both velocity sensitive and have polyphonic aftertouch. There’s a timeline below as well. TIMELINE:0:00 Intro 1:00 Overview 5:05 Keys vs desktop 7:30 Poly aftertouch 9:20 Ribbon 10:55 Chords 11:35 RGB pads 13:20 Synth engine 13:40 Oscillators 16:35 Mutant modules 22:00 Ring/noise 22:50 Mixer 24:00 Filters 28:50 Amp 29:15 Envelopes 31:30 LFOs 34:25 Effects 38:50 VoiceRead More →

Crave from Behringer is a semi-modular analog monosynth based their 3340 oscillator and ladder filter, with a single LFO and envelope, an arpeggiator/sequencer and a 32 jack eurorack compatible patch bay priced at around $200. The market for analog synths at this price is getting pretty heated up, so let’s check out how Crave compares – a full timeline is just under the video below: 0:00 Intro  0:45 Overview  2:30 Connectivity  4:00 Oscillator  6:00 Osc mods  7:05 Filter  8:45 Filter mods  10:45 Envelope  12:30 LFO  14:10 Utility  15:15 Arpeggiator  16:05 Sequencer  21:10 Global controls  22:00 Patch bay  22:20 Assign output  24:40 Patching ideas  25:35 Playing the filter Read More →

LYRA-8 from SOMA Laboratory is a synth that behaves like it’s from outer-space. From otherworldy drones to modulations that certainly aren’t from Kansas, LYRA-8 isn’t like any other synth. But is that a good thing? Check it out if you’re ready to step outside your comfort and into the twilight zone… (timeline below the video):   TIMELINE: 0:00 Intro jam 1:35 Overview 4:55 Envelope control 7:45 Modulation 11:00 Cross mod 12:35 Vibrato 13:10 Total feedback 13:30 Hyper LFO 14:25 Delay controls 15:45 Delay modulation 17:05 Drive 17:35 External in 18:45 Hold gate 19:05 CV Delay 19:55 CV Voices 21:00 Pros & cons 22:50 Outro jamRead More →

Digitone Keys from Elektron has the same synthesis engine as the “regular” Digitone, but as it quite clear from the first time you look at it, something is very different: Elektron added a three octave keyboard, as well as the additional controls above the keyboard, and the pitch and mod wheels on the left. Elektron is also providing hundreds of new presets, that are adapted for expressive control – meaning the react to velocity, pressure and mod wheel controls. Layout Let’s start with an overview of the synth and layout. Digitone Keys is an 8 voice multitimbral digital synth that includes both FM and subtractiveRead More →

Yamaha’s MODX is the less expensive, more portable version of their flagship Montage synth. It has the same exact synth engine as its bigger brother – but at a price which makes it a very interesting player in today’s synth market. There’s a lot going on in MODX – in this review and companion video I’ll look at the most important things you need to know to figure out if this synth is for you.   What’s a performance? Let’s get started by looking at some basic terms. A performance consists of everything you can do simultaneously with the MODX – the song I playedRead More →

I’ve been traveling this week – to Knobcon in Chicago – and took two very odd travel companions on the road with me – Bastl’s SoftPop and Gecho’s Loopsynth. They’re very different, but the thing they have in common, other than being battery powered, is that they are entirely unlike any synth or instrument you may be used to, and that they can both make bubbly water sounds…. So, for those reasons I reviewed them together, but if you’re interested particularly in one and not the other, just skip ahead. Bastl SoftPop Let’s start with SoftPop. It’s described by the company as a psychedelic analogRead More →

Medusa is an innovative new synth, the result of a collaboration between Dreadbox and PolyEnd. The core of what’s new with Medusa is the GRID – a multi-mode expressive interface that can be used as an instrument, a sequencer, a modulator, or any combination of the above. Medusa combines Dreadbox’s great sounding analog synth capabilities with PolyEnd’s experience in making SEQ – its powerful and yet easy to use sequencer. They call it a Hybrid Synth and it is indeed a combination of a few things – it has both analog and digital oscillators, it’s both a monophonic and polyphonic or paraphonic depending on yourRead More →

Grandmother is the latest semi-modular analog synth from Moog. There have been increasingly more and more semi modular synths released in recent years and the demand for rewiring synths and interfacing them with other modular gear grows. In this clip I explore what’s special about Moog’s Grandmother, and it turns out there’s quite a lot there, especially if you look beneath the surface. For example, while the front panel seems to show only two oscillators and one envelope, in reality, Grandmother has three fully functioning volt/octave oscillators (four if you count the self resonating filter), two and even three envelopes, and is capable of beingRead More →

A few years ago 1010Music released Bitbox – a simplified but extremely powerful Ableton-Live style sampler, slicer and clip launcher – by far the most advanced Eurorack sampler I’ve ever seen. Where it gets a little confusing is that since then they’ve released two completely different firmware versions for the same hardware – Fxbox and Synthbox, which transform it into radically different modules. I’m not talking about just updates with new features (which have also come out separately), but rather alternate firmware versions with entirely different functionality. In parallel, they’ve released independent modules with said firmware versions, which can also load each other’s firmware. So,Read More →