I must admit I really do love hardware synthesisers. There is something about the unparalleled sound quality, hands on usability and the sheer satisfaction you get from a tweaking frenzy.
Working out of the box is definitely a liberating experience and this is echoed across the music technology landscape with more and more manufacturers putting their efforts into addressing the needs of hardware crack addicts.
Kicking off the gold rush in recent years was Korg with their highly successful Volca range. With the recent addition of a sampler, the set is now complete!
Last Christmas I had a buying fest and made sure I got my hands on the Beats, Keys and Bass. Since then however I have sold the Beats & Bass but kept the Keys; the rationale being that the keys had more to offer musically.
To be honest I kinda wish I kept a hold of the Bass!
Next up to shake up the market was the brilliantly marketed Roland Aira series. Again as far as uber commercial hardware goes this trio rocked the market. But analogue purists and quite a large faction of the Gear Slutz keyboard terrorists ripped the poor Aira to shreds within seconds on its release. Well done Roland I say, considering the battles you have had to move forward. (Let’s not mention the abomination called the Jupiter 80)
I have to mention the chin stroking, high brow fraternity that is the Elektron crew. With the highly complex but extremely rewarding Octatrak, insanely named Analog Rytm (Big up Cuckoo on YouTube for his demo’s and ermm accent!) and phattter than your mama’s ass Analog 4, these guys really know how to please the tweaking indulgence of most synth nerds on planet Earth.
If you want to be elitist you need to get into modular synthesisers. Everything from Euro Crack to Doepfers and many more. This bottomless pit of expenditure is not for those with children I can tell you. Poor little Johnny would be eating rice cakes for weeks if Dad was top get into Modular Synthesisers. The other issue here would be justifying a frequent weekly spend of £250 to your wife especially when the clothes wardrobe is beginning to resemble a control panel from the Death Star.
Anyway this post was really a result of grabbing a few moments to test out my iPad blogging app.