It makes for a nice evolving patch and if you have digital control it’s perfectly possible.
But then the minilogue has only 4 voices and I remember many people were ruling it out because of that. The minikeys is another topic… Also I’m not sure how much value the motion sequencing has to a musician playing in a band. Syncing gear with the rest of the band is troublesome.
The Behringer jumps into that spot. Many voices, familiar structure (presumably), good sound quality (as far as we know), analog (whatever that means), lots of controls on the panel, relatively simple architecture, full size keyboard.
I guess what I want to say is: While the minilogue is a decent piece of kit, it’s more of a “synth fiddler” instrument. Its features go towards palying in an all electronic setup where the shitty keys don’t matter (because synth guys sequence it anyways) and where midi sync is available. The Behringer on the other hand will be leaning towards live performance in a band. A completely different story imho.
Ah whatever. Just my opinion.
Since this is the second budget analog poly I suspect more to be popping up soon. Arturia can’t be far off. I know I will probably buy one of them this year and maybe sell one of my last bits of vintage kit the Juno 60.
The controls are always going to be the part which get compromised. They know that you can always sequence it or trigger it with MIDI. But if the sound is rubbish you won’t want to.
Here a quote of the GS forum from Uli Behringer:
"I like to clarify that these are 12 voices with each 2 DCO’s and 2 LFO’s. The oscillators are DCO’s, which means these are digitally controlled analog oscillators; so the synth has 24 full-blown analog oscillators.
Once we reveal the board assembly images, you will discover the thousands of discrete components that went into this design and the extreme density of the multi-layer boards. This synth is a true engineering masterpiece from our Midas engineers, a company that is famous for making the world’s best mixing consoles.
A little side story: We specifically launched the 4th video on a Sunday morning UK time as some of our engineers wanted their kids to participate in the rollout of this important video. Over the past years, many of these people have heavily sacrificed family time for this synthesizer. I am sure there are some proud kids and dads out there.
Thank you all for making this such a wonderful journey. I can honestly say that for me this is the most enjoyable product since I started the company nearly 30 years ago.
Oh, and one more thing – more to come
VCOs sound better
But it sounds to be a labour of love, only time will tell if its a good one.
I’m curious about filter - lm13700, ssm2164 or discrete… Probably, ssm2164.
They said discrete…
So if it’s discrete- is this the opposite to the DSI ‘synth on a chip’ approach? Can anyone shed any light on why Behringer might have gone down this route? Seems like the long way round to me, but I know very little.
12 voices and keys that grownups can use. So far, so good. I don’t really care if it is analogue or digital, I only care about the sound. Anyone who still thinks analogue is somehow better than digital is a sucker for nostalgia-laden hype.
Discrete means you can do what filter design you like and it can be repaired at future date.
Any Andromeda owner will tell you that they dread one of those custom chips failing.
Having said that, SMD-based devices aren’t easy to repair, even if they are made of discrete components.
> is this the opposite to the DSI ‘synth on a chip’ approach?
DSI has been moving away from that too - since the Prophet 12.
> Can anyone shed any light on why Behringer might have gone down this route?
In the 80s, the barrier to entry for custom ICs was not that high - everybody was doing it in one way or another. Part count had to be kept low because all parts were through-hole, and thus required costly labor for manual insertion. There was a big competitive advantage in developing and using custom ICs.
Nowadays, outside of the tiny world of synth design, most of the functions that required custom ICs in the past are done digitally by general purpose digital processors. Few projects require custom ICs, and as a result, the teams designing ICs are only located at large semi manufacturers (TI, AD…) where they work on complex projects in which some boundaries are pushed (cost, efficiency, miniaturization, speed). For synth design, it’s no longer expensive in size and assembly cost to make things out of individual components.
The only question that remains is whether to go completely discrete or to use “building-block ICs” like the 2164 or LM13700. The argument for them is that they are easy and predictable to work with - with many kinks already ironed by their designers. The argument against them is cost (less than $1.0 for ten transistor pairs vs $1.5 for a 2164), and less freedom in achieving a specific sonic quality.
>Having said that, SMD-based devices aren’t easy to repair
I find it easier than through-hole when it comes to removing a part. Often you can heat up the pads and lift the part off.
ICs are especially better to remove. You can use some enamelled wire and lift the legs. Or that chipquik stuff.
Also, “discrete” sounds nice in a musicians ear. Just like those guys selling discrete opamps for their super hi-fi audio preamps. (Don’t forget the gold wires. And your audiophile network cable.)
Now Behringer must be carefull not to trigger the “omg it’s only DCO’s” people. I was kind of surprised to see that it sais “DCO” on the panel.
The Juno 106 says DCO and its still alive and kicking
The DCO thing is only a thing for the tiny gearsl**z minority. Everyone else just uses their ears.
Some had issues in the higher notes, but I imagine that is long solved.
thanks for the insight @pichenettes. I guess we wait and see how much the thing costs. I’d estimate somewhere in the Roland JD-Xa/Prophet 08 region maybe?
Behringer could do it below the 1000€ mark.