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Synthesizers

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    Sound Modules

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    Synthesis / Sound Design

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    Synth Secrets

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    Yamaha FS1R

    FM Synthesis / Formant-shaping Tone Generator

    FM synthesis was the success story of the mid-'80s, and synth based on its principles, like Yamaha's DX7, sold by the bucketload — until affordable sample-based synths arrived at the end of the decade. Now, with their new FS1R, Yamaha have updated the technology for the late '90s.

    Reviews Dec 1998
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    Roland Alpha Juno 1 & 2

    Synthesizers (Retro)

    Prepare to shed a tear in another near-miss tale of a desirable analogue synth swept aside by the rise of digital technology.

    Reviews Oct 1998
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    Moog Minimoog 204E

    Synth

    The Minimoog rides again thanks to Welsh company Moog Music Limited. But how close does it sound to the original? We at SOS knew opinion would be split, so we got five of our regular synth reviewers, all previous or current Mini owners, to give us their views.

    Reviews Oct 1998
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    Oberheim OBX, OBXa & OB8

    Analogue Synthesizers [Retrozone]

    Simon Lowther introduces the clan of classic American analogue synths, the Oberheim OBs.

    Reviews Sep 1998
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    Kurzweil K2000VP

    VAST Synthesizer Workstation

    It's certainly borrowed (for the purposes of this review), and it's unquestionably blue, but is it old or new? Synth Guidance Counsellor and long‑time K2000 owner Paul Ward checks out Kurzweil's VP makeover of this legendary workstation.

    Reviews Sep 1998
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    Crumar Bit One, Bit 01, Bit 99

    Synthesizers (Retro)

    Gordon Reid is bitten by the memory of a brilliant, but deeply flawed trio of Italian synthesizer designs that could have been the last word in affordable analogue.

    Reviews Aug 1998
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    Emu Audity 2000

    Digital Synth Module

    The streamlined '90s exterior of Emu's Audity 2000 claims to hide a virtual modular hybrid, harking back to the company's own lost '70s analogue megasynth.

    Reviews Aug 1998
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    Novation Supernova ASM

    Polysynth

    Long awaited and much anticipated, Novation's digitally-modelled analogue synth module is the company's most ambitionus offering yet.

    Reviews Aug 1998
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    Steve McNally: Sound Programmer

    Sound Design

    Do you ever wonder who's responsible for the waveforms and sound patches in your favourite synth? If it's a Korg keyboard, then the answer might be Steve McNally, one of the team of sound developers.

    People Aug 1998
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    Doepfer A100

    CV Modular Synthesizer

    Analogue modular synths in the late '90s are something like the old bus joke — none for ages, then loads all at once. Chris Carter catches the latest arrival.

    Reviews Jul 1998
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    Moog Polymoog

    Analogue Polysynth (Retro)

    A synth company that produced as many classic and well-loved instruments as did Moog Music is surely allowed the odd turkey! Gordon Reid waxes critical over one of them.

    Reviews Jun 1998
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    Novation Supernova

    Polyphonic Synthesizer Module [Preview]

    Simon Trask previews the Supernova, Novation's most ambitious synthesizer module to date.

    Reviews May 1998
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    Roland Jupiter

    Analogue Polysynths [Retrozone]

    Roland's Jupiter family yielded one or two shining examples of what an analogue polysynth should be.

    Reviews Feb 1998
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    Clavia Nord Modular (Preview)

    Virtual Analogue Modular Synthesizer

    If you'd love a modular synth, but couldn't possibly afford a real one, it's possible that virtual salvation is at hand.

    Reviews Feb 1998
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    Korg TR Rack

    Expanded Access Synth Module

    Korg's new module makes the synthesis technology of their flagship Trinity workstation range more affordable — but at what cost?

    Reviews Feb 1998
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    Paul Nagle: Northern Exposure

    Electronic Musician

    Writer and electronic musician Paul Nagle successfully combines a day job with live performance and regular CD releases. Paul White zooms up the M6 and comes in for a landing at his well-stocked studio.

    People Feb 1998
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    Oberheim Xpander

    Analogue Synth Module [Retrozone]

    Not all analogue classics have keys. The Xpander was an early module that packed in more features than its moderate size would lead you to expect, and left a legacy still discernible in modern synth design.

    Reviews Jan 1998
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    Alan Wilder: Recoil

    Unsound Methods

    Anyone in any doubt as to the popularity of Depeche Mode should see this man's studio. Alan Wilder, formerly the programming powerhouse of the group, and now striking out on his own, has poured the profits of his years with the Mode into this astonishing home setup. Here he talks about the studio, his new album, and his days with Depeche.

    People Jan 1998
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    Yamaha VL70m

    Breath-controller Sequencing Workshop

    Paul White finds a few ways around the restricted breath-control facilities of the Yamaha VL70m.

    Techniques Jan 1998
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