NAMM 07 Modular Analog Synthgasm

Metasonix Wretch Machine2007 Winter NAMM Show: NAMM 07 was a modular analog synthesizer synthgasm.

This year’s show had more modular analog synth gear on display than any show we’ve been to, and possibly ever.

If there had been any more mega modulars in the convention center, it might have been dangerous, and we’ve got the photos to prove it.

Warning – not safe for work – you don’t want to get caught drooling on your keyboard….


Here are a few highlights:

Modular synthesizer EMU - Riley Smith

Check out this modular bad-boy – a classic Eµ Modular Synthesizer System.

We talked to Riley from E-Mu, and he was justifiably proud of the modular. It was hooked up via MIDI and audio outputs so that it could automatically be sampled using E-Mu Emulator’s automated sampling feature, providing the best of both analog and digital worlds. You can’t see it here, but there was another rack of modules in the case below the main modular synth!

Modular Synthesizer - big city music

Big City Music may have one-up’d E-Mu with it’s collection of analog gear, which included equipment from Analogue Systems, Frostwave, Future Retro, Mellotron, Metasonix, Sherman, Schippmann, Vermona and others.

Modular synthesizer EAR group

Electro-Acoustic Research was displaying their Plan B line of synth modules, in a very cool Synthbox clear acrylic case. We’re not so sure about the Plan B name, but their gear is so sexy that you just might want to have some emergency contraception on hand.

Continuum Keyboard

Speaking of sexy, Haken Audio’s Continuum Fingerboard was on display with its gorgeous new stand – driving a modular synth, of course.

Modular synthesizer Metasonix Wretch machine

Metasonix was displaying their S-1000 Wretch Machine, the ultimate tube synthesizer. It doesn’t have any pictures of scrotal torture or anal violation, but it’s still one of the nastiest things tube guru Eric Barbour has ever come up with.

Modular synthesizer Future Retro

Future Retro had a was showing th XS Expander, a very cool new semi-modular synthesizer from FR’s Jered Flickinger. Pair this up with his Mobius sequencer, the 777 or the Revolution, and you’d have a very powerful compact setup.

Modular synthesizer Wolfgang Michalowicz sequencer

Wolfgang Michalowicz may not look that excited to get his picture taken – but he’s standing next to his Surfin Kangaroo sequencer. The sequencer is an interesting mix of traditional analog Moog-style step sequencer, and MIDI control. It’s carried by Analogue Haven.

Modular synthesizer Synthesis Technology MOTM synthesizer Paul Schreiber

There were more booth babes than ever at the 2007 NAMM show, but the Nicest Rack Award would have go to Analogue Haven, who had stacks of racked modular synth gear on display.

“Here’s the 2007 photo of me pointing at some synth modules,” says Paul Schreiber, displaying his Eurorack-sized MOTM modules. (Last year’s photo).While Paul’s MOTM modules got the place of honor in the top modular rack, if you look closely, you’ll see that Analogue Haven also had modules from Cwejman, Doepfer, Blacet and others on display.

Last, but not least, Moog introduced its FreqBox, a audio-modulated synthesizer VCO disguised as a guitar pedal.

Moog Freq Box

The FreqBox is one bad Moogerfooger. According to Moog product development engineer Steve Dunnington, “This effect is so over the top that we had a hard time naming it.”

It’s also got a healthy collection of jacks across the top to allow for modular weirdness.

This was only part of the multi-synthgasmic goodness that was on display at the 2007 Winter NAMM show. Check out our other coverage for info on the virtual synths and more!

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