25 thoughts on “What Would You Do With 12 KORG Monotribe Synths?

  1. This is getting interesting.

    Not ONE of the twelve Monotribes shown here by KORG is being powered by their AC Adapter. They're all on battery power. Why do I mention this? Because even though KORG mentions that the Monotribe can be powered by their AC Adapter there is no model number for it anywhere in their Owner's Manual, you cannot find the "right" Adapter available for sale anywhere, no one knows what the "right" Adapter for the Monotribe even is (because they don't tell you model number), and KORG isn't answering any emails on the subject.

    What is a person supposed to do? Power this by batteries for life? (Battery power is said to last for 14 hours.) It's a little expensive to do that, and some are saying that they feel the Monotribe is overpriced as it is.

    Should we be concerned?


  2. What would I do with 12 Monotribes? At retail, that's $3600. Considering its limited skill set, I think I'd make some hefty additions to my rig that were more pro-level. Its a great toy, but not a lot more than that, in my view. You'd have to really reach to use it as much more than Instant Deadmau5. For $320, I could get a serious MIDI controller, several patch sets or a mixed batch of useful things like new headphones. I foresee a huge after-market life for Monotribes when they are $100 on ebay.

  3. I REALLY would have liked to see 16 steps for the sequencer – but everybody probably has one more thing that they really would have liked Korg to include on this.

    Still, I could probably get by with 12 of these. I think I'd sell 10 of them and use the remaining to to have some techno fun.

  4. Yeah, I was hoping $150-$199 tops. Once you say $250 you start thinking adding a bit more and getting a Mopho or the like.

  5. Well, having tried it out in Shibuya last week (it's on sale in Japan since June 1st) I am pretty impressed – it sounds wicked, lokks like it can take a beating and sells for ~200 USD (16800 JPY). Splashing out 400 EUR on a Dark Energy isn't exactly cheap, either….

  6. 'Kay, I hear you. The Adapter input for the Monotribe is center Positive, and it's 9v. Not sure about the Adapter input "size". I do know that the connector on an AC Adapter can vary in "size". KORG of course states in the Owners Manual to "only use the specified AC adapter", and then they fail to mention what that Adapter actually IS. So…it's a waiting game to see what KORG is going to do about getting people the information regarding the "optional AC adapter" that they recommend that people use to power the Monotribe. Perhaps it will end up being an existing KORG Adapter, but they need to tell people which one to get – whether it already exists or is something brand new only for the Monotribe.

    But…you know what else? in taking another look at the video here I'm in fact WRONG. It appears that some of the Monotribe's in this video ARE actually being powered by AC. My bad on that.

    As to what would I do with 12 Monotribe's…I would probably sell eleven of them. This video didn't convince me that having more than one is of much value — creatively. In fact, I thought the "tune" that these people came up with was uninspiring. I think they could have taken another crack at it and perhaps gotten better results. I think most people can see that hooking up 12 of anything is nothing more than a gimmick, and that's kind of cheap when you think about it. I think the Monotribe is an interesting device but somebody at KORG doesn't feel that it's beyond a little gimmick like this video in order to keep the dialog going with regard to the product. After all, it's about to make it's debut in the USA.

    Bottom line when it comes to the Monotribe less is more.

  7. 12 Monotribes? Well, as an electronic technician I'd rip them apart to see if I could do something useful with their electronic components.

  8. I don't agree. I've had experience with the original KORG Electribe series ER-1 and EA-1. I actually still own an original series KORG ES-1. They're a different flavor from the Monotribe. Not better, just…different. And I think there is certainly room for both flavors in the world.

    You can call the Monotribe a "toy", but really it's a "tool" for creativity. Just like an ER-1, EA-1, and ES-1. Or a Mono/Poly. Whatever…

    I think elements of the company called KORG are heading in a very interesting direction. Namely, the parties responsible for the Monotron, and the Monotribe. Some of the people at KORG are feeling that there are a lot of people in the world who long to play with an actual Analog sound, and that's a wise observation. Look at how the Monotribe was initially introduced…it initially was "announced" via KORG's iPad app. Pretty interesting approach. Perhaps they figured that people, having experienced some KORG synth action via the world's newest "phenomenon" (The iPad), might now be wondering what it would be like to combine that with something that had the sound and tactile feel of a more "vintage" device. A "real" box with knobs and switches. Not to mention the sound of a "real" Analog device.

    Yes, "Being Analog", in fact, does count to some people. Big time.

    I think companies like KORG, MOOG, Dave Smith Instruments, Linn, Tom Oberheim, and a few others have realized that a KIND of return to the devices of yesteryear is worth it. It's not a complete return to the Analog synthesis of yesteryear, of course, it's more of a modified "return". It's Analog, but updated for the age that we live in now. I think the most important element is the fact that, with the Monotribe, you get hands on interaction. There are no LCD menus. It's immediate, and it's simple (but effective). KORG knew this, and integrated it, with the original Electribe series (which wasn't actually true Analog). Where is the "dumbing down" taking place? Because I don't see it quite like that. By "dumbing down" do you mean "less features" on the device? It's true that the Monotribe has less "features", but in this case less CAN be more. It depends on who's at the controls.

  9. Fair points, and I have no doubts I'd love this thing. The Mopho I mentioned is $399USD, and certainly adds a lot for the $150 extra premium. I say that in the context of someone wanting cheap analog as a motivating factor, disregarding the very cool uniqueness of the Monotribe. You're right if we venture into Doepfer or MFB territory we're talking more money.

  10. I think they are powered by AC power in this vid. Each box except two has two cables for sync in and out, one cable for audio out, and one cable that looks like power. the two closest to the cable are at the start and end of the sync, so they only have one sync cable.

  11. For the record, i hear the mono(tron anyways), sounds amazing with a starved battery used for it's operation. This situation comedy sounds pretty cool, to be honest, but 2k cool? (which is how much this set up would cost).

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