Novation Ultranova Synthesizer Review

This review, via producertech, takes a look at the Novation Ultranova synthesizer, a ‘Nova’ series analogue-modeling synthesizer with a built-in effects processor.


  • Single part with up to 18 voices, 14 filter types, 36 wavetables, 5 effect slots
    • Patch Browse enables you to browse 300 sounds by type & genre
  • Touch-sense controls enable new sound-shaping & performance:
    • Trigger envelopes/LFOs/filters/FX by just touching the encoders
    • Large rotary control instantly allows you fine control of any paramete
  • 37 full sized keys, a vocoder, and loads of controls:
    • Voice optimized 12 band vocoder with gooseneck mic
    • High quality key bed with aftertouch for expressive playing styles
  • Software plug-in editor and Patch Librarian for full visual editing:
    • Plug-in editor allows you to view and edit in with software
    • Software Patch Librarian a organise, store and share unlimited patches
  • Built-in 2 in 4 out USB audio interface and it can be bus powered:
    • UltraNova can be used to stream audio to and from a host computer
    • Stereo main (analogue & SPDIF) and aux outputs, and MIDI in/out/thru ports

The Novation Ultranova retails for about US $700.

10 thoughts on “Novation Ultranova Synthesizer Review

  1. I think the UltraNova is currently the best choice for a new analog-modelling synth under 600€. The oscillators have some nice features (e.g. a hypersaw-like mode for every available waveform), the filters sound good and the touch-sensitive encoders provide performance controls that can be quite useful.

    Sure, when I compare it to my Virus, the UltraNova clearly lacks some power (sound- and feature-wise), but again: for the price, I think it is great value.

  2. The UltraNova still sits very high on my wanted list.

    One thing though: they forgot to mention that it can be fully USB powered, which I think is an awesome feature for when used together with a DAW.

  3. Oh, I did want to say this; I hate the way that guy talks! I mean it’s clear and well spoken but good lord that video would have been half the length if he’d actually just talk to us, I get the he’s used to doing tutorials and whatnot but this is just a review “hey look at this feature, look at that one” not “hey… This…is…the…Ultranova…it…is…a digital…synth…”

  4. The clarity of this review is excellent. I wasn’t too interested in this synth but now I know alot more about it. This is probably one of the best and most thorough reviews I’ve come across in awhile.

  5. It has an amazing and beautiful software editor. And the touch buttons sets it apart from other synths. I guess I want one!

    1. Hm, yes that’s a bit of a downside of the UltraNova. Novation always point out that this is also a cost-factor and that they expect users to record one sound at the time, considering the DAW-oriented features of the UltraNova.

      But I agree, it would have been nice to have at least 3-part multitimbrality. You don’t necessarily need it when you sequence + record everything with your computer, but it’s a bit dissapointing if you have a more hardware-oriented workflow.

      I still think the UltraNova is a really nice synth 🙂

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