Korg Monotron Delay Circuit Starving Experiments

Reader Jonathan Wise has been experimenting with the Korg Monotron Delay, using nearly-dead batteries and ‘circuit-starving’ the device to see if it would create interesting sounds. The YouTube embeds above capture the result of his experiments.

Here’s what he has to say about it:

You can get some weird sounds by using batteries that are nearly or going flat. The sound of the monotron changes quite a bit as the batteries loose charge.

Additionally , I recorded the results into Guitar Rig, creating a dry version and a wet version through guitar rig’s ring modulator, transposer and reflektor reverb.

‘Circuit-starving’ is a less destructive way than circuit-bending to explore the unanticipated audio possibilities of existing circuits. If you’ve tried this with other devices, leave a comment and let us know!

11 thoughts on “Korg Monotron Delay Circuit Starving Experiments

  1. You can add an element of control to this by putting the batteries in a holder connect to the contacts in the battery compartment and put a 1M pot on the positive side

  2. Not only recommended operating procedure for creative use of effects units but also battery powered sound generators. No circuit bending needed and you sometimes get quite musical results.

  3. The Voodoo lab power supplies for guitar pedals have these two SAG ports, to experiment with sagged voltage. You can configure them from 4 to 9V, the idea being that lower voltage gives less headroom, so more distortion.

    Haven’t found good effects with it yet though.

  4. I have a set of really low batteries for my Monotron specifically for this. The synth makes no sense with low batteries, turn a knob expecting one thing and get something completely different.

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