Here’s What The $4,995 Modal 008 Sounds Like

Modal Electronics shared a new set of audio demos for their Modal 008 synthesizer:

The Modal 008 offers 100% analog VCOs, 16 multi-mode filters, two LFOs, fast envelopes, extensive modulation options and more.

Pricing and Availability:

Modal Electronics’ 008 is available now at a suggested retail price of US $4,995. For more information, product specs, and dealer locations, check out the Modal Electronics website.

30 thoughts on “Here’s What The $4,995 Modal 008 Sounds Like

  1. This is like general midi for the boutique synth. Honestly i hope they are not paying someone to come up with these sounds..I am expecting a lot more from a synth like that!

  2. I’m sure this synth is more than capable of more interesting sounds. But what I really want to hear is a fairly complex musical piece created only with the 008. That’s how I tend to judge a new synth. 🙂

  3. I have the 008. Between the animator and the ability to have multiple sources modulate the curves of the filter means you can make some pretty interesting sounds. That said, I prefer the 002, which I also have. It might just come down to the style of music I typically make, and that I’ve spent more time with the 002, but it sounds more unique to me.

  4. It sounds fantastic to my ears. And though I can’t afford it, the asking price seems pretty reasonable for what it is. Not my cup o’ tea, but it still is a lovely cup o tea.

  5. Impressive sound….for the 70s. For 2016, this ridiculously expensive synth sounds poor and outdated like hell. Great design, but that’s all.

    1. “for the 70’s”? WTH is that supposed to even mean? Does a square wave run though a LPF sound different now? Its an analog synthesizer. If you don’t know how to use one, especially one with this much horsepower, to make pretty much any sound you can conceive in your head, stick to your laptop.

  6. Dont´t sound very impressive to my ears and for this level of price is not good news.
    Any way.. Sure is not cheap to build a synth like that but I think Modal knows people can pay a lot more for the magic words “Analog Poly Synth”.

    This synth need a much better programming work for sure. My Oberheim M1000 sounds a lot complex and is 4.300€ cheaper than this. 🙂

  7. You have to admit, it’s a thing of beauty, but I’ll never buy one. I also love my Matrix 6R, which I kind of want to combine with M1000.

  8. The audio demos showed me that it can do great bread’n’butter sounds and even better, unique signature sounds for about 5000$/€.
    Hmm, just thinking on how I would spend this huge amount of money on gear to do similar sound spheres (for my environment and kind of music style). I would choose Roland System-1m, TB-3, Boutique JX-03, JU-06 and JP-08 (~1500$/€), Korg Minilogue, Volca Bass, Volca FM (~950$/€), Elektron Analog Four (1250$/€), Twisted Electrons TherapSid, acid8 (~700$/€), PreenFM2 (~300$/€), Soulsby Atmegatron (~300$/€).

  9. Unfortunately this synth has nothing to justify $5k they are asking: neither sound nor integration. Also DSI P6 + OB6 are about the same price new right now.

    1. I have the 002, the 008, P6 and OB6. The first 2 do things the second 2 can’t. There is a fidelity to the first two that the second two cannot achieve that definitely would not be conveyed through soundcloud, youtube or any other online consumption method. That said, the P6 and OB6 can achieve some things more easily that is more difficult on the 008 and would be kind of missing the point by trying to achieve on the 002. I love all 4. They all fulfill a particular need, and since the price correction, I feel are fairly priced…except for the OB-6. We know Tom had to get paid, so I suppose it is a different sort of argument. However, to form an opinion upon the value of a synth based upon some patch examples is kind of ridiculous, and does nothing but illustrate why most presets are bombastic and not particularly useful in a mix. FWIW, if I could keep only one, it’d be the 002, but I love them all.

  10. I posted this on Sonicstate as the debate raged onward.

    “You are grossly missing the point. If you take exception with European pricing model vs other regions that is one issue, however if your premise is purely pricing, then you simply do not understand the quality aspect aspect of Modal vs even DSI.

    Modal is using in most instances Class 2 to Class 3 PCB boards, with C3 being typically considered aviation grade build quality and reliability. Furthermore, the signal path integrity is maintained via 192Khz in digital conversion, when for instance using the effects card. They have stated repeatedly that the chosen components are rated at 10+ years!

    Now, is there an additional premium to this “boutique” synth maker, yes, certainly! However their quality cannot be compared to Moog and especially DSI as this is a league above those makers. And to those comparing this to Korg’s Minilogue, I am afraid quality is lost on you regardless of specs.

    Sadly, most of the demos for Modal’s synths are underwhelming. That is a programming issue, not one of capability. Once you have had an opportunity to play one, and spend even a modicum of time programming, you will understand that this is a step in the right direction for analogue synths. This is not Dave Smith’s incremental regurgitation of the same technology and synth year after year.”

    1. There’s a huge difference between having a synth with “aviation grade PCBs” and having a synth with “soul”. A lot of modern, expensive synths just lack in the je-ne-sais-quoi department, this one is a good example, as is the Schmidt which costs 5 times more. Great, beautiful, high quality machines with little character… At least to my ears.

    2. I felt the same about the pricing of the Modals as many of the people responding until I spent some time with them in person, especially the 002. The online presentation of them is always kind of meh. I’ve also noticed the price of the 002 or the 008 is always included in the headline of the post about sound samples. It’s like it’s setting it up for negative impressions. I do agree these patches are underwhelming, and they do not represent the synth properly, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as what was posted for the 002. That was painful. Not sure why Modal keeps stumbling in the PR dept.

      I do love my DSI and Moog gear, too. They all fill a niche.

    3. I think something went there wrong. They want sell a top-class product but aren’t able to create a bunch of unique, exciting sounds that shows the real potential of this synth to better justify their price level? It’s like selling a Ferrari with nothing else than a b/w photo copy of a brochure.

  11. Such a shame that it costs an arm and a leg. Based on those demos, the sound is rather clean, yet maintains a sort of character by not being TOO clean.

    If it were 1.5 to 2k less, then it’d be a product that could stand on two feet. But against the polysynth titans of today, Oberheim and Smith? The jury’s out on that one.

  12. Dave Smith P6 has an effects processor that saves the effects with the patch. If you are an “all analog” purist, you can turn it off. Surely this board should have effects for that price.

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