New Ants! Synth Designed To Be An Affordable, All-In-One Modular Synthesizer

Plankton Elektronics has launched a Kickstarter project to fund production of the Ants! – a new synth that’s designed to be an affordable, all-in-one modular.

Key Features:

  • Analog: true analog electronics and sound.
  • Modular: connect the different parts and functions with standard 3.5mm patch cords to create classic or novel sounds.
  • Affordable: A fraction of the cost of a basic Eurorack modular system.
  • Compatible: 100% compatible with the Eurorack voltage system and patching cords.
  • Portable: small size and desktop format.
  • Lot of features, which make it very powerful and versatile.

Features:

  • 4 Oscillators: yes, 4! V/Oct triangle-core oscillators. 2 of them switchable to LFO. Combining sinusoidal, triangle, saw, square and pulse with PWM. Play chords, detuned basses, octaved leads, drums, and frequency modulated sounds.
  • 2 LFOs: 2 low frequency oscillators with triangle, square and pulse outputs.
  • VCF: switchable analog 12dB low-pass / 6db high-pass filter with resonance. At high input volumes it distort the signal. Self oscillating. It can sound crystal clear or really dirty.
  • 2 A/R envelopes: 2 attack – release envelopes with manual and external controls. Working at different times.
  • Mixer: 3 input mixer. Mix oscillators, envelopes, noise or any other AC or DC signal.
  • 2 VCAs: control the level of the signals with 2 analog VCAs.
  • Noise: a white noise source!
  • Sample and Hold: create random voltages, stepped sequences or dither your sounds or even your own voice.
  • AND gate: logic AND gate. Combine oscillators to create new waves, combine LFOs to create different patterns or mix your control signals to create complex modulations.
  • MIDI to CV: connect any MIDI keyboard, sequencer or computer and transform the digital signal to analog voltages for controlling the synth.
  • 49 patch points, 28 potentiometers, 5 switches and 8 leds.
  • Normalized: Some connections are already made between some functions. Just connect your Midi or CV controller and play the synth without patching it. You can break any connection by plugging a patch cord to the normalized input.

Video Demo:

Audio Demos:

Pricing and Availability:

The Ants! modular synthesizer is available to project backers, starting at €419.

35 thoughts on “New Ants! Synth Designed To Be An Affordable, All-In-One Modular Synthesizer

    1. you’re right. thats very expensive. in fact it should be a 100 max and you should get an extra drummachine plus efx box and stuff on top. i bet you spend 800 dollars without hesetating, everytime a new iphone is out.

        1. 0 coast is not a subtractive synth. It has an entirely different set of functions compared to this thing. And it’s normalled. And it has pretty lights. And it’s cheaper. The only similarity is that it’s black with knobs and patch points.

    1. ..there is nothing wrong with the graphics of a 0-coast.

      the Ants! looks like a very nice box…damn.
      too bad that there is already too much gear on my table…and less money on the bank :-).

  1. Good time to like synths. Not exactly “cheap” but that’s a lot of synthesizer for $515, shipped. That puts it inline with the 0-coast and the M32.

    1. I thought the same thing: This is similar to the Moog Mother-32, except that this has three more VCOs, one more envelope generator, and one more LFO. Then again, the M32 has a DIN MIDI input and it has that built in sequencer.

      1. This comes with a MIDI din to jack converter, at least it says in the FAQ. Maybe not that affordable, but 4 VCO and 2VCA makes a big difference, IMHO

        1. “And it’s not a Moog. There can only be one with that legacy and sound…”

          Because moog make the only synths that sound usable or nice….

          There have been people that have lived and musicians made rich, without any moog in their life. True story.

      2. Yep. That’s what makes it a good time to like synths. There are several well spec’d, highly patchable mono synths available, each with different feature sets in the $500-$600 range. Something for everyone.

        Ants has a bit of an uphill battle, at least for me. Moog, Make Noise, Erebus, etc are all well established companies, each of which will take your $500-$600 and give you a nice synthesizer (with a solid track record) at the point of sale. I love the idea of Kickstarter but that’s a tough sell. Hope they crush it.

  2. I’m really upset by this. Look at the contributions of Merzbow, The Incapacitants, Masona & KK Null. To say that this synth is a white noise source is just plain racist, as well as ill informed. Loads of Asian people make noise music.

    1. Hi,

      here Alex, from Plankton Electronics. You are missunderstanding the meaning of “white noise”. White noise is a form of noise in therms of audio speaking. There is white, brown, pink and other kinds of noise. Ants have a circuit that make noise, a.k.a. a white noise source. It’s used in synthesis.

      We’re totally against racism, xenophobia, sexism and homophobia.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colors_of_noise

      1. Hi Alex. I’m sorry, I was just being an idiot. I know what white noise is….it’s just that it was a slow day at the office and I wanted to make a stupid joke.

        On the plus side, I found a few good Asian noise musicians I hadn’t heard of.

  3. I *WAS* going to put in a pledge for this but was stopped by the €118 post (for the Ants + leads + Ninja stars) to the UK which suddenly made it not-affordable. I know it was for taxes etc. I’m still hovering over the pledge button though. Damn, but that €118 has just pushed it out of the “affordable” price range… Urgh!

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