New Vako Orchestron Discs – Solo Trumpet & Solo Trombone

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Optigan.com has released a pair of new sound library discs for the Vako Orchestron, Solo Trumpet and Solo Trombone.

Solo Trumpet is a new sound for the Orchestron. This is an actual acoustic trumpet sound, taken from the original Optigan/Orchestron master tapes, but never actually heard on any Optigan or Orchestron disc, until now.

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Analog Drum ‘n’ Bass On Vintage Gear

Analog Drum ‘n’ Bass meets blurry cam synth porn in this video from K X.

Details on the video:

This is my imagining of what circa ’98 era minimal tech step drum ‘n bass may have sounded like had it been invented before modern samplers and digital synths / fx.

All the sound is being generated live, coming straight from the main mixer in the middle, with no multitracking. Sequenced by 3 vintage hardware sequencers, the Yamaha QX-1, Roland MC-4 and Roland MC-8 locked together by tape-sync.

Gear used:

  • Sequencers : Roland MC-8, Roland MC-4, Yamaha QX-1
  • Modulars : Roland System 100 (Drums), Moog series 900 (pads), Roland System 700 (Basses), Arp 2500 system, Buchla 100 series.
  • Other Synths : Korg MS-20, Roland System 100 standalone synth.
  • FX : Roland Space Echo RE-501 (tape delay, chorus, spring reverb), Roland DC-30 (analog chorus-echo), Roland Dimension-D Analog Chorus.
  • Mixer : Tascam M308b

Electronic Music Works Patch Generators For Vintage Synths

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This is a demo of the Electronic Music Works Patch Synthesizer JX-810P, a patch generator for the the Roland JX-8P and MKS-70.

Here’s what EMW has to say about the Patch Synthesizer:

Our Patch Synthesizer is not just a patch randomizer, it uses an intelligent algorithm to create very usable sounds and has adjustable parameters to allow you to control the type of patch that will be created. Rediscover your synth with the EMW Patch Synthesizer series.

Electronic Music Works offers a variety of Patch Synthesizers, including ones for the Roland Alpha Junos and the Yamaha TX81Z / DX11. See the company site for details.

Open Mic: What’s Your Worst Synth Disaster?

Synth Disaster

Open Mic: Own and perform with synths and other electronic gear for any length of time and you’ll eventually run into a synth disaster.

Maybe you shipped a carefully packed keyboard and it came back smashed. Maybe you stored too many keyboards on a gorgeous glass table….until the glass broke.

Or maybe you were onstage, ready to play, and looked down to realize that your keyboard had completely lost its memory.

The Sequential Circuits ‘Five Trak’

Sequential Circuits Six TrakMy personal synth fiasco started with a winning bid, several years ago, on eBay for a Sequential Circuits Six Trak. I paid my money and awaited the arrival of my first polyphonic analog synth.

When it arrived, I unboxed it and tried it out. It sounded pretty good….except for every sixth note, which would never make any sound. One of the synth’s voices was dead on arrival!

So, contacted the seller. He said to just get it fixed and he’d credit me for the repair. I shipped the Six Trak off to a company called Wine Country – the best-known Sequential service center. They fixed it up and sent it back, good as new – at a cost, with shipping, of a couple of hundred bucks.

It was starting to look like things were going to work out – until I emailed the seller the invoice for the repair work. At that point he fell off the face of the earth, never to be heard from again. eBay’s dispute resolution process accomplished absolutely nothing.

The disaster, though, is that instead of appreciating the Six Trak as a vintage analog synth, I still see it as a visual reminder of getting scammed on eBay.

Getting scammed on eBay is pretty bad. But it’s nothing compared to building the ultimate synth cave and finding out that it leaks every time you get a good rain.

What’s your worst synth or electronic music gear disaster?

Open Mic: If One Vintage Synthesizer Could Be Put Back Into Production, Which One Would You Pick?

vintage synthesizer

Open Mic: Every time we’ve got news about a major new synthesizer at Synthtopia, there are always some readers that respond to the news with “Cool, but if only they had re-released the __________”

Korg, Yamaha, Roland and others have so many great vintage synths in their history that it’s hard for new introductions to compare to their lusted-after classics.

But Moog has proven to be successful revisiting their past classics and Tom Oberheim recently re-released his classic SEM. So it can be done and done successfully.

Which should be next? If one vintage synthesizer could be put back into production, which one would you pick? And why?

Image: geirarne