The Schmidt Analog Synthesizer – How Much Would You Pay To Own One Of The Most Powerful Synths Ever Made?

How much would you pay to own one of the most powerful synthesizers ever made?

That’s the question raised by the Schmidt Analog Synthesizer – a gigantic analog monster synth that is being shown at the 2012 NAMM Show.

Designer Stefan Schmidt spent years of his life designing the Schmidt Analog Synthesizer – because he wanted a ‘super synth’. And, as you’ll seen in this overview video via musicradartv, the Schmidt synthesizer is a muscle car monster synth, the likes of which the world has seldom seen.

The question Schmidt faces, though, is whether the synth can really be built and sold. He spent years of his life handcrafting this prototype.

To hand build each Schmidt Analog Synthesizer this way would mean that the synths would end up being very expensive. But, to be able to able to mass produce the Schmidt synth, he’d have to be able to get the cost of the synth down to a price that many people could afford.

So, how do you think the Schmidt Analog Synthesizer would need to be priced to make it something that you’d not only dream about playing, but actually consider buying?

42 thoughts on “The Schmidt Analog Synthesizer – How Much Would You Pay To Own One Of The Most Powerful Synths Ever Made?

  1. If money was no problem and I had a desire for my sound to be even more unique, I’d have no problem dropping 25k USD on one of these things. With that being said, Schmidt’s asking price of 30k USD is a bit high, but with THAT being said, if you could afford to drop 25k on one of these things, I’m sure you could afford to drop 30k on it as well.

  2. I can’t see it happening. Not in it’s current form. Even if he started taking orders for them – cash up front – delivery would be in 2025. The best chance of this seeing the light of day would be to do a deal with an already successful boutique synth company…. however to make it profitable and affordable they’d need to trim some of the fat off this. And it’s the fat that makes it appealing.

  3. Lol, 30k? You can go spend under ten bucks on an iPad app that can sound as good, then maybe a bit more on something like tc11 that sounds even better lol

    Why buy something so big for so much? And have a hard time taking it places to boot?????

    You need a truck to haul that around, besides, how much u think the German guy is going to charge you for shipping??????

    1. That is so true, why would I buy a 500$ guitar when there are 99¢ guitar apps for the ipad? It just sounds like a total waste of money.


  4. It’s a wicked cool synth, but I think it also represents the end of a line of thinking. It’s that “enterprise edition” approach, where you put in every feature known at the highest possible quality and then charge a farkton for it. So would I own this? Hell yeah! But what would I pay for it? Not much… because I’d rather consitently purchase smaller, more specialized noise makers that all did unique things instead of one big beast that took all my resources for an extended amount of time.

  5. @xtopher

    Agreed,it’s all about downsizing, not making things bigger these days. Look at the new korg kaoscillator2 , fits in your pocket but does a lot. Best to fit everything in a small suitcase and be happy, rather than lugging shit around and be penniless lol

    This year will see credible daws on ipad3 and pros will have two or three pads an travel light, maybe with one or two other gizmos

  6. Smidcht is German, he likely sold a BMW or Benz to self fund lol

    Nothing wrong with the synth, it’s great, it’s just huge..

  7. This is interesting, because its a closed system, with the complexity of a modular, designed to be easy to play. Remarkable endeavor.

    I don’t know many active musicians who can make a purchase like this without trading time for the money to acquire it. When you trade time, there’s no music made, because music takes time.

    I’ve been fortunate enough to own great synths, because I bought them when they weren’t valued. Now the only reason I’d buy a new synth like this is to have something that actually works! But productivity isn’t the most important thing. Quality is more important, and it is a certain quality Mr. Schmidt has been after. I think he’s achieved it.

    I hope his instrument gets used to create something extremely beautiful. I don’t think its value can be measured in a crude thing like money.

  8. 30K!!!?

    I think ill be fine buying a Voyager XL and having some money left over to feed my children.

    But seriously…this thing sounds WAY digital in my opinion.

  9. Sounds WAY digital? isn’t this an analog instrument? Why do I always hear people say, “It’s not fat enough, its TOO digital, or its a digital synth” when they are looking for analog? Now you have an analog beast and saying it sounds WAY to digital? I just don’t get it.

  10. Adjusted for inflation, the $30,000.00 price is about as much as five Minimoogs cost in 1975. Or two OB-Xs in 1979. It would vastly outclass either of those instruments in any meaningful comparison test (how it sounds is, obviously, a far more subjective thing).

    In that context it’s hardly an outrageous sum for something that would be low-volume, high-spec, and utterly boutique.

  11. I wish i could give away other people’s kidneys for one. People that can’t tell what’s digital or not 🙂

    Just kidding.. those kidneys are not good enough…

  12. My question is, why does he take it to shows for display? Who funds that? and for what purpose? Is he trying to sell his idea to some company for production? I wish someone would pick it up.

    I’d love one. I couldn’t really justify $30,000, though. But that seems a moot point. I don’t see Mr. Schmidt selling it even for $50,000 unless he had another one to replace it. He’s got so much of himself invested in it. That’s the beauty (sickness) of DIY. Now, maybe if it came as a kit…

  13. Wow, that thing is intense. If I had money to waste like that I’d probably rather have a Buchla but my hat’s off to the guy. That thing is a beast. That wood inlay above the keys is just begging for a giant ribbon controller. Whatever though, I wrote most of my new track in Nanostudio on my phone. That app costs 15 bucks, it fits in my pocket and I can get down on it. Shit, layer up the stems in Logic when ya get home, slap some plugins on them and it sounds killer. No need to pay the price of a car to get some good sounds.

  14. Every time I see an interview with Stefan Schmidt, I have to smile because I just find his accent so hilarious – even though my own mother tongue is also German 😉

    The synth itself is huge and impressive, but it’s not attractive in the same way as e.g. the Elektron stuff. I’d say, it’s more like a sports car that looks extremely cool, but in the end you know that you could buy so much more useful stuff for the same amount of money…

  15. Decadent beyond belief. I bet getting the thing insured is expensive.
    Good on the man for working on it , but it is hilarious price wise and again we see obsessives so far up their own arses they can’t see the light of day (i.e . economic reality).
    It’s a joke really?

  16. He’s got the quality nailed. He should bust that thing up and sell little $500 boxes instead… that’s how you get funding! He could make so many great little instruments/effects from that thing. Trying to sell it in one pile guarantees that the one in that video will be the only one in existence, and it will be bought by some rich dork who doesn’t even play music and sit in his house so dinner guests can see how cool he thinks he is.

  17. on ebay the old stuff just gets more expensive $1400 for a ms10 !!!

    take a look at the EMS Synthesizer Documentary
    you will see the true cost of synths ..
    it made me delete most of my vst’s and buy VCO’s

    i don’t want sounds others can find in their drop down menu

  18. Honestly between 4-7000 USD would be the most I would pay, I think Solaris and moog are right where they should fall in, I mean this thing being even a step more up, I would really have to say it would be worth 8-9 even especially if it had a service warranty or some form of backbone there for defects.

  19. To the people who complain it is expensive: Yes it is. But this thing isn’t aimed at the bedroom producer. Think Trent Reznor or Vangelis, those guys can spend 30k without hurting their economy. Or think all the bank managers, I bet some of them makes music, or have children/family who makes music.

  20. If there is a market for it, it can be produced for much less, no doubt. It’s value is in all of the custom work being built from scratch. Anyone that does DIY modules, kits, etc., knows that it takes time to and money to put it together (and that’s just from a pre-designed kit/PCB layout). A custom laser-cut, silk-screened panel is going to cost you much more than one mass-produced in China. Anyone that has had prototype PCBs manufactured knows that it costs much more than a PCB mass-produced for an existing project. That’s just the basic economy of things. Now imagine the time involved in designing the circuit from scratch in the first place and troubleshooting it, tweaking the circuit, having another protoboard made (rinse and repeat). Add to it, coding the software necessary for patch recall (or whatever is involved!), putting it into a cohesive, user-friendly, professional-looking package, etc. The amount of work, time and money is staggering, really, especially for a one-man show without a corporation to bankroll the whole project.

    I’m sure that’s why the big names haven’t jumped on a project like this because there’s not much of a market for it, or rather a profit margin. Not that there aren’t people that want it. At some point the market for it may grow enough to make it feasible, if not somewhat profitable. Until then, we can watch Stephan Scmidt live the hard-earned, sweat-infused dream.

  21. No doubt it’s a wonder synth. I’d have one in a heartbeat in another life. But how many Cwejmans, Vostoks, Macbeths and Voyagers could I buy for even one of these?

  22. Bigger is better. I’ll never own one, its too expensive but I do own 16 synths, half of them analog from the 80’s, I prefer lots of knobs and sliders, I don’t like menus or function buttons – those are for engineers not musicians. I’ve used many synths with menus and function buttons – they all suck to program and are tedious and boring as shit. Nothing beats knobs tweaking an old analog synth, nothing! Sure the iPad is great and it’s alot of fun and the Kaosillators are great too, and all the VA synths out there – they are all great and it would seem that the hey day of these big analog synths is over but there will always be a niche market for them because they are fun and sound great and they are historic and there is something special in writing a cool song today using a 35 year old synth. It’s not the gear that matters its the musician – but you can’t stop progress, you can do an entire CD using just an iPad and it will sound amazing and guess what I’m even gonna use one for a future CD project but I will never sell my old analog synths, I will keep using them for song writing and producing along side the modern VA’s and iPads – cause I can actually play a keyboard! I studied classical piano and organ and when I started playing synths in 1985 I didn’t even have a sequencer or a computer, I had to do everything manually, so I can appreciate technology, it makes making music so much easier but it doesn’t make the music any better , that’s up to you.

  23. Why are people so concerned about where did the guy take funds from? Does it really matter? What we have here is a monstrous synth, and i believe that people who enjoy this kind of instrument like me are just wishing this thing come true and that it would cost no more than two or three moog voyagers together.

  24. This synth is amazing in so many ways, but it is quite obviously out of almost everyones price range. Who can afford to drop $30k on a synthesizer? I can’t! For that price I could piece together a respectable home studio. A tiny fraction of ONE PERCENT of synthesizer enthusiasts could actually afford to own one of these. I’m always stoked to see innovative, high quality products, but the price is so prohibitive that there’s no point in even wasting my time dreaming about having one of these. The most expensive synth that I ever hope to own some day is an Andromeda or 2600/M5.

  25. No CV inputs! booo! For a synth this big and expensive, no CV is a big loss of points im my line of work.
    However as a proud SUNSYN owner im still open to it.
    I need to hear more sounds and see more of what it can do.
    Most of what Ive seen and heard of its sound seem weak and cheesy.
    Nothing like sounds that come out the EXPANDER, SUNSYN, NEURON, or Andromeda.
    Right off the bat though i would consider paying $5000 – $6000 maybe $7000 based on the fact that its a fully Analog synth with lots of knobs, but once again i would need to hear and see more.
    Really though if i had the kind of $$000 he’s asking for it right away i would be on the look out for EMS gear.
    For the good of all music and analog hardware I really do hope they pull off putting it in to production.
    One things for sure though I would like to see and hear some one besides a person that plays lead keys or the key board player of Price put this thing to work.
    Some like Alex Paterson or Ott should be working this piece.

  26. Hell!! Now that i think about it if i had 20k – 30K, I would for sure have a BUCHLA and some out board gear to go with it.

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