Arturia MicroBrute Synthesizer – Is This The New $300 ‘Sonic Monster’?


Arturia yesterday released a new teaser on its site for a new hardware synth, described as a ‘sonic monster’.

Official details are to be announced, but we know the new synth will be a monophonic synth with ‘vintage sound’ and no presets.

The only official photos that have been released are purposely blurred, like the ones above and below. arturia-microbrute-fuzzy

The Arturia MicroBrute

In addition to the official info, though, unofficial information has leaked out about the Arturia Microbrute:


The Arturia MicroBrute will reportedly be priced at $300. And, based on the image, it will offer a single oscillator, a single ADSR EG, LFO, glide and a two-octave keyboard.

microbrute-synthesizerLook closely, though, and it also offers a sequencer and what appears to be a patchable modulation matrix.

Is the Arturia MicroBrute the new ‘sonic monster’? We’ll have details when the official announcement is made at the Arturia site next week.

In the meantime, check it out and let us know what you think!

79 thoughts on “Arturia MicroBrute Synthesizer – Is This The New $300 ‘Sonic Monster’?

  1. It’s kind of a shame for the Novation guys. I really want a rackmount Bass Station II, and Novation said they’d consider it if the Bass Station sells well, then Arturia basically undersells them by $200…

    1. presets? Sequencer looks easier? I think the software side of the novation could use some innovating (like sequencing presets?!) , maybe this will be the push it needs.

      I mean CPUs are a lot better than when they first appeared in the 80s there’s no excuse for not pushing them to do interesting things.

      Anyway, this looks fun, but at that size, come on pads! You have the spark body to use and everything. Pads aren’t silly on a monosynth if you use “key” tracking and sequencing you can get some quite different sounds, per pad. I for one would totally buy a CV spark(le?) that made some cool sounds on it’s own too.

    2. well novation should have thought that one out better….by announcing there could be a rack , many people might hold off from buying the keyboard ….which could undermine sales and rack is never made !
      It would be better to offer a sign up page for potential rack buyers to better gauge the demand.

      P.s I also want the BassStation Rack ( rackmountable desktop , ideally ). Would be happy to pay more for it than this minibrute , so I’m one sale Novation haven’t lost here to Arturia.

    3. I don’t really understand how you can say that Arturia is “undercutting” them by offering this synthesizer for $300 compared to $500.

      The Bass Station 2 has a lot going for it and delivers a great value in my opinion— it has two oscillators, two filters, two envelopes, two overdrives, patch memories, full MIDI control, and the list goes on. But by your logic, we should be actually be pitying Arturia here with their new 1 oscillator, single envelope, mini-key synthesizer. After all, Korg is undercutting them by half the price (!) with the Vocal Keys which has 3 oscillators, is paraphonic, has ring mod, and MIDI CC control. See what I mean?

      These are all different analog synthesizers with different sounds and different features at different price points. The Bass Station 2 will sell just fine to people who like the sound and/or want more than double the synth for less than double the price of the MicroBrute, so what’s the problem? 🙂

      1. Well, it’s not arguable that it’s in the exact same market slot, specifically, affordable analog “bass machines” with a two-octave keyboard, which is what this, the Minibrute, and the BassStation II is. Believe it or not, I think people will look at what’s offered to them and ask themselves if they’re worth an “extra” 200 dollars (20 meals out, new wheels for a fancy bike, an extra old synth to add to the studio, that awesome euro filter you’ve been dreaming about)… I personally think it is worth it, but it’s a drastic miscalculation of the consumer base to think that these two products live in two distinctly different markets, “the people who care about having two oscillators and two filters and want a bassline synthesizer” and “the people who don’t care about having two oscillators or two filters and want a bassline synthesizer”. ??

    4. sound quality of minibrute versus bass station tho,, i think bass station is easy to understand as a noticeably higher quality full-range output. so many of the cheap boxes lack warmth. i would never consider seriously owning a volca or minibrute, whereas bass station is a bit closer to the low-end moogs in sound warmth.

      1. Now i get it! For you esoteric, elitist analog fundamentalists, it was never about “analog is better than digital”, it is about “expensive is better than cheap”, and most importantly, about YOU owning the expensive stuff.

        1. Well, back in the 1980s a Jupiter 8 or Matrix 12 sounded a hell of a lot better than a Kawai SX-210. These days, we’ve lost most of the analog audio chip industry and we’re back to banging rocks together and recreating flawed discrete filters from the 1970s.

    5. The Bass Station II is in an entirely different class than the Minibrute, especially this new micro version. It just happens to be around the same price.

      Without a doubt, the BSII is the best analog mono I’ve owned and played.

  2. The miniBrute is so well crafted and its sonic possibilities are outstanding. I suspect the microBrute to fall in line. I’ll take 2 please.

  3. “Sonic monster”?? Seriously? One Osc, doesn’t even look like there is a sub. Might be a decent synth but there is nothing monstrous here….

  4. This likely won’t be a popular opinion but iOS7 and interapp audio has cooled my enthusiasm for making music on iPad. I’d planned to buy a new iPad when released but the MicroBrute may well be a better investment.

  5. I don’t understand how a new OS with better music app integration has made you LESS interested in using an iPad for music making. I think a 64 bit iPad 5 next week is going to be amazing for the epic synth-app collection I have, believe me!

    As far as the best “investment”, hmmm… I’d say whichever one helps you personally to create the best music would be the winner. 🙂

    1. More like cs-5. Switchable lpf/hpf/bpf, one lfo, one eg, vco wave mixer, etc.

      Its basically the exact same layout as the cs-5.

  6. Well, it’s definitely mini keys, just compare the size of the keys with the knobs. 🙂

    It looks like the mod matrix has CV, LFO and ENV out, and SAW and SUB and PWM in, as well. Can’t make out the rest, but surely it’ll be GATE?

    I don’t see any AMOUNT knobs for LFO routing, etc., so it looks like this patch matrix will cover sending the ENV to pitch or the LFO to PWM for instance. Maybe the sub oscillator could be pitched and controlled externally, then? 🙂

    1. So buy a cheap Casio or Yamaha keyboard to use as a MIDI controller and add a delay or reverb pedal. It can already make detuned 2 osc sounds.

  7. Well, I wasn’t terribly interested until I saw the price. That’s in the “I’m just going to pick something fun up to make myself feel better about my crappy week” territory.

  8. I know everyone’s reaction is “What do you expect for $300” but I would have rather seen a rack ear on each end of it instead of mini keys. Unfortunately I don’t have mini fingers. That being said, I hope it does well.

  9. The most interesting part is the patchable section I think, and if this has CV outs and MIDI? Forget about it, instant buy.

    Honestly, I was hoping the new synth would be an expansion to the Minibrute at a higher price point (a Megabrute if you will), but I suppose this makes more sense with the demographic they’re going after.

  10. I heard the pictures too! There’s no way it could be a sonic monster…whatever, it may push for a minibass station but this thing still looks cool. Sequencing and a cv section? This thing would have sex with volcas. You can put together a mini analogue studio for under a grand now, as an old schooler how could I complain?

  11. Looks like a fun little synth and an analog synth for $300.00…….great price!
    But a sonic monster? Hmm?
    Maybe describe it as a great little discount analog synth?

  12. im a very happy minibrute owner. in fact i preordered one below cost, loved it for a day, and sold it on ebay for more than it cost. then bought another minibrute the next day at way below cost. in total it cost about the same as the microbrute. thats neither here nor there….

    as a minibrute owner i have very little interest in this cool looking thing. 1 minibrute is more than enough for me. my only complaint is that it tends to sit OVER the mix, its too fat. but thats just my style of music. like many others, i would also consider a “weird” synth or a polysynth.

  13. Yawn…sigh…As much as I liked my MiniBrute the single oscillator drove me nuts after a while. I really missed having a 2nd oscillator . No mistake the MiniBrute is a great synth. I really expected an expansion the other way or something completely new with all the hype growing. Not more MiniKey business. Also this over focus on bass synth by the market peddlers gets annoying old fast. Sure you can do more with just a bass synth but if you can’t do it with any decent synth then forget it. I’m Novation’s Bass Station is just as worthy as any Brute that comes along. Arturia has proven they know how to make hardware if you ever have played the MiniBrute or one of their recent controllers. They feel solid and hold uphold up well.

  14. I love all these affordable analog instruments, though my predicament is the predicament of us post-modernist, er, types. Paralyzed by choice. It’s a real pisser!

    1. “Maxi Brute”? That sounds both like something you stick down your crotch around that time of the month and something you put on your face after a shave. 🙂

  15. In standard naming convention: Wouldn’t an expanded version of the MiniBrute be the Arturia Brute?
    And once the Brute (2 osc, 24db filter, 3 octaves) has an even bigger sequel (3 osc, 2 filters, 4 octave keyboard) wouldn’t that be the MegaBrute or UltraBrute or SuperBrute? (I’ll take a MegaBrute Rack)

    1. Using the MicroBrute as a 2nd osc is silly because:

      1. You’d be using an entire keyboard as a simple oscillator
      2. There’s no way to tune that second oscillator to an interval if you control it via MIDI or CV. (Except for a few hundred cents of master “tune.”)

      If there’s one thing the Brute series can already do, it’s deliver neat but identically pitched waveform variations from the single osc. To add another identical note wouldn’t be much fun.

      Get yourself a CV eurorack oscillator, a tiny powered case, and then you’re cooking.

  16. This and a mini case of Eurorack would be a powerful, compact rig. If this is the new synth, I wouldn’t be surprised if it ends up being quite a few young musicians’ introduction to analog, especially at that price.

  17. Gee, it’s really swell that Arturia has the money to create and release these micro versions of their products, it’s too bad they still can’t deliver on promised updates/functions for the Origin. You would think satisfying the costumes who paid thousands and are still left waiting would be a bigger priority than releasing micro this’ and that’s. For this reason alone I’ll probably never buy another Autria product. Don’t get me wrong I’m sure their new analog gear is great, and I do like the Origin but it’s hard to support a company that leaves it’s customers in the dark.

  18. I want a mini brute
    I don’t want this
    Scratch that I don’t desire this
    What I want is a poly brute with just as simple an architecture

  19. Oh and just bought a BS2 and 3 volcas and I have a minbrute so how the fuck do I convince my wife that I really NEED this. No chance.

  20. Forum,board and replies about Microbrute have been censored then destroyed on website …Strange communication’s policy inthe “Pays des droits de l’homme”…

  21. I got the Arturia mailing list email announcing, “Something Big (highlighted) is coming up Oct 25th”…
    I thought that meant they were going to reveal a “Big Brute”, with one or two more octaves and (possibly) a few other bells and whistles. Instead, MicroBrute with micro keys. Oh well…

  22. I love my Minibrute, so I hope that this development leads to more folks exploring the hands-on “minibrute experience.” But I gotta say, I’m a bit disappointed that all this teasing is basically for a stripped-down, price-reduced Minibrute. The modmatrix doesn’t look like anything unique from what the Minibrute already does with internal routing and its back panel.

    I was really hoping for something TRULY polyphonic (to one-up the Korg Volca Keys) or like a usable analog bass/drums groove box of some kind that was uniquely routable to other gear via USB and/or CV. How many people might put a hold on saving up for a now $1350 Analog Four if a new $500-$600, say, Arturia product could effectively sequence MIDI or CV? Plus, talk about integrating well with their current lineup! I think any Minibrute owner would love to take the old-school and hands-on approach of the Minibrute synth into a sequencing context. If such a product were created, I would jump on it. As it is, I guess I’ll continue to save up for the A4’s big pricetag so I can integrate it with my Minibrute.

    Oh well. Hope they sell a lot of Microbrutes, but seems like a missed opportunity to me.

    1. Funny you should say that, becuz I’m preparing to invest in a Analog Four, and then I saw this announcement and really hoped for a Polybrute and was prepared to consider that instead. But then, I would love to get one of these little guys too, not exactly going to break the bank.

    1. Yeah I agree! With a sequencer, and CV out, and 3.5 jacks which work directly with Doepfer stuff (and most other Eurorack)! You could also control more aspects of this synth with external LFO’s and EG’s from your modular. There is quite a lot of stuff on the Mod Matrix and you could just plug a CV out from your modular straight into this. Now that would be good.

      Unfortunately, I have no money so all I can do is dream about controlling my non-existant modular with my non-existant microbrute D=

  23. all that hype for THIS,… jeesus.. NO i dont want one,. I thought they would release something really cool.. like their own euro rack modules or an upscaled rack version of an analog,.. not this crap. Sorry guys, this is PANTS.

    1. First the Monotron, then the Monotribe, then two more Monotribe, then the MS20, then the Volcas. Each one possible because of the previous. Some expansions on what came before, others not.

      First the Moog Voyager, then the Little Phatty, Slim Phatty, Taurus, Minotaur, Sub Phatty and a number of other pedals in between. Each one possible because of the first, and once again each one not nesessarily bigger or more than the previous.

      This is the reality of hardware synths. It’s always been this way. Make a product, then make variations based on that product. That’s smart business.

      What Arturia have done is amazing. A software company making unique and affordable analog hardware synths. If they have another hit on their hands I suspect the third outing will be something very different. Who knows, by thier 5th or 6th hardware synth they might release a poly.

      It might not be for you, but it will be for many and it will make the marketplace more interesting. Sure isn’t it very likely that moog made the Sub Phatty in response to the MiniBrute?

  24. i like the idea of a stripped down bass synth.
    ok, it’s got only 1 osc. and 1 env. but this is the synth i’ve been waiting for, a monotribe with actual keys i can jam a funky bassline on. super cheap and affordable for kids who don’t have an extensive budget.
    why was the microkorg so successful? it was the cheapest synth available.
    this will be the cheapest analog that is actually playable. for the price of an entry level bass guitar.
    sure, synth freaks will prefer more expensive boards with more possibilities, but for aspiring musicians, here’s something you can afford and setup a band with your (broke) friends.

    1. The Volcas are the cheapest analog synths that are playable (they have MIDI). The Microbrute has built in (mini) keys, a state variable filter, and CV inputs and outputs. The Volcas have 3 oscillators. Neither is really better than the other, but the Volcas are half the price so they’ll probably be the new MicroKorgs. Although the Microbrute does look like a more serious synth…


    MicroBrute is the tiny analog synth with vast possibilities. Based on the award-winning designs of its little brother, the MiniBrute, the MicroBrute puts all the essential building blocks of an analog classic into a package that’s pure hands-on fun.

    If you’re new to synths, you’re looking at one of the easiest to use and most unique sounding synthesizers we think money can buy. And if you’re a synth veteran, we think it won’t have escaped your attention that MicroBrute is also a seriously capable semi-modular sequence-able beast. Wait till you hear how it sounds.

    Rip woofers from their housings with bass. Spend years coaxing different pads, leads, effects, wave-folded growls, vintage tones, modern tones, punchy drum kits and glittering sequences. Process audio. Sequence analog gear. Give your modular a new LFO and Envelope Generator. Hook up to your DAW and make whole tracks. Hook up to your Drumtracks, open your door, and play a whole gig.

    Tiny in size, tiny in price, huge in sound, and vast in potential. We’ve had so much fun with MicroBrute: Now it’s your turn.


    The voice path on MicroBrute is 100% analog. This makes for superior sound quality and warmth. The MicroBrute will inspire your tracks. The purity of signal allows it to sit in the mix well.


    The MicroBrute allows you to connect to vintage gear via standard 1-Volt per octave CV/ Gate. The MIDI In jack makes the MicroBrute the perfect sound module expansion to a MIDI rig. The USB/MIDI interface will allow your MicroBrute to connect with your favorite software application.
    This combination of interfaces makes MicroBrute a great companion to a monolithic modular system, a classic MIDI equipped keyboard or a modern laptop


    The oscillator is the heart of the MicroBrute and it does not disappoint. It features 3 waveforms that are mixable. This allows you to shape the sound in limitless ways not found on any other synths. Along with the SAW, TRIANGLE and SQUARE waves, MicroBrute features waveshapers which modify and animate the sound, to create an even wider pallet of sonic possibilities. The new Overtone Oscillator will generate additional harmonic content, ranging from one octave down to a fifth above the base Oscillator pitch. The Sub-5th control will allow you to continuously sweep spectrum. Never has a single oscillator synth sounded so big.


    The Steiner-Parker filter helps to give the MicroBrute its unique sound. This filter design was first used on the classic Synthacon synthesizer in the 1970’s. With Low pass, Band pass and High pass modes, you will not find more filter personalities from any other synth in this price…even in many synths at 3 or 4 times this price.


    Our new step sequencer is a source of endless inspiration. You can step input notes and rests creating rhythmic patterns that you can playback and switch between. Transpose your sequences up and down using the keyboard and you will have a new composing tool that will open up fresh ideas.


    The Mod Matrix is a patchable system of modulation routing. This flexible scheme gives you not only new ways to create your own sounds, but it allows for excellent interfacing with a
    Minibrute or modular synths


    – 25 Minikey keyboard
    – Octave up and down buttons allow for a full range of transpose
    – Monophonic Analog synthesizer

    – Steiner-Parker multimode filter
    .Low Pass
    .Band Bass
    .High Pass
    .Bi-polar Envelope amount control
    .Keyboard tracking

    – Arturia’s famed Brute Factor
    – Voltage Controlled Oscillator

    – Oscillator waveshapers
    .Ultrasaw for creating dance anthem sounds
    .Pulse width for creating thin nasal sounds or rich square tones
    .Metalizer for creating harsh, harmonically rich sounds

    – Overtone Generator
    .additional harmonics, from 1 octave down to 5th up
    .Sub-+5th spectrum shaper

    – Oscillator Mixer (Overtone, Saw, Triangle, Square)

    – Wide range LFO with 3 waveforms
    .Saw, Triangle, Square
    .Freq range from .1Hz to 200Hz
    .Syncable to external sources, sequencer or internal

    – ADSR envelope
    – VCA with GATE and ENV modes
    – pitchbender
    – Modulation wheel (can control filter cutoff or LFO amount)

    – Mod Matrix – standard 1 Volt per octave
    .Envelope Out
    .LFO Out
    .Ultrasaw modulator In
    .Pulse width mod In
    .Metalizer In
    .Overtone/Sub modulator In
    .Cutoff In
    .Pitch In

    – External Audio Input with Input level control
    – 1/8” headphone output and 1/4” audio output

    – CV/GATE interface
    .Pitch Out
    .Gate Out
    .Gate In

    – MIDI Input
    – USB 2.0 Type B jack
    – Glide time control

    – Step Sequencer
    .Rate control knob
    .Tap Tempo button/Rest input in record mode
    .8 storeable sequences
    .PLAY and RECORD modes
    .Sync to external MIDI clock

    – 12Volt, 1Amp Center pin + DC connector
    – Weight (1.750 Kg)
    – Dimensions (325x221x60mm)

  26. I’m I alone when I say I’d like to see the MEGA-BRUTE?? I can understand that arturia was likely surprised by the reception and demand for the minibrute, and now wants to make a more affordable one. But personally, I’d like them to make a brute with at least 3 or 4 oscillators. It’d be monstrous to make it polyphonic too.
    One can hope I suppose…

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