Saturday Synth Porn: This video takes a look at the classic Korg Mono/Poly – a unique synth from 1981 that could be used as a 4 VCO monosynth or a 4-voice paraphonic synth.
The Korg MonoPoly came out 1981 and was the last analogue monophonic synthesizer from Korg. Actually, the MonoPoly is a monophonic synth – but you can play it polyphonically, too – if necessary.
The Korg/Mono Poly is a very flexible synthesizer: It has 4 oscillators, oscillator sync, cross modulation, PWM, noise generator (white noise), 24 dB Filter, 2 ADSR envelopes, 2 LFO’s with many waveforms, ARPEGGIATOR, CHORD MEMORY and portamento. The built in microprocessor makes many things possible: chord memory, arpeggiator, key assign and polyphony.
It is built around SSM chips like the Korg Polysix. I think, with the MONOPOLY Korg wanted to produce a synth as an alternative to the Minimoog and Sequential Circuits Pro One.
The most characteristic thing on the MonoPoly is the arpeggiator, when it triggers the oscillators in poly-mode. Every step of the arpeggiator triggers a different oscillator – unique patterns can be produced.
The MonoPoly sounds great – it produces fat basses and leads – but also FX sounds, bells, like you can hear in the video.
I played the Korg MonoPoly sometimes with a Roland DEP-5 for delay effects and a Lexicon MPX-500 for reverbs.