2015 NAMM Show: Moog Music today announced that it is reintroducing the classic Moog Modular synthesizer, including three iconic systems: the System 55, the System 35 and the Model 15.
These three modular synthesizer systems were originally created and manufactured by Moog in 1973. Moog plans limited run manufacturing of the three systems, using the same parts and techniques that were used to build the originals.
Here’s Moog’s take on why they are reintroducing the Moog Modular:
The reintroduction of these instruments is not about reliving the past – while much incredible work has been done with the Moog Modular, there is so much further yet to be explored in this relatively young instrument. Artists had only begun to grasp the vast possibilities of these large format modular synthesizers when they went out of production over thirty years ago.
Decades of electronic experimentation have enabled musicians to move on from viewing the Moog Modular as a replacement for traditional instrumentation. Now a new generation of artists, with a greater understanding and more complex tools, will have the opportunity to explore the power of these singular sonic machines.
Today, the modular synthesizer is viewed in the manner Bob Moog originally intended: to “discover endless offbeat, unconventional, and even irrational ways of working.”
Here’s their intro video for the new modular systems:
The video features electronic music pioneers such as Suzanne Ciani, Malcolm Cecil, David Borden, Dick Hyman and Herb Deutsch alongside performances by contemporary modular artists like Holy Ghost! (DFA), Gavin Russom (ECSTATIC/Entropy Trax), Max Ravitz AKA Patricia (L.I.E.S./Spectral Sound/Opal Tapes), Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith (Western Vinyl), Jacques Greene (Vase/LuckyMe) and M. Geddes Gengras (Stones Throw). Each artist played a patch live, in one take, with no overdubs on one or more of the new Moog Modular systems.
The Return Of The Moog Modular Synthesizer
The foundation for this announcement was laid last year at Moogfest 2014, when Moog released the Emerson Moog Modular system – a faithful recreation of Keith Emerson’s legendary modular instrument, which was the culmination of three years worth of research and engineering.
Moog is using the techniques learned recreating the EMMS manufacturing process to once again build these modular systems. These systems will be made entirely to their original product specifications and manufacturing techniques and processes.
Working from the 1970s schematics, each instrument will be handcrafted, as a recreation of the original. The modules are built from the original circuit board films – just as they were in 1973- by hand-stuffing and hand-soldering components to circuit boards, and using traditional wiring methods. The front panels are photo-etched aluminum, a classic process rarely still used in today’s synthesizer manufacturing, to maintain the classic look of vintage Moog modules.
The dedicated nature of the Moog modular rebuilding process is such that the units will come in extremely limited quantities. There will be 55 units of the System 55, priced at $35,000 per instrument; 35 of units of the System 35, priced at $22,000 per instrument; and 150 units of the Model 15, priced at $10,000 per instrument.
Alongside these Moog Modular Systems will be the Sequencer Complement B Expansion Cabinet, a dual 960 Sequential Controller, an accompaniment to the System 35 and System 55, that has been out of production for over 30 years– as well as an optional 5-Octave duo phonic keyboard.
See the Moog site for details.