A Final Run Of The $20K+ Schmidt Polyphonic Synthesizer Has Been Announced


German instrument distributor Electronic Music Components (e:m:c) has announced that it is taking orders on what it say will be the last 25 Schmidt Polyphonic Synthesizers, one of the most ambitious analog synths ever created.

Here’s what e:m:c has to say about the Schmidt Polyphonic Synthesizer:

This is the synthesizer that Stefan Schmidt always dreamed of, created against all odds without any compromises whatsoever (with more than a little help from friends Axel Hartmann — co-founder and owner of renowned industrial designers designbox, whose distinctive design talents took the Schmidt Eightvoice Polyphonic Synthesizer prototype to another level entirely, thanks to some serious funding from e:m:c President Stefan Hund).

But bolstered by those tradeshow successes, supported by his partners at e:m:c, Stefan Schmidt set about putting his dream synthesizer into (build-to- order) production. A limited run of 25 units was admirably announced. Anyone arguing about its ‘second-tier’ five-figure price point probably couldn’t afford one. But bear in mind that those that could were buying into a thoroughbred analogue eight-voice polyphonic synthesizer with a fully- analogue signal path (with precise digital control) that’s truly a sound designer’s dream machine.

More meaningfully, a quick glance at its complex four-oscillator structure should be more than enough to convince even the most skilled synthesist that the Schmidt Eightvoice Polyphonic Synthesizer is capable of creating complex timbres that go way beyond the capabilities of conventional analogue synthesizers. Speaking of which, Oscillator 4 is worthy of special mention. Thanks to its chain of five ring modulators fed by six pulse-waves, each with different pulse-widths, it can create colder, wavetable-like sounds — despite being fully analogue. These truly unique features are hitherto unheard of in any analogue synthesizer, let alone an analogue polysynth! Subtractive synthesis clearly knows no bounds here, helping to make the Schmidt Eightvoice Polyphonic Synthesizer a shining example of no-expense-spared synthesizer design, deploying discrete sound generation circuitry throughout — no integrated oscillator/filter circuits on a single chip, for instance — in keeping with the highest possible production standards, while each and every parameter is directly accessible via dedicated controls on a seriously spacious front panel to die for.

Fortunately, for Stefan Schmidt and his supportive e:m:c production partners, all 25 units subsequently sold; Hans Zimmer would not be the only seriously satisfied Schmidt Eightvoice Polyphonic Synthesizer owner, after all. And that could so easily have been the happy ending to this success story, with the Schmidt Eightvoice Polyphonic Synthesizer surely going down in the annals of history as one of the bravest moves in electronic musical instrument design as a bold statement that flies in the face of the fast-paced and superficial age we unfortunately find ourselves living in today.

Today, though, with 25 instruments already hand-crafted in Germany and duly delivered to seriously satisfied owners around the world, e:m:c is proud to announce that it will be building a final batch of 25 more. Maintains Stefan Schmidt: “I feel really honoured that musicians around the world love the Schmidt Eightvoice Polyphonic Synthesizer, which started simply as a small-scale bass synthesizer project before I took the chance on building the synthesizer of my dreams. That e:m:c has decided to build another 25 units of this exclusive — and expensive — instrument makes me proud!”

Pricing and Availability:

Limited to a second (and final) build-to-order production run of 25 units, the Schmidt Eightvoice Polyphonic Synthesizer is priced at €19,900.00 EUR (including tax) plus shipping within the EU and €16,900.00 EUR (excluding tax) plus shipping for other countries, and can be ordered directly from e:m:c here. (Please note that a 50% deposit is required and delivery time is approximately one year after ordering.)

20 thoughts on “A Final Run Of The $20K+ Schmidt Polyphonic Synthesizer Has Been Announced

  1. Great sounding synth, but if I happened to have an extra $20k lying around, I’d spend it on something modular. This is more like the greatest roland ever built. If I had an extra million to blow, I’d get one for sure. Then again I’d have every synth ever.

  2. Other than bringing its owner much happiness & joy to play & program – how will this investment fare over time?

    ie: you could easily spend that much money on a car that loses 90% of its value in 10 years or less. This beauty might actually gain value!! And you’d have added the pleasure of playing it for all those years 🙂

  3. even if it goes up in value, the market is minute.

    Little story:

    My grandfather collected Native American Hopi Kachina dolls and ancient pottery. Some of his purchases cost well over 10k… 30 years later, museums are calling the collection “priceless art”, meanwhile there was no way to sell them privately for more than a quarter of their appraised value.

    Just because something goes up in value, it doesn’t make it easy to sell… especially something with a niche market like synthesizers.

    You want an investment? Buy a 100% original and flawless model D. Buy a Neumann U47 with the original tube. Buy a vintage 1073… They may not be worth as much, but they sure have a bigger fan base.

    1. thanks for the tipp… i guess these babys should be showing up on ebay for under 5k in about two years time then 🙂

  4. > “one of the most ambitious analog synths ever created”

    Could we hear a few words about the amazing full keyboard real time microtuning facilities that such a world class leading edge uber synth must surely have?

  5. I’m sure it’s very nice and everything, but the demos don’t exactly blow me away. In those it sounds like every other virtual analog vsti. At 20k you’d think they’d get Vangelis or Rick Wakeman or even Jordan Rudess to give this thing a spin. They’re hardly doing a lot to sell it on that front.

    Although with a customer base composed of people like Hans Zimmer, they’ve already captured the sort of people who aren’t going to hesitate about dropping that kind of money and don’t give a shit about demos.A truly stunning set of demos would probably just make poorer musos cry anyway. Making the synth a subject of much gnashing of teeth regarding increasing income inequality. The masses? Let them eat Ipad apps…

  6. So this is $25,000 AUD. Let’s see – for the price of that one synth, I could get a Moog Voyager XL ($7,699); a Modal 002 ($7,999); a Dave Smith Instruments Prophet 06 ($4,599), and a Dave Smith Instruments OB-6 ($4,899) – grand total of $25,196.

    That’s four top-end synths, compared one one synth that in every video demo, has not blown me away at all. To me this is an easy choice – go for the four synths and forget about the Schmidt, which is overpriced – or spend $25,000 on some classic vintage gear – ARP 2600, Minimoog Model D, and a Roland System 100. Or a single Yamaha CS-80. Or, if I’m really lucky, a Roland System 700. Much better options than the Schmidt.

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