Elektron Digitone FM Groovebox At The Winter NAMM Show

At the 2018 NAMM Show, Elektron introduced the Digitone, a polyphonic digital synthesizer that combines a modernized FM implementation with a classic subtractive synthesis signal flow, making it ideal, according to the company, for creating ‘highly unique tones and timbres’.

Here’s a hands-on demo of the Elektron Digitone from the NAMM Show, with examples that show how things like per-step patches and parameter locks let the Digitone do things that you might not expect from a FM synth.

See our earlier post for Elektron Digitone specifications and audio demos.

Pricing and Availability

Digitone is available now for $759 USD/779 EUR/£699 GBP.

19 thoughts on “Elektron Digitone FM Groovebox At The Winter NAMM Show

      1. I am just spoiled by my CZ1 I got for 300 bucks I guess (in immaculate shape with anvil case,RAM cartridge, and all original booklets) Great synth if you give it time. Also, I think his reason for only having 4 operators is a bunch of BS. I wish people would make double digit operator FM synths….ide pay good money for that.

  1. I wish it was only $500! But, it’s definitely worth what they are asking imho. When compared to say the Moog Mother, DFAM in terms of overall capability (I.e. External Midi Sequencers x4, trig conditions, OB) I think $750 is pretty spot on. Elektron has always been a hefty price tag but I’ve owned many many synths/workstations over the years and nothing comes close to the Elektron work flow for speed and “happy accidents.”

  2. We’d all love for it to be $500.00 but I’d feel like i was getting it on the cheap. It seems like it should be worth what they are asking for. Yeah, you get external midi, trigs, micro-timing, and a bunch more and a super cool sequencer with the p-locking. $400- $500 bucks is in the range of a Circuit and an Electribe brand new. The extra 250.00 is well worth it.

  3. On the Elektronauts forum, Simon from Elektron says that the Digitone’s synthesis engine is running internally at 32bit 96kHz. Which means no ugly uncontrollable aliasing. This really sets it apart from older hardware FM synths IMO and makes the price much more reasonable.

  4. Whether its worth the price or not is subjective, but I always like seeing semi-boggling tech brought closer to Earth. Programming FM can be a serious time sink, so putting part of it under a subtractive GUI is a healthy approach. Additive can make FM look like a marimba solo, but NI’s Razor makes it musically approachable. If you’re an Elektron person who prefers hardware over the numerous software “DX” synths, here you go.

  5. The best FM synth (if sound + ease of use are the criteria) is the Reface DX. Nothing else comes close.
    It always sounded great, but now it has quantization and a long pattern length on its sequencer, it is no.1.
    It too is a 4-op with onboard effects, plus it also has a very nice keyboard (ok, mini, but you easily get used to it).
    It’s a totally undervalued machine.

  6. Very interesting-I wonder what’s next?
    The DigiWave, with the Superwave Saw, Superwave Pulse, & Superwave Ensemble machines?
    Then the DigiPro, with DigiPro Wave, DigiPro Beatbox, DigiPro DoubleDraw, & DigiPro Ensemble machines?

    Those were all in the Monomachine, along with FM+, FM+Static, FM+Parallel, & FM+Dynamic; VO Vocal Formant synth, SID 6581 emulation, GND machines. You could import you’re own single-cycle waves into the Monomachine, it had 6 Mono tracks (or 1 6-voice polyphonic track), 6 external MIDI tracks, distortion & delay per track, stereo input (could be used as a monster FX processor), etc. It’s sequencer didn’t have micro timing, sound locks, probability, etc.

    The MachineDrum had close to 70 synthesis machines available for each of it’s 16 tracks. I wonder if Elektron plan on repackaging those into several different machines.

    1. IMHO I think this approach makes sense and is in fact much fairer for potential new customers as well as all existing ones.
      Contrary to what happens with the MKII fever, in which their machines are sold with two or three updates, but that in the background is precisely the same product sold again, brutally devaluing the previous versions (in Rytm’s case with a life span of 3/4 years) that end up having a much lower market value although they are practically the same machines (see Octatrack MKII), this approach is much more honest, yes FM synthisis already existed in monomachine, but now it is available in a completely different and more modern approach at an accessible price, without however withdrawing the meaning of the MM’s existence or withdrawing its market value.
      If you need all the other machines then do not buy Digitone, go for Monomachine.
      I despite having the MM, will undoubtedly end up buying Digitone too.

Leave a Reply