Behringer VC340 Vocoder Plus Now In Pre-Production With Sub-$1,000 Price Target

Behringer today announced that its VC340 Vocoder Plus – an updated clone of the classic Roland VP-330 keyboard – is now in pre-production:

We’re excited to announce that the VC340 Vocoder is now in pre-production. It’s all looking good and we’re confident to soon switch to full production.

That’s one great sounding vocoder!

A sub-$1,000 price tag is expected. Uli Behringer has previously stated that they expected the pricing to be in range of $799.99 – $999.99, depending on initial order volume.

Here’s a video sneak preview, via Firechild:

49 thoughts on “Behringer VC340 Vocoder Plus Now In Pre-Production With Sub-$1,000 Price Target

  1. > clone of the Roland VP-330 keyboard

    lmao, yet again. we´re doomed.. caught in a time loop.
    hey, uli. what about a complete in-house development? not interested? why? ah, your products are solely made of the idea to make “easy” money. i see.
    *facepalm*
    someone should organize a boycott of behringer. i vote for that.

    1. Actually I think this shows that it’s _not_ about easy money for Behringer. Not many people really want a VP-330 vocoder — it’s an effect that most people only use a bit, and by and large most people would make do with something more modern and smaller. These are large, complicated and not cheap to build and so not cheap to manufacture. Uli has said before that he doesn’t make profit on synths, it’s a labour of love, and I can well believe it with this one.

        1. But this is a very complicated piece of kit, far more so than the Model D, and so I don’t think anyone thought it would be possible to price it at $299.

    2. You mean an own in house developed instrument like Deepmind or the Neutron? Their efforts to lower costs for a quality synth is something the likes of Roland can learn something from; or Korg for that matter, who both keep the market prices artificially high. If you don’t like it, don’t buy it, but don’t hate on Behringer for making instruments affordable.

        1. Yeah I call bullshit there. Korg is killing in the cheap synth world. Mini and monologue are both killer and verrrrry well priced. The Behringer stuff is dope too but doesn’t even respond to midi cc’s which both of those as well as volcas do.

      1. Behringer is kind of tedious as well. People will stop “hating on” them when they stop stealing designs and start treating their people like people.

        They make nothing – nothing – of their own. They trade – Behringer trades – flamboyantly, snottily – on the work and creativity of other companies. Behringer could give the stuff away and these practices would still be obnoxious. Until one researches it, one feels they are just a normal company making cheap knock-offs. It is, unfortunately, worse than that.

        None of Behringer’s crazy legal actions or polite internet claims that he is a prince of a boss change the repeated stories from workers and the obvious aping of other people’s work – all the time. Labor of love? No. Labor of sticking it to other companies – for fun and profit – is closer to accurate, from where I sit.

        Complaints about this producer have ample basis. Many people make affordable equipment with much less baggage. Other people reuse old, expired-patent designs and do it with dignity. This producer does not.

        Whatever.

        1. Keep on hating

          Behringer doesn’t only do cheap knockoff but they are cheap priced. You wanna hate on that?
          Look at those other companies, didn’t we all asked for remakes for decades?
          Now which companies have their ego’s so far up their asses again?

          Behringer is giving synth players what they’ve long been asking for. But you mr complainer who brings nothing to the table other than conspiracies keeps on hating. Go check a mirror!

        2. Behringer isn’t stealing anything. The original producers had a full decade to come up with clones or new analog gear. People demanded it and got ignored. I am not even a big fan of analog gear. People like you should read and understand before posting bs.

        3. Stop hating then. Behringer is not stealing designs and nobody knows how they treat their people. You claim to know, but I doubt you have better sources than the Glass Door website and some Chinese online newspaper that nobody knows the reputability of. If you do, please enlighten us. If not, stop claiming moral superiority because of your “research”.

    3. It is rather interesting how some strange and odd new participants come onto various forums and vehemently defend Uli and his practises. The synths aside, this method of posting seems to mirror the embarrassing episode uncovered on KVR and Gearslutz where it appeared to be Behringer employees forced to put up this defence.

      Just look at the odd hours they posted. That said, Uli has already proven himself to be a shrewd business man with little ethics and very poor marketing skills.

      1. Oh you’ve noticed it too. It’s been going on for years. 4AM in NY is 10AM in Berlin. Maybe he can write some scripts to delay-post with all his various aliases so it’ll be not so obvious. Be aware he gets up very early and often starts posting by 5AM his time, sometimes earlier, today’s first post was made at 4:45AM. He’ll cycle back here in a few hours.

      2. Not everyone works or follows the same schedule, and, I imagine it is common practice for most companies to have campaigns on social media. I am sure that some are more whisper campaign, some are open advertisement, some are targeting specific companies and business practices with criticism, and some are a combination of all the above. I am not convinced that there is a conspiracy here, but definitely there is some re-branding going on because the market he has been breaking into is full of folks that decry the quality of his company’s products. I am not sure that the view is universal, and that there are other segments of the music gear market that have been historically happy with his stuff. I honestly think his marketing is working well. It might not be what he expected, but he’s got buzz all over.

        I take criticism for him, and excessive praise for him with a grain of salt. If he is making something I want, I will definitely try it or buy it. If he’s not, I am definitely going to put my money there. I think it is totally worth knowing if the view you are reading is legitimate or not, and staying a little skeptical is good practice. But, it’s not healthy to see bogeymen lurking in the corners of every forum for public opinion. Because: opinion. And: trolls.

  2. It’s a beautiful sounding instrument, I was hoping it would be in the 300-400 range and I’d buy it immediately but at 600-700 I find it too expensive.

    1. I agree, I’d probably buy one up if it was $500 but it’s awfully limited for something more expensive. Might pick one up used in a couple of years since Behringer stuff doesn’t hold it’s value very well.

    2. yeah that is my feeling too. i would really love one but the price tag is too high doerr me, sure it is easy cheaper than getting an original but still out of my price range.

  3. Not sure if people want the gear cause its cheap or because they long for nostalgia and vintage gear. When he price is right, people will fight both and nail and combat ethics vs patent laws. The moment that price goes about $500, those comments shift pretty quickly. So if everyone is just about having cheap stuff, I can be in that boat for sure. Was all the “Behringer is an awesome company” and riding Uli’s balls wasn’t something I could get behind. They are a pretty shady company but we all have our price.

    Slavery would have ended a lot earlier is the cost of goods went up like this Vocoder.

    1. Honestly I don’t lose sleep over the price and that it’s made in Asia. All the soldering etc. is done by machine nowadays (look up pick and place machinery if you’re not familiar with this) and the human work is assembly and testing, putting the circuit board in a box, attaching the knobs etc. etc. I’ve done this sort of work before. It’s boring but not difficult or dangerous, and it;s not a big input into the manufacturing costs. I’d say building a Neutron requires between 30-60 minutes of human labor per unit depending on their quality control.

  4. As someone that spent a long happy career reverse engineering IBM Mainframe Memory & storage products, DEC, HP, Wang, and Prime minicomputers, then going on to design an implement a series of 20 ASICs, and 40-odd patents, I have no problem with Behringer’s business model. To have someone spend that expertise and R&D costs bringing great instantiations of out of production popular instruments is awesome!

    Copying great designs is a wonderful way to learn marvelous techniques and skills. These engineers will be valuable people!

    FWIW, there are very few ‘new innovations’ that came out of nowhere. If you want good products in the future, invest in giving folks interesting work they will learn from. They will be the developer of great things to come!

    So, thank you Uli – you’re one of the CEO’s that ‘get it’.

    1. Yes! Finally somebody who sees the bigger picture. Behringer’s synth department is building up a treasure trove of expertise. Doesn’t every great artist start by copying the classics? The question of course is what they’ll do once the most important/desirable classics will have been copied. Will they just milk it, or will they indeed put that expertise to great use and innovate? And with innovate I don’t mean come up with completely new synth paradigms, but something along the lines of Dreadbox, that always bring something new to the table, even if it’s just a small thing.

      I recently got a few drum machines and I can’t believe how every manufacturer seems to get something totally wrong. Either the sound, the programming, the usability, the file handling, etc. I can’t wait to see what Behringer will offer in that department after copying the classics. Understanding what makes the 808 and 909 such ubiquitous machines and knowing how to mass produce them for a low price seems very valuable knowledge indeed.

  5. Yeah! Otherwise lets boycott all the guitar companies and microphone manufacturers, etc, that also replicate classic design as well.

    The price is high on this vocoder because Uli doesn’t think the demand for it is that high. Behringer will try to break even, while Uli and crew get a bunch of them to play themselves.

  6. This one is just TOO vintage for the money, in my view. I’m sure Kebu et al will love it because they revel in fun retro, but it falls short in just one key area: its not a *VP-550* clone. That one included a Vocal Designer section of physically modeled choirs that went far beyond phased formants with the Ensemble switched on. It took vocoding to a higher plane by meshing you with a much more realistic human presence. If it had a Vocal Designer clone in it (that’s surely proprietary Roland data), it could be viewed as a superior solo voice. As it is, it feels more like a quaint component of a revisited prog rock stack. Not a negative if that wows you, but I have several easier, more stable ways to vocode.

    1. Here’s a quote.
      “As I stated multiple times, many of our synthesizers are not very profitable and at times even loss leaders. Synths are my absolute passion and since we’re a privately owned company, we’re able to pursue these “labor of love” projects.”

      Do you really think that cloning 70s vocoders is a get-rich-quick scheme?

  7. I might be willing to pay this price for a fully modernized state of the art hardware vocoder from a company that doesn’t abuse its workers or file lawsuits against its critics.

    Actually I did buy a fully modernized state of the art vocoder, but I paid I think it was $300, several years ago. And it’s great.

    At the $1k price point and this highly limited backwards feature set, I’m sure the usual suspects will pile on to this and denounce anyone that giggles, and that’s just fine by me, I enjoy watching.

  8. Well, it sounds really good. No one else is gonna do it so good for them. These folks are doing the reissues we WISH the original companies did. With real analogue tech, not virtual approximations. I say good for them.

  9. And here I am over here wishing they would clone a slightly upgraded MPC1000 (with JJOS and SD card), or an SP-404SX with velocity sense and auto-pitching.

  10. I don’t get the people who complain that Behringer doesn’t deliver original products. Is there any other company that puts out new affordable versions of vintage expensive synths? If the answer is no, then that’s original. Also why didn’t anyone call SE unoriginal when they released the Boomstar or Arturia all those VST versions of classic synths?

    1. Agreed. Keep up the good work Uli. Going by the sales figures of your synths, the majority of people are right behind your production decisions.

  11. I want the “ag to be put in the washing machine.

    Synthtopia blocks your message if you mention that troll by name…..very sad. I want it gone.

  12. Love my Neutron. Build quality is solid. Sounds great. Value for money is off the chart – I also get a bunch of utility modules for my eurorack thrown in. Planning to buy an 808

    If these things sound good (they patently do so far), are machine built to 2018 /19 automation standards and cost 299 Blemflarks… How can anyone not see how this is going to go?

    Nobody knows or cares who ‘Uli’ is.
    From what I’ve seen on here he doesn’t seem to be a serious threat to humanity.

    1. But `Uli` has enslaved Asians to build his legion of company-crushing synthesizers, which, I might add, are built on secret plans that he stole from the pure, sainted, undefiled and definitely not-for-profit charities that are in no way for-profit companies that engage in various business practices that they deem fit to stay profitable, but exist only to cater to the whims of synth audiophiles when they are not busy warming our hearts with nostalgic visions from the days of synths gone by. Uli is in no way running a for profit company that has its own mission to make money or brand itself as it seems fit, but is in fact PURE EVIL, and not really just another person running his business and working on building his brand by shaping public opinion or getting people excited (positively and negatively) with social media. I know who Uli is. Oh, I know. And, I care deeply enough to post this response. Your Neutron is KILLING ‘MURICA.

      But seriously, I like my Behringer D, I’d like to have the 808/909 clones, and this vocoder more than any other Behringer clone. Just saving up for it now. I would also love to have a 303 clone, like the TT-303, which Behringer does not seem to be developing, but other companies already have been.

      So, they must be embedded sleeper cell companies that Uli planted to lull us into a false sense of security before they destroy all the boutique manufacturers that are totally not for-profit companies, but our very own mothers and fathers whom we love with all of our hearts.

  13. I wonder if the same people who champion the IP theft also champion the working conditions that get you cheap knock-offs? Someone is getting rich here, and it isn’t the guy the working 7 day work weeks with suicide nets out his 4th floor factory window. For a musical genera that is socially conscious there seems to be little concern for the true cost of the units to people.

    1. Do you actually know what the working conditions are, or is that speculation? There’s a lot of conjecture flying around. It’s a legitimate criticism with proof.

    2. You can definitely argue that Moog has good working conditions. They are open about that, and they are close enough for many to visit. But, it’s hard to justify the state of working conditions in Behringer’s factories being good or bad without docuentayion.

    3. IP theft is a strong statement. Patents last 20 years and this synth is from 1979 and they haven’t made it for donkeys years. Your statements on working conditions are also a bit much without any evidence.

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