Arturia Microfreak Update Adds Vocoder & More

Arturia has introduced the Arturia MicroFreak Vocoder Edition, an updated version of the MicroFreak that adds a vocoder and new synthesis capabilities.

In addition, they’re releasing a firmware update that brings the new capabilities to all MicroFreak synthesizers.

The MicroFreak Vocoder Edition is essentially the MicroFreak with new styling and a new Gooseneck electret microphone.

The vocoder features 16 frequency bands & 3 waveforms – sawtooth, pulse width and noise. The Timbre and Shape knobs adjust the response of the 16 frequency bands. You can use the removable mic or connect an external sound source via the headphone socket. The mic will be available separately for existing MicroFreak owners.

Here’s an in-depth look, via loopop, at both the MicroFreak Vocoder Edition and using the firmware with existing MicroFreak synths:

Here’s another look, via Oscillator Sink:

Pricing and Availability

The Arturia MicroFreak Vocoder Edition is available now with a street price of about $350 USD.

19 thoughts on “Arturia Microfreak Update Adds Vocoder & More

  1. Sometimes you have to see these things in person, but from the pictures I think the white unit is really ugly.

    The chaos controls in the middle appear unchanged from the original grey theme, and the goldish metallic touch keyboard does nothing to make the white look good.

    I love me a nice vocoder but to me this one sounds pretty mediocre. I have a lot of not-very-high-end gear that produces much better vocoder results to my ears (MS2000, DVP-1, DP/4, VC340, Wavestation A/D).

    I can think of a lot of reasons to own a MicroFreak. It’s one of the coolest, most unique synths to come around in a long time, and it’s dirt cheap. I used to think it excels at everything it sets out to do, but that vocoder is lame.

    1. Horses for courses I guess. I have the original version, but if both colour-ways were available at the time of purchase, I would have chosen the white. In the end, it’s the noise that you make with it – right?

  2. Krikey! A big studio did something cool with their music gear and gave consumers a reason to enjoy their product even more without having to purchase the MK2 version. Son of a @#$%^!

  3. Simply fantastic to see Arturia adding functionality like this in a free firmware update.

    I must ask the question though: Does the new firmware disable (or let you turn off) the blinking lights on the octave buttons? It’s the one sticking point I’ve always had with Arturia hardware, and I was amazed to see that they did in fact make the change in one recent update (the Minilab, I think). Hoping this change eventually makes it to Arturia’s entire hardware lineup.

  4. Hope a medium sized “Matrix ***” synth will be a thing.
    Between the Matrixbrute and the Microfreak – with a matrix that has buttons to press & with effects section!

    While i like the concept of the MIcrofreak the “Matrix on this is too slow to work with imho.
    The matrix should have buttons instead of just lights you scroll through – like the Matrixbrute but smaller.

    What i do like is the touch keyboard! The arpeggiator and sequencer are also great!

    … waiting for the Medium sized Arturia …

  5. Awesome update to a nicely priced budget
    Synth!!

    Thank you Arturia!!!

    I’m looking ahead and hope like others for a more decked out Microfreak that has the matrix expanded so one can have CV in and out to modular!!

    Thanks again Arturia!!

    Btw….Arturia is going to have that microphone for folks who already have a Microfreak. When will they be available, and for how much?

    1. I was going to ask the same question!!! But then I realized, “Wait! WHERE would you plug a Mic into the “old” Microfreak? There is no Audio input… is there one and I just missed it?”

      1. You plug it into the “headphone out”, which is actually a combo connection like you can find on older phones (not just iphones, Apple didn’t invent the wheel).
        Apparantly this was planned right from the beginning since you can’t add an audio-in with a firmware update.

        1. If I can plug a mic in, I can plug an external sound source too. Time to hack this (unknown until now) connection and breakout another connector.

  6. What a great easter egg! The Loopop video says old models can use old iphone wired earbuds. Just plug em in the headphone out.

  7. I don’t care about the vocoder, but an audio input is awesome. Maybe further updates will open up audio effects and processing capabilities like the Korg NTS-1?

  8. II wonder if they are going to sell the mic on it’s own – it would be nice to have it integrated with the jack rather than having to use an adapter

  9. Just pre-ordered the Gooseneck Mic from B&H.

    Installed the new 2.1.3 firmware. Smooth!!! Noticed improvements in the Volume, Filter, n the capacitance keys….

    Hope my Gooseneck Mic comes sooner than later.

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