Haken Audio Slim Continuum In-Depth Review

In his latest loopop video, synthesist Ziv Eliraz takes an in-depth look at the Haken Audio Slim Continuum, the latest version of Dr. Lippold Haken‘s expressive Continuum synthesizer.

The Continuum is a unique synthesizer that’s designed to capture a full range of expression, giving you independent polyphonic control over any attribute of your sounds. Each finger is sensed continuously in three dimensions, so you can do things like pitch bend single notes, play microtonally and have complete control over the timbre of your sounds.

Topics covered:

0:00 Intro
1:30 The Surface
3:55 Polyphonic control (MPE)
5:10 Portamento
6:20 EaganMatrix
7:30 What’s new?
11:00 Connectivity
12:50 The setup
14:50 Haken Editor
18:50 Recirculator
20:25 Rounding
22:30 Sustain
23:15 Sostenuto
25:00 Patching
29:15 Formulas
34:00 Jenny osc
35:00 BiqBank
35:40 BiqGraph
36:10 BiqMouth
36:30 Sine bank
36:50 Sine spray
37:15 Wave bank
38:00 Harmonic Manipulator
39:20 Modal Manipulator
39:55 Additive Bank
41:00 Kinetic Bank
41:40 Delay banks
42:20 Alternatives
44:30 Pros & cons
48:25 Outro

Check out the video and share your thoughts on the Continuum in the comments!

17 thoughts on “Haken Audio Slim Continuum In-Depth Review

  1. This is instrument of my dreams however the price makes it an impossible dream to achieve. I wonder when will be this kind of technology accessible to all humans, not only for the higher class.

      1. I was in on the Kickstarter for the Continuumini. But then I had a chance to play it at Superbooth and immediately cancelled my backing. I was disappointed to be honest

        Apart from the Eagan Matrix engine it offers nothing even close to the experience of the Continuum. The surface is not the same or even similar in any way and the polyphonic expression is much more limited so your playing style is also limited.

        If you’re going to spend a 700 – 1000 euro for an MPE instrument and you want to experience something akin to a Continuum you still can’t beat a Seaboard Rise. I had one a few years ago but sold it off because Ableton (my main daw) didn’t support it and Equator had no user sample support

        All that has changed now and Equator 2 is awesome. Granular engine with user sample support. Plus Ableton has pretty good MPE support now.

    1. Do I think this product is overpriced? Not really. Would i ever pay the asking price for what the functionality you get? Hell no.

      1. Wait nevermind, this thing is definitely overpriced. It costs more than I paid for my 2010 Ford fusion. If your synth costs the same as a car its overpriced.

  2. It’s cool but way overpriced for what it actually is. Probably this expensive because of patents and being a small company but after so many years it just feels like someone is being greedy.

    1. Anyone that thinks the Continuum is “way overpriced for what it actually is” is uninformed, but also just not the type of musician that this is designed for.

      The Continuum is designed for experienced musicians that want an electronic instrument that can be played with the same levels of expression as a traditional acoustic instrument.

      The Continuum is not a cheap as most synths because it’s not dumbed-down and cheaply built as most synths are.

      If you want a dumbed-down, cheap instrument, there are plenty of options. But, if you want a synth that’s designed to be as expressive as a traditional instrument, there are not a lot of options, and they’re all made in small batches by craftsman.

      1. Garbage. So it’s expensive because it isn’t dumbed down ?

        It’s expensive because it’s designed and built from scratch by one guy in a small workshop and in limited numbers. They are built from custom parts, again designed by one guy and not mass produced. It requires high precision engineering and machining to build and they take quite some time to build if you’ve ever checked the waiting lists.

        It’s not because it’s “dumbed down”. Far from it. It’s The immediacy of the Continuum that is one of its biggest draw factors. It is so simple. Just a surface to play sound on. No knobs or other parameters. No menus, no screens and no buttons to draw your attention away. Just the surface.

        Many of the programmed sounds aren’t even focused on any kind of tonality. They are just sound effects. But I guess most people would be too dumb to touch to the surface to hear them

  3. Not everything on this planet has to be cheap and affordable. What happened to craftsmanship! People are too used to easy access and cheap products.

    Stop consumerism. Stop unnecessary production. Save resources, etc.

    1. I second this. If there is an expensive instrument you want, sell the affordable stuff for this beauty. People used to have to decide between buying a Minimoog and car.

      Neither do these things have to be purchased, utilized and enjoyed by just one person. I find it fitting for an institution or a community to share things like this instrument so dozens of people can learn to perform it and hundreds can watch performances with it.

      1. Great points all around. I find a lot of products these days feel cheap and built down to a price rather than up to a quality. We need inexpensive instruments too, but it’s nice if certain things don’t feel like a race to the bottom – it’s nice to be given a choice. With some instruments, I find myself saying things like “This is a great synth. I would have definitely paid a few hundred more if it had a nice keybed.”

        If this feels like a quality instrument, as opposed to a computer peripheral or note entry device, I would be inclined to save up for it if it’s something that I think will truly inspire me.

        1. Literally anyone that’s ever learned a traditional instrument understands why you’d want a good instrument.

          A lot of electronic musicians just don’t have that experience with learning how to play a traditional instrument – which probably why a lot of electronic music doesn’t have much expression or dynamics to it, and why they don’t understand why you’d want an expressive instrument.

          1. Well that’s a massive generalisation

            Electronic Music is hugely diverse category composed of hundreds of sub genres spanning almost 100 years of music history

            I think if you had have said Pop Music instead I would be more inclined to agree

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