Do I “need” analog synths?

Anything about hardware musical instruments.
User avatar
egbert101
KVRAF
2290 posts since 13 Jun, 2014

Post Sun Feb 10, 2019 5:29 pm

toonertik wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:36 pm
It ain't serious.. it is the famous vurt toon.. with the neutron singing praise to vurt (or just screaming in pain, you decide).. hey.. lets not get too serious.. have a giggle :wink:
https://soundcloud.com/toonertik/singing-the-vuts
I enjoyed your piece of music btw. Refreshingly experimental and out there. Had plenty of energetic vibe and complexity.

I'm on a personal journey in a search of exactly whether I just want to play around with synthesizers and make sounds, or whether I actually want to try and compose music. I think the most important thing is to simply have fun with the process.
<list all your stupid gear here>

User avatar
toonertik
KVRian
772 posts since 15 Feb, 2017

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:10 pm

egbert101 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 5:29 pm
I'm on a personal journey in a search of exactly whether I just want to play around with synthesizers and make sounds, or whether I actually want to try and compose music. I think the most important thing is to simply have fun with the process.
Thanx for the listen, I posted to demonstrate what just one synth can do.
I think it is always a personal journey..(even when collaborating with others) that is life. Fun has to be a factor, I think.. even if it's a kinda angst fun.. you gotta enjoy the process. For composing, the people I have worked with in the past (and also for myself) had something to say, or sing about.. whether it be love, protest, political etc .. something drove them to express their feelings, or construct melodies/ compositions that related to their emotion (I am excluding the pure commercial "producers" from this :wink: ).
A long time ago I realised my compositional skills were very limited, however I could bang the drums and make crazy sounds... and was a pretty good engineer and so used my strengths rather than "go against the tide". OFC, still searching for THAT ELUSIVE MUSICAL EXPRESSION... the journey>> never ending, that IS the process :party:
only an opinion OFC>>> :)

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pekbro
KVRAF
2277 posts since 29 Sep, 2010 from Maui

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:44 pm

I just turned 49 myself, I can understand about the knob thing, with digital, you can't really
do the thing where you only pretend to turn the knob, mostly moving the potentiometer
up a hair, through sheer force of will alone. I am now convinced that anyone interested
in pursuing music as we do here, should in the least get themselves an affordable hardware
synth to be used in conjunction (or addition) to plugins and whatnot. For a long time, I was
of the opinion that hardware (beyond a guitar) wasn't necessary. Being a computer nerd,
software seemed to me the perfect solution. I believe now, I was wrong about that.
While software is amazing and definitely worthwhile, solely relying on it, is a mistake imho.
The two work together perfectly well and go a long way to make up for each others
shortcomings. From now on, if anyone tells me all you need is in the box, I would say
sure thats fine, if all you're after is only half of the story...

*I enjoyed the neutron as well toonertik, the first time I've listened to the neutron actually. :tu:

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:11 am

toonertik wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:36 pm
BTW, I am not really a musician,
I’m not sure what the requirements are to be called a musician, ha ha :-)
toonertik wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:36 pm
It ain't serious.. it is the famous vurt toon.. with the neutron singing praise to vurt (or just screaming in pain, you decide).. hey.. lets not get too serious.. have a giggle :wink:
https://soundcloud.com/toonertik/singing-the-vuts
Interesting sounds. What was the signal flow? It sounds like drums being processed through and triggering a synth.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

User avatar
whyterabbyt
Beware the Quoth
26633 posts since 4 Sep, 2001 from R'lyeh Oceanic Amusement Park and Funfair

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:14 am

egbert101 wrote:
Sat Feb 09, 2019 3:19 pm
You buy a sub £300 analog synth, and what's the worse that can happen?
leaking capacitors and magic smoke.

ah, crivvens, mah poor wee werkstatt....
"The bearer of this signature is a genuine and authorised pope."

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:26 am

egbert101 wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 5:29 pm
I'm on a personal journey in a search of exactly whether I just want to play around with synthesizers and make sounds, or whether I actually want to try and compose music. I think the most important thing is to simply have fun with the process.
I do one while in pursuit of the other. I don’t have a lot of success focusing on melody, and sound itself is what got me into this whole thing. Playing with sounds, hoping my brain will be triggered into a melody for them, is what I do most times. Sometimes fun, but usually not. I lost the ability to experience pleasure through this complicated stuff some time ago.

I might end a music/sound session having learned better about how something works; better is if I saved a few loops or ambient sounds for later use. If I’m lucky, I found myself awake after 26 hours, eyes wanting to clamp shut, with a piece of music that’s in a public demo state of completion. Lately, the share-worthy stuff I’ve made hasn’t been shared because it clearly needs vocals and I suck at putting words and music together, despite being able to sing.

As long as I am making something at all, I feel like I’m not neglecting my equipment. I do still need to figure out a process of using it all more effectively, though. The hardware, because it doesn’t have immediate feedback, or a feeling of direct control, tends to sit there going unused much of the time (it’s connected and routed, but not fun to play with), while the software gets used rather often because it’s right there on the computer where I’m sitting, where my sequencer and editors already are.

My efforts to create a standing workspace of hardware gadgets hasn’t come together because it’s all pretty static and menu-divy. I can’t bear the notion of selling that stuff because each has a unique facet that drew me in to buy it in the first place. Maybe standing and leaning over a workspace is the wrong approach for those items. Still haven’t cracked the workspace configuration problem.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

User avatar
egbert101
KVRAF
2290 posts since 13 Jun, 2014

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:59 am

Jace-BeOS wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:26 am
Sometimes fun, but usually not. I lost the ability to experience pleasure through this complicated stuff some time ago.
A yes, this reminds me why I'm changing the way I do things. I'm kinda approaching things from the perspective of art rather than entertainment. It's not about doing things the easy way, but having to do whatever it takes to get the satisfactory results I want or need, hopefully with minimal compromise.

If anything, it's going to be a lot of work and pain and energy for something that at least is an expression of uniqueness, rather than copying other people, something I've yet to truly break free from.

It is pure insanity but a few people will understand what I'm going through.
<list all your stupid gear here>

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:22 am

toonertik wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:10 pm
I think it is always a personal journey..(even when collaborating with others) that is life. Fun has to be a factor, I think.. even if it's a kinda angst fun.. you gotta enjoy the process. For composing, the people I have worked with in the past (and also for myself) had something to say, or sing about.. whether it be love, protest, political etc .. something drove them to express their feelings, or construct melodies/ compositions that related to their emotion [...]
I struggle with the expression part. I crave an ability to express deep & intense feelings. It wants to spew out in an uncontrolled mess. None of the stuff I work with is “spew unfiltered feelings”-safe. Years back, there were cases of rage spewing forth (thanks to unwanted pharmaceutical intervention), and it didn’t result in much art (it did result in damage).

I prefer subtlety and structure, and I don’t have the physical skills for angry metal guitar anyway (developing such skills takes patience I lack, training I can’t afford, and teachers always wanted me to learn notation, which I cannot do). I suspect a lot of the end result is the processing and studio anyway, so it still involves a ton of control.

Expressing with vocals and lyrics: I have a lot to say (FFS, look at how verbose I am), but can’t simplify thoughts into shorter phrases & artful vocabulary to sit in a rhythm / meter. Er, without sounding juvenile.

“Art” doesn’t happen on command; it’s all down to accidents. Like, oops, I accidentally wrote a song with vocals & lyrics that aren’t that bad. :hihi:

I’m okay with keys and, sure, throwing distortion on a synth maybe sounds angry and aggressive, but it needs variation/expression and there are few expression options with my setup. Well, without spending time figuring out where to route MIDI CC for each and every patch or setting.

I have expression pedals plugged into FX units and MIDI control surfaces... pads, knobs, and even a Roland VG-99 with a short ribbon and a D-Beam to wave the hand over for parameter control (I don’t see how this was ever meant to be useful to a guitarist because it doesn’t respond to my guitar headstock and the range is really short)...

...but nothing is ready to just power-on and PLAY. Aside from playing a nicely modeled or sampled piano, it’s all about configuration first. Once I get a parameter mapped somewhere interesting, I’ve spent all my mental power on that and don’t feel like playing with it. I’m in a tech mental space, not an expression mental space. Odds are, that configuration will disappear when things get changed for something else later. I have no preset palette of sounds and controls ready to just play something expressive. It all feels disparate and disconnected. Not like an instrument.

Between software bugs, clumsy workspace, spending time routing & configuring things, and a lack of hands-on, immediate control over parameters, my mood and what I want to express can swing wildly.

While trying to do something ambient, I might find distracting zipper noise in a filter cutoff adjustment, or a software bug strikes, or a device isn’t communicating with another device for some arcane reason, or the effective range of the expression isn’t right (or it’s inverted), etc... irritation sets in with the tools I’m supposed to be using to express myself. There goes the desire to keep things ambient. Instead it becomes rage at the tech and I suck at making angry music, especially when angry :lol:

It’s one thing to go “oh, that should be plugged in there instead of here”. It’s something else entirely to have a black box of parameters buried under a GUI (and bugs). I have hostility toward computers in general, after spending my life wrangling them for employment and hobby.

That’s the thing I wish for most: control over my equipment enough that I can express myself without being forced to funnel all expression through the bottleneck of technical nonsense.

I’m clearly not happy (and not having fun) with equipment that is buried under bootups, menus, shared controls, and digital parameters. When I see people playing with semi-modular analog synths connected to a pile of analog effects pedals with one-knob-per-function behaviors, I feel like I’m missing out.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:39 am

pekbro wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:44 pm
I just turned 49 myself, I can understand about the knob thing, with digital, you can't really
do the thing where you only pretend to turn the knob, mostly moving the potentiometer
up a hair, through sheer force of will alone. I am now convinced that anyone interested
in pursuing music as we do here, should in the least get themselves an affordable hardware
synth to be used in conjunction (or addition) to plugins and whatnot. For a long time, I was
of the opinion that hardware (beyond a guitar) wasn't necessary. Being a computer nerd,
software seemed to me the perfect solution. I believe now, I was wrong about that.
While software is amazing and definitely worthwhile, solely relying on it, is a mistake imho.
The two work together perfectly well and go a long way to make up for each others
shortcomings. From now on, if anyone tells me all you need is in the box, I would say
sure thats fine, if all you're after is only half of the story...
+1000!!! :tu: :-)

This has been my process of discovery with many creative tools. I went for the “cost-effective” digital/computer-based setup for art and music.

End result: I hate computers (and I especially hate 3D modeling/rendering software). I crave tactile interaction with my tools. I crave consistency and reliability!!

Mouse and trackpad have their place, but I don’t like feeling as though my hands are operating ten-foot poles protruding into a tiny, low-resolution view port, manipulating little bits and bobs from over twenty feet away, and having no sense of real-time expression over parameters without wasting time configuring low-resolution knobs at every context change.

Still, computers get us accustomed to saving/instant recal & undo. I’ve often wanted to undo a pencil mark or paint splotch. So, some of each world is my goal now: some digital and some analog/physical.

But damn if the physical and analog tools aren’t exactly as costly as the marketing claims of software-everything said they were!
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

chk071
KVRAF
18570 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:44 am

Jace-BeOS wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:39 am
I crave tactile interaction with my tools. I crave consistency and reliability!!
Same here. The thing is that i absolutely hate anything else hardware related. Cables, devices taking place, the need for a new audio interface with more inputs, hardware which might need maintenance after a while, voltage controlled oscillators, which lose tuning, having to render every sound i make, losing control over the ability to always modify the end result... thus making it really hard to justify a hardware purchase.

If it's different for you, fair enough. Just my 2c.

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:47 am

egbert101 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:59 am
If anything, it's going to be a lot of work and pain and energy for something that at least is an expression of uniqueness, rather than copying other people, something I've yet to truly break free from.
I struggle with this. The music I made when I first started was often way outside what I want to be making (cheesy; too pleasant). As I developed my techniques and got better tools, I started to actively pursue the sounds of my favorite musicians. I learned a lot by trying to emulate their sounds & techniques... but it’s probably a bit obvious who my strongest influence is when listening to much of my music.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

User avatar
vurt
addled muppet weed
40646 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:49 am

Jace-BeOS wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:22 am
When I see people playing with semi-modular analog synths connected to a pile of analog effects pedals with one-knob-per-function behaviors, I feel like I’m missing out.

in this case, i would seriously consider looking at the neutron (that track toonertik posted is pretty cool, iirc from the thread on the café, only the reverb was added)
or wait on maybe the korg volca modular.

both of these are entry level, both cost and function wise,
although, the neutron is a little more expandable obviously.
when i say entry level, i mean they offer the very least you would need to do anything "modular" all in one package, but even in such a small package, theres a hell of a lot of scope for sound 8)
and there really is something to be said for noodling for hours with no real intent.
yeah, intent is good sometimes, but that pure freedom is so zen :hihi:

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:49 am

chk071 wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:44 am
Jace-BeOS wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:39 am
I crave tactile interaction with my tools. I crave consistency and reliability!!
Same here. The thing is that i absolutely hate anything else hardware related. Cables, devices taking place, the need for a new audio interface with more inputs, hardware which might need maintenance after a while, voltage controlled oscillators, which lose tuning, having to render every sound i make, losing control over the ability to always modify the end result... thus making it really hard to justify a hardware purchase.

If it's different for you, fair enough. Just my 2c.
:-) I fully appreciate all you said there. I think that’s why I need to find a way to have some of both worlds, rather than almost all of one.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:52 am

whyterabbyt wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:14 am
egbert101 wrote:
Sat Feb 09, 2019 3:19 pm
You buy a sub £300 analog synth, and what's the worse that can happen?
leaking capacitors and magic smoke.

ah, crivvens, mah poor wee werkstatt....
:lol: yeah that’s why I made so many inquiries about whether or not interfacing various semi-modular synths was safe.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4913 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: Do I “need” analog synths?

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:57 am

vurt wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:49 am
in this case, i would seriously consider looking at the neutron
It’s on my list. As is Behringer’s Model D, the Korg MS-20 and SQ-1, and/or maybe the Behringer Crave.
vurt wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:49 am
or wait on maybe the korg volca modular.
In videos I’ve seen of the Volka series, I noticed stepping in things like filter cutoff adjustments and that put me right off the Volka line. If I’m going for analog, I don’t want digitally-controlled analog. That’s exactly what I’m trying to escape. Until MIDI 2.0 dominates (I’ll give it to just before I die), digitally controlled stuff will continue to be low-resolution on controls.
vurt wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:49 am
and there really is something to be said for noodling for hours with no real intent.
yeah, intent is good sometimes, but that pure freedom is so zen :hihi:
I’d be happy to play in that space. :-)
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

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