Cheapest build quality?

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OriginalJambo
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Post by OriginalJambo » Sun Apr 06, 2008 12:09 am

In my experience I wouldn't trust any of these synths to withstand much punishment:

X-Station
microKORG
Polivoks

Of course for every cheaply made synth there is a:

Image

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Post by Alex E » Sun Apr 06, 2008 12:18 am

Okay I take it back about the electribes. My ER-1 just seemed sorta light and plastic. But then again I was comparing it to my MC-303 which is made of metal.
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Re: Cheapest build quality?

Post by supermel74 » Sun Apr 06, 2008 12:24 am

TrondC wrote:
supermel74 wrote:
Alex E wrote:What synths/drum machines have you played/handled have the cheapest build quality?

My rule of thumb is: If you torque it in your hands and it creaks, that says something about build quality. :)


First generation Electribes
The first generation electribes were built very solidly imo. My nominee is the Korg 707, very creaky.
my EA, ER and Microkorg are solid as h**l to me. just don't treat them like s**t.
For real. I love reading reviews of the 1st generation Electribes. People are always like "the build quailty is pretty sketchy, I wouldn't want to drop it" NEWSFLASH: Drop a piece of gear even in a steel case and it will probably knock the insides loose and break just as easily. Metal casings won't protect from shock and jarring. If anything the extra weight will just make the fall harder. Then there's "I wouldn't want to gig with it, too fragile" What in the h**l are you doing to your gear at a gig that would bust hard molded plasic with a metal undercasing? :lol:

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Post by OriginalJambo » Sun Apr 06, 2008 12:44 am

I will say that my Polysix fell five feet from my keyboard rack backwards, against the wall and the result was only a slight dent to the corner of the back panel and some fake wood panel chippings. That I found most impressive.

If that'd been my Polivoks the outcome, I fear, would have been a lot less desirable.

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Post by Johnny Lenin » Sun Apr 06, 2008 1:37 am

OriginalJambo wrote:I will say that my Polysix fell five feet from my keyboard rack backwards, against the wall and the result was only a slight dent to the corner of the back panel and some fake wood panel chippings. That I found most impressive.
Ditto when my cats knocked my Vox off its stand [I don't have the original stand... sigh...]. It hit the ground keyboard end first, and I was convinced that all those 40-year-old solder joints and 40-year-old transistors would be trashed. I put it back on the stand, turned it on, and it played as well as always. Okay... there was a scuff on the tolex.

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Post by Alex E » Sun Apr 06, 2008 1:49 am

A lot of keyboards falling off stands... my Juno-106 did just that and the only damage went to the bender stick, which got cracked inside so it got loose and the tip was bent. But that's all.
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Post by Alex E » Sun Apr 06, 2008 1:51 am

OriginalJambo wrote:
Of course for every cheaply made synth there is a:

Image
When I had my MK1 DX7 a couple years ago me and my bandmates always referred to it as "The Tank"

Though, they don't quite stand up to Trent Reznor and a mic stand as well as I wish they did. :cry:
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Post by polardark » Sun Apr 06, 2008 2:09 am

Novation Bass Station and Novation Bass Station Rack... definitely. Turning the knobs makes me afraid that they'll come loose.

Now the Novation Super Bass Station.. there's good quality.

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Post by Hossinfeffa » Sun Apr 06, 2008 2:41 am

The SH-201 takes the cake based on synths I've seen in real life. I saw it lying against the wall, unplugged in Guitar Center and went to pick it up. The thing was so light I kinda fell back a bit expecting something heavier. The front of it also seemed like it would fall off rather quickly.

Never actually got to toy with the sound of it though.
Well fffff.

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Post by Johnny Lenin » Sun Apr 06, 2008 4:30 am

Hossinfeffa wrote:The SH-201 takes the cake based on synths I've seen in real life. I saw it lying against the wall, unplugged in Guitar Center and went to pick it up. The thing was so light I kinda fell back a bit expecting something heavier. The front of it also seemed like it would fall off rather quickly.
I liked that the SH-201 was light. But the amount of volume for the weight -- its lack of density -- was really disconcerting. I've never played any other synth that felt like it was 90% air. If it was more the size of a Poly-800 it would feel better.

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Post by supermel74 » Sun Apr 06, 2008 4:49 am

polardark wrote:Novation Bass Station and Novation Bass Station Rack... definitely. Turning the knobs makes me afraid that they'll come loose.

Now the Novation Super Bass Station.. there's good quality.
I had the same feeling with the Bass Station rack and the DrumStation rack. Two very good machines that could have been more solid. Probably should have been 2 unit rack spaces too to give more room for tweaking and slightly larger, better quality knobs

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Post by Hossinfeffa » Sun Apr 06, 2008 4:55 am

Johnny Lenin wrote: I liked that the SH-201 was light. But the amount of volume for the weight -- its lack of density -- was really disconcerting. I've never played any other synth that felt like it was 90% air. If it was more the size of a Poly-800 it would feel better.
There's nothing wrong with something being light as long as it can stand up to time and use, in my opinion. To me it just felt like I was handling a young girl's Casio starter keyboard with that build quality. Maybe I'm just too used to carrying my Juno-6. I admit, I'm not a rough user and I don't gig, but still, I felt like I was going to break the thing. I still wish I could have heard the sound of it though. Maybe next time I walk in.
Well fffff.

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Post by lotus-eater » Sun Apr 06, 2008 5:21 pm

The knobs on the Prophet 08 feel really, REALLY weak to me. That synth would be ten times more attractive to me if the encoders were reasonably firm. I don't understand why so many manufacturers seem to be forgetting how great it feels to adjust a solid control, whether it be a knob or a slider. The anodized aluminum knobs on the electrix gear feel amazing, and those weren't exactly high-end devices.

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Post by OMNI26 » Sun Apr 06, 2008 5:32 pm

The Pro-One, for sure.

Also, most Italian stuff from the 70's / 80's (i.e., Crumar and Siel, in particular) I have found to be lacking in overall build quality.

With regard to newer stuff, the Novation X-Station and XioSynth are quite fragile. I just sold my XioSynth.....sounded fantastic, but I was hoping to use it live with my band and I never felt comfortable that it could take even the slightest physical challenge....the knobs in particular.

And yes, the DX7 is a tank!

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Post by synth3tik » Sun Apr 06, 2008 7:22 pm

The cheap pieces o' c**p that are coming out now.

Like the Korg MicroX and the Yamaha MM06. The plastic is even super low grade. What ever happened to the tanks like the M1?

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