Is It Just Me?

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Zamise » Sat Sep 03, 2011 11:17 pm

I like to think of them like having a giant golden buddah statue sitting on my front porch. My prayers won't be answered any more than if it was made of cement and hidden away in my basement. Their purpose is for showing them off to try to impress everyone else besides yourself. If there is some special sound only those that have one can hear and can't be sampled to sound identical, then I think the US government should look in to them for encrypting CIA spy messages. They've been known for spending billions on a hammer, it might actually be way way cheaper to use a JP8 or CS-80. Maybe they have been already, I don't know.
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by urgetoplay » Sun Sep 04, 2011 3:55 am

Zamise, the chip on your shoulder is starting to distort your vision; go have it checked out.
Resonance in Humans is called Empathy.

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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Automatic Gainsay » Sun Sep 04, 2011 4:14 am

AnalogKid wrote:My point was/is that, in my opinion, the difference is not worth $3,000, $5,000, $8,0000, or in some cases $10,000 and up, especially with reliability and repair concerns. My annual household income is $83,000 a year. To me, $5,000 is a lot of money, a huge sum of money. As I mentioned in my first post, unless you win the lottery and/or have money to burn, I personally don’t understand why someone would want to spend huge sums of money, $5,000 and up, on a “classic” analog synth. I appreciate the (cordial) responses from those of you who indicated why they think the old machines are worth it, and I can see where many of you are coming from. However, in my subjective opinion (I stress the word subjective), I just happen to disagree.
A synth is worth to you what you'll pay for it. Will you pay $5000 for a classic? Apparently not. But apparently someone will. There are classics I might pay $5000 for, but not many. Also, my annual income is FAR less than yours.
The point is, is it worth it to you... and that's all there is to it. I can agree with you. While I will shout about certain qualities vintage analog synths possess, I will not pay insane prices for them. The people paying insane prices are people who are engaging in a status behavior, OR they are people who simply have the money to spend, and it's worth it to them. So, they're "worth it" to those people. On average, yeah... the prices are starting to exceed the average person's assessment of their worth. It's sad, but nothing can be done. Scarcity and false hype are in control now, and there's no turning back. You'll get a bunch of rich guys who don't know s**t telling their friends "this synth is the best you can get, I paid $8000 for it," and like most of the people here, they won't be able to describe or even discern the aural value of the synth.
Last edited by Automatic Gainsay on Sun Sep 04, 2011 5:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Hybrid88 » Sun Sep 04, 2011 5:06 am

Shock horror, I totally agree with everything AG just said. :D

...and my income isn't anywhere remotely near the above figure, but I'm fortunate enough to be able to spend a fair proportion of it on whatever I want, really there are certain sacrifices you have to make to allow the average person to own this stuff nowadays - and looking at the prices I'm happy that I've got all the synths I was after.

I hope in the future these things don't get out of reach of the musicians who want them though, it'd be sad to see these exclusively relegated to pro studios like the vintage Neve's etc. have.

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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by tunedLow » Sun Sep 04, 2011 5:17 am

I agree with AG as well. For some $3k is too much, others would rather pay to smash a synthesizer into the ground before ever playing one. It's all relative to what matters to you.

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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by urgetoplay » Sun Sep 04, 2011 5:20 am

I'd like to also point out that people who've paid exhorbinant amounts for vintage synths are a very small percentage of that synths owners. Jup 8 owners who've paid more than $5K are less than 1% of Jup 8 owners. Same goes for $20k
CS80 owners. most of us purchased our gear at much lower pricing.
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by nvbrkr » Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:26 am

AnalogKid wrote:It would seem that some of you are still missing the point of my original post. Again, the point that I was trying to make is not that modern synths sound better or as good as the old “classic” analog synths. Synth fans have been arguing for a long time about old analog synths being “warm” and “alive” etc. when compared to modern gear. As I mentioned in an earlier post on this thread, old analog synths can and do sound fantastic (if the user knows what they’re doing; judging by many of the clips on Youtube, many don’t).

Let me make it clear for some of you who still seem to misunderstand what I was trying to convey in my original post on this thread. My point was/is that, in my opinion, the difference is not worth $3,000, $5,000, $8,0000, or in some cases $10,000 and up, especially with reliability and repair concerns. My annual household income is $83,000 a year. To me, $5,000 is a lot of money, a huge sum of money. As I mentioned in my first post, unless you win the lottery and/or have money to burn, I personally don’t understand why someone would want to spend huge sums of money, $5,000 and up, on a “classic” analog synth. I appreciate the (cordial) responses from those of you who indicated why they think the old machines are worth it, and I can see where many of you are coming from. However, in my subjective opinion (I stress the word subjective), I just happen to disagree.

Some of you seem to have also missed my point in mentioning Asia, Genesis, and Ultravox in my last post on this thread. My point was that these acts were/are known for their use of “classic” analog synths decades ago, and NONE of them was compelled to use them (although they could afford it) in place of modern synths when they toured in the present day performing their old material, which was originally all played on what is now "classic" analog gear. These bands sound fantastic using modern synths, and now they don’t have to be as concerned about reliability issues when they tour.

With the enormous prices that people are asking for vintage synths, if someone wanted to recreate, let’s say, a Jean Michel Jarre track using the same equipment as JMJ, you would literally have to invest tens of thousands of dollars in vintage analog equipment to do it.

Right now, there is a Jupiter 8 on Ebay with a buy it now price of $6,499 and a CS-80 with a buy it now price of $19,900 (gulp). Instead of paying $6,499 for one old Jupiter 8, I could buy EVERYTHING , I stress everything, in this kid’s home studio (clip below) two times over and still have thousands of dollars left over.

Here is a kid (great synthesist in my book; check out some of his other clips), recreating Jean Michel Jarre’s Oxygene 7 in his home studio using ALL modern gear. If you click on “show more” and expand the section under the clip, you’ll see that he listed all of the hardware, soft-synths, and sequencers that he used to recreate Oxygene 7. As the kid writes, “No samples from the original track where used. Everything you see me playing is LIVE!” (some of you may accuse him of lying about his comment that no samples from the orignal track were used when you hear it).

I have been a fan of Jean Michel Jarre ever since I can remember. He is one of my synth heroes. Frankly, (unless you have bad speakers or crappy headphones) I think you are lying to yourself if you don’t think that this Oxygene 7 recreation sounds fantastic and very much like the original Jarre song.

I must be lying to myself then. I'm hardly a Jarre fan myself, but what makes that type of compositions have a lot of charm to me is exactly the details in the sound and the way those classic electronic instruments sits just so effortlessly in the mix. The recreation you provided a link to just lacks all of that and I don't know why I would want to listen to something like that except for A/B'ing that version to the original (though I have no problem with the "kid's" version and I also know that there are VAs that get closer to real analogue sound than the boards that he is using).

Really, I appreciate your point about the price difference. It underlines the absurdity of the whole thing.

Bringing up that Jarre example just makes me think you're barking at the wrong tree here. Most people on sites like this one aren't buying expensive vintage gear with some sort of a completionist mindset. They consider quite carefully what type of units will complement each other and what purposes they could serve in their music. For example, they might have a great monosynth or two for the leads and the experimental stuff and a more modest polysynth for just chords. Very few people are interested in doing recreations of the music of the likes of Jarre, Vangelis, Tomita - most of the time when I see people attempting to do that on youtube it's been guys with rather large VA / modern gear setups.

As for where the money comes from: it doesn't come from just your wage, it also comes from selling the gear you have. I've had to sell all kinds of pedals, amps and other keyboard instruments to get the few analog synths that I have wanted. I started buying music equipment when I was thirteen, so it shouldn't be surprising that I had a lot of stuff to sell by the time I was entering my thirties. When you buy something used there's always a decent chance that you're going to at least get the same money back when selling it to someone else. A lot of it is just about switching stuff around. You could do one recording project with certain units - then perhaps switch them for something else for the next project. It's not about hoarding everything at once into your one bedroom apartment.

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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Synthacon » Sun Sep 04, 2011 1:08 pm

I think there are a lot of synths out there that can be had cheaply and that can sound great, most of the Yamaha CS range is still cheap and very under appreciated in my opinion, I have had a few, the CS40M was possible the best I had to be honest.

You do not have to spend big money if you do not want.

The Jarre clip is interesting as most of that album was a mix of real analogue, mainly Eminent 310, ARP 2600 and VCS3 and also an awful lot of VA gear. I think it is not a bad effort at all. The best examples of Jarre stuff on new gear is the Norwegian guy who does entire tracks on a Virus KB, very very impressive stuff.

I know Jarre is touring with a pile of old gear at the moment but he has been known to use lots of softsynths, the Aero album for instance, and also digital stuff (D50,JD800 and K2000) where he has created whole albums just with the presets.

The thing is with some vintage gear you could buy better modern, the 2600 and VCS3 are too examples where you could do the same both in terms of function and sound far far cheaper.

At the end of the day it is choice, talking to well know synth person last week even he can not understand some prices anymore, it is strange and worrying as there may come a time when hardly anything is going to be cheap enough for people to use.
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by AnalogKid » Sun Sep 04, 2011 9:59 pm

Synthacon wrote: The best examples of Jarre stuff on new gear is the Norwegian guy who does entire tracks on a Virus KB, very very impressive stuff.
Can you direct me to the "Norwegian guy?" I'd be interested in hearing this. I can't seem to find anything on Youtube done on a Virus by a Norwegian guy. I would appreciate your (or someone else's) assistance in finding this. Thanks much.

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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by hfinn » Sun Sep 04, 2011 10:25 pm

Same reason a 40 year old Gibson guitar could go for $15000 compared to a new one, and the same reason a 57 corvette is worth lots more than a new one. :-/

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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by man-009 » Sun Sep 04, 2011 10:35 pm

so true for some gear! i can see some being worth a little extra since they no longer make the old hardware versions but that is just plain crazy to be so high priced! a joke for some! but that is my thoughts. but...if you want it, you pay! it's worth it to some. and i can respect that. i bought a wasp for crazy money. why?, because i had to have it. and that may be a joke to others. it's a choice. and you make it. pay or don't. period.

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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Synthacon » Mon Sep 05, 2011 2:04 am

AnalogKid wrote:
Can you direct me to the "Norwegian guy?" I'd be interested in hearing this. I can't seem to find anything on Youtube done on a Virus by a Norwegian guy. I would appreciate your (or someone else's) assistance in finding this. Thanks much.
Here you go...

http://www.perkristian.net/studio_viruskb.shtml

He is on YouTube too doing things live.

If people are not impressed by the Virus only tracks then I will be surprised. Just goes to show what you can do with a 10 year old VA and some talent.
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Diametro » Mon Sep 05, 2011 2:57 am

I wouldn't tour with vintage analogs either ... There's little point live ... THERE, the difference between analog and digital IS mostly lost ...

However, in the studio, a different set of rules apply ... It's quite simple ...

In addition, back in the day, there was NO OTHER CHOICE other than analog ... It's conceivable some of these analog synth pop guys actually prefer digital now ... Or at the very least for the reasons aformentioned, on the road ...
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Automatic Gainsay » Mon Sep 05, 2011 3:23 am

Synthacon wrote:I think there are a lot of synths out there that can be had cheaply and that can sound great, most of the Yamaha CS range is still cheap and very under appreciated in my opinion, I have had a few, the CS40M was possible the best I had to be honest.

You do not have to spend big money if you do not want.
Totally. I keep on telling people that the CS-15 is the best possible synth for the money, and that I'd pay Odyssey prices for one because its functionality exceeds SO MANY monosynths.
What do I have to do, make a demo???


Synthacon wrote:The thing is with some vintage gear you could buy better modern, the 2600 and VCS3 are too examples where you could do the same both in terms of function and sound far far cheaper.
I guess that depends on what "sound" means to you, and how deep your perception of analog character goes. Functionality, sure. But sound... I've simply never had a synth like the 2600 or that had functionality like the 2600 that had a sound like my model of 2600. I sacrificed a 44 module modular for it simply for that sound, and do not regret it one bit.
But you're right for some people. The people who can't tell a difference, or don't care if there is a difference, shouldn't waste time or money on a 2600 or VCS3. I envy them.
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Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by phesago » Mon Sep 05, 2011 3:26 am

I would have to say, that having owned a p5 3.3 and a NL1, I would say that I prefer the p5. I regret deciding to sell it. It did in fact sound better to me.

It was a much more simple machine. Elegant even. Def worth the 2-3k ish you have to spend to get them. Then again, I am basing this opinion soley on the aesthetic appeal of it's look and ease of use.

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