Size doesn't matter... or does it?

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.

What sized setup do you prefer?

Hardcore - (The more the better)
9
18%
Big - (Approx. 15 synths/drum machines)
4
8%
Medium - (Approx. 10 synths/drum machines)
8
16%
Small - (Approx. 5 synths/drum machines)
25
49%
Softcore - (all in the computer)
5
10%
 
Total votes: 51

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Re: Size doesn't matter... or does it?

Post by tekkentool » Fri Oct 18, 2013 3:45 am

bvc wrote:I find all the dedicated MIDI controller keyboards out there very cheap and not conducive to playing as a musical instrument.
Don't buy the cheap ones then. if crisp keyboard action is what you're after it's probably not the best idea to look for vintage gear :lol:

bvc wrote:I personally feel that software synths can do anything hardware synths can do, in theory. The appreciation of old analog synths is akin to vinyl enthusiasts who say records sound better. They don't, but people like what they're familiar with. (This isn't to say analog synths don't sound as good as software synths, just that they don't necessarily sound "better," as that's subjective).
Not really. Software vs hardware is not really that much of an issue. I think a virus TI VST would sound the same as that overpriced box of DSP processors does.

Digital vs analogue. Eh it's up in the air, there are certain things for sure you'll notice on digital synths like stepping, Aliasing on the LFO once it hits audio ranges, and yeah the sound is different. Whether or not that's an issue to you is different thing, most listeners won't tell or care really but if something works for you I don't see the issue. For me I like working digitally and I just don't have the space to own anything other than my 88 key controller right now ever since I moved. Let alone have anything set up and ready to go.

The answer really lies in how you work. If you don't ever use sequencers I don't see much of a reason why hardware would at all be inferior in speed/workflow to a DAW.
bvc wrote: The appreciation of old analog synths is akin to vinyl enthusiasts who say records sound better.


this analogy is awful btw.

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Re: Size doesn't matter... or does it?

Post by bvc » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:35 am

tekkentool wrote:
bvc wrote:I find all the dedicated MIDI controller keyboards out there very cheap and not conducive to playing as a musical instrument.
Don't buy the cheap ones then. if crisp keyboard action is what you're after it's probably not the best idea to look for vintage gear :lol:
Cite a dedicated MIDI controller you feel has passable action, then. Also, try claiming that the Yamaha FS synth action found on a lot of "vintage gear" is not "crisp," and see who gets laughed at.
tekkentool wrote:
bvc wrote:I personally feel that software synths can do anything hardware synths can do, in theory. The appreciation of old analog synths is akin to vinyl enthusiasts who say records sound better. They don't, but people like what they're familiar with. (This isn't to say analog synths don't sound as good as software synths, just that they don't necessarily sound "better," as that's subjective).
Not really. Software vs hardware is not really that much of an issue. I think a virus TI VST would sound the same as that overpriced box of DSP processors does.
"Not really." Did I not just say that software and hardware synths have essentially the same capabilities as one another?
tekkentool wrote:
bvc wrote: The appreciation of old analog synths is akin to vinyl enthusiasts who say records sound better.


this analogy is awful btw.
As is your ability to offer reasoning as to why you take issue with my analogy.

If you want to be condescending and contrary, at least back up what you're saying with some arguments and logic. Is it that you have thousands of posts here and I have few that makes you feel the need to be pedantic? Perhaps consider that I may be spending more of my time creating music than talking about creating music on a message board.

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Re: Size doesn't matter... or does it?

Post by cornutt » Fri Oct 18, 2013 8:35 pm

Hmm. Judging from this thread, it appears that I have one of the larger setups: 16 synths, not counting the modular, plus a Hammond. That surprises me: both that I have that many synths (I didn't realize until I added it up just now!) and that there don't seem to be too many other people replying to this thread who have anything as large. Evidently I'm a dinosaur. :lol:

Why so many? Well, one reason is that I'm always on the lookout for something unique, a synth that either uses an uncommon or different synthesis method, or a unique method of working with it. I've got a few analogs, a few digital subtractive synths, a few romplers, a drum machine, an additive synth, a couple of sampling-based machines, a semi-modular, an actual modular, and a few that don't fit neatly into a category (Fizmo, Solaris). Another reason is that I like the "virtual track" paradigm: I like to record tracks as MIDI, and then when everything is built, run a big MIDI playback and mix the resulting audio directly to two-track. This is kind of a holdover from the tape days (in the tape world, the fewer tracks and the less track bouncing, the better), but it is kind of cool to hear a track come together in a big MIDI jam session, so I continue to work that way.

I have slowed way down on my buying new gear over the past few years. My last major purchase was the Solaris, and that was actually paid for several years ago (I was one of the pre-orders). Every time I look at a piece of new gear, I usually wind up realizing (after the initial drooling) that it mostly or completely duplicates the functions of something I already have. These days, most of my buying consists of bits and pieces for the modular. I have a rule that I don't buy anything new until I have learned how to use all of the gear I have, although I've been known to break that rule from time to time. I do have a few synths that I don't use much, but as it happens those particular ones aren't worth anything on the used market right now, so it's not worth the bother to pack them up and ship them.

One thing that is a negative about having a lot of gear is the amount of time you spend on maintenance. I don't currently have anything that is broken, but I do have several things that are "not quite right" at the moment: dead keys and velocity problems with the JD-800 keyboard, DAC that needs calibration in the JD-990, loose power cord socket on the TG33, one voice in the Matrix-1000 with a filter that's out of whack, and a couple of modules in the modular that have jacks or pots coming loose. And I do actually use a few soft synths, so I'm in the software update/licensing loop too.
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Re: Size doesn't matter... or does it?

Post by Infinity Curve » Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:57 pm

bvc wrote: Cite a dedicated MIDI controller you feel has passable action, then. Also, try claiming that the Yamaha FS synth action found on a lot of "vintage gear" is not "crisp," and see who gets laughed at.
Check out the Novation SL line

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Re: Size doesn't matter... or does it?

Post by divineaudio » Sat Oct 19, 2013 12:58 am

3 synths, 1 sampler, 1 drum machine, tons of effects. ideally i would have the ability to recreate everything i do in the studio in a live setting without having to carry around a huge pile of gear. :)

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Re: Size doesn't matter... or does it?

Post by ninja6485 » Sat Oct 19, 2013 6:46 am

bvc wrote:tekkentool wrote:
bvc wrote:
The appreciation of old analog synths is akin to vinyl enthusiasts who say records sound better.

this analogy is awful btw.

As is your ability to offer reasoning as to why you take issue with my analogy.

If you want to be condescending and contrary, at least back up what you're saying with some arguments and logic.
HAHAHAHA!!!! I like this guy ;). c**p analogy though.
bvc wrote:I personally feel that software synths can do anything hardware synths can do, in theory.
Eehhh not really. I find it's better to appreciate the unique qualities of each thing respective to what it does and how it fits with having an aesthetic experience. I mean you have to keep the discussion oriented to what we're doing. It's not like we're building bridges here, where economy means getting the same end with cheaper means. In our case economy means facilitating a better aesthetic experience, namely creating music.

But in a way you're right because Tekken probably has great aesthetic experiences with only software. The difference is that I'm after a wholly different kind of aesthetic experience, and thus those tools do not serve me, and as such are not economical (in my case). So I say the weaker thesis is the case, viz..you can have an aesthetic experience with software, but the stronger thesis; that you can have the same aesthetic experience with software, is not the case. So naturally when I read the opinion that software synths can do anything hardware synths can do, I have to go eeehhh... 8-)



Anyway, I went with the more is better option. I like exploring gear, and I find I use the character of a piece of gear more than I use what it does. Sometimes I need my m1, sometimes I need my sh-101. And I've started doing exactly what cornutt described. only took me a decade to go from using a DAW and softsynths to doing it the old fashion way :ugeek: I also like having huge complicated things that have plenty of area to explore. I like not knowing my gear to a certain extent. The exploration is very fruitful. And while we're counting, I think I'm at 29 pieces of gear, not counting maschine or my mixers, guitars/bass, perc instruments, ethnic stuff, computers, recording devices,etc.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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