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Moog Sub 37

Posted: Wed Jan 15, 2014 11:58 pm
by vcs3
New Moog Sub 37 Paraphonic:

From matrisynth:

"Paraphony is the property of an electronic musical instrument that can produce multiple notes or voices, but falls short of being truly polyphonic because the voices are not fully independent since they share at least one common element. For example, there might be just one single filter working on all voices collectively rather than the one filter per voice of truly polyphonic instruments; or there might be only one envelope generator.

One well-known paraphonic synth is the Korg Poly-800, which had 8 oscillators and could produce 8 voices (or 4 2-oscillator voices), but had just one filter."

Notes: Another way to look at it is that in a true polyphonic synth, each voice is an individual synthesizer, albeit with parameters in sync so the patch for each note is the same, unlike say an Oberheim four or eight voice where you have to manually sync up parameters. Some paraphonic string synths and organs have full polyphony across the entire range of the keyboard. They implement this with what's commonly referred to divide down technology which is a way of essentially dividing down the frequencies of the main oscillators to map the full range of the keyboard. In short they share the same oscillators for all notes. All of the above will impact how the synth responds to polyphony. For example if all notes share a single filter and you apply an envelop modulation to that filter then the modulation will be shared across all notes triggered vs. being applied independently for each note. It's like running a polysynth through a single external filter with shared inputs - each note either takes over the input or responds to the first input (think mult vs singl trigger modes). The same would apply to modulations to a divide down oscillator. Any modulation applied would be shared across all notes. It will be interesting to see how things are implemented in the SUB 37. Waldorf's Rocket and new Pulse 2 has a paraphonic mode for selectable eight or four note polyphony. Analogue Solutions new Polymath is also paraphonic. The Polymath has four oscillators that can be triggered independently much like the KORG Mono-Poly.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 12:23 am
by alan partridge
Very good news. We're well overdue for some new paraphonic synths - cheaper and can sound great. For those people who think paraphony isn't usable as polyphony, have a listen to how many musicians on 1970s records were able to make paraphonic instruments sound sweeping, colourful and great.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 12:27 am
by sequentialsoftshock
What's the source of that graphic ?

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 12:30 am
by GuyaGuy
sequentialsoftshock wrote:What's the source of that graphic ?

As per Moog post:

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 12:40 am
by Rooftree
The graphic was posted by Moog Music on their forum.

I saw a piece of text on the graphic that was "duo". I forget where on the panel it was. Maybe it can be played as a two voice synth with the voices going through a single filter paraphonically.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:02 am
by Automatic Gainsay
I just posted this on my Facebook page:


It's one of my pet peeves, actually. There seems to be some extensive confusion about what these terms mean, and what they mean in relation to each other.

Even the Wiki page states something ridiculous about "true polyphony."

So, I'm here to set the record straight (in regard to synthesizers).

Monophonic/Monophony: This synthesizer, triggered from a keyboard, can only play one note at a time. Now, depending on the amount of oscillators, more than one note may be heard... but all of these notes will move in tandem when different single notes are played on the keyboard.

Duophonic/Duophony: This synthesizer, triggered from a keyboard, can only play two notes at a time. This term came into being in regard to synthesizers at the point where synthesizer oscillators were modified to be either "low note priority (the lowest voltage is played, all others are ignored)," or "high note priority (the highest voltage is played, all others are ignored)." Synthesizers like the ARP Odyssey, the Moog Sonic Six, and some versions of the ARP 2600 are duophonic. You can play two notes at a time, one for each voltage. Of course, you also need at least two oscillators.

Polyphonic/Polyphony: This synthesizer, triggered from a keyboard, can play two or more notes at a time. Yes, I know... that overlaps with the term "duophonic," but these things can't be helped. "Polyphonic" is a very general term.
In regard to analog synths, there are two types of polyphony.

There is top-octave divide-down polyphony, where the top octave of keys has its notes provided by 12 fixed-pitch oscillators and those frequencies are divided in half to aquire each subsequent descending octave. That means the synthesizer has 12 oscillators, and 12 dividers per octave after that. Every SINGLE note can be played at the same time on this synthesizer. This is, by definition, "true" polyphony. It started in 1939 with the Hammond Novachord, and has been used extensively in a variety of synthesizers up until the 1980s.

There is "limited, but individually-articulated" polyphony. This is polyphony where a microprocessor scans which notes are played when, and applies that information to the available oscillators. This type of polyphony came about with advances in microprocessor technology that made microprocessors less expensive and more available in the 1970s. It allows you to have more control over the articulation of each note, but severely limits the amount of notes that can be played at once. The Sequential Circuits Prophet 5 and the Yamaha CS-80 are examples of this method. The limitation comes in because each note needs a variable oscillator... or even two. And those are expensive.

Of course, with digital technology, polyphony increased from 2 notes to 4 notes to 8 notes to 16 notes, and etc. More powerful computers means more powerful voice allocation and less expensive digital oscillators.

[Note: there is actually a type of polyphony that was created by Harald Bode back in the 1930s which allows electric note allocation, but apart from the Warbo Formant Organ, I don't think it has been implemented anywhere else... I'm really curious about it]

Okay, and that's it. That's the end. Those are the types of polyphony.

"But wait!" You say... "What about PARAPHONY! Isn't that a form of fake or not true or not-quite-real polyphony?"
No, it most certainly IS NOT. It really has NOTHING TO DO WITH polyphony. In fact, every monophonic is ALSO paraphonic.

I know you're running to your favorite online dictionary right now... but I'm going to plow ahead.

"Paraphonic" is a term that has to do with articulation... not a term that has to do with how many notes a synth can generate. A "paraphonic" synthesizer is one where all of the notes generated... from 1 to 1,000,000... go through a single filter and VCA combination. That's it. That is what "paraphonic" means. It's just more noticeable when you're trying to articulate polyphonic passages.

A synthesizer like the ARP Omni is paraphonic. It has a divide-down polyphony scheme, but all of those notes, and every triggering of those notes, is forced through a single filter and VCA. What does this mean? It means you can't have each new note played featuring new filter articulation without having that same articulation occur on the notes you're holding. Or, it means that new notes get articulation, but old notes get nothing. Is that awesome? Well, not really. In fact, people kind of hate it, sometimes. They want each note to trigger a filter and VCA. Which is, I must point out, just like a piano. People really like how each note played has its own volume and filter articulation.

Just like, say, a Prophet 5 or a Memorymoog. But the problem with those is that you run out of notes quite quickly. In the Prophet 5, you only have 5 notes to play before you run out of polyphony. What kind of polyphony is that? SEVERELY limited polyphony. But... people tend to favor it because they like the articulation more than they like the note-count.

Of course, you could always go the route of the Korg PS-3100. It is divide-down, but instead of going the paraphonic route, it has A FILTER AND VCA FOR EVERY SINGLE ONE OF ITS NOTES. Yeah, that gets expensive fast... which is why most manufacturers didn't take that route.

And that is what it comes down to. "Polyphony" is how many notes a synth can play at once. "Paraphony" is the instance where those notes are directed through a single filter/amp combination. Synths can be polyphonic AND paraphonic. Synths can even be monophonic and paraphonic. But the only "real" polyphony is when every note can be played at once... whether you seek individual articulation or not. Instead of saying things like "real polyphony," we should describe full polyphony with full articulation with a term like "ideal polyphony."

Okay, all of that being said... if you really examine this graphic, it's probably most likely that this is a duophonic synth, and not a polyphonic synth. Look at the "duo mode."

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:03 am
by sequentialsoftshock
Oh nice, so this isn't just some rumor. Hope to try it out.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:13 am
by commodorejohn
Wonder what the price will be, but I'm intrigued. A new duophonic analog would be freakin' sweet.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:38 am
by Z
It's Mono/DUOphonic, y'all.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 5:11 am
by Kenneth
If this is really a duophonic version if the Sub with 37 keys and an arpeggiator, I might have to seriously consider selling my Voyager in pursuit of this. I am unbearably excited to try one out for myself!

Re: Finally a new polyphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 5:11 am
by silikon
Multimode filter? Feedback loop? free-run or sync on both LFOs? EG's with lots of options? Arpeggiator with a record function?

Please let there be full CV.

$1499.- (my guess)

Pardon me while I go shag an inanimate object.

Next up in the B/S/T: unused organs. Anyone need a kidney? :D


Re: Finally a new polyphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 5:36 am
by Kenneth
silikon wrote: Pardon me while I go shag an inanimate object.

BTW this thread should be re-titled: "Moog Sub 37" to avoid somebody starting another one.

BTW BTW Marc, I really enjoyed your explanation on different types of polyphony. It's good to have someone around who actually knows what they are saying rather than making things up!

Re: Finally a new polyphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 6:17 am
by CfNorENa
silikon wrote:Multimode filter?
Don't think it's a multimode (with HPF and BPF); but it does have four slopes (6dB, 12dB, 18dB, and 24dB) which you can choose from the front panel.
silikon wrote:$1499.- (my guess)
God I hope you're right. But I'm thinking closer to $1999.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 10:08 am
by nathanscribe
Also, duopohony can work in two different ways: 1) 2 fully articulated voices as standard, as in the Yamaha CS-40m, or 2) One 2-osc voice which can be articulated as a 2-voice (1-osc each) "paraphonic" type either by selection or playing two keys, such as the Odyssey (IIRC?)

Can't tell from the tiny graphic on my tablet whether there's any sign of which type this will be.

Re: Finaly a new poliphonic Moog or not?!

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 10:24 am
by alan partridge
Whether this particular synth is duophonic or will play chords, some people are put off paraphonic instruments because they think they are 'cheap' or not really 'useable' as polyphony. There's almost 10 years of great music to prove that this is nonsense. You can even argue the characteristics of paraphonic instruments have their own interesting artefacts when you play chords with melodies, in the same way the limitations of small monosynths can help creativity.