Best Synth Teacher

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
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Alex E
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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by Alex E » Sat May 03, 2014 11:11 am

I learned on a Juno 106 and a Yamaha CS01.
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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by Virgule » Sat May 03, 2014 12:37 pm

Juno-106 too.

Played a Poly61, Siel Cruise and Yamaha SY-2 before that but never quite understood what I was doing.

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by Swayze » Sat May 03, 2014 8:45 pm

Out of all the old synths that I've tried, the JX3P w/ PG200 definitely has taught me the most about subtractive synthesis. It's traditional architecture and knob-per-function layout made it really simple to grasp basic concepts like modulating the pitch or filter with an LFO, OSC detune, plus some bonus x-mod features like sync and "metal." IMHO the 3P+PG is one of the best synth teachers out there. Whenever I think about replacing mine with something better, I remember how much I enjoyed learning synthesis on it and just how useful it can be for a budget 80's analog. For these reasons, it's earned a permanent place in my home.

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by synthroom » Sat May 03, 2014 11:03 pm

A JX-3P was my first synth. It's a keeper and I'll keep mine forever.
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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by pflosi » Sun May 04, 2014 1:15 pm

I learned everything with Reason. It's kinda cool since you can connect the synths yourself etc., so it taught me a lot about "studio" thinking as well.

My first proper synth was a Juno 60 and it seems to be a favorite around here for learning - no wonder, it's super simple and one big sweet spot.

Other notable synths that taught me a lot are the A6, DX7 and my modular.

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by ibelieveinmusic » Mon May 05, 2014 12:50 pm

Roland MC-202 <3 - my first analog synth. All the settings on the front with one control per function and a simple architecture. The onboard sequencer helps learn programming rhythms and melodies too. Plus into sounds awesome!

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by pflosi » Mon May 05, 2014 3:00 pm

ibelieveinmusic wrote:The onboard sequencer helps learn programming rhythms and melodies too.
Indeed. When you've mastered the 202, every other sequencer will be easy... But starting with it could lead to a lot of frustration I guess.

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by mpa1104 » Tue May 06, 2014 1:02 pm

Juno 6 was my first which really made me appreciate things like PWM, envelopes, filters, and all the basics of analogue. Then added an SH-3a to the fold which made things a little more interesting.

And then, there was the venerable VCS 3 - boy, did that teach me a thing or 10 (and still does!)
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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by zoomtheline » Tue May 06, 2014 4:20 pm

Waldorf Pulse taught me Synthesis but the Blofeld taught me more about the Pulse ha.
Still learning everyday.

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by Voodoo Ray » Tue May 06, 2014 5:23 pm

For FM synthesis (which came first) - DX-21. Honestly the TX81Z would have been a nightmare without having used the DX first! In hindsight I am eternally grateful.

For analogue subtractive it was the Alpha Juno with PG-300.

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by dswo » Thu May 08, 2014 5:30 pm

Bitexion wrote:I bought a big subtractive synthesis book from amazon at the same time I got my Ion. I had no idea what ADSR envelopes were, i didn't even know how to make an "automated filter sweep" at the time.

And happily I found every single item in the book on the Ion. So I kinda learned everything from that book.
What was the book?
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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by Bitexion » Fri May 09, 2014 12:06 am

I can't remember, sadly..it was back in 2002. I found one of the books I bought around that time, Sound Synthesis and Sampling by Martin Russ on amazon now. But it's not that one. That is more a theory about all kinds of synthesis, with a 30+ page chapter on subtractive synthesis.

The one I had was fully dedicated to that and had examples for uses of every common sub.synth module like ADSR's and LFO and stuff. I knew nothing about anything, and suddenly I was making epic patches that won sound design competitions on the Ion :P

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by commodorejohn » Fri May 09, 2014 12:24 am

Bitexion wrote:The one I had was fully dedicated to that and had examples for uses of every common sub.synth module like ADSR's and LFO and stuff. I knew nothing about anything, and suddenly I was making epic patches that won sound design competitions on the Ion :P
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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by Bitexion » Fri May 09, 2014 12:56 am

Yep pretty much like that :D I entered an Alesis sound design compo they had on their website, and to my astonishment I won 2nd prize for my "satan drone bass" patch (it used pretty much the entire synth).

Most of the other entries were boring stuff like "tb-303 bass"..guess mine stood out in the crowd. I got two huge studio monitors that cost like $1000 each. Had to pick them up at a local music store and take pictures with them for the compo..the first prize was an Andromeda A6. That went to germany. I bought one a few years later anyway.

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Re: Best Synth Teacher

Post by _dan » Sat May 10, 2014 3:51 am

ms2000... had no idea what a synth was, I bought it under the "professional keyboards" category of a music store website... I was one of those people who was like "why doesn't it sound like a piano?"... so I read the manual, learned what each part did, and tried to make a piano patch. The piano patch never came to fruition on the ms2000 for me, but I had a good time trying, making all kinds of weird noises. I picked up an ion after that, more weird noises, and even a decent piano patch. the ion had a good manual, and the interface uses "real" values (seconds, hertz, etc). but knowing what the decay does and being able to plan and design a patch with a specific sound are different things. so i'm definitely still learning. i have spent some time transcribing patches between synths, that has taught me a lot.
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