- Reliable analogue
- Low aliasing VA's
- Sample streaming
Synthesisers that have exhibited new developments in recent times include the Korg OASYS, Moog Sub 37 and Sub Phatty (these are uniquely different to any other analogue synth around today and represent true 21st century improvements on the analogue mono synth), Roland synth technologies such as APS, Vocal Design, Variphrase and Supernatural Acoustic Tones, and Omnisphere.
But fundamentally, development has been sparse. If you look at the best synthesisers 40 and 30 years ago, they were far superior to the best that's going around today. I'm talking about Minimoog, VCS3, VP330, CS80, OBX, Jupiter 8, ARP2500, DX1, Prophet T8, PPG 2.3, VL1, SY99, ....and then the likes of the Fender Rhodes and CP80.
In my view we've gone backwards in some instances, when considering synthesisers as performance instruments, and there's no sign of a new golden era as the 70's and 80's were.
Yes there are plugins - but a huge percentage of them are basically the same.
The synthesizer, as a medium for 'development' is largely over in any case - it's not about keyboards any more - that's why system-1 has an outrageously pathetic keyboard. It's all about Push controllers, lighted pads and so on - and I'm not knocking that - they are exquisite new controller formats - but it's why we're seeing the likes of the Prophet 6 and Pro2 from Dave Smith, and not something progressive, because the synthesizer is not under development or a vehicle for development in electronic music, or electronic music performance any more.
Indeed gone are breath control, long ribbon controllers, polyphonic aftertouch and even velocity on keyboard in many cases