This thread may be old, but I'm up for some late night synth-ranting so here goes:
Like so many, I love the Junos, despite their simplicity. I've found the Juno-6 to be my favourite, because it's so pure. The lack of memory means that the sliders always indicate how your sound is, and working with it feels a bit like using an SH-101. I had a 60 but never used the memories so I thought what the h**l, I'll "downgrade". Didn't regret it.
The 106, despite having the same architecture "feels" very different. Not in a bad way, just different. More cold and sterile, like people have said, but very very usable and an unmissable element of any synthesist's arsenal.
The Polysix just drips with character. Had mine midi-fied so I can do sequenced unison basses all day. I don't think these are comparable to the Junos, despite being similar on paper. Much more class, but would somehow never work as one's only synth, like the Junos do.
Jupiter-6... where to start? This is probably my most used synth. It's been at my side for almost a decade now, and I think I've used it in almost every song I've made since I got it. That's something, right? Still, the sound isn't mindblowing... it's more like a big Juno 106 somehow. Incredibly usable and fits into mixes. I will chime in with the others about the resonance. It's awful, and I almost always keep that resonance slider at 0, unless I want to do some weird effects. It somehow just kills the sound completely, sounds very hollow in itself, and brings out the worst stepping you will ever hear. Nothing cool about it.
Sidenote: the Juno6/60 has beautiful resonance, and the few times I've laid my hands on a Jupiter-8, it has felt a bit like having a JP-6 with Juno6/60 filters. Lovely!
Teisco SX-400: Wonderful beast with heaps of character and a lot of sound-sculpting options. Killer ensemble effect and very alive in every way. Sounds like nothing else, and is completely underrated as well. Downside... you will probably never ever find one.
Alpha Junos: My first analog synth as well! Handy to have around, but definitely overshadowed by a lot of better options. Used to tour with one (the smaller version) for a long time, which was a cheap way of having a Roland analog poly sound in a live setting, and easier to haul around than its full-sized siblings. I even had the PG-300 once, but even that was disappointing to use and was sold for the price of a Juno-106. What really makes it annoying to use are the multi-stage envelopes. I have a deep hate for multi-stage envelopes. They make even the simplest of decay curves a h**l to program. This peeve also goes out to you, Mr. Casio CZ-101 and Ms. Yamaha EX-5! Let us have an ADSR for daily use, and make the multi-stage an option!
DSI Mopho X4: Personally, I don't get why people aren't all over these. This is what replaced my AlphaJuno for live use, and it's ace! Very hands on, lovely form factor, and if 4 voices aren't enough, just plop a Tetra onto that little Tetra-shaped space on the panel (nice coincidence!), and then you have something much better than a Prophet8 (which I also don't click with at all).
These are the Polys which I have kept, and are in constant use. Good instruments. Now let's see which ones didn't make the cut:
Akai AX60: I lusted for this one when I was starting out in music but could never find one (they are quite rare in Europe). It was supposed to be some kind of underdog Juno-killer. So years later, after a good drunk ebay session I suddenly found one of these at my doorstep, shipped halfway across the world for double the price of the synth
- Anyways, to start with, the looks are to kill for. It's like a Juno's evil twin. Slick, black, red leds and the whole panel is littered with sliders and buttons, beautiful 80's design. Then you start playing it, and you wonder if the sound is coming through a pillow or something, but nope, no pillow in front of the speakers - That's just how it sounds. I tried and tried to like it. For two years I kept giving it second chances, but eventually ended up hating it. The oscillators are just so damn weak, and the filter resonance really only has two modes, the first being "dull" for 98% of the slider action and then "XTREME" for the last 2%. It's one of those great-on-paper synths. I will always cherish the photos I took of it.
Korg Poly800: Has some nice sounds, a few cool quirks, but the interface isn't fun. Still perfectly fine for a lot of applications and I would recommend it to anyone starting out, but for people with a few more capable synths at their disposal it quickly becomes the "why do I even still have this thing"-synth.
SCI Six-Trak: Pretty cool synth, but sonically even more limited than the Junos, and misses the hands-on bus. Cool sequencer, but archaic in its implementation. Programming it gets very tiring very fast, especially if the program buttons are sticky (which happens to all of them sooner or later). Somehow always sounds like an 8bit video game, which can be good but also bad. Form factor is great, because it looks like a Mopho X4! Or wait, was it the other way around?
Akai AX-73: Pretty much the same as the AX60, except you miss the hands-on thing and it's bigger than a door. Why I even had this is still a mystery to me.