Hello and advice requested

A forum for discussing the pros & cons of buying a particular synth and for advice on buying synthesizers.
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Ozzy Geiger
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Hello and advice requested

Post by Ozzy Geiger » Thu Apr 23, 2020 8:28 pm

Greetings. 62 yr old guitarist/bassist here. I’ve been experimenting with composing in Logic/MacBook Pro. Still have alot to learn re software/DAWs but I’m slowly but surely making progress. I’m a total keyboard hack, but I’ve been making do with sounds in Logic, an old Korg X5D as a controller and a Scarlett I8i8.
So that kinda summarizes where I’m at, now For where I’d like to go.
Me and my buddy would like to escape from the DAW a while and do some live Kraftwerk, Tangerine, etc inspired jamming, He’s a git fiddler as well but plays keys a bit better than me, although his only keyboard is an ancient Casio and some guitar effect pedals, lol.
So here’s the gear we currently own:
PA, 12 ch analog mixer and powered speakers w sub. Buncha mics, guitar pedals out the ying yang, delays, ODs, reverb, etc.
Korg X5D. No sequencer on it, just a ton of presets, a few good sounds, a lot of em just ok and plenty dated and useless ones, no way to edit sounds without endless frustrating tiny menu diving.
Old Casio home keyboard. Midi in, out, thru,No after touch, some rhythms and a one song recorder. Gets some usable sounds with pedals.
Old Boss Dr5 drum machine. Lots of dated sounds and a PITA to program.

So I’m thinking first step is an easy to program source of beats, a sequencer/drum machine of some kind and a nice affordable mono synth, or a poly capable of mono tones. Thinking maybe can keep the Mackbook/Logic/X5D as controller in the mix for some poly sounds at least at first. Might pick up a little 25 key controller for it for use as an actual recording/production tool ,looking at the Necktar lx 25 since it seems to come premapped for Logic and has a whole bunch of tactile control functions. Not sure how it would work tho in a live set up to control other stuff besides a daw.
Looking to spend up to $1000 bucks or so on a beat machine and synths. There’s so many options, I’m kinda paralyzed where to start. The Drumbute Impact looks nice, and so does the Minibrute .Also Monologe and Microloge. Beringher Poly D looks intriguing. The Volca stuff is fascinating but I’d def need a good keyboard controller to go with those because of the tiny buttons. Love the sound of the Reface CS and the new Behringer MS1 based on videos. I just dunno whether I’d be better served with something like the DrumBrute and a Mono synth at first, or go the keyboard controller semi modular route, or some combination. Jams would mostly take place in my studio so ultra portability is not as important as versatility and ease of use.

Any advice, direction, or just ahole opinions are welcome! Thanks!

JotaSotodiaz
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by JotaSotodiaz » Fri Apr 24, 2020 10:12 pm

I would recommend an AKAI MPC live I own one, its hard to get your head around it at first but there are tons of videos you can find on how to use it. they go for around $700 i would recommend it because of drums, synth samples, midi sequencing capabilities and portability.

please check out my youtube channel i do synth review as well i use the mpc live on them.


Ozzy Geiger
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by Ozzy Geiger » Sat Apr 25, 2020 10:44 pm

Idk. That thing looks as a complicated or more so than Logic. It’ll probably take me the rest of my life if ever to master a daw, much less that thing too. If I was gonna go the groove box route, I’d prob do better to start with something simpler like a Circuit or even a Kaossolater.

Ozzy Geiger
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by Ozzy Geiger » Tue Apr 28, 2020 10:20 pm

Since posting this, I’ve been experimenting with what I can do with what I have, and had a kind of epiphany as to a direction to go in, as far as a core, or brain to a system, and I’ve decided the first thing I need is a multi track looping device.

How I arrived at this was

1. Programmed a suitable drum beat and tempo on the old Dr5.

2. layed down some rhythm guitar on my Jam Man Solo looper pedal.

3. Played lead guitar or keys on top.
Was pretty darn well pleased how easily this was and with the results.
I realized that if I had a good way to loop a bass part that could easily be synced with the drum track and guitar loop ,I’d be well on the way to achieving a backing “band” that can be layed down rather quickly in a live jam, freeing me, or me and a partner, to play lead guitar, keys, or concentrate on singing. If the parts could be easily preprogrammed and chained in a specific order to build up songs that would be even cooler.


I thought about buying another looper pedal for the bass that would sync easily with the Jam Man,

but then I ran across the Boss RC 505 loop station. Expensive, but seems to have everything I’d need to sync up drums, bass, and rhythm guitar tracks. It had 5 separate loop channels of independent length, tap tempo , some quantization available, sync, midi, usb, effects on input and output channels, some built in drums, and plenty of pattern storage.
For a guy who really doesn’t play keys well and doesn’t want to be always limited to 16 or 32 steps in a sequencer for bass lines and chord progressions, this seems like the most usable (for me)gadget I’ve ran across.
Since the looper would have a tap tempo clock to send via midi seems like you could hook up just about any synth, drum machine, mic, or any source really, to this core, including a laptop/controller running whatever.

Still want a new synth to play with though. MS20 mini is the one speaking to me right now as of this moment.

Theres also the RC300, which has foot pedals, but you have to stoop over for everything else, and it also has less tracks. Does appear to be a bit sturdier built tho. I can see adv and disadvantages to either the 300 or the 505. Anyone used either or both?

Am i way off base as to what either of these +/- $500 boxes can do for an old guitarist/bassist with a slow learning curve, or am I way off track here?

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meatballfulton
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by meatballfulton » Wed Apr 29, 2020 6:43 pm

Look into Mainstage, it's only $30.

It's the live performance version of Logic...no recording functions. You get all the same instruments and effects you're familiar with. Add a third party sequencer plugin or a hardware sequencer like an Arturia Beatstep or Keystep. You can use Ultrabeat for the drum machine. It is possible to hook up multiple keyboards to play different instruments in Mainstage at the same time.
I listened to Hatfield and the North at Rainbow. They were very wonderful and they made my heart a prisoner.

Ozzy Geiger
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by Ozzy Geiger » Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:33 pm

meatballfulton wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 6:43 pm
Look into Mainstage, it's only $30.

It's the live performance version of Logic...no recording functions. You get all the same instruments and effects you're familiar with. Add a third party sequencer plugin or a hardware sequencer like an Arturia Beatstep or Keystep. You can use Ultrabeat for the drum machine. It is possible to hook up multiple keyboards to play different instruments in Mainstage at the same time.
Since there is no recording function I guess it doesn’t do loops right?

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meatballfulton
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by meatballfulton » Thu Apr 30, 2020 8:17 pm

Are you talking about looping synths or guitars? Mainstage does work as a guitar effects platform.

Read this article.
I listened to Hatfield and the North at Rainbow. They were very wonderful and they made my heart a prisoner.

Ozzy Geiger
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by Ozzy Geiger » Fri May 01, 2020 1:47 am

meatballfulton wrote:
Thu Apr 30, 2020 8:17 pm
Are you talking about looping synths or guitars? Mainstage does work as a guitar effects platform.

Read this article.

Thanks for the link. I see how it's done. Lots of pretty complicated routing to set up the channels, but once you get it working would be very cool.
Might very well give this a try.

Ozzy Geiger
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by Ozzy Geiger » Sat May 02, 2020 2:55 am

Got Mainstage today. Certainly some nice sounds, looks like will be easy to set up my fav banks. Def more user friendly than Logic as far as that goes.
Now if I can figure out how to get at those sounds into Logic to record them that would be even nicer.
BTW I still haven’t figured out a way to make a favorites list for the software instruments in Logic. One of my current frustrations is when I go to experimenting with different instruments I get lost trying to go back to the instrument I started with.
Thank you meatballfulton for the recommendation!

formest
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by formest » Mon May 11, 2020 1:20 pm

Ozzy Geiger wrote:
Thu Apr 23, 2020 8:28 pm
Greetings. 62 yr old guitarist/bassist here. I’ve been experimenting with composing in Logic/MacBook Pro. Still have alot to learn re software/DAWs but I’m slowly but surely making progress. I’m a total keyboard hack, but I’ve been making do with sounds in Logic, an old Korg X5D as a controller and a Scarlett I8i8.
So that kinda summarizes where I’m at, now For where I’d like to go.
Me and my buddy would like to escape from the DAW a while and do some live Kraftwerk, Tangerine, etc inspired jamming, He’s a git fiddler as well but plays keys a bit better than me, although his only keyboard is an ancient Casio and some guitar effect pedals, lol.
So here’s the gear we currently own:
PA, 12 ch analog mixer and powered speakers w sub. Buncha mics, guitar pedals out the ying yang, delays, ODs, reverb, etc.
Korg X5D. No sequencer on it, just a ton of presets, a few good sounds, a lot of em just ok and plenty dated and useless ones, no way to edit sounds without endless frustrating tiny menu diving.
Old Casio home keyboard. Midi in, out, thru,No after touch, some rhythms and a one song recorder. Gets some usable sounds with pedals. GBWhatsApp
Old Boss Dr5 drum machine. Lots of dated sounds and a PITA to program.

So I’m thinking first step is an easy to program source of beats, a sequencer/drum machine of some kind and a nice affordable mono synth, or a poly capable of mono tones. Thinking maybe can keep the Mackbook/Logic/X5D as controller in the mix for some poly sounds at least at first. Might pick up a little 25 key controller for it for use as an actual recording/production tool ,looking at the Necktar lx 25 since it seems to come premapped for Logic and has a whole bunch of tactile control functions. Not sure how it would work tho in a live set up to control other stuff besides a daw.
Looking to spend up to $1000 bucks or so on a beat machine and synths. There’s so many options, I’m kinda paralyzed where to start. The Drumbute Impact looks nice, and so does the Minibrute .Also Monologe and Microloge. Beringher Poly D looks intriguing. The Volca stuff is fascinating but I’d def need a good keyboard controller to go with those because of the tiny buttons. Love the sound of the Reface CS and the new Behringer MS1 based on videos. I just dunno whether I’d be better served with something like the DrumBrute and a Mono synth at first, or go the keyboard controller semi modular route, or some combination. Jams would mostly take place in my studio so ultra portability is not as important as versatility and ease of use.

Any advice, direction, or just ahole opinions are welcome! Thanks!
The Drumbute Impact looks nice, and so does the Minibrute .Also Monologe and Microloge. Beringher Poly D looks intriguing. The Volca stuff is fascinating but I’d def need a good keyboard controller to go with those because of the tiny buttons.

Ozzy Geiger
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Re: Hello and advice requested

Post by Ozzy Geiger » Tue Jul 07, 2020 4:30 pm

Well, after many hrs of YouTubing:
I got a Drumbrute Impact, had it for a week or so, much fun, still learning all the functions.
Today I ordered Microfreak to pair it with. That combination should keep me busy for a while.
Will probably up the ante with a Grandmother at some point.

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