Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

A forum for discussing the pros & cons of buying a particular synth and for advice on buying synthesizers.
Post Reply
User avatar
Hossinfeffa
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 454
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 7:08 pm
Gear: Roland D-50, MT-32, Korg DSS-1, DDD-1, MS-20, Yamaha FB-01, PSS-560, Akai AX-80, MfB 522, Arturia MiniBrute
Location: Everett, WA

Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by Hossinfeffa » Wed Dec 19, 2012 2:52 am

Currently I am looking around for a "new" synth. So far, these ones have been catching my ear. I keep switching around between them and not quite sure which would fit for me best..

Basically, I am looking for something to compliment what I already have, while also standing out. Budget is between $500-$1200. My current synths are an Alesis Andromeda and Korg DSS-1, DDD-1. (I am planning to add a Miniak later I think.. something for portable fun.) I would like another analog, while also trying something newer. I also would like it to be monophonic, even though the x4 is not. I just can't get my head to like the original Mopho design. What do you guys think?

The Little Phatty design and interface I seem to like the best, and the sound is really appealing. Though I am not sure it will stand out enough being that the Andromeda tries to replicate the Moog filter already.

The Minibrute looks and sounds great as well, but I am on the fence about it being one oscillator.

The x4 also seems to fit what I want, but I am not really set on the sound fully. Maybe I just haven't heard it in a way I want to.

Ultimately only I can really decide what I want, but I figure some people and possible owners can chime in with what they like about said instruments.
Well fffff.

User avatar
Automatic Gainsay
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 3962
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2007 12:22 am
Real name: Marc Doty
Gear: Minimoog, 2600, CS-15, CS-50, MiniBrute, MicroBrute, S2, Korg MS-20 Mini, 3 Volcas, Pro 2, Leipzig, Pianet T, Wurli 7300, Wurli 145-A, ASR-10, e6400.
Band: Godfrey's Cordial
Location: Tacoma
Contact:

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by Automatic Gainsay » Wed Dec 19, 2012 3:03 am

Well, I can set your mind at ease about the single oscillator on the MiniBrute.

What is boring and irritating about single-osc synths is that they usually only have a couple of waveforms, and it makes the oscillator exceedingly boring. But what the fine folks at Arturia have done is let it be designed so that what SHOULD be the most interesting part of a synthesizer is the most interesting part of this synthesizer. Due to its unique implementation of waveforms and modulations to those waveforms, you end up with a startling array of complex timbres. While the MiniBrute has a definite sound to it, I have to say that this single-oscillator is more interesting than a lot of analog dual oscillators. It creates a really interesting breadth of tones due to the multiply-mixable supersaw, PWM, and triangle wavefolding. There is nothing like it, and you'll never say "wow, this is a boring oscillator." Then, it has a sub oscillator on top of that. Do NOT worry about the MiniBrute's single osc. Worry about whether it's really awesome breadth of sound suits your needs.
‎"I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question." -Charles Babbage
"Unity and Mediocrity are forever in bed together." -Zane W.
http://www.youtube.com/automaticgainsay

User avatar
jeffrey1121
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 287
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 7:01 am
Gear: Moog LP, Blofeld, MoPho, Machinedrum, ART FXR, Reason, FL Studio
Location: Somewhere in upstate NY
Contact:

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by jeffrey1121 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:25 am

I love my Little Phatty but it has less features when compared to other modern synths: Only one LFO with only 4 possible destinations, no auxiliary envelope generators, no onboard-fx, only 100 patches can be saved, no USB to computer connectivity, etc. But on the other hand the filter is fantastic. I would ultimately describe it as a synth best suited for serious monosynth/moog fans looking for a more "vintage" sound. Ditto all of this for the Slim Phatty. I think you would probably find it a bit too pricey for what you get a few months down the line. :?

If you want a Monophonic synth like you say, then don't consider the Phox4. Also, why can't you "wrap your head around the original mopho design" if you are considering the x4? it's literally making my head hurt thinking about how this makes sense to you :? The Keyboard Mopho is less expensive than the LP and has a much more intuitive UI than the original desktop module which creates so much more sonic freedom IMO. 8-)

Is it the "yellow-ness"? :lol:

As for the Minibrute....this is the only synth among these that i have no experience with whatsoever. I have watched many demos for it online and there are 3 little things I have to admit that bother me about it.

-Any 2 Octave KB is an octave short of what i'd call "the minimum"
-Mod wheel/pitchbend seem to be too small--look how big they are compared to the keys.
-No patch memory

I will admit the Minibrute seems to have a nice sound though. It's interface is very knobby as well, which is always good. Best of all it's the cheapest of these three and would be the easiest to acquire.

--the Jeffrey1121 breakdown--

Moog LP/SP - best filter, average to below average modulation muscle, most expensive. Not a lot of variety in sound, but what's there is great.
Mopho KB - great filter, average to above average modulation muscle, less expensive, yellow. Much more varied in sound but still considerably fat-sounding.
Minibrute - good filter, average modulation muscle, cheapest.

User avatar
megamanx
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 838
Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 4:39 am
Gear: nord lead2, roland sh101, yamaha cs5,mono/poly, sub37,Ms20, Chroma polaris,prodigy, esq-1, jx3p
Band: Thieves & Co.

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by megamanx » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:39 am

little phatty stage II does have usb, and yes it might be limited compared to the others but it sounds awesome.

User avatar
jeffrey1121
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 287
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 7:01 am
Gear: Moog LP, Blofeld, MoPho, Machinedrum, ART FXR, Reason, FL Studio
Location: Somewhere in upstate NY
Contact:

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by jeffrey1121 » Wed Dec 19, 2012 6:00 am

oh. yeah... I have the stage 1. I look silly now.

Rick N Boogie
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 304
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2011 3:45 pm
Real name: Alan
Gear: MEK/Blofeld/Phatty/JP08/DrumBrute/ER1
Basses/synth fx galore
Band: no.one.won
Location: Dallas, TX
Contact:

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by Rick N Boogie » Wed Dec 19, 2012 4:46 pm

I also have no experience with the MiniBrute, but own a Little Phatty, which I love to death, and have owned a MoPho kb, which I also loved. Traded MoPho to a bandmate, and replaced it with the now discontinued DSI Mono Evolver kb, which is an absolute dream synth. So, aside from the yellow issue, the MoPho has so many great features, it's really several steps above and beyond the Moog, but doesn't sound like a Moog. Then again, it's not trying to, but with the arpeggiator and 16 step sequencer, 2 sub osc's, filter feedback, along with 4 LFO's, it a quite capable little monosynth, and should be at the top of your list, imo.
Bassist, synth junkie

User avatar
Stab Frenzy
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9723
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:41 pm
Gear: Eurorack, RYTM, Ultranova, many FX
Location: monster island*
Contact:

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu Dec 20, 2012 3:18 am

The Minibrute is the only one of the three that does something that you can't do as well if not better on the Andy IMO, so that's what I'd go for if I were you. The Mopho is like the Andy but doesn't sound as good or have as many options; the LP is nice but it just does one thing and it's something the Andy does very well although if you just wanted a nice simple synth for Moog sounds it's a good choice.

The Minibrute is half the price of the LP but does some really cool stuff that no other fixed-architecture synth ever made can do. I've actually played one a fair bit (a guy I produce with has one) and the biggest thing about it is that it's really really fun to play. Sure it sounds amazing and you can hook it up to your computer and use it as a midi CV interface and all the rest (tap tempo LFO!), but that wouldn't make it half the synth it is if it wasn't so much fun to play around on. Especially if you've never owned a WYSIWYG analogue before, it'll make you lose hours just having fun playing an instrument. The only negative for me is the two-octave keyboard, but honestly I was having so much fun with it I hardly noticed, unlike the last two-octave board I played (an X-Station) which I found fairly frustrating.

User avatar
GuyaGuy
VSE Review Contributor
VSE Review Contributor
Posts: 1547
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 2:10 am
Gear: YES PLEASE!
Location: Brooklyn, NY

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by GuyaGuy » Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:12 am

+1 on the Minibrute for adding new sounds to your arsenal.
Automatic Gainsay wrote:Well, I can set your mind at ease about the single oscillator on the MiniBrute.

What is boring and irritating about single-osc synths is that they usually only have a couple of waveforms, and it makes the oscillator exceedingly boring. But what the fine folks at Arturia have done is let it be designed so that what SHOULD be the most interesting part of a synthesizer is the most interesting part of this synthesizer. Due to its unique implementation of waveforms and modulations to those waveforms, you end up with a startling array of complex timbres. While the MiniBrute has a definite sound to it, I have to say that this single-oscillator is more interesting than a lot of analog dual oscillators. It creates a really interesting breadth of tones due to the multiply-mixable supersaw, PWM, and triangle wavefolding. There is nothing like it, and you'll never say "wow, this is a boring oscillator." Then, it has a sub oscillator on top of that. Do NOT worry about the MiniBrute's single osc. Worry about whether it's really awesome breadth of sound suits your needs.
All true. But a single oscillator will never give you 5ths, 3rds, 7ths, etc., if that is important to you. However, you can always feed an Andromeda oscillator into the Minibrute for that kind of thing.

User avatar
Hossinfeffa
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 454
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 7:08 pm
Gear: Roland D-50, MT-32, Korg DSS-1, DDD-1, MS-20, Yamaha FB-01, PSS-560, Akai AX-80, MfB 522, Arturia MiniBrute
Location: Everett, WA

Re: Minibrute, Mopho x4, LP

Post by Hossinfeffa » Fri Dec 21, 2012 1:08 am

Automatic Gainsay wrote:Well, I can set your mind at ease about the single oscillator on the MiniBrute.

What is boring and irritating about single-osc synths is that they usually only have a couple of waveforms, and it makes the oscillator exceedingly boring. But what the fine folks at Arturia have done is let it be designed so that what SHOULD be the most interesting part of a synthesizer is the most interesting part of this synthesizer. Due to its unique implementation of waveforms and modulations to those waveforms, you end up with a startling array of complex timbres. While the MiniBrute has a definite sound to it, I have to say that this single-oscillator is more interesting than a lot of analog dual oscillators. It creates a really interesting breadth of tones due to the multiply-mixable supersaw, PWM, and triangle wavefolding. There is nothing like it, and you'll never say "wow, this is a boring oscillator." Then, it has a sub oscillator on top of that. Do NOT worry about the MiniBrute's single osc. Worry about whether it's really awesome breadth of sound suits your needs.
I went ahead and placed my order in for the Minibrute. It was my original choice months ago and your videos upon re-watching them swayed me over again. I have to say I am quite excited to see what the little machine can do.
Stab Frenzy wrote:The Minibrute is the only one of the three that does something that you can't do as well if not better on the Andy IMO, so that's what I'd go for if I were you. The Mopho is like the Andy but doesn't sound as good or have as many options; the LP is nice but it just does one thing and it's something the Andy does very well although if you just wanted a nice simple synth for Moog sounds it's a good choice.

The Minibrute is half the price of the LP but does some really cool stuff that no other fixed-architecture synth ever made can do. I've actually played one a fair bit (a guy I produce with has one) and the biggest thing about it is that it's really really fun to play. Sure it sounds amazing and you can hook it up to your computer and use it as a midi CV interface and all the rest (tap tempo LFO!), but that wouldn't make it half the synth it is if it wasn't so much fun to play around on. Especially if you've never owned a WYSIWYG analogue before, it'll make you lose hours just having fun playing an instrument. The only negative for me is the two-octave keyboard, but honestly I was having so much fun with it I hardly noticed, unlike the last two-octave board I played (an X-Station) which I found fairly frustrating.
This also helped sell me. I used to have a Juno-6 and miss it pretty badly. So I am eager to dive back into that sort of limited functionality. The Andromeda is my synth for planning and sculpting.. so having something less "imposing" is a good way to just focus on playing.
GuyaGuy wrote:+1 on the Minibrute for adding new sounds to your arsenal.

All true. But a single oscillator will never give you 5ths, 3rds, 7ths, etc., if that is important to you. However, you can always feed an Andromeda oscillator into the Minibrute for that kind of thing.
This thought also passed into my mind. Since I am quite curious how the A6 oscillators will sound in the Brute's filter.

Now all that is really left is the waiting game. I am confident I will be satisfied with this choice.. and hopefully it helps push more music out of me!
Well fffff.

Post Reply