Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

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vselamere
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Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by vselamere » Wed Jun 08, 2016 11:04 pm

Hey!
I'm looking to purchase my first synth. Astral Projection, Etnica, Cosmosis (his old-school stuff), MFG, Man With No Name, Miranda, Masa, Prana, Oforia/Tandu, Transwave, Technossomy, X-Dream, Doof, Ubar Tmar and California Sunshine are all names of artists which I truly love.
It has to have a keyboard and MIDI options. USB is an option so I don't have to use a sound-card at first.
Out of the following, which do you think is the most preferred for making old-school Goa Trance?

Solton MS5
Korg R3
Roland JV-90
Novation X-Station
Korg PS-60
Korg X3
Yamaha DX7
Roland E-14
Roland XP-50
Roland Gaia SH-01
Ensoniq MR-76
Roland SH-201

Would also love to know why you think your synth of choice is the best. Thank you very much.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by ninja6485 » Thu Jun 09, 2016 7:01 pm

You're going to want a synth that does good Acid sounds: 303 style basses, 101 leads, basses and self oscillation. Self oscillating filters are a key component. An analog mono synth and a sampler (or sampler software even) is probably the best approach to getting the sound.

Old school Goa has a strong acid foundation. Modulation options are helpful, but not an absolute necessity. The Sh-101 is ideal, and historically relevant to the style. Seek to emulate it's sounds and capabilities.

Aside from an acid foundation, the sound of analog sequencers is important. An sq1 could be a good investment for part writing, or you could try treating your piano roll like an analog sequencer. Also, pay attention to the type of scales you're using. Harmonic minor or other eastern exotic scales can go a long way with a simple analog lead sound with the right rythm, at the right tempo.

I'm tempted to say the gaia sh01 or the novation might be good choices for you, but I'm not too familiar with all of these options. An access virus would work, so maybe a va that's similar (novation?).

If I were doing goa on a budget with modern gear, I would get a boutique to get the roland acid sounds, and an arturia minibrute with an sq1... although an ms20 mini is instant access to a strong element of the hallucinogen sound. A tr8 or good samples would almost be a more important purchase than a synth, since Goa is so rhythm and bass oriented. Although a squelchy synth with fast envelopes is a must. The arp Odyssey could get you a lot of Astral projection style leads. Pads can be handled in software using the boutique / minibrute, and the same for fx, although fx are hugely important as well, and frequently overlooked.

Jo-08/ odyssey = dancing galaxy style sounds
Basic mono synth/ fx, drum machines gets you the juggling alchemist under the blacklight style sounds.
Ms20 + sampler & boutique for 101 sounds gets you in the hallucinogen realm a little bit (fx help)
Boutique for acid, leads, and self oscillation + 909(tr8?) Is a start for a man with no name style sound.

None of these are prescriptions for the sound, just an estimate of what sort of sounds I'm hearing in some of these, coupled with what I know about what the artists use.

As for anything, if you get the one you like more than the others, you can program similar sounding parts with it and come up with some cool unique goa flavors. You could make a whole track with a drum machine and a mono synth that could be a little bit like juggling alchemists with some ingenuity. That might even be what that album is anyway! And the more into psytrance you get, the more VA/ software comes to the fore.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by ranzee » Thu Jun 09, 2016 10:24 pm

ninja6485 wrote:You're going to want a synth that does good Acid sounds: 303 style basses, 101 leads, basses and self oscillation. Self oscillating filters are a key component. An analog mono synth and a sampler (or sampler software even) is probably the best approach to getting the sound.

Old school Goa has a strong acid foundation. Modulation options are helpful, but not an absolute necessity. The Sh-101 is ideal, and historically relevant to the style. Seek to emulate it's sounds and capabilities.

Aside from an acid foundation, the sound of analog sequencers is important. An sq1 could be a good investment for part writing, or you could try treating your piano roll like an analog sequencer. Also, pay attention to the type of scales you're using. Harmonic minor or other eastern exotic scales can go a long way with a simple analog lead sound with the right rythm, at the right tempo.

I'm tempted to say the gaia sh01 or the novation might be good choices for you, but I'm not too familiar with all of these options. An access virus would work, so maybe a va that's similar (novation?).

If I were doing goa on a budget with modern gear, I would get a boutique to get the roland acid sounds, and an arturia minibrute with an sq1... although an ms20 mini is instant access to a strong element of the hallucinogen sound. A tr8 or good samples would almost be a more important purchase than a synth, since Goa is so rhythm and bass oriented. Although a squelchy synth with fast envelopes is a must. The arp Odyssey could get you a lot of Astral projection style leads. Pads can be handled in software using the boutique / minibrute, and the same for fx, although fx are hugely important as well, and frequently overlooked.

Jo-08/ odyssey = dancing galaxy style sounds
Basic mono synth/ fx, drum machines gets you the juggling alchemist under the blacklight style sounds.
Ms20 + sampler & boutique for 101 sounds gets you in the hallucinogen realm a little bit (fx help)
Boutique for acid, leads, and self oscillation + 909(tr8?) Is a start for a man with no name style sound.

None of these are prescriptions for the sound, just an estimate of what sort of sounds I'm hearing in some of these, coupled with what I know about what the artists use.

As for anything, if you get the one you like more than the others, you can program similar sounding parts with it and come up with some cool unique goa flavors. You could make a whole track with a drum machine and a mono synth that could be a little bit like juggling alchemists with some ingenuity. That might even be what that album is anyway! And the more into psytrance you get, the more VA/ software comes to the fore.
A great reply!

I'd also like to add that the Roland SH-01 GAIA is probably a good starting point (a lot cheaper than an Access Virus for one). As Ninja said, you're going to need a real acid-ey sounding mono-synth. You could look at the Roland TB-3 (Aira) and the Roland System-1 - both digital again - but price point and brand new with a warranty will work. In fact you'll probably also want the TR-8 so you can get those accurate TR-808 recreations (and not just samples).

If it has to be a real analog - Novation Bass Station II is a great workhorse monosynth. You can get some bassey acid-ey sounds out of it.

So, all the suggestions I have give above - I own them all. If you want more info - just sing out ;)

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by vselamere » Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:40 pm

Thank you so much for the effort put into your replies.
Acknowledging what you've said, and taking budget into consideration (the list I've put above is compiled of used synthesizers which I can fit in my budget and buy in my country) I must ask, isn't getting a MIDI keyboard with 303, 909, 101 VSTs the safer option?

I'm thinking it's either getting a good MIDI keyboard with a lot of knobs and sliders (such as the Novation Launchkey) or using the Gaia for being a synthesizer and a functional MIDI interface as well. Or did I get it all wrong? I can get the used Gaia for approximately $410.
The way I see it now it's just a scale of grabbing the Gaia for its own sound + MIDI functionality or getting the Launchkey for its MIDI purpose which can cover a lot?

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by ninja6485 » Sun Jun 12, 2016 11:16 pm

It's hard to say - which option seems like it would be the most fun to play? You could probably use the Gaia as a midi controller anyway if you went that route, although correct me if I'm wrong. Did you watch the sonic state video on the Gaia? If you can map all of the keys and knobs and everything to your software on the Gaia, I'm tempted to say it could be a pretty decent midi controller in place of the launchkey, making it the better option. Unless of course the launchkey is part of some kind of software bundle you wouldn't get if you got the gaia.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by vselamere » Mon Jun 13, 2016 3:57 pm

Thanks, ninja6485. I've looked it up and it seems I'd practically get the same amount of CCs so the only loss here is the amount of keys, although that essentially puts the Gaia on top as it has far more to offer - it can produce its own sound. My only worry was if there was a better used synth in the same price group, though I'd also be willing to add an extra $140 dollars if it meant some shipping costs of a far better synth to grab off of eBay, from a different country.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by vselamere » Mon Jun 13, 2016 5:54 pm

Well, turns out both Gaias I found were already sold. A shame, I found one for a really cheap price.
Updated list:
Korg MicroKorg
Novation K-Station
Korg PS-60
Roland E-14
Novation X-Station
Yamaha DX7
Korg X3
Korg R3
Solton MS5
Ensoniq MR-76
Roland JV-90
Roland XP-50

As stated before, all of these are used and available to purchase in my country. I don't mind shopping on eBay, too. Would the JP-8000 be worth it? Anything else I can get for up to approximately $570?
Or, alternatively, get a modern keyboard for much less than that.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by Ashe37 » Tue Jun 14, 2016 1:54 am

of those? The K-station has the most immediate editing interface. Or, yes, the JP-8000.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by ranzee » Tue Jun 14, 2016 6:59 am

vselamere wrote:Well, turns out both Gaias I found were already sold. A shame, I found one for a really cheap price.
Updated list:
Korg MicroKorg
Novation K-Station
Korg PS-60
Roland E-14
Novation X-Station
Yamaha DX7
Korg X3
Korg R3
Solton MS5
Ensoniq MR-76
Roland JV-90
Roland XP-50

As stated before, all of these are used and available to purchase in my country. I don't mind shopping on eBay, too. Would the JP-8000 be worth it? Anything else I can get for up to approximately $570?
Or, alternatively, get a modern keyboard for much less than that.
I can't help but think some of these synths have popped onto your list because perhaps your favourite GOA artists have used them? Some of them will be a bit of a learning curve to get it to that sound - the DX7 for example is quite tricky to program if you're not learned. The Korg X3, R3 and MicroKorg are all pretty much the same beast - you could go the RADIAS or MS2000 instead - and will probably give you more knob/on-the-fly live functionality. I have the MicroKorg and the RADIAS and they have an amazing sound. The Roland XP-50 is purely a rompler workstation - I have the XP-30 (it stores a stackload more sounds) - if you're after that Roland sound - get an Integra7. The XP-30 is a poorer cousin. The JP-8000 is more expensive than an XP-30 - but definitely a nice board.

If you're interested in the X/K-Station gear from Novation, check out the Ultranova as a new alternative.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by vselamere » Tue Jun 14, 2016 8:04 am

Thank you for your input.

Ashe37, the K-Station is available in my country (keeping in mind these are all used) for approximately $200 and an instant pickup (+checking it before purchase). I saw the JP-8000 for approximately $600 including shipping. If the JP-8000 is a far better purchase then it's something I would probably go for.

ranzee, the list simply contains all used synthesizers I could find in my country for a decent price range, which means they are easy to get. I've left the eBay option open too, because ultimately I want "the best I can get" for the price range and the acidic Goa Trance style of music. I'm actually not sure who used what. :)
I don't mind learning; surely the Gaia looked much more intuitive with no display at all, but I'm willing to push whatever I get to the limit. I absolutely love knobs and faders, though.

Again, appreciate the help given here. Thank you very much.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by Ashe37 » Tue Jun 14, 2016 10:45 am

I'd get the k-station, personally.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by vselamere » Wed Jun 15, 2016 9:27 pm

Thanks. Bought the used K-Station. No adapter and a broken knob and fader. I'll see if it works (otherwise I'll return it) and then fix the knob and fader. Thank you guys very much!

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by Goa Travellers » Fri Jun 17, 2016 12:09 pm

vselamere wrote:Roland Gaia SH-01
Roland SH-201
I would recommend one of these two (ok, sold). The JP-8000 is good. I can control my MKS-7 with the knobs of my Gaia using BOME's MIDI Translator software application using Sysex.
vselamere wrote:isn't getting a MIDI keyboard with 303, 909, 101 VSTs the safer option?
Yes, and you can use the JP-8000 as a synth, and as a master keyboard ;)
Take your time, don't rush to buy a synth you're not 100% confident it'll fit your needs.

I saw you bought the K-Station, it's a good choice. Here's a list of synths used for psychedelic goa trance. You can also use VSTis, some of them sound really nice and analog, even though they are run on a computer (e.g. Sylenth1, D16 Phoscyon, etc.). Good luck and enjoy yourself! ;)

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by vselamere » Wed Jun 22, 2016 7:12 pm

Thanks, buddy.

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Re: Newbie Looking for a Goa Trance Synth

Post by kylen » Tue Nov 01, 2016 3:01 pm

Hi,

I think that a Roland JD-Xi/Xa, Korg minilogue, JP with good reverb/delay is good options for trance music.
I record example track on similar synth : - ) .


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