80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

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80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by jantra » Fri Jul 22, 2016 1:32 pm

Hello from Norway!
Im Jan and im new to the forum and new to synth.

Im a typical motor head. I`ve been riding dirt bikes since I was a kid and I still do. Some racing too. I`ve never had any interest in musical instruments what so ever, until now.
I have always love the 80s sound, and over the years the the 80s interest has grown.
I started to search and learn what I could about synthesizers about a month ago. I have been stalking this forum for quite a while. Im thinking about making my own 80s music.
But as I said. I have never had any interest for instruments. This means that I cannot play a piano at all. But im willing to learn!
Im thinking about giving this a shot! I want to buy myself a synthesizer.
Only for hobby. Only personal home use.
I have no gear at all just to let you know. The synth will be used only for 80s sounds I think. That’s the main reason im so interested in this.

Heres some examples on what 80s music i really like and what i would TRY to make. Dark, creepy and grungy 80s is what i like :)




My budget is $1000 dollars.
I need some options and feedback on what synth I should check out.
Im open for both new and used synths.

Im looking for a synth that will give me the 80s vibe (Im sure most syths are able to get that vibe but some might get it better than others?). A user friendly one that is not extremely hard to work with is what I want I guess. I have read on the forum that people recommend newbie’s to start on a analog mono synth instead of a powerful polyphonic VA synth because the Analog mono does not have all the “effects” which will force the user to work with what the analog mono has to offer. The limitations. Lol if that made any sense! I hope you understand what I mean. A polyphonic synth might be a bit $$$ friendly since its able to do “much more” than a Mono? Im letting you guys give me some options!

Here are a list of used syths for sale on a website in Norway. Most of these are in my price range. But remember, these are all used. VA-syths, analog pholyponic and mono. If you recommend any other please let me know.
Thanks!

Korg Microkorg
Roland jp 8000
Arturia Minibrute SE
Novation Nova II XL
Access Virus B
Korg T3
Roland MC-202
Yamaha DX7
Korg MS2000
Roland SH-09
Dave Smith Instruments Mopho Keyboard
King Korg
Roland Juno 106
Roland MC-202
Roland JX-8P + pg-800
Roland SH-09
Roland SH-201
ARTURIA KEYLAB 88
Ensoniq SQ-80

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by Ashe37 » Fri Jul 22, 2016 1:44 pm

there are no microns or Ions? (Alesis products)

I'd think about starting with several new inexpensive boxes to get you close to that sound... like maybe the JP-08, the Volca Bass, Volca Beats, and Volca FM, and a full-side keyboard to control them

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by jantra » Fri Jul 22, 2016 2:05 pm

Ashe37 wrote:there are no microns or Ions? (Alesis products)

I'd think about starting with several new inexpensive boxes to get you close to that sound... like maybe the JP-08, the Volca Bass, Volca Beats, and Volca FM, and a full-side keyboard to control them
Thanks for the fast response Ashe37! :)

No right now there are no Alesis products for sale. But i see some older adds on the site, where a few guys tried to sell their IONS but they did not. The adds expired. I could send some of them a mail and ask if they still have it. Its the same for the microns. Some of the adds expired in 2016 and they did not get sold. They probably still have it.
Heres one for examble:
Image
The Ions are in my price range.

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by Ashe37 » Fri Jul 22, 2016 10:53 pm

An Ion could be used to duplicate many of the analog synth sounds. Then, an FM synth and a drum machine are what i recommend. Beyond that, a hybrid like the SQ-80. that's in approximate order.

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by jantra » Sun Jul 24, 2016 7:23 pm

Thanks. You would recommend the ION as a first synth for me? Its a good starting synth?


Im open for options guys. Any other synths besides Alesis you would recommend? :)

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by Jabberwalky » Mon Jul 25, 2016 5:32 pm

The Ion was kind of convoluted in my opinion. It didn't immediately sound good to me. No built in FX, and slightly too advanced for a beginner. You'd be much better off with a JP8000, or an An1x imo. I write stuff with an 80s vibe and I love all the old Korg synths personally.

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by commodorejohn » Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:20 am

I'll go ahead and be "that guy" that recommends a vintage piece as a starter - you don't get much more '80s than the DX7, and it can do dark and grungy like nobody's business. Plus, as much as its on-board editing sucks, the keybed is a thing of beauty and a joy forever.
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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by Swayze » Tue Jul 26, 2016 3:59 am

Gotta say that a Juno or JX8P + DX7 sounds like 80's perfection to me. Another honorable mention would be the SQ-80. I've owned all of these boards at some point and they're all great synths. I do prefer a JX3P over the 8P but they're both winners, the 3P being a better dedicated analog synth IMHO. If you're just starting out, physical knobs, sliders and switches are definitely a huge plus for learning synthesis so get the programmer.

Like others have mentioned, you might want to also look into some other analog modeling synths like the AN1x, fantastic sounding synth that can do FM as well, might be able to kill two birds with one stone.

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by jantra » Thu Jul 28, 2016 4:29 pm

Thanks everyone for you suggestions and options!
Yes “Swayze” i need a synth with knobs. I think that will be the best for me on my learning curve.
I have been reading A LOT lately and I have now managed to make myself a good list of different synths that I can choose from.
Now its all about the price.

I am not considering the ION Micron anymore because its not easy to program.

Many like the DX7 for its nice 80s sound but many don’t like its interface. Hard to program. That’s why im not going for that synth now. I wish the DX7 had a controller like the JX-8P has (pg800)

I have found a Roland JP8000 for sale on the Norwegian site. Its listed for $425
I think I can push the price lower because the guy needs to sell it FAST. After reading, I see it’s a great beginners synth.

I have also sent a few e-mails to some who are selling the Roland JX-8P (none JX-3P for sale) with the PG800 controller. They are listed for $800. I will try to push the price lower.

No Yamaha AN1x for sale :(

I have actually got a hold on a KORG Polysix synth. It’s a bit expensive for me thought. He is asking $1100. Since I need more “gear”, im blowing my budget if I buy this one. But its looking good! Everything is working. Battery has recently been changed. I have sent him a e-mail. Going to check if I can push the price lower : )

There is an Ensoniq SQ-80 for sale here. Price is $600

Im searching for a MS2000 but I cant find any for sale. People on different forums said it’s a nice beginner synth that you can grow on.

No Nord Lead`s for sale right now.

VIRUS B (without keyboard) is priced for $550

What do you guys think considering the prices i have shown here? Im thinking JP8000 or JX-8P

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by commodorejohn » Thu Jul 28, 2016 5:06 pm

$800 is unfortunately getting to be pretty typical for a JX with the programmer - that's what I paid for my JX-10 & PG-800 a few years back. $600 seems high for the SQ-80, but I haven't kept up on things in a while. That said, it is a really good synth and a great jack-of-all-trades for '80s sounds - it can do typical DX7, analog poly, and even some lo-fi sampler type sounds in a pinch.
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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by ninja6485 » Thu Jul 28, 2016 5:16 pm

Have you considered the Roland boutiques for some Jx/Juno vibes that won't break the bank?
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by Ashe37 » Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:00 pm

jantra wrote: I am not considering the ION Micron anymore because its not easy to program.
The Ion is easy to program. In fact, easier to program than a JX-8P unless you have the PG-800. The Micron is not easy to program. The good news is if you really like the Ion, a Micron can load the sounds to give you additional polyphony in another timbre, and Microns are inexpensive and readily available.

Also, in addition to the SQ-80 look at the ESQ-1.

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by groy » Fri Jul 29, 2016 3:51 am

I'd consider trying to get a synth with an arpeggiator if your just getting started playing and looking to have fun with one piece of gear.

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by jantra » Sat Jul 30, 2016 4:22 pm

Ashe37 wrote:
jantra wrote: I am not considering the ION Micron anymore because its not easy to program.
The Ion is easy to program. In fact, easier to program than a JX-8P unless you have the PG-800. The Micron is not easy to program. The good news is if you really like the Ion, a Micron can load the sounds to give you additional polyphony in another timbre, and Microns are inexpensive and readily available.

Also, in addition to the SQ-80 look at the ESQ-1.
Sorry i was a bit fast in that turn. Yes i meant that the Alesis Micron is out of my list because its hard to program.
But im still looking for an ION :) Micron and ION would be cool together!

A Nord lead 2X just showed up for sale here. Listed for $730.00. I see they are more expensive on Ebay.
Its a synth i have seen been suggested many times for people looking for that 80s sound.

Also i was reading on a another forum where a guy wanted some suggestions on 80s sound (just like me).
Another reponded with this:

"for your style of music and budget i'd suggest the yamaha dx-7 II and a novation nova tabletop v.a.

the yamaha dx series was heavily influential to the latter half of the 80's funk sound. paired with a novation nova you'd have a great keybed and all the knobs for controlling things in vsti's and a killer vocoder and a great v.a. synth"


Can i ask that kind of setup this is and how it works? Is the Novation nova controlling the DX7? Will the knobs on the Nova controll the DX7?
Or is the DX7 only used as a keyboard?

Sorry for my (i guess) dumb questions

( Ashe37, There is an Ensoniq SQ1 plus for sale here. Price is $200.00 :) )

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Re: 80s VIBE! What first synth should i buy ?

Post by Jabberwalky » Sat Jul 30, 2016 4:43 pm

No, they meant using them seperately. Nothing can really control the Dx7, aside from a BCR2000, badly. Wherever you are, there seems to be no problem getting access to a ton of stuff. I'd buy something cheaper first, see if you even like this stuff..

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