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Korg shares spirit of Minilogue synth with next-gen Monologue
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Korg shares spirit of Minilogue synth with next-gen Monologue

by Salil Tembe2016/11/04

Korg has announced their brand new next-gen Monophonic synthesizer called the Monologue that has presets designed by Aphex Twin. The Korg Monologue “shares the acclaimed spirit of the Minilogue” and comes with additional new voicing and sound sculpting features. It will also be retaining the stunning look and construction of its predecessor with five colour variants to choose from.

Much more for a lot less

The next generation Monophonic synthesizer the Korg Monologue will come for $200 less than its Polyphonic counterpart, the Minilogue which costs half a grand. It will come with an Aluminum top and a neat looking wooden back panel. The keyboard has 25 keys having E to E octaves structure making it easier to access the low end tones. Comparing with the Minilogue, we find a C to C octaves arrangement for the keys. Additionally, the Korg Monologue will have an improved 16-step sequencer and the neat looking OLED oscilloscope is also coming from the Korg Minilogue. Every musician would love to have a display to visualise the tones he is producing.

Korg Monologue synth controls

Korg Monologue synth controls

The drive feature on the synth is something worth looking at. It allows you to emphasize the overtones into your audio which itself gives birth to unique sounds. The LFO is tunable to very high speeds to produce some really “space-shattering sounds”.

The voltage controlled low pass filter is tunable on the fly to create a bombast of low tones. Combining the filter response with an amazing overdrive will result in some really over the edge tones. The filter and the overdrive combo is capable of producing thumping low tones as well as scratchy highs. Furthermore, the filter resonance can kick in to create some fantastic self-oscillations that contribute to the party of tones.

Korg Monologue synth inputs

Korg Monologue synth inputs

Most of the tones generated on this synth come from all analog circuitry. For a fact, there is some level of digital circuitry present, but that is barely used to actually produce sculpt or manipulate tones in anyway.

An electro-treat for Aphex Twin fans

Aphex Twin has hand crafted 80 out of 100 presets containing sequences and tones for the Korg Monologue whereas, the remaining 20 are left user programmable. It is Richard D. James who stands behind this stage name, a popular figure in the electro music world. From what we know, Korg invited Richard to work as an advisor; not just for crafting the presets but also for the overall implementation and design of the synthesizer.

It is a well-known fact that Richard James likes to take on new challenges. This brings us back to when he released Cheetah EP last year. The story revolves around the ‘The Cheetah MS800′, the world’s most notorious synthesizer because it is just too difficult to program. Everyone who bought it has probably thrown it away without even thinking about using it. Richard James is one exception who I would say is the first musician to make use of the MS800 for a meaningful creation. He named his EP as the Cheetah and released it in 2015 after a lengthy 9 year break.

The Japanese company has already given out some pre-production pieces of the Korg Monologue to a few for the purpose of evaluation. For the rest of us, the company is taking pre-orders whereas, the actual shipment of the product will start in January 2017. Make sure you have at least $299 in your bank for pre-ordering the Monologue from sites like GuitarCenter or Gears4music.

 

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About The Author
Salil Tembe
Salil is an electronics engineer who loves to play around with the technology. He has a passion for expressing his love for technology through writing. Also, he firmly stands for open sourcing everything that makes our lives better, so that it can get even better.
  • Cowfood
    2016/11/05 at 2:32 am

    This is not an upgrade to the minilogue. It is not an improvement either. It is its own beast. This is a monophonic synth, usually used for leads and bass melodies. The minilogue is a polyphonic synth that can be used for playing chords, or single voice work. Hence the difference in price. The moniogue is different in its range of modulation , filtering, sequencing, and tuning. It is complimentary and unique to the minilogue. Your title is missleading. Btw, I am pre ordering one of these to augment my minilogue in the studio 😉

    • 2016/11/05 at 11:05 am

      Thank you for your concern, the title has been updated from “improves upon” to “shares spirit of”. The article will be updated shortly by the author to explain the difference in price.

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