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Arturia MiniBrute Analog mono synth!!!
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Author Arturia MiniBrute Analog mono synth!!!
Chuck E. Jesus
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 7:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

drewtoothpaste wrote:
I'll let you touch my arm for a dollar.


only if it's after one of your weight lifting sessions...
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suboptimal
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I bet the touch would be worth it. He's meaty, after all.
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Jason Brock
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Christopher Winkels wrote:
Couldn't have said it better myself. I never could understand the worship some people have for the 24 dB/octave filter, like it was the holy grail of topology.

It's good. It's great in some cases. But it's not as though 12 dB is an "inferior" design. It's like saying chocolate is inferior to vanilla or strawberry.


I really don't think the slope of a filter makes a huge difference in character anyway, based on my experience. A Moog transistor ladder in 2-pole mode still sounds Moogy to me, just a bit brighter. And I would bet that if a Steiner filter were designed to have a 24dB slope, it would still retain its own unique character too, instead of suddenly sounding like a Moog. The real tonal difference seems to be mostly determined by the method used to create the resonant feedback loop.
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dopefiend
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Look at the crazy popularity of the Serge synthesizer......2-pole filters and all.
The Yamaha CS-80 has been touted to be one of the fattest-sounding poly synths in history, 12-dB's notwithstanding!
Anyone want to question the obesity of the Oberheim SEM?

I think that the argument of the Arturia (or any other synth, for that matter) being inferior for having 2-pole LPF's instead of 4-pole ones is pretty lame.
And while we are on the argument of screwed-up views from those SOS reviewers, I remember the reviews of both the Analogue Systems RS Integrator and the Doepfer A-100 in the late 90's done by Chris Carter. He gave a raving review of the AS, praising the "high construction quality and excellent sound" of it, while giving the Doepfer a tepid, lackluster one. At that time I personally had the opportunity to try out both of these systems. I had a generous Doepfer rig, and wanted to expand it with AS, so I purchased 3 VCO's, a mixer and and a filter, and what a disappointment!! The PC boards were bent at their attachment to the front panels, the front panel legends were cheap-looking and barely legible (font too thin) and some were fading (in all fairnesss to Carter, he did briefly state that the front panels looked cheap). The jacks were as loose as the Doepfers (not mentioned by CarterThe filter was kind of bland for me. Chris Carter wrote that they "oozed quality" (WTF!!! angry very frustrating ).
In all fairness to AS, a few years later I bought a Bode FS clone, and the build was better, with great sound, even though the front plate was still hard to read and cheap-looking. I have therefore declared, based on my experience, the Doepfer to be overall superior to the AS, and have stuck with it since.

Now, I am not implying that the SOS staff is British-biased, but in my personal experiences with these instruments I just could not see what this dude what describing in his reviews, and since then I take his opinions with a heavy sodium load. Nevertheless, I still love some of their articles, especially Gordon Reids', and I think his review of the Buchla was fair, in spite of how bruised Don's feelings got.
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mhtones
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Latest from Musician's Friend.

Spoke to a CS rep today because I just received another backorder automated email after receiving a similar email a couple weeks ago. He indicated that I still had a tentative backorder shipping date of end of April. The date on their website for July is for anyone ordering a Minibrute today. He indicated that they had 97 pre-orders and I found out that I was somewhere between #60 - 70. They are expecting 90 Minibrutes at the end of April. So, 91 - 97 will be filled upon their 2nd shipment, hence the July date.

One thing to note: You will fall off their pre-order waiting list if you do not contact them within 60 days of your order. So, if your a part of the first 90 and still want your Minibrute tentatively shipped in April, you'll need to call them and let them know. By calling, they reset your 60 day grace period.

Now, all this is what I was told by MF CS. I take it all with a grain of salt. I'm hopeful for April, but prepared for actually receiving this later. Will give me more time to save up for it. hihi And sorry if someone else has already posted all this, I didn't want to read thru the hundreds of posts. Besides, figured this was an update that some might appreciate.
Small Type: I do not work for nor am I affiliated in any way with Musicians Friend or any other retailer for that matter. thumbs up

What??? No 24db filter, crap I'm cancelling my pre-order. hihi
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MrDys
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

mhtones wrote:
One thing to note: You will fall off their pre-order waiting list if you do not contact them within 60 days of your order. So, if your a part of the first 90 and still want your Minibrute tentatively shipped in April, you'll need to call them and let them know. By calling, they reset your 60 day grace period.


I just don't get that. I ordered a thing, why would they not fulfill it? Especially if they know that the delivery date is more than 60 days out?

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Chuck E. Jesus
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

mhtones wrote:
They are expecting 90 Minibrutes at the end of April. So, 91 - 97 will be filled upon their 2nd shipment, hence the July date.

One thing to note: You will fall off their pre-order waiting list if you do not contact them within 60 days of your order. So, if your a part of the first 90 and still want your Minibrute tentatively shipped in April, you'll need to call them and let them know. By calling, they reset your 60 day grace period.


sounds closer to what the MF guy told me...thing is i already paid, i'm guessing because i used a discount code?

mhtones wrote:
What??? No 24db filter, crap I'm cancelling my pre-order. hihi


i don't mean to diss the reviewer guy's credentials, but who cares what he thinks?
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drip.feed
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Guys, before the Gearslutz Witch Burning gathers any more momentum, I'd like to ask how many of you actually read the review (written by a guy not given to hysterical hyperbole and who has played and reviewed more synthesizers in his long life than you or I have ever heard of)? I did, because I get SOS on subscription.

(all emphasis here is my own)

Re: the filter. My interpretation of what he wrote was that he merely questioned the non-obvious choice (based on poor sales of the original filter back in the 1970's) and then allowed Arturia to explain why they chose it, to wit: the American Moog sound which many players want was too obvious, whilst the madcap Russian and English filters were "too characteristic of the original synths". So they chose a filter that offered "versatility and savagery" and also meant the 'brute wouldn't sound like any other modern synth.

Where is Reid's bias or ill-informed fuckwittery in that??

Reid then spent the rest of the review spilling his seed about the MiniBrute.

He documents his gradual conversion to the dark side:
"At first, I struggled to get the sounds that I wanted from it. The filter seemed rather too flaccid for my hardened 36dB/octave tastes, and the shape of the contours didn’t quite work for me. But as time passed, things started to drop into place, and I found myself generating some sounds that I really liked."

Next paragraph:
"...the result was a deep, speaker-shredding bass that was more buffalo than bull. I loved it."

Next Paragraph:
"One patch I tried used the Metalized triangle wave responding to an AD filter envelope and slow LFO modulation, with the filter at high Q also following the contour, and the Brute Factor at about half power. When arpeggiated, this raised the dead from under my 250-year-old house...and I hadn't even started mixing waveforms!"

Next paragraph:
"Playing with the MiniBrute, I started to remember how much fun synthesis was before punk rock turned keyboard players into dweebs."

(Most of) his conclusion:
"You have to applaud Arturia for avoiding the temptation to build yet another low-cost ‘bass synth’ (or, as I think of them, synths with limited capabilities that just happen to play low notes)...In truth, if I were considering buying a second-hand SH101, Axxe or MS10 for the same price as a MiniBrute then, after agonising about the width of its keyboard, I would choose the MiniBrute...Yes, you should be excited, and yes, this is a mature synthesizer. I suspect that Arturia’s confidence may be justified. The MiniBrute could be a very successful product indeed."

Summary
"You might think that all the evolutionary niches for analogue synths were filled long ago, but the MiniBrute proves that that’s not so. More than 40 years after the emergence of the genus, it offers a unique architecture and can sound excellent. At the price, it should be one of the success stories of 2012."

Reid's message? All great synths are better than the sum of their parts, and Arturia has nailed it.

Side note: Paul White (I think it was), the Editor in Chief of Sound On Sound, was asked a couple of years ago about why SOS very rarely gives negative reviews. His reply was that, these days, for the kind of equipment SOS focuses on, there is actually very little shitty product.

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mhtones
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Hence the hihi hihi hihi Translation: I don't care what kind of filter it has, its got a lot of options packed into a nice interface and I can hook it up directly to my modular! For $425 US. Win-win for everyone who wants one! It's motherfucking bacon yo It's motherfucking bacon yo It's motherfucking bacon yo Review? What review?
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rico loverde
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

drip.feed wrote:
Guys, before the Gearslutz Witch Burning gathers any more momentum, I'd like to ask how many of you actually read the review (written by a guy not given to hysterical hyperbole and who has played and reviewed more synthesizers in his long life than you or I have ever heard of)? I did, because I get SOS on subscription.

(all emphasis here is my own)

Re: the filter. My interpretation of what he wrote was that he merely questioned the non-obvious choice (based on poor sales of the original filter back in the 1970's) and then allowed Arturia to explain why they chose it, to wit: the American Moog sound which many players want was too obvious, whilst the madcap Russian and English filters were "too characteristic of the original synths". So they chose a filter that offered "versatility and savagery" and also meant the 'brute wouldn't sound like any other modern synth.

Where is Reid's bias or ill-informed fuckwittery in that??

Reid then spent the rest of the review spilling his seed about the MiniBrute.

He documents his gradual conversion to the dark side:
"At first, I struggled to get the sounds that I wanted from it. The filter seemed rather too flaccid for my hardened 36dB/octave tastes, and the shape of the contours didn’t quite work for me. But as time passed, things started to drop into place, and I found myself generating some sounds that I really liked."

Next paragraph:
"...the result was a deep, speaker-shredding bass that was more buffalo than bull. I loved it."

Next Paragraph:
"One patch I tried used the Metalized triangle wave responding to an AD filter envelope and slow LFO modulation, with the filter at high Q also following the contour, and the Brute Factor at about half power. When arpeggiated, this raised the dead from under my 250-year-old house...and I hadn't even started mixing waveforms!"

Next paragraph:
"Playing with the MiniBrute, I started to remember how much fun synthesis was before punk rock turned keyboard players into dweebs."

(Most of) his conclusion:
"You have to applaud Arturia for avoiding the temptation to build yet another low-cost ‘bass synth’ (or, as I think of them, synths with limited capabilities that just happen to play low notes)...In truth, if I were considering buying a second-hand SH101, Axxe or MS10 for the same price as a MiniBrute then, after agonising about the width of its keyboard, I would choose the MiniBrute...Yes, you should be excited, and yes, this is a mature synthesizer. I suspect that Arturia’s confidence may be justified. The MiniBrute could be a very successful product indeed."

Summary
"You might think that all the evolutionary niches for analogue synths were filled long ago, but the MiniBrute proves that that’s not so. More than 40 years after the emergence of the genus, it offers a unique architecture and can sound excellent. At the price, it should be one of the success stories of 2012."

Reid's message? All great synths are better than the sum of their parts, and Arturia has nailed it.

Side note: Paul White (I think it was), the Editor in Chief of Sound On Sound, was asked a couple of years ago about why SOS very rarely gives negative reviews. His reply was that, these days, for the kind of equipment SOS focuses on, there is actually very little shitty product.
I read the SOS article too and i did not get the feeling at all that he was bashing the filter. Get over it guys.
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budz
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Yes, I've read the review now and it's not a bad review overall at all. It is still a very odd thing to say though, and strikes me as being really out of touch, and the acoustic emulation comment I just cannot understand at all. Synths got popular because they made different sounds.

Also, I'm quite disappointed that even though I'm sure Gordon has lots of modular, there's nothing in the review about what it's like to use the Minibrute as a CV/gate controller - does it send out gates for individual generated arpeggiator notes for example? It's an example of why SOS reviews annoy me... most of the review tends to be a regurtitated press release/promo spiel about what the features are, with maybe a paragraph about what the thing is actually like to use, if you're lucky. The Arturia review is better than most in this respect though.
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theabsent
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

budz wrote:
most of the review tends to be a regurtitated press release/promo spiel about what the features are


I stopped reading reviews years ago mainly for this reason. I found that really useful deep reviews were extremely rare. Might have changed since, I dunno.

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drip.feed
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

budz wrote:
Yes, I've read the review now and it's not a bad review overall at all. It is still a very odd thing to say though, and strikes me as being really out of touch, and the acoustic emulation comment I just cannot understand at all. Synths got popular because they made different sounds.

Well, in ye olde days synths were often measured against yardsticks which nowadays seem patently naive. Every programmable synth back then had nothing but pianos, sax, guitar, organ, flute, brass and slap-bass sounds in their presets because that's how the intelligentsia of the day judged their capabilities. So I don't think Reid was holding that yardstick up himself, just giving the reader a sense of why the original filter might have bombed back in the day.

budz wrote:
Also, I'm quite disappointed that even though I'm sure Gordon has lots of modular, there's nothing in the review about what it's like to use the Minibrute as a CV/gate controller - does it send out gates for individual generated arpeggiator notes for example? It's an example of why SOS reviews annoy me... most of the review tends to be a regurtitated press release/promo spiel about what the features are, with maybe a paragraph about what the thing is actually like to use, if you're lucky.

I certainly agree with that. I nearly always skip the detailed crap and read the summary and conclusion first, then back-track through the review if it piques my interest. Some reviewers are so OCD they can't help themselves. Maybe they have a certain number of words-per-article to fill and documenting the features is a good way of bulking out a review?

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drewtoothpaste
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

If you review something you like you have to point out a couple negatives or it sounds like you're writing ad copy for the company that gave you the free synthesizer.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have no doubt over Gordon Reid's experience with, and knowledge of, synthesizers. It does, however, become very obvious that his arrogance & musical tastes (70's UK prog rock) have a strong influence over his reviews of equipment. He is a "traditional" keyboard player who has little or no regard for anything out-with that genre- or instruments that are designed for a non-conventional approach. (I can't imagine anyone less able to properly assess a Buchla). His reviews in SOS have irritated me for over 20 years and will continue to do so, but he always seems to get the pick of the crop. To be fair, though, he does really comprehensively review gear.
Yes, his "Synth Secrets" show an in-depth knowledge of sound synthesis, but they're mostly attempts at re-creating conventional instruments.
To me his review of the MB is actually positive (for him) but "punk rock" ( I guess he's referring to Cabaret Voltaire & Throbbing Gristle here) happened over 30 years ago and there have been many many developments in electronic music since then- get over it FFS!!
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