Does anyone here have experience with synthesizers? I'm thinking about buying one for my jam band and I need to know good brands and prices. Im not looking to go all out and professional, just something I can tool around on while we jam.
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get a laptop with a good sound card. steal a program that creates synths form midi key boards. by a midi keyboard(<$100) and plug your laptop into a speaker. now you have a portable and probably cheaper synth.
PS: this is what part of the alphabet would look like if Q and R were eliminated.
get the microkorg for sure, its so sick but the keys are a little small. look at the roland juno or the nord lead, those are amazing too. if your looking for a synth just for recording , you should try software synths, its cheaper and you can get a lot more sounds. basically you buy a MIDI keyboard connect it to your computer, get some synth plugins and you've got 1000s of different synths into one. the thing is that you cant really perform with them unless you want to setup a computer/laptop and play it through some computer speakers.
go microkorg man, seriously theres nothing better than a microkorg if you just want to screw around. plus its got a vocoder so you can like mask your voice and sound like a robot. ever heard the band death from above 1979? if not check it out, they were a really good band and jesse (the bassist/synths) used a microkorg and it sounds amazing. youtube them and watch them perform the song Do It live. then you'll be convinced.
I had an sh-201 as my first synth, and it was an amazing learning tool if you want to go the analog route, it really teaches you how a sound is created, and it has some cool patches that are easy to mold to your liking. I moved on to a Voyager from there, which is my baby. For stage, I'd save and go the rack-mounted setup with a nice controller, rack synths just can't be beat. at least 90% of pro musician synths go the rack way, even if it appears they are using a different synth, its most likely being used as a controller.
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^if you have $2k to drop. otherwise a microkorg is a really safe option. it has classic trance/electronica sounds as well as some "retro" tones. if those aren't good there are about 132049710571 downloadable patches online.
the tiny keys haven't bothered me at all as of yet but i agreed that the vocoder is not amazing. if thats an issue you could try running a better mic through it because it might just be a sound quality thing.
its not actually, so i guess it depends on what exactly you need it for..
as for being a toy, i wouldn't call it that, there is still a lot of functionality and it can be tweaked pretty well.
all in all though, it really does depend on what you need it for
the vocoder itself is good, you just need a better mic the stock one sucks balls. and synths are suppose to be toys man, its all about experimenting and playing around. i'd say theres nothing better if your just getting into synths, its got the functionality of a hardware and software synth for not a high price