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July 8, 2011 1:03 PM   Subscribe

SynthMania - The internet premiere resource for keyboardists

Previously, but with a great many updates since 2006.
posted by Blazecock Pileon (18 comments total) 37 users marked this as a favorite
When I needed album art for my Survivor mp3s, I found no images of either the band or its record sleeves that I would care to see repeatedly. So, as a generic image for 80s Album Oriented Rock Hit, I used a picture of the Yamaha DX-7.
posted by Trurl at 1:16 PM on July 8, 2011

I prefer VintageSynth for my general synth perusing (and a big double-plus for their SynthFinder) but SynthMania definitely has the broadest set of sound examples, per instrument, that I've been able to find.
posted by lekvar at 1:17 PM on July 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Dang... thought this was going to be about how to pimp out my IBM Model M.
posted by RolandOfEld at 1:19 PM on July 8, 2011

One of the interesting things, I find, about SynthMania is that they manage to present the cheapo synths in a really positive light. DX7? Yeah, it's a great pice of synth history, but check out the Casio Rapman! Does the DX7 have a scratchpad or a microphone? Didn't think so! Yeah, your Ensoniq Mirage might be pretty sweet with its analog filter, but get a load of the Yamaha DJX! It's a sampler with a whole sweet suite of built-in effects!

Seriously, if a website can give me deep-down gearlust for the biggest lemons of the synth world, they're doing something right.
posted by lekvar at 1:37 PM on July 8, 2011 [3 favorites]

Seconding the superiority of vintagesynth.com; for sound samples, I usually just hit up YouTube.

The major drawback of VS, though, is that they post the estimated dollar value of each synth. This can be great if you're shopping for something new, or selling something old, but it has made finding bargains virtually impossible.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:05 PM on July 8, 2011

And VSE prices are all outdated, making it an even worse "feature"
posted by readyfreddy at 2:07 PM on July 8, 2011

Indeed. I doubt they've budged in ten years.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:09 PM on July 8, 2011

I follow Matrixsynth and Synthtopia for my daily fixes of synthesizer and keyboard news!
posted by philquadra at 2:27 PM on July 8, 2011

I really like miniorgan. This page is totally fun.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 2:56 PM on July 8, 2011 [2 favorites]

I don't need another synthporn page. They make living without unlimited financial resources hurt.
posted by Zerowensboring at 5:55 PM on July 8, 2011

SynthMe(Synthesizer Music and Electronics) is very active with a deep archive.

• Also unspoken as yet today is Create Digital Music, a major player, always SOTA.

Wire to the Ear may be worth checking out.

Retro Synth Ads is certainly worth a mention, also deep archive.

Failed Muso shares experience and depth.

• I'll second b1tr0t's remarks on SOS; classic synths (and synthesis) are covered in amazing (and technical) detail. First go-to if you're considering major investment in a classic.
posted by Twang at 5:59 PM on July 8, 2011 [3 favorites]

for those in the softsynth realm, kvr audio is it - and for other, more hardware oriented things, gearslutz and harmony central deal with just about everything that has to do with music

i also like the sound of reason - lots of reason tutorials - and the boss gt central page - if you have a boss gt series guitar fx processor, you really must go here

i've also been lurking on the all about jazz music theory forum and the international music score library project is full of many, many things in the western compositional tradition*

*by which i mean "classical music" - but i don't think that's a very good term
posted by pyramid termite at 7:11 PM on July 8, 2011

OK, so I'm going to favourite this post and enjoy the audio-porn everyone has so kindly linked. /bows out
posted by Dark Messiah at 7:38 PM on July 8, 2011

Heh. Indeed. The only synths I can afford are mid-eighties hybrid synths, because the folks at VSE apparently don't like them or something, so they are cheap. The ESQ-1 was $200, and the K3m was $150. They are both completely excellent.

(The fact that 303s are still ridiculously pricy can only be a testament to the brain-eating properties of ecstasy.)
posted by Sys Rq at 7:08 AM on July 9, 2011

> They make living without unlimited financial resources hurt.

Despite the big collections people like to show off, I think most of us have one or two pets we hold onto, and the rest we play with for a year or two and then trade off.

Modulars look grand (and cost many grands), but the charm of patch cords wears off before you know it.

A few knobs, buttons and blinkenlights are wunderbar, but if you focus on sound rather than hardware, really the quality and versatility of today's softsynths is great. Team with a decent MIDI controller and lose the blues!
posted by Twang at 1:31 PM on July 9, 2011

Disclaimer: My husband restores vintage synths. Seen a lot of cool ones in my day. :)

Neat site, but no Moogs or Buchlas? ;-)
I like Synthtopia, but I have very personal reasons for not liking Matrixsynth.
posted by luckynerd at 1:43 PM on July 9, 2011

Wow. I've just learned that old K2000 I have sitting in a bedroom is well regarded.
posted by bz at 9:52 PM on July 9, 2011

Disclaimer: My husband restores vintage synths. Seen a lot of cool ones in my day. :)

posted by luckynerd at 1:43 PM on July 9 [+] [!]

posted by Hello, I'm David McGahan at 12:38 AM on July 11, 2011 [1 favorite]

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