Many of you may well be asking ‘Who is Studiologic?’ Well, for those that aren’t aware, this is Italian keybed manufacturer Fatar, who have created the keyboard action for all manner of synthesizer manufactur- ers for many years. They have also had a very successful selection of controller keyboards available for some time and are now making a real scene with their synthesizers and stage pianos. So, although I was not unfamiliar with Studiologic in one sense, I had never actually had one of their Italian made synthesizers to test out until this month. What I got was much more than a synthesizer, I got the Sledge.
I am sure you have all noticed from the pictures of this keyboard that it is yellow. Re- ally yellow. So much that you just can’t look away and in an eerie fashion, it just draws you towards itself. So, if you want to stand out, the Sledge is certainly going to help you do just that. Beyond the wild looks, it is a well thought out synthesizer and the large format makes it very workable. The full sized keys will be a blessing to all those who like a real keyboard and the Fatar keybed is great under the fngers. It all looks like a great frst step for Studiologic in the world of modern synthesizers. There are some teething problems, like a loud pop when you fre it up and notes that ride out extremely long decays and reverb even when you have moved on to the next patch. But, these are all part of the development of the beast, and new frmware updates continue to improve this synth. I must point out that the unit I tested was the frst to land and wasn’t fully upgraded, so there is an even brighter future for this instrument.
A GERMAN IN ITALIAN CLOTHING
I will make no secret of the fact that I am a massive fan of German synth manufacturers Waldorf. They have created some absolute beasts over the years and have a very defnitively German sound that is a techno wonderland of tone. So, I was delighted to see that the Sledge houses an engine designed by Waldorf to bring together the Italian Fatar keybed and German engine. And what a combination they create. I was simply stuck scrolling through pre-set sounds for a couple of hours before I even had a chance to get re- ally involved in the Wavetable options, three oscillators and super-fast flter envelopes. If you were a fan of the Wave series of synths by Waldorf, this is going to get you excited. Oscillator 1 has a wavetable generator that total twists the sound you can derive from this monster. Beyond this, the engine is built around a classic subtractive synthesis design and incorporates a series of effects that really give added life to the already pumping sounds. This is a techno monster, but it is so much more than just that. It will adapt to create sounds for so many uses and with the new addition of being able to upload Korg sounds with the included editing software. Put simply, I really loved playing with the Sledge. With its little niggles aside, this is a keyboard that any synth nerd simply must add to their arsenal.
Hits and Misses
Fatar keyboard and smooth control on all parameters
Waldorf engine is all that one would expect it to be
Hanging notes and popping when turning on or off