A holy trinity of old school oddities.
Kicking off the calendar year with a bang, Japanese audio mainstays Korg have unleashed three new synths today for NAMM 2021: the Modwave, a whopper of a wavetable synth that aims to revive the most expansive tones of the ’80s, plus reissues of the classic miniKORG 700 and ARP 2600.
- The new Modwave synth acts as a comprehensive revamp of Korg’s DW-8000, a classic unit from 1985.
- Featuring two wavetable oscillators, a dozen analogue filter types and 200 wavetables to explore plus Motion Sequencing, an expressive Kaoss Physics engine and more.
- The miniKORG 700 revives one of Korg’s earliest mass-produced mono synths from 1973, while the ARP 2600 M follows on from last year’s full-sized reissue.
Catch up on all the action from NAMM 2021 over at our Product News section.
Sharing a similar design to last year’s Opsix and Wavestate units, the Modwave revives the classic wavetables of the DW-8000 and puts them in a much more accessible, hands-on package. The unit packs two wavetable oscillators with individual controls for Position, Morph, Blend and Level, with oscillator being able to load two wavetables to blend between one another.
With 200 wavetables – each containing 64 waveforms – and 30 modifiers with 13 differing morphing types, it goes without saying that you won’t run short on sounds with the Modwave. There’s even room to load your own wavetables, while a PCM library of sample sounds unlocks even further versatility.
Elsewhere, the Modwave offers twelve analogue filter types, as well as four envelopes, five LFOs and dual mod processors. There’s also an arpeggiator function and a powerful motion sequencer, while the Kaoss Physics Engine offers X-Y control over various parameters on the fly.
Also new (kind of) to Korg is the miniKORG 700 – a revamp of the brand’s first ever mass-produced mono synth from 1973. It features a sweet vintage design with a smattering of slider controls beneath the keybed – the synth was originally intended to sit on top of an organ, with these slider controls making live adjustments easier for keys players.
Two oscillators with sine, square and saw waves allowing for pounding basses and creamy leads alike, while oscillator detuning lets you create thick chorus sounds with the flick of a switch.
On top of adding new features such as ring modulation, spring reverb, patch memory, joystick control, aftertouch and an arpeggiator, the miniKORG 700 also offers high-pass and low-pass filter modes, as well as portamento, vibrato and more. The unit also comes in a vintage style hard wood case, and looks like the perfect counterpart to any funky studio setup.
ARP 2600 M
Finally, there’s the ARP 2600 M – a down-sized take on last year’s ARP 2600 semi-modular reissue. It’s 60% smaller than the larger ARP 2600 FS, and packs all the same features that made the original ARP 2600 such a hit with the likes of Herbie Hancock, Kraftwerk and Stevie Wonder.
While there’s no dedicated keyboard controller, Korg have been gratuitous enough to include a custom case for the ARP 2600 M with space for patch cables, power supplies and other accessories. By the looks of things, it’ll sound just as good as last year’s unit and take up a whole lot less studio real estate, which is something we can all get behind.