Had the Microfreak and it’s a cool gadget. but on it’s on it falls short IMHO.
(by it’s own I refer to no external effects or controller)
My thoughts on it for my use.
It’s a cool idea, and it looks neat. In practice it’s pretty much useless for anything but randomness. Since it’s highly sensitive to humidity and is affected by the moisture or lack thereof on your hands, the key does not respond equally to the same velocity. So while fun and cool to start with, it gets old real fast.
No onboard effects so the mono output is dry and flat, quite underwhelming, as first synth and you do not have any other references it might passable, but other than that you will need to run it through some external effect to be usable and come alive. Korg NTS-1 is proof that it doesn’t have to cost a lot to get some basic effects. Which of course makes it a good pair with the MF.
Microfreak needs to be connected to the computer via USB to connect to MCC. The connection is slow even though its USB transferring presets is slow and organizing them on the computer is not possible if you do not transfer them to the Microfreak first and then back to your computer. I think the fact Arturia uses “on the fly live sync” isn’t helping. The Keystep is a lot more consistent in its connection, while the Microfreak often needs a reboot to connect to MCC, this tested on both Windows 10 and OSX Mojave.
It is actually more than decent for the money, I mean it won’t compare to Elektron boxes or Minilogue XD, but it’s also in a different price category. Apart from the Keybed, I find the build to be good for the money. Encoders feel solid enough and it’s easy to navigate the UI with the controls albeit a little plasticky.
Fun and easy to use, although limited I would say it’s plus on the overall package.
-Bottomline for me-
The underwhelming output and its keybed was the main reason I could not warrant keeping it.