Considering Analog Four as First Hardware Synth


A couple years ago I scaled back everything except the Dark Trinity, in an effort to coax the most out of my A4.
It was a great move, and got me to love my A4.
Still though, I think it’s time to get some VCO goodness back in the mix.


Actually I am considering to get one of the Analog Solution Fusionbox(es), because this is pure analog circuitry, semi-modular, and in the sense of the 70/80ies and it sounds incredible …

I have watched the videos by Marc Doty … WoW


Yeah Analog Solutions has all the drool worthy sounds.
Been wanting the Nyborg combo for a while now.


This Analog Solution make me think we must to ask you @Ellingferd what music genre you’re in ?
it’s more easy to help and advise you when we know what music genre you focus.

if it’s SynthWave … it’s not the same like Dub Techno, neither than Trap or Soul … i would not buy this or that instrument it’s all about the music genre … Are you a Keyboardist ?


So I am most interested in probably falls in the ambient/shoegaze/dream pop. The sounds/artists I am drawn to most would be M83 (Dead Cities in particular, the song “Noise” has been on repeat lately), Loscil, The Sight Below, R Beny, Boards of Canada, Jefre Cantu-Ledesma (In Summer in particular) etc.

As far as my musical experience/history/abilities, I played the viola from elementary to high school, and the guitar casually off and on since then (I’m 33). I have a vague recollection of music theory (which I am planning on studying), but I think my experience as a youth gave me a good ear. I have basically no experience on piano/keys, which is why the analog appeals to me (even though that sounds a little silly).

I am just getting back into Ableton after a hiatus for a few years, but here is a link to the first track I ever made: (I was recovering from an injury and bored out of my mind, which is what got me into Ableton). It’s not indicative of the sounds Im interested in making now, but just to give a little context.

At any rate, thanks for replying and I have to say that this is by far the most responsive and supportive online forum related to music I have encountered yet!


This makes me think you’d dig the Monologue with the micro tuning and some guitar pedals.

Totally agree, elektronauts are the best :3lektron:


That makes me think you are on your way with the A4.

Edit: System 1 or minilogue might be good choices too


If you go for the A4 I would recommendgetting a Midi Keyboard or if you want the mk1 maybe buy an Analog keys. I’ve you have experience with Reaktor then you won’t have any problems, the manual is a good read too :wink: Keep in mind the some synth are more limited then others. IMHO the Virus is pretty awesome if you want a great Allrounder but of course the A4 has a awesome analog sound. Keep in mind the the A4 has only 4 voices, this could be a downside if you only want one synth. My first synth was the Roland JD-Xi, pretty awesome features if you consider the cheap price.


My first hardware synth was the AK. It has a very distinct sound and i actually find it pretty easy and rewarding to program and play around with.
I have a P6 also and although i love the immediacy of the knobs i tend to prefer mucking around with the AK because i find i get more suprising results that take me down a route id never expected.
As has been said lots also theres many other great synths out there. Were lucky!!
But id say look into each that interests you and go for the one that appeals the most :slight_smile:


No doubt!
5 years ago, completely different story.


For the money, a Korg Monologue would make a wonderful first (or last) hardware synth. I can not in good faith recommend another synth without first mentioning the Monologue.

But if you had need of external CV sequencing, the Analog Four would make a fine choice.


I almost got through a whole thread without suggesting to keep an eye out for an old Clavia Nord Lead/Rack. Much knobbyness can be had, if that’s how you best like to function. Solid MIDI spec too.


It’s a great synth, but not for learning how synths and sound design works.

For that purpose, the Sub37 can’t be beat.


Still waiting for the desktop version, eventually I’ll just need to mod one or throw down for a Voyager RME


Ok i think i doing fine to asked you what music genre… so I’ll tell you what I’ll do without making a brand fanboy. First i would not take the Analog Four, i wouldn’t take the Analog Rytm.

I would rather prefer few different microphone (canon mic, contact mic, underwater mic) a good headphone, an ipad with granular app, an octatrack, keep your computer… a good soundcard + iconnect Midi4+ , guitar / violin + amp is just fine… And start to Live sampling, Treat and Design your sound but not from the ground sound synthesis way. (Sure you will learn a lot, if you really want to know sound synthesis do syntorial but not buy analog synth for now)

Effects are very important too…

That’s not because you feel your way analog : it’s a synth you need ! Nope it’s analog and modern evolution of music concrete but less experimental you want. it’s analog sounds effected and triturated… it’s called Re-Sampled Synthesis, Granular Synthesis + your melody + your voice… but state of the art of the transfomation and sound design. (not sound synthesis)

i don’t say don’t buy synth at all neither don’t put atmosphere and soundscapes in your music don’t get me wrong. But as strange it can sound you don’t need a synth to achieve every music band you give as reference. it’s just another way to work with materials.

Hope it make sense. if not i’m sure other elektronauts will extend what i have in mind with that.

(Buy a synth when you know what your music is missing you will save a lot of money by starting by the beginning and the beginning is no hardware synth for me)


Due to the unorthodox user interface I wouldn’t recommend an A4.
Something like a Nord lead is much more intuitive


I was thinking something similar.
With those references, re-sampling etc sounds like the avenue to explore, and the OT is a monster!


Yup it’s just the wrong way to me… (checklist order of his needs)

But i’m not the voice of god, i just reply with respect of any other advises, with my honesty.


Reaktor? Last time i heard of it (years ago) this was a totally complicated “make your own shit” software by programming stuff kind of thing … :stuck_out_tongue:

I would say: If you feel comfortable with Reaktor you are ready for every Synth out there! All of these strange “plugins”? which are available for this thing need so much head scratching to get into them that you will most likely feel like the A4 is a very easy and simple instrument :slight_smile: If you know subtractive Synthesis in particular, you get a good mate with the A4 that will surprise you every here and there.

If you are just a preset user though - get Massive and its 10 Million Soundsets instead :wink:


Well Im just starting into Reaktor and it definitely makes my head hurt, but I think the new blocks aspect makes it way more approachable (I got into it because of the possibility of emulating eurorack without spending an insane amount of money). Yes, you can certainly create anything from the literal ground up, which is way beyond my capabilities at the moment.