When you have GAS but nothing seems worth it


“Syndrome” is a word most often associated with medical disorders… To me GAS has a negative connotation inherently implied. I think there is very much a difference between trying out things and possibly trading and getting other things until one finds what works for them, and GAS which is more like always desiring the next thing and sort of obsessing over new stuff when one already has a highly functional setup obtained by the general non-GASsy methods, or thinking ones music would be better by obtaining some “thing” instead of putting in time and effort and being creative with ones already highly capable setup. That’s the way I see it…

Maybe people see it different but to me when someone shows up saying they have GAS in its own thread it’s basically admitting that they have some sort of issue and want counciling, therefore the stream of use what you have, your gear is already awesome, etc… Sometimes it’s used more lightly like “oooohhh I’m gassing for this!” in a new product thread and usually no one jumps in to stop them there, they like the post!


Charcoal tablets


I think the term has deviated since long, from any literal meaning related to the world of medicine, and that it’s used in a lighter context in forums like these. But I could be wrong, of course.


(apologies in advance for poorly constructed post, I’m tired and just went with the “stream of thought” method here!)

For me personally I find it important to identify which equipment I truly love and identify with. I’ve gone through a lot of “low to midrange” gear and at this point the only things that I truly love are the Digitakt, a recently purchased Moog Sirin, and my PRS guitar. They all look good, feel good, and sound good, and have little qualities that “speak to me” on a more personal level. Me and my wife have a “bird & bunny” thing going on (don’t judge… was originally because of our Chinese horoscopes, me being rooster, her being rabbit, but progressed into its own thing from there). So the Moog Sirin has a bird. And it sounds good. And it looks cool. And from a technical perspective it is great, with MIDI control over all parameters. How much more perfect of a match can you get? My PRS guitar has birds on it. It is also a deep plum purple (favorite color). Sounds good, feels good. I love it. What need do I have for any other guitar? The Digitakt was a gift from my wife and was my first (currently only) Elektron device, which I had wanted to get into for years. I’m also a little bit of a goth at heart, and I have a TC Electronic Dark Matter distortion pedal. It’s not the most amazing or expensive thing in the world, but it has a cool name and looks cool.

I have a few other instruments that don’t speak to me on NEARLY the same level as those mentioned already. They are just kind of “there.” And they might be good tools, but I don’t feel any particular connection with them.

I guess what I’m getting at, is finding contentment and joy in the equipment, and getting some kind of inspiration out of it, and for that I think it has to have some kind of personal connection. And it might be that NONE of the stuff you have speaks to you on that level. It might be that you’ve been blinded by GAS and “new feature syndrome” and have acquired stuff just because it’s the cool new thing or because someone else said it was good or whatever. That’s something you should think about, and if you aren’t happy with any of the gear you have, get rid of it, and think about what you truly want.

Also, regarding GAS in general, I think we have to be careful not to idolize the machines or see them as more capable and powerful than they really are. They are not wizards, WE are the wizards. The machines are just metal and plastic. They are just tools or toys. And I think it’s important to identify what you want out of the tools, or what kind of fun you want out of the toys (depending on how you approach it!).

My wife often has a hard time making final decisions on clothes and makeup. She’ll come to me with like 10 pages open of different stuff, wanting me to help decide what to get. I always tell her, “If money wasn’t an issue, and if someone came up to you right now and laid those out in front of you and said you could have ONE for free, which one thing really stands out to you the most? Which one thing would you REALLY not want to miss out on in that moment?” That usually helps identify what it really is she wants and overcome the choice paralysis.

Rambling quite a bit here… but I guess it comes down to identifying what you want.
Tool? Or toy?
If tool, identify the NEED first. What purpose do you need the tool for, what qualities and capabilities does it need? Then find the right tool.

If toy, identify what makes you happy and what you feel a more personal connection with. And when you find that thing, and you know it’s more special than the others, commit to it and don’t look for anything else to replace it.

Finally… I think it’s easy to get addicted to that feeling of always looking for “new and exciting stuff.” It’s not just in music but other industries as well. So that feeling of restless GAS without any specific piece of gear in mind could very well be that you are looking for the next “new and exciting thing” and either there isn’t that much exciting stuff out there right now, or you’ve exposed yourself to too much of it and there isn’t much left that’s going to bring you that sense of satisfaction that you may have experienced in the past with a particular piece of equipment. So again, recalibrating and figuring out what it is you really want is important. Are just wanting something for the sake of getting something, or are you looking to fill a gap in your current equipment, or to make a particular style of music, or to get a certain level of “fun” just from using the gear?

Rambling over :slight_smile:


It’s probably interpreted in many ways, that’s just how I’ve interpreted it so I imagine others would to which explains the “use what you got” type replies is I guess what I’m trying to say.


My rule of thumb is:
1 synth
1 sampler
1 drum machine
1 effect

Strip your setup down to that, commit for 1 month, and rediscover the fun of being creative on a limited set up.


I wish I could do that


Why can’t you? For ages people have made music with only guitar+voice, or only piano, or only X whatever instrument or minimal setup. Just because we live in a time where SOOOO many tools are available (hardware and software) doesn’t mean we NEED all the tools.


I can relate to gassing over nothing in particular. Scary feeling! I just quelled a bout of that with accessories! Happy with the relatively cheap fix: A dust cover for my rytm and two types of expression pedals.


I have no problem not wanting new gear, I do however smoke tobacco (organic roll your own) and drink a lot of coffee… :joy:


My exact setup, only:
1 monosynth x 2 (same one)
1 polysynth
1 sampler/drum machine
1 effect
…plus iOS device.


can´t buy love, can´t buy happiness, can´t buy skills … the economic system most of us live in has it´s barriers.


I think it’s because I enjoy having the variation and using the right tool for the right job. Downsizing would be nice , but I also like having the choice. I don’t think GAS is an issue for me right now. But I think whenever I have more expendable money it might be. I might sell most of my stuff , get a moog one and a Buchla 200e and call it quits with synths.


Ahhh gotcha, that makes sense. Well there’s nothing wrong with having a lot of tools available if they serve a purpose and you know what to use them for, versus just having a “collection” of stuff and none of it serves any clear-cut purpose and it all becomes unsatisfying clutter


this thread reads like a meeting of anonymous gasoholics.

Hi, my name is goat and Im a gasoholic. For 11 months Ive resisted in buying a korg Prologue 16, though I dont have an polyphonic keyboard synth yet and I saved the money on my bank account.

Well I think the root of gas is being unsatisfied with your music. This is a good thing, because then your aiming to get better. But new gear is no shortcut. It cant replace training and inspiration.

turn your gas into kas and ias: knowledge acquisition syndrome and idea acquisition syndrome


Continuing to learn Ableton Live and the Max Suite inside and out is slowing killing my GAS.

Now it’s about getting creative and actually making music.

And not to go there, but OB has solved a lot of “problems” for me. My Rytm syncs up super tight now.

All the tracks I’ve made in the last little bit have been all inside the box with some help from the Rytm.


I have a very similar rule
3x sampler
3x synth
3xdrum machine
3 x effect


i have another simple rule: 12 channels available in mixer.

that’s why i love polytimbral synths with multiple audio outputs.
here you can see 2 boxes occupied all 12 channels.


What’s that yellow one??


I’m with you guys on this

Lead: OB-6
Rhythm: Prophet-6
Bass: DSI.AS-1
Drums: AnalogRytm /samples
Vocals: ProphetRev2

Everything else: For Sale