Moog Sub Phatty - Analogue Mono Synth

Moog Sub Phatty

£849

The announcement of Moog’s Sub Phatty last year was slightly overshadowed by Korg’s unveiling of the MS-20 Mini, for one simple reason: price. If the Sub Phatty has been released a few years ago, we’d probably all be marvelling at what good value it was, but the emergence of a new class of even more affordable analogue synths has made us all recalibrate our internal value-for-money scales slightly. That shouldn’t detract from the fact that the Sub Phatty is one of the most affordable Moog keyboards ever made.

Affordability doesn’t necessarily mean that the quality is sacrificed. Build quality is outstanding and the sonic character is as strong and impressive as the more affordable models in the range. What Moog have achieved with the Sub Phatty is an incredible balance between classic Moog signature sounds and forward-thinking technology which allows the user to push way beyond the traditional strengths of Moog synths – the company describes it as the “grittiest” Moog ever made. The fundamental architecture is familiar, with two oscillators, a sub-oscillator, noise source, LFO and ladder filter. The key to the gritty sound comes in the form of the Multidrive circuit, a dual distortion option which acts both before and after the filter.

The Sub Phatty’s true versatility only becomes apparent when you realise it also offers a number of parameters which Moog describe slightly euphemistically as Hidden Features, but which the rest of us might call parameters accessed via shift functions. Thankfully, if you don’t feel like memorising the Hidden Features (which are truly hidden – they don’t appear on the front panel, so you’ll need to refer to the cheat sheet to figure them out), then there’s also a software editor to make life easier.

The Sub Phatty might be the black sheep of the Moog family, but it excels where it really matters: it sounds like a Moog, but dirtier.

 

 

28th July, 2014

Comments

  • No love for the Vermona mono lancet? Wicked dual osc mono synth with one of the best square waves around imo

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  • My two cents…. I’ve heard some pretty terrible things about Cyclone Analogic TT-303… and I would personally take a x0xb0x over it any day.

    Also… Korg Monotron? Top ten best analog monosynth? I guess SH-101 and MC-202 were too close to the 303 or what? I agree that the Mono Lancet should be in there, perhaps instead of Monotron. Well, actually there are a bunch of better candidates.

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  • Borg – new synths only in this one, so 101 and 202 don’t qualify.

    As always with our Ten Of The Best features these are our favourite options at a range of price points, listed from cheapest to most expensive.

    We like the Mono Lancet too but as far as modules go the Dark Energy and Pulse 2 get the nod here.

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  • got the bass bot since a while and must say the sound is quite good, creamy and very 303 authentic, the filter is good as well. probably better to test it for yourself than judging on it by “hearing terrible things”. the rest of the list seems to fit as well.

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  • Monotron is my favorite synth of all time. I have plenty of synthesizers (also some which are mentioned in this post).

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  • Future Retro’s XS should be on there too IMO

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  • Analogue Solutions Leipzig S is a killer monosynth !

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  • Can definitely recommend ANYTHING from Studio Electronics.

    SE-1 is a great and cheaper alternative to the minimoog + has an SEM filter in there!

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  • Mono lancet should be there imo

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  • Really surprised the Moog Minitaur didn’t make the list…

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  • For something e little different, check out an Eowave Domino. It has an interesting character

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  • vermona mono lancet, eowave domino, mfb micro/nanozwerg (price is ridiculous) just to name some very strong contenders for this list.

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  • Analogue Solutions Telemark ? Happy the Dark Energy got in their tho

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  • I am surprised not to see the EMS’s Synthi A, or VCS3 on the list. When it comes down to sonic flexibility, those two remain peerless.

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  • No DSI Pro 2???

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  • BASS STATION II …All the way! it’s amazing.

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  • The MicroBrute is made of very solid metal not plastic. And the MiniBrute also has only one oscillator.

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  • lol cool article

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  • x0xbox its better than cyclone!

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  • Waldorf Pulse 2 is the best sounding synth from all of those however it would be beneficial having more knobs. Pulse 2 is proper analog modular synth with the patch memory.

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  • If you think the analogue revival started with the MonoTron you must have just jumped on the bandwagon recently.

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  • Hypersynth Xenophone should be on the list, I would say in place of the Mopho which is bland and undistinguished. Or if you want a DSI, put the Evolver up there, the best monosynth for under a grand. I would put both; remove the Minimoog which is always admirable but overpriced and does not have a place on this list of affordable monosynths.

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