Elka Synthex

Elka Synthex Image

The Synthex is a very lush sounding classic analog 8 voice synthesizer. Later versions implemented basic MIDI functions. It has 30 knobs, 6 sliders, 80 switches and a joystick. Powerful sounds with 2 oscillators per note, separate envelope generators, chorus and even a sequencer! The use of stable DCO's (digitally controlled analog oscillators) and oscillator cross modulation of Pulse Width and a multimode filter made it unique in its time.

There is a cool joystick that replaces traditional pitch/mod wheels and allows for greater variable real-time control over the two LFOs, oscillator and filter modulation. The 6 sliders beside the joystick assign what (LFO, osc and filter) goes to the joystick. Voices can also be layered or split across the keyboard. Other great features include the onboard digital Ring-Modulator, Chorus effect and Dual or Layer modes available. And also a four-track sequencer rounds out this synths host of features. Two of it's tracks can output MIDI data.

Elka Synthex Image

This is just an extremely good analog and unique synth excellent for pads, drones and glistening lead sounds. They're a bit of a pain to service and find parts for. However many famous artists such as Tangerine Dream and Nick Rhodes (Duran Duran) have used one, and Jean Michel Jarre swears by it. One last Synthex was made just for Stevie Wonder after their production run eventually ended.

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19 Visitor comments
June 26, 2009 @ 8:40 am
Also used by Geoff Downes and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.
April 20, 2009 @ 3:46 am
I have owned mine for 3 years now, i bought in in very bad condition but have had it restored as good as new.
I totally agree with 'sergeeo' a truely outstanding polysynth, better than any Jupiter, memorymoog, Matrix/expander, any OB series, any sequntial instrument period.
I would say only KORG PS 3200/3300, Oberheim 8 voice and Yamaha CS80 are musicaly more interesting.
April 11, 2009 @ 10:36 am
I sold mine about two years ago and I regret so much...

One of the most astounding keyboards I've ever played. The negative point is it's weight...
September 21, 2008 @ 11:12 am
my father gave it to me as a gift when i was 14 years old. Very cool sounding synth, wunderful sounding chorus very deep and complex sounds. Jarre used it on his album Rendevous as his main synth. Sadly it broke, i trade it in with some other stuff but i want it back.
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Rated 4.09 (389 Votes)

  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 8 Voices
  • Oscillators - 16
  • Sequencer - 4-Track
  • Filter - Curtis Chips: 24dB LowPass, 12dB HiPass, 12dB & 6dB BandPass
  • VCA - ADSR
  • Keyboard - 61 keys
  • Memory - 40 preset/40 user
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1981 - 1984
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from Perfect Circuit Audio.

    Thanks Edwin Balzan and Mattias Rickardsson for the info.

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