Korg microKorg

Korg microKorg Image

An MS2000 in sheep's clothing. The microKorg is a very cool and retro-looking version of the MS2000 analog modeling synthesizer. This compact keyboard is designed for portability and can run on batteries! But inside the microKorg is the exact same synthesis engine and sounds found in the killer MS2000 and MS2000R synths!

The keyboard's 37 keys are small and almost toy-ish. But they have a firm response and feel natural enough to play. The case is a sturdy plastic and there are wood end-cheeks. There is a plethora of written info on the face of the instrument and reminds one of the old Poly-800 and DW-8000 synths. The five knobs above all this writing initially control the filter cutoff, resonance, envelope attack and release times, and the internal tempo. But they can be assigned to control every other parameter available in real-time. Their assignable functions are what is written below them (hard to read in the dark). The top-mounted vocoder input microphone (included) hasn't been seen on a Korg since the decades-old VC-10!

Korg microKorg Image

The microKorg has 128 Programs organized into 8 categories: Trance, Techno/House, Electronica, DnB Breaks, HipHop/Vintage, Retro, SndFX/Hits, and Vocoder. The sounds are great and inspiring. There is only 4-voice polyphony and only one Program can be played at a time. But as a hands-on, real-time dance machine, this really is all you need...one hand on the keys and the other on the knobs!

The microKorg has two oscillators with 71 waveforms (7 simple analog waves + 64 DWGS waveforms from the DW-8000), a multi-mode resonant 12 or 24 dB/oct filter, 8-band vocoder, two ADSR envelopes, 6-pattern arpeggiator, oscillator sync, ring modulation, two MIDI-syncable LFOs, programmable multi-effects, and more! All knobs and buttons send/receive MIDI controller data. External audio can be vocoded and/or processed through the filter, effects and EQ via the included microphone or standard 1/4" stereo inputs. A built-in USB Interface would have been nice for true lap-top portability, but is currently absent. But in its affordable price range, the microKorg is an awesome synth for beginners, DJs, and even the pros looking for a compact performance synth with retro style, flexible programing and excellent sounds!

It's been used by Air, Atomizer, Bare Naked Ladies, Beck, Prodigy, Yesterdays, The Killers, KMFDM, Royksopp, Owl City, LCD Soundsystem, Jean-Michel Jarre, Nick Rhodes (of Duran Duran) and The Pet Shop Boys.

Korg microKorg Image

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169 Visitor comments
Uri Noir
September 22, 2010 @ 12:39 pm
This is a great instrument, to me, personally, as a poor guy who can't afford vintage analogue, due to absurd prices
It is as close to analogue as it gets, although it does soud a bit clean sometimes, due to "non-dusty old VCO's", but well, that can be rearranged with a Monotron, perhaps.

And, it works nice as guitar-amp/effect, too.

I'm not really a fool for vocoders, I mean, today's music offers an overkill of them, mostly cheesy goldfish-like effects or Kanye West-blurps, but, as a gimmick and nice extra, it's okay.
Although I mostly put another instrument, of even a taperecorder through it, instead of vocals....
Just to mess around.
Matt
September 16, 2010 @ 3:58 pm
Definitely not a toy, had it for years and will never sell it. Yeah there is some cheese but can't think of many synths where there isn't. Anyway the knobs are to be twiddled and twiddle you must to be rewarded.
Beatrage
September 12, 2010 @ 7:01 am
The best way to enjoy this machine is to start off with a pure Waveform. Then just select the oscillators and LFO's to make something incredibly. This is a very versatile machine with lots of great features!
relic
September 11, 2010 @ 9:56 am
whoever says this synth is a toy is a fool. you can do so much with this portable synth. perfect for a touring synth player. get one!...now!
asbotech
June 21, 2010 @ 8:10 pm
try phoning up your local chinese with the vocoder hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha, bought this when it first came out and loved just sitting jamming with it. nothing too complicated just awesome sounds ( and hilarious vocoder)
 
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  • The link above will take you to an eBay 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 - 4 voices
  • Oscillators - Dual Oscillator Analog Modeling Synthesis System: 7 waveforms: sine, tri, saw, pulse, noise, cross-wave, vox, plus 64 DWGS waves, external audio
  • LFO - 2 LFOs with sample and hold
  • Filter - Multi Mode Filter (-24dB/oct LPF, -12dB/oct LPF/BPF/HPF)
  • Effects - 3 types modulation (chorus/flanger, phaser, ensemble), 3 types delay (stereo, cross, L/R), 2-band EQ, 8-channel vocoder, 6 pattern arpeggiator (UP, DOWN, ALT1/2, Random, Trigger)
  • Keyboard - 37 Keys (mini-keyboard, velocity sensitive)
  • Memory - 128 programs
  • Control - MIDI IN/OUT/THROUGH
  • Date Produced - 2002
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