Rhodes Chroma Polaris

Chroma Polaris Image

The Chroma Polaris was the second synthesizer made by Fender/Rhodes after they took over ARP, following their classic Rhodes Chroma. It has a classic analog ARP-like sound, kind-of tinny but also fat. Sounds can be layered up to 6 voices. It has typical analog synth controls including a cool 'sweep' knob for sweeping through the LFO or analog filter cutoff parameters. It also has a simple real-time sequencer and 132 memory patches.

Rhodes Chroma Polaris Image

There's also a nice and colorful layout with sliders similar to Roland Juno synths, membrane push-buttons and a large velocity sensitive 61-note keyboard making the Chroma Polaris a very nice synth. Fully MIDI-equipped, the Polaris will transmit and receive all its edit controls through MIDI as well as the ability to play up to three patches at once. Unfortunately they are rare and usually hard to find. It has been used by Leftfield and Jimmy Edgar.

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21 Visitor comments
Michael DeAngelis
October 11, 2008 @ 11:47 pm
Classic analog sound with MIDI functionality that will rival any synth on the market today. Nearly every parameter will transmit and receive MIDI – amazing back in 1984. Sound quality is reminiscent of the days when the OB 8 and Jupiter 8 ruled the land. While not as famous as those great synths, the Polaris’s sound more than holds it’s own against such synth royalty. The Polaris has 6 note dynamically allocated polyphony but it’s also 6 part multi-timbral. There are two very real VCO's that slowly drift out of tune as they heat up - just honest raw analog power. When needed there is a simple "Tune All" function that perfectly tunes all 6 voices in a few seconds. The filter is fat and the resonance will growl nicely if you need that. I gigged with it extensively and It worked perfectly for 11 years until the membrane switches began failing. That’s a common problem with these beautiful machines. If you find one in working condition BUY IT NOW because it will be gone tomorrow.
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  • 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 - 6 voices
  • Oscillators - 2 VCO's: sawtooth / pw
  • LFO - Sine or square
  • Filter - 4-pole lowpass VCF: cutoff, resonance, env, keyboard, sweep + Attack, Decay, Sustain, Sustain Decay, Release
  • VCA - ADR
  • Keyboard - 61 keys w/ velocity
  • Memory - 132 patches
  • Control - MIDI (3 to 6 simultaneous patches)
  • Date Produced - 1984

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