Realistic Concertmate MG-1

Realistic Concertmate MG-1 Image

This is the very source of cheap Moog bass! It is a lot like the strap-on Moog Liberation in its design and architecture and also looks and sounds very much like the Moog Rogue. The MG-1 was built by Moog for Realistic (Radio Shack), and was designed specifically for the home market. Very basic and easy to use, this is a nice cheap way to get your hands on Moog sounds!

The MG-1 is a 2-VCO monophonic/polyphonic analog synth with a genuine 24dB/oct Moog filter, however the overall sound is thin. On the MG-1, the VCOs are referred to as 'Tone Generators'. It can produce sawtooth, square and pulse waveforms, and the oscillators are detunable and syncable. A simple ASR (attack, sustain, release) envelope called 'Contour' can be applied to both the amp and the filter. The LFO section provides triangle or square wave patterns as well as Sample-and-Hold. Additionally there is a simple Ring-Mod effect called 'Bell'.

Realistic Concertmate MG-1 Image

Unique to the MG-1 is a slider on the far right side of the keyboard which controls the volume of a simple divide-down polyphonic organ sound. This feature makes it at least a little more versatile than the Rogue. There are RCA inputs and outputs (the input is routed straight to the output for playing along with music from your stereo system) but no external speakers as in most other home marketed synthesizers. There is also no sign of Midi or patch memory on the MG-1. It is used by Peter Gabriel, 808 State, Remy Shand, and KMFDM.

Here is a table highlighting some of the differences pointed out by a user between the MG-1 and Rogue.

Realistic Concertmate MG-1 Moog Rogue
Sliders for modulation Switches for modulation
Divide-down polyphonic organ --
No Pitch/MOD wheels Independant Pitch/MOD wheels
Keyboard tracking switches Keyboard tracking knob
Independent waveform selection and pitch --
Ring modulator effect --
Osc sync on/off Osc sync contour
Keyboard response is slower --

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51 Visitor comments
Mad Benny
November 4, 2010 @ 12:26 pm
My first love in the synthesizer realm. Maybe it makes me a little biased, but i'm sorry, but this thing smokes the rogue. Crazy sound, and a mod to make it have audio through would improve it vastly, but even on it's own, a solid fat sound, with some awesome sync and juicy filter making it a classic. Also, as in my own case, something tells me this unit was a precursor to many a person's synth fetish.
October 15, 2010 @ 6:05 am
The very first analog synth I've ever played. An old friend of mine had this little instrument laying around. never used it since the early eighties, so the sound's a bit rusty, dusty and dirty, but it's so charming at the same time. I've tried to get my hands on it for a couple of years, but even here, secondhand prices are ridiculous, but perhaps, one day I might be lucky...
June 25, 2010 @ 1:03 pm
Owned one of these, my friend owned a Rogue. I was always jealous of his rogue. Not a piece of junk by any means. Not one of the better moog's either. Considering these go for about as much as a rogue your better off getting a rogue.
Andrew Brawley
April 10, 2010 @ 6:04 pm
Let me add my voice to those that say the Realistic version is superior. Though I have no doubt that the internal circuits *are* basicaly identical, the control options are not. The oscillators are much more independent on the MG-1, and the osc. sync can be utterly fierce. I've actually never relied on the "polyphonic organ" tone for much, but it's there, and the rudimentary ring mod is lots of fun (when it wants to work...) I've owned one since '83 when they started to close them out. I go through periods of ignoring it, but then every now and then I start to play with it. When I do, it never ceases to amaze me with new sounds even though I think I have exhausted its potential. As cheesey as this little bugger is, I just can't imagine parting with it.
December 8, 2009 @ 2:55 pm
Also Motion City Soundtrack used the Realistic Concertmate in their music.
VSE Rating


User Rating

Rated 4.03 (497 Votes)

  • Check Price
  • 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 - Monophonic (plus fully polyphonic (divide-down) organ sound)
  • Oscillators - 2 VCO's; TG1: sawtooth and square; TG2: sawtooth and pulse waveforms; Noise source
  • Memory - NONE
  • Filter - 1 24dB/oct lowpass w/ cutoff, emphasis, env amount
  • VCA - ASR
  • Keyboard - 32 keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - NO
  • Control - CV / GATE
  • Date Produced - 1981
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from

    Thanks to Eric White and C. A. Polk for providing information.

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