Moog Rogue

Moog Rogue Image

The Moog Rogue could be the very definition of cheap Moog bass. It's a two-oscillator analog monosynth from Moog that, while having genuine and highly desirable Moog componentry, its design cut many corners to make this Moog's most compact and inexpensive offering of its time. In fact, the design was so simplified and streamlined that Moog licensed the design to Tandy/Radioshack who built the nearly identical Realistic Concertmate MG-1, which actually offers more features for less bucks! Incidentally the Rogue is also utilized as the Moog Taurus II Bass Synth with 1-1/2 octave bass pedals instead of the Rogue's 2-1/2 octave keyboard.

The Rogue could be considered a very scaled down version of the Prodigy (which was itself a very scaled down Minimoog) offering far fewer synthesis options and flexibility. Only two waveforms per oscillator (saw and square/rectangle) and, unlike the Prodigy, the oscillators must play the exact same waveform and pitch range, for a much more limited sonic range of synth tones. You cannot mix Sawtooth with Square/Rectangle waves on the Rogue, whereas you can on the Prodigy and Liberation. Another cutback is the single envelope generator that is shared by both the Filter and the Loudness Amp, offering just Attack, Release and a switchable Sustain mode (OFF, HALF, FULL). Still, the Rogue has a decent Moog filter with an external audio input.

Moog was definitely cutting costs with this model, making it the smallest, simplest and most basic synth in their line-up; yet still versatile and user-friendly enough to be used as the Taurus II Bass Pedal synth and an entry-level electronic tinkering Radioshack junkies music machine. To this day, the Rogue is still an inexpensive place to get good Moog sounds! It is used by Peter Gabriel, Add N To (X), 808 State, Stereolab, Mr. Oizo 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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42 Visitor comments
James
April 15, 2013 @ 6:57 pm
Yes, the Rogue lacks control functions but the (smart) designers left a streamlined and easy to use synth that gets an astonishing amount of musical and classic tones. Wild Acid bass lines to heart pumping thump. And classic Moog lead tones? No problem getting those too. Of course you have a pair of nasty and dirty oscillators and the 4 pole Moog filter that opens up nice and W-I-D-E. Great fun!
Andre
March 6, 2013 @ 12:30 pm
I recorded with one last week.... it sounded great, and i had plenty of fun twisting the knobs... simplicity can be the best sometimes...
hey
February 28, 2013 @ 4:45 am
mark, about the triggering of notes. that is totally normal for the rogue. not many synths are like this. most synths do the opposite. but the way the rogue keyboard is wired up to the board. it has to do with voltage.. it makes sense. nothing wrong with your rogue.
Mark
February 22, 2013 @ 10:52 am
Bought in 1981 and now handed on to my son, as a stage instrument and sampling synth. 33 years use for £200 - not bad!
mark
February 9, 2013 @ 2:10 pm
I just got one of these and have a question. If hold down a note with my thumb, and then use my index finger to trill a higher note, it does not even register it. But if I do the opposite, where I hold a higher not while trilling a lower not, it works. Is this normal?
 
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  • 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
  • Oscillators - 2 VCOs:
    OSC 1: Pitch: 32', 16', 8'; Wave: Sawtooth, Rectangle.
    OSC 2: Pitch: 32', 16', 8'; Wave: Sawtooth, Square.
  • Memory - None
  • Filter - 1 24dB/oct lowpass w/ cutoff, emphasis, env amount
  • VCA - Attack, Release
  • Keyboard - 32 keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - NO
  • Control - CV / GATE (V-trig in, S-trig out)
  • Date Produced - 1981
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from

    Thanks to Pete Moulton and Eric White for providing information.

    Updated June, 2008.

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