Moog Source

Moog Source Image

Moog's Source was their first to offer patch memory storage as well as some other new features. It boasted 16 memory locations so you could finally save and recall your synth patches. A casette-tape jack was also implemented to transfer your patches to and from an external tape and free up the on-board memory for additional new patches. But in an effort to modernize with the eighties, the Moog had replaced all buttons, knobs and sliders with flat-panel membrane buttons and a single data-wheel assignment format. At the time, this may have seemed far-out, but in all actuality it is the Source's downfall.

Moog Source Image

Parameters are edited not with hands-on sliders and knobs but by assigning a selected parameter to the dedicated data wheel. This is very tedious and does not allow for true hands-on tweaking during performances nor can you adjust different parameters simultaneously or while playing. These days, the membrane buttons don't always seem to work quite right either. However, those famous monophonic Moog sounds are still inside this synth which has two fat analog oscillators and the legendary 24 dB Moog filter.

Moog Source Image

The Source has been used by Tangerine Dream, Jan Hammer, Depeche Mode, Devo, Vince Clarke, New Order, Ultravox, Josh Wink, Front Line Assembly, Moog Cookbook, Kitaro, Imperial Drag, The Cars, Phish, The Rentals, King Crimson, Blur, and Gary Numan.

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42 Visitor comments
June 10, 2010 @ 9:21 am
April 14, 2010 @ 11:28 am
Sounds closer to a Model D than any other Moog. My Voyager sounds great, but it doesn't quite nail the original Mini sound. As good, but cleaner. Prodigy types don't do it it either. LP's even further from a D. Sound like Moogs, but not like a D. That mojo the old Minis had going on, the Source has in spades. Yes, it only has 2 VCOs, but there's a dedicated LFO & tbh that's what the 3rd VCO on a Model D gets used for most of the time. Don't get hung up on the single controller. It's as simple as touching the parameter & turning the knob. A lot of the parameters are just on/off switches anyway. Every parameter has its own switch & there're no menus. Sure, a pot for every parameter would be better, but with VCO sync, 2 ADSR, easy tuning, a built in sequencer, a freely programmable arpeggiator that even lets you vary note length, easy midi upgrade, and the sound of a Model D, it's still one monster synth. Cosmetically, it's like the synth version of a DeLorean. Sadly price is rising:(
March 19, 2010 @ 12:08 am
When I first spotted the Source in ´82, I think that I must have had a hidden fettish for modern kitchen appliances.
.......So, I went out and bought one.
When you consider it´s price at the time (close to $1,000),
it was a pretty stoopid purchase...Apart from it´s (somewhat limited) memory & brushed metal & wood trim, the internal workings of the Source were basic Moog fare.

My Pro-One, needless to say, was under no threat of relegation...Actually, I sold the Source a few months later and bought a second Pro-One.
Jaco Davis
March 18, 2010 @ 3:40 am
If you love Depeche Mode's first albums, this is highly recommended..
Christopher Winkels
February 25, 2010 @ 8:23 pm
I recall my Source fondly. It was fun, musical, and inspiring.

Sure, it has some serious drawbacks. There are only had sixteen memory locations. The single knob was a big aggravating, as it tended to have a lot of inertia. The low end wasn't as full as one might expect from a Moog. The sequencer is a bit of a joke and one loses independent control over LFO speed when its engaged (they use the same clock source). There's no LFO pulse width modulation, no audio rate FM, and no envelope control over pitch or pulse width.

But all that doesn't matter much because it sounds so great. The hard sync (swept via the mod wheel) is massive sounding, the envelopes and filter are great for percussive, "wooden" sounds, and it feels so playable and organic. Even the octave switches are positioned perfectly for trills. Everything is tidy and well laid out, and it's one of a very, VERY small number of synths I regret selling.
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User Rating

Rated 4.21 (417 Votes)

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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 - Monophonic
  • Oscillators - 2 VCO's + Noise Gen. with ramp, triangle, variable width pulse waveforms
  • Memory - 16 patches (plus casette-tape save/load)
  • Filter - cutoff, res, ADSR env
  • LFO - square or triangle
  • Keyboard - 37 keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - YES
  • Control - CV /GATE
  • Date Produced - 1981
  • Resources & Credits
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