Everyone is familiar with the big names in the synthesizer hardware industry, such as Korg, Roland, Moog and the rest, but they are by no means the only manufacturers. Thanks to the resurgence of interest in analog synthesizers, a number of small companies and even individuals have taken it upon themselves to create these marvelous instruments. Of course, designing, manufacturing and shipping your own hardware is not an easy task, which is why many of them made use of Kickstarter to help spread awareness, entice backers and generate the funds needed to make their synths a reality.
To most people, synthesizers are already pretty strange instruments, but this hasn’t stopped a few enthusiasts from taking things a couple of steps further. Unlike traditional instruments, such as guitars and pianos, there are not as many constraints when it comes to the designs of synthesizers. This has resulted in a few synths that not only sound unique, but also look unlike anything else on the market. Since the synthesizer market also tends to attract people who are more comfortable than most when it comes to experimenting with electronics, there is no shortage of ingenuity on display.
One of the reasons why software synthesizers are so popular isn’t just due to their convenience. Many people would love to own hardware synths, but unfortunately just don’t have enough money. However, just because certain vintage synthesizers cost about as much as a house these days doesn’t mean you can’t get your hands on some decent hardware. The popularity and renewed interest in hardware synthesizers have also resulted in more models being available on the market for cheaper.
While it is true that nothing could ever truly compare to owning your very own vintage analog synth, this is unfortunately not an option for many people. Instead, they have to make do with soft synths that offer digital recreations of actual synthesizers. While there has been a lot of improvements to soft synths in recent years, resulting in them sounding better than ever before, for many purists it is still not enough. However, there are ways and means to make your soft synths sound a bit more analog instead of clinical and cold.
These days a lot of people think of synthesizer performances as someone lurking behind a computer and just clicking away with a mouse. However, there are still musicians who favor hardware synths over soft synths, which makes for much more interesting and impressive live performances. Of course, this was much more prevalent in the early days of synthesizers when a lot of bands included these instruments for their unique sounds. Nowadays it is less common to see hardware synths as part of a live performance, but they are still out there.