Synton made a name for themselves in the Netherlands by manufacturing and distributing high-end electronic equipment. In addition to importing products from Fairlight, E-Mu, and Ensoniq in Europe, Synton tried their hand at producing their own synthesizers, in the form of the System 2000 and System 3000 as well as their monophonic analog synthesizer, the Synton Syrinx. Unfortunately, the company went bankrupt in 1989 and nothing was heard from them again until 1997. This was when their product specialist, Marc Paping, and designer, Bert Vermeulen, who were behind the creation of the Syrinx, reunited to create the Synton Fenix. These two were not impressed with the synths taht were available at the time and decided that they could do better with the Fenix.
The Synton Fenix is basically an analogue synthesizer that features 31 differing modules. To create the Fenix, Paing and Vermeulen looked at the synthesizer that the have owned and incorporated all of the features that they liked about them. This meant that the Fenix had quite an esoteric range of features to say the least. Initially, only 25 of the Synton Fenix units were hand-built and these were mostly distributed amongst enthusiasts who were close friends or fans of the company. Thanks to word of mouth, the team had to create another 50 because of the high demand for them. However, these 75 units were the only ones that were ever created and production of this synthesizer came to an end in 2000, which makes them very rare. Those who were lucky enough to end up with one in their possession has praised it for the unique modules that it features as well as the distinctive sounds that were possible using the synth.
The Synton Fenix was very much a labor of love, which meant no corners were cut during the manufacturing process. This meant that a lot of effort went into every single component, such as the Bakelite knobs that were fabricated in Taipei instead of being bought locally. Despite featuring 31 modules, the Fenix is not really modular as the modules have predetermined architectures. However, you still have more freedom than what would be possible with pre-patched instruments. Other notable features of the Fenix include three VCOs, three low-frequency oscillators, three VCFs, three different envelope generators, two dedicated CV mixers, three general purpose mixers, and four VCAs.
Artists who have used the Synton Fenix in the past include Martin Gore and David Morley, as well as Aphex Twin and Chris Whitten.