MESSE13: Korg Introduces Three Analogue Grooveboxes

Volca series are true-analog synthesizers with built-in sequencers   10-Apr-13

Following in the footsteps of the monotron, monotribe, and MS-20 Mini analog synthesizers, Korg has announced the volca series, a new lineup of EDM production tools comprised of three distinct models:

  • volca Keys - Analogue Loop Synth.
  • volca Bass - Analogue Bass Machine.
  • volca Beats - Analogue Rhythm Machine.


Korg tells us that these are powerful and fun-to-use true-analog devices delivering a diverse array of fat sounds that can be obtained only from an analog synthesizer. They say that each is also equipped with sequencing/recording capabilities for intuitively generating performances. Multiple volcas can be used in tandem via the vintage-style sync in/out, and with your favorite DAW software or MIDI keyboard via MIDI In. Battery operation and built-in speakers mean that you can conveniently play anywhere and anytime.

A spokesperson told us, "These are the next-generation analog synthesizers, bringing you the ultimate sounds and grooves with ease and depth. Whether used together or by themselves, the volca series is poised to inject true analog power into any performance or studio setup!"

Korg sent us the official press release after we'd already broken the story so we've just added it below...

Korg USA has announced the Volca series of portable, true-analog synthesizers. Following in the footsteps of the Korg Monotron, Monotribe, and the MS-20 Mini synth, these next-generation true-analog instruments offer on-the-go sounds and grooves along with MIDI functionality. The series is comprised of three models: the Volca Keys lead synthesizer; the Volca Bass synthesizer; and the Volca Beats rhythm machine.

All models provide carefully selected parameters that allow users to create the distinctive, massive sounds that can only come from a true analog synthesizer. Each instrument features a loop sequencer for intuitively generating and recalling phrase-based performances. Multiple Volcas can be used in tandem thanks to vintage-style sync in/out, or with the user's DAW software via MIDI In. Convenient, optional battery operation and built-in speakers provide the ability to play anywhere at any time.

The Volca Keys represents a new chapter in Korg's long history of analog synthesizers. This 27-key analog lead synth generates sound that's more powerful than its compact, low-profile body would suggest. Its three oscillators can be tuned against each other in a variety of ways-from one part unison to three-part chords-to provide the versatility needed to create a diversity of sounds. With a filter section that utilizes the circuitry of the classic miniKORG700S (1974) plus an easy-to-use interface that includes delay effects and a 16-step sequencer, Volca Keys offers the richly expressive sounds that are distinctive of an analog synth, and combines the enjoyment of basic sound creation with deep functionality.

The Volca Bass is an analog bass line groove box that's capable of generating a wide range of bass lines. Though basic in structure, the analog sound engine has an unmistakable presence with subtle nuances that cannot be reproduced by a digital simulation, making it ideally-suited for acid house and many other styles of electronic music. Its step sequencer-distilled from Korg's Electribe series-offers a convenient, visually intuitive way to generate "free form" bass loops to stimulate inspiration. The three oscillators can be combined in several ways via a voicing function, to generate a variety of thick and modulated bass sounds.

The Volca Beats offers six fat analog drum sounds: Kick, Snare, Hi Tom, Lo Tom, Closed Hi Hat, and Open Hi Hat. It contains a wide array of sound variations that could not be produced by any means other than analog, with special emphasis on the sounds that are considered indispensable for dance music. A PCM sound engine is also included for generating clap, crash and others sounds that are better suited for PCM. Simple knob-based parameters can be used to quickly create a variety of drum sounds. For example, simply by using the three knobs (Click, Pitch, and Decay), a variety of kick sounds can be crafted, ranging from rough sounds that dominate the low range to tight sounds that keep a precise beat. In addition, a 16-part sequencer is included to easily add or remove parts.

Pricing and Availability:

The Volca series will be available in July 2013 for a U.S. street price of $149.99 each.

More information:


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13 Comments... Comments are closed while we transition to Disqus

..    Said...

midi to sync converter?

10-Apr-13 04:40 AM

parker    Said...

Crap! Korg please do some serious stuff...there are a lot of toys on the market...i think it is time to do more innovative gear...

10-Apr-13 04:57 AM

Voltage Controlled    Said...

Do not agree at all! These are not toys at all!

It is brilliant new move from Korg in my opinion.

If you know J-culture a little, people there like small tiny stuff. It is ART to make small things (from food to trees to synths :)

And since it is true ANALOGUE...BRAVO Korg!! Each with sequencing part! Amazing!

Sound is everything of course, we will see and will hear soon I hope. But the features they already have are awesome!!!!

10-Apr-13 05:16 AM

Spinkterbrain    Said...

YES ! This is wat we want ! Boom ! Here's korg AGAIN with something intuitive. Theese look awesome.

10-Apr-13 05:26 AM

Spinkterbrain    Said...

YES ! This is wat we want ! Boom ! Here's korg AGAIN with something intuitive. Theese look awesome.

10-Apr-13 05:29 AM

Benedict Johnson    Said...

The "Volca Keys" appears to be named after the one thing it doesn't have.

10-Apr-13 07:24 AM

spider_dan    Said...

Wow. I am super excited. Does the EG on the Volca Keys also control the amp? Can long sweeping pads be created or is it better for stabs?

10-Apr-13 09:02 AM

Bagersynth    Said...

Same old boring sound over and over and over again. Please give us something fresh and new for a change. How many time do I have to listen to the same old 80's sounds of Roland and Korg outdated instruments. There will be a ton of these on eBay within weeks.

10-Apr-13 11:45 AM

pino    Said...

why no midi out??

10-Apr-13 11:47 AM

jammer    Said...

There's no MIDI out because it would tax the tiny little processor running these devices, and because many knobs are analog and wouldn't send information via MIDI.

That said, it's really weird to see a drum machine without MIDI Out. Traditionally, you sync other gear to your drum machine... not the other way around.

10-Apr-13 02:08 PM

GTRman    Said...

Always limitations on these kiddy toys. You get what you pay for and as you can see it is not much.

10-Apr-13 02:33 PM

jj-porsche    Said...


05-Jun-13 08:02 AM

ModdyG    Said...

You haters obviously haven't heard the sounds and are intimidated by the prospect of kicking a groove without fancy gear that runs itself.

15-Sep-13 09:48 PM

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