Synth Site: Moog: Polymoog Synthesizer: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 2.9 out of 5
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P. Cobb a part-time user from U.S. writes:
The Polymoog is simply amazing. I bought mine over a year ago, made in '79, and am getting faster and faster at tweaking while I play. Having the footpedal makes it ten times more user-friendly; I use the pedal to alter the pitch, volume, filter, and sustain notes. There is also a button on the keyboard which acts as a sustain. Both the pedal sustain and the keyboard button more strongly carry the sustain, but it does eventually cut out--as it is analogue. You can tweak the filter, and independently operate the lows or mid/high keys, this sounds beautiful. With the pedal, you can tweak the VCF so intricately, it's easy to get lost while playing a chord. If you work your foot carefully enough, you can simulate a Theremin. I've plugged my guitar through the Polymoog and the tone is sick. With three separate resonators, I can produce three different overtones on my guitar. Heaven. The strings and harpsichord patches are unbeatable. You can tweak these patches easily or use the manual patch. It is difficult recapturing a sound when you're on stage, but this lends toward a more organic and evolving approach to my band's songs, if you're open to this. When I first got the keyboard, I didn't use it in the band I was in because of its weight. 75 pounds isn't an extreme burden--it's just so bulky! I am able to carry it around confidently now, and I can't wait to play it out more. If weight and tone parameters are what concern you the most, get a light-weight plastic casio. The Polymoog is baggage, but if you're willing it is worth the wait (weight).

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Nov-14-2000 at 13:36
lanza a professional user from canada writes:
About the polymoog... I was actually just listening to some domos that I made about 18 years ago. The band came very close to making some serious noise. We used a roland ,jx3p, korg poly6,and 909 and of course a late stage polymoog synth. I have forgotten how good that keyboard actually sounded. It could be distinguished on almost every track ,especially the harpsicod and string sounds. Needless to say as soon as you took it out in weather below 65 degrees the machine became so unstable you couldn't even tune it .The power supply blew up years ago and it has been retired for a long time .I finally found an original tech guy in Buffalo who has original parts and a very good reputation I am definiteley getting the beast going again (recording studio only) I am dying to here this guy live again..

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Friday-Nov-03-2000 at 12:41
Fred Coulter a part-time user from Florida, USA writes:
I remember very well the PolyMoog. My dad owned one and almost gave it to me. I would get one because of the memories of my dad, but not to use as a current synth.

As has been pointed out, it is not a very flexible synth. It is pre-MIDI, so you can't layer it. There is also no memory to the unit, so you get to reprogram it between songs.

There were also problems with reliability. Since there was so much going on internally, the power supply on this thing went out several times.

One group that I remember using it was Electric Light Orchestra. Given their use of live strings, the strings on this thing fleshed out their sound even more.

Hope this helps in your understanding of the PolyMoog.

Rating: 2 out of 5 posted Sunday-Jul-02-2000 at 15:50
James Meeker a part-time user from Toledo, Ohio writes:
Actually, all of the synth parts on Numan's "Pleasure Principle" are Polymoog (actually, five of them for their live shows 79-80). (Keep in mind that the drums and bass are live.) In fact, the Polymoog shows up in Numan's "Telekon" also (joined with a Prophet 5, Jupiter 4 and a few other things). PWEI used the Polymoog (Vox Humana) parts in their song "Dance of the Mad". Kraftwerk used to use the 'Poly in their live show. It has a fairly distinguished pedigree, I think.

Personally, I like the "transistor" sound of the Polymoog. It has a character unlike other synths that come to mind. Granted, it's a reliability/portability nightmare though. If you buy one, try to get one with the footpedals--in my opinion they are key to making the Polymoog sound "human".

The big benefits to the Poly' are its full polyphony, and triple resonant filter. Sure, it uses divide-down oscillators--but they crunch nicely. Overall, I think the Polymoog was a landmark synth (much nicer polyphony than the Oberheim 4-voice at the time--and polyphony was THE issue at the time) that was an important innovation at the time. Okay, so it had to have 300 engineering changes, and the early models are still pretty testy if they even managed to survive until today. Past all of this, I think the Polymoog is great!

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Friday-Jun-23-2000 at 15:37
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