Synth Site: Miscellaneous: Darkstar: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.1 out of 5
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Iggie a part-time user from USA writes:
I just got my Darkstar from the friend and I will tell ya for $199 this thing kicks some immortal ass..I have messed with older units like Moogs and Arps as well as Oberhiems, although I will not compare the darkstar to these units equally, but I must say that it definitly holds its own.. This little black beast has quite a few tricks up its sleeve. It is as close to old school that I have found for the money. Don't let the $199 price tag fool ya ...(Remember fellas the old school units did not have all those lovely FX and all the bells and whistles)

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Saturday-Feb-02-2002 at 19:45
Lord D a part-time user from USA writes:
I agree some of the factory presets suck and the interface (4 digit display) sucks as well , but come on, this is a physical modeling synth - oldstyle and old school, so if you whant to get some cool sounds out of it, just spend some time working the knobs, and connect some nice effect box, it will make a lot of difference. Final Verdict: It's cool, so get it while it lasts, cause for $199, you won't find anything that comes close to DarkStar

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Friday-Dec-14-2001 at 12:49
mischa a hobbyist user from chicago, USA writes:
for 200 im not disappointed...

but if i paid 500 i would be bitter, the thing takes like 15 seconds to boot? no idea why. The interface is terrible, best they could do since the darkstar is basicly crammed into a federation effects unit. the filter is thin, and most the presets suck. but some of the sounds this little box produces are amazing. really. buy if for 200, you wont be disapointed as long as you know of its weaknesses before hand. and if you dont like it you can turn it into a vocoder for just $50 more.

very digital sounding.

Rating: 2 out of 5 posted Wednesday-Dec-12-2001 at 14:26
Victor writes:
Been using the Darkstar for about a year and a half now (I ordered one from Red before they even established a presence in the U.S.). Sad to say that with only studio-use the Cutoff knob is already getting a little loose. Other than that, it's some of the best $500 I ever spent.

Review time... Yes, the interface is lousy compared to most analog modellers, but Darkstar offers a ton of modulation and routing possibilities, so if you're already comfortable with subtractive synthesis and you prefer planning ahead to twiddling, it's really quite good...

Weak filter, unconvincing as a true analog modeller. Won't replace my Juno any time soon. Warm and fat it's not, but what it lacks in warmth it can make up in, uh, grunge... Playing it next to a real analog always reminds me of the difference between an overdriven tube amp and solid-state distortion. It doesnt sound cold and thin like an old-school digital synth (DX7/CZ101), just... flat, I guess. Like there's not enough sloppy harmonic distortion. But it's got it's own sound which you may or may not like. Try before you buy, for sure.

Final verdict, in my opinion? If you're still worried about not getting multiple outputs or a fat sound, you can buy six of these for the price of a JP-8000. Then you can stack-and-deture your way to more fatness than you have frequency spectrum, not to mention that you'd get TEN outputs, and FORTY voices. You do the math.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Thursday-Nov-29-2001 at 02:16
Cocomoj a professional user from The One and Only U.S.A writes:
So I find this deal on a Red Sound Darkstar on musiciansfriend.com for $199.00, and get the vocoda upgrade for 39.99 more. I then proceed to try to play with the thing for a while and have one hell of a time trying to figure this thing out, then this great idea pops into my head to read the owners manual, which usually never happens, THEN -- I UNDERSTOOD!!!!! I have to hand it to the British fellows who came up with this thing, now I know why E-MU distributes for you guys in the States, because it fucking KICKS, okay!!! They state exactly what it is, and does everything they say and more. I've played a lot of analog modelers in my days, but fuckin' A, for $200.00 U.S., how can you complain about this thing. Thanks Red Sound !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Thursday-Nov-15-2001 at 22:56
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