Synth Site: Elka: Synthex: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.8 out of 5
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Peter Wilcek a professional user from germany writes:
Hey evryone out there...believe it or not: I still hold the proto-type (serial # 1), that SYNTHEX model that Mario Maggi didn´t want to appear on the market because he didn´t like the wooden screws that are holding the side panels...

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Saturday-Apr-05-2003 at 13:03
Zinovieff a hobbyist user writes:
I have it for two months now and at the moment i'm deeply in love with the Synthex. When i bought it the joystick could not be moved and when i opened up the synth the metal pen was smashed into the printings:( i took a little glue and fixed it and it hasn't let me down since :)

It's the best synth i have ever heard and the looks are not bad either. Programming is very simple, the synth has got a very nice layout with big knobs, lot of knobs and much space.

The sounds are wonderfull!! I can't get enough of the synced squarewave i make to play solo's. It's so simple but it sounds so damn cool!!

Strings and pads are warm and harmonic and the chorus is great and is a gtreat trademark of the synthex.

I use the sequencer a lot for retro stuff like TD Blake and early Ciani. you can make great evolving sounds by using the sequencer.

I have this interface card to let it receive midi and send out midi, it's basic but who cares:) i haven't even tried the interface yet.

Double function and split function are great to create complex sounds.

Analog excitement with digital precision!!

Kudos to Mario

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Dec-24-2002 at 14:28
Henrik Huste a hobbyist user from Norway writes:
There are a few things with the Synthex that might cause a little scepticism among potential buyers. You have to hear it, in order to get a subjective opinion of the sound of it. Don`t be scared of things like DCO`s and that`s it practically unknown among most musicians/composers. Yes,it`s rare, and it`s a project shipping the unit from one national boundary to another...however, it`s really worth the effort. That, I can say after 6 years of personal use, and after 7000 days since it was first launched on the market:-)

It`s one of my most appreciated instruments ever, because I simply just don`t run out of "up to date" timbres. It sounds analog, and has a great bass to it (Curtis filter). I`m just building up... I havent`t gotten there yet. Let`s use better words to describe it:

This instrument is capable of producing higly interesting timbres. You can tweak this beast (physical and mentally) into digital perfection, or to warm blasting and powerful analog power. I do not want to relate the Synthex`s sonic state to its "brothers", which in my opinion, from an historically point of view, could be synthesizers like: Memorymoog, Jupiter 8, Prophet 5/10, Oberheim OBXA, Yama CS series (actually, yes!)It`s not as fat as the Memory Moog. I`m a little tired of the idea of that everything have/had to be so fat. The synthex is so much more than this consept, and so is music.

"Hang in there, I`m not done yet". Ok, I had to move on, as for my musical preferences. There is so much more new, and wonderful music being produced these days. I`m not talking about big-bug commersial artists that show their bellys, and that have forgotten what music is all about. No, I`m talking about all those great suburb-based half-known/unknown artists, who have successfully made their ways into better marketing conditions (like I-net.

What I`m trying to say, is that wether you want to make analog Minimoog like bass sounds (it`s very cool, because the synthex has a CV input for the filter, which can be manipulated from any Midi sequencer and a midi/CV converter), or HUGE PUMPING pads, strings, drones, Monolake-type "pad" sounds...(Monolake is a German duo, known for making quite special electronic, and computer based music), or romantic and nostalgic Vangelis leads, originally produced on the Yamaha CS- 80. The comparison is to me unique. Off course,the CS-80 was the only synth the could produce the fat, razorsharp, powerful sawteeth, and rich timbered horn-like leads, that became the trademark of Vangelis.

I`ve almost gotten there, as for this sound. The filter on the Synthex isn`t as powerful as the CS-80 filter (which filter is?), but its other features compensate for that. The chorus onboard the S. is a killer! Actually, I think it`s an overkiller. Don`t get me wrong. It`s wonderful. It`s not static, nor is it like any other chorus units I`ve heard. I don`t know why almost none of those great film composers have ever used it. They really missed out something.

My conclusion: This is an intuitive, but yet advanced analog- based polysynth, capable of producing unique, and not to forget, MOODY timbres.

Anything like it? NO, I`m sorry! I truly am, because how long will it survive the tear and wear?

Who made this beast? Mario Maggi, a designer who worked for Elka.

Do I appreciate his work? Oh yes.

want to hear it? Go to: On the second side of this album, there is an ambient/dub/basic channel inspired piece (Palawan) which has lots of the Synthex sound to it. Chil out, if you ever get to hear the song!

Cheers Henrik

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Friday-Nov-15-2002 at 19:47
Martin Tauchen a part-time user from Germany writes:
What a beast !!!!!

This is ELKAs Masterpiece in analog synthesis. Good thing needs its time.The Synthex is a must have device. A perfect analog synth of its time.The engineers did a very amazing work to design this machine.

Unfortunately,the Synthex has not the brandname of Oberheim,ARP,Moog and so on... One of the best analog synths ever build. Flexible and with good sounds. The Synthex was released to late.In times where digital synths started to rule the market,the synthex was pure nostalgica... Released to late to be an economic success,but it set the analog mark more higher. A good machine after all this time. Elka never made such a product again.Elka will survive in history by the synthex. Or does someone remember the EK44 or EK22 as good machines ?


Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Saturday-Sep-14-2002 at 11:47
Diego a part-time user from italy writes:
Hi all, i'm Italian, a beautyfull day i bought a synthex, my musical life's completely changed after that day, i can definitively say that this is the best polysynth i've heard, the internal electronic architecture is very particular and powerfull, and you can hear its sound, powerfull basses, great pads, great sounding multimode filtering section, split and layer facilities, and the magic feature that many people ignore is the sequencer, 4 monophonic tracks with real time transposition, it could seem a poor thing compared with todays sequencers but the history is completely different!!!! this sequencer is a sort of programmable arpeggiator or imagine it as an auto accompaniment effect, all sequences are loopable also if they have different lengths, and all the arrangement is transposable just pressing a different key on the lower section of the keyboard, so you can just imagine how particular and powerfull effect is inside this sequencer! I can't find nothing similar around!!!! I liked synthex so much that i bought another unit after a year, so now i've two synthexes, my units are not midi equipped but it doesn't matter because i can syncronize them very well by using a normal audio triggering from a bassdrum separate output of a drum machine, Synthex has external clock input so a normal audio font can be plug into this input to be synchronized !!!! Synthex was designed with big passion by an Italian man whose name is MARIO MAGGI. Thank you dear friend...

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Monday-Jun-03-2002 at 00:23
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