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The best tech gear of NAMM 2016 – plus WIN a £500 recording bundle!

The best tech gear of NAMM 2016 – plus WIN a £500 recording bundle!
This competition has now ended. The winner was Alex Watson of Plymouth, woooo!

NAMM season is here and new music tech springs forth like the snowdrops and crocuses emerging through the frost-covered ground. This post is our place to showcase our picks of the synths, recording gear and other hi-tech items that have piqued our interest and embiggened the kumquat of our curiosity.

Enough procrastination!

Make Noise 0-Coast

Make Noise 0-CoastWe’ll keep this one short and sweet and let the video tell you all you need to know. However, let’s just say that the Make Noise 0-Coast (Zero Coast) is a standalone desktop monosynth that brings together the best of the East and West Coast synthesis philosophies and gives you the freedom to expand with a plethora of CV connectivity. If you’re already into your modular, or want to start with something that lets you make noise (ha!) right out of the box, the Make Noise 0-Coast could be it!

Pre-order the Make Noise 0-Coast here!

KORG Minilogue

minillgueThe Korg Minilogue brings 4-voice analogue synthesis to, well, you! Coming in at an incredible £435, the Korg Minilogue also comes complete with a 16-step note and motion sequencer and the ability to decide you you use those four voices – from 4-voice polyphonic to unison and various ways inbetween –  an arpeggiator, onboard delay and all housed in a sleekit aluminium body. Sure to be a hit!

Pre-order the KORG Minilogue here!

Warm Audio WA-2A Compressor

Warm Audio WA-2AWe love Warm Audio here at Red Dog Towers, from their Tonebeast to the EQP-WA, they’ve been giving us incredible designs at incredible prices. This is the one I’ve been waiting for though, the hammer is poised next to the piggie bank for the Warm Audio WA-2A! Based on that famous unit, the Warm WA-2A gives you a channel of classic optical compression in a unit filled with tubes and transformers. You want analogue? You’ll find it here!

Arturia MatrixBrute

matrixbruteOh my WORD! Their word is that the Arturia MatrixBrute will be “the most powerful analogue synth ever created”. We’re LITERALLY shaking.

When we look at the Arturia Matrixbrute, it’s that ‘matrix’ bit that strikes a chord. Not bad for a monosynth. We’re reminded a bit of the pin matrices of synths like the EMS Synthi. Want the modulator x to control the parameter y? Just pop a pin in the hole where they meet on the grid.

A bit like the see how far it is between Exeter and Carlisle grid things you get in the back of road atlases.

With the Arturia Matrixbrute though, this things based on buttons with lights in. And buttons with lights in means presets. Old meets new in glorious harmony!

Now, that’s all well and good, but not that useful if you don’t have anything to modulate or things to modulate the things you want to modulate with. Not a problem. How’s this:

2x analogue exponential oscillators

1x analogue linear oscillator/LFO

Cross-modulation: VCO1>2 ; VCO1 < VCO3> VCO2 ; VCF 1 < VCO3> VCF 2 ; VCF1 < Noise> VCF2

Steiner Parker filter with 12+24 db per octave modes ; Drive ; Brute factor; Low Pass, High Pass, Band Pass, Notch

Ladder filter with 12+24 db per octave modes ; Drive ; Brute factor; Low Pass, High Pass, Band Pass

2x LFO’s: Sine, Tri, Square, Ramp, Saw, Random, S&H

3x Envelope Generators: 2x Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release; 1x Delay, Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release

Plus all the other good bits and bobs like pedal inputs, 64-step sequencer, arpeggiator, chorus/delay/flanger effects, 12 CV/gate ins and outs, external audio input, MIDI and USB input and output. The Arturia Matrixbrute is looking like the knees of the bee. In fact, let us paraphrase perhaps that most famous of poems:

Think of a bee

You are its knees

Can I buy an Arturia Matrixbrute Tuesday please?

Roland JC-01B

Roland JC01B Bluetooth SpeakerHaving a wireless speaker about the place is great. I mean, I love my hi-fi an’ all, but sometimes you just want to play back an ultimate 80s party playlist from YouTube on your phone. And you can’t find the cable. Well, with the Roland JC-01B Bluetooth speaker, you can listen to Labour of Love and The King of Rock and Roll in stunning clarity and tweak the tone to perfection with the bass and treble controls!

Pre-order the Roland JC-01B here!

Apogee Symphony I/O MkII

Apogee Symphony I/O mkIII liked Apogee’s Rosetta converter line, but the introduction of the Symphony system made their renowned converter know-how more modular, letting you create the bespoke system that was right for you. With the Apogee Symphony I/O mkII, the best just evolved and you can now connect to the Thunderbolt port on your Mac directly!

NORD Piano 3

NORD enthusiasts will be ecstatic to hear of the impending arrival of the third edition in their simply named “Piano” series. Experienced, professional players will know how incredible an instrument the Piano 2 is, so this brand new edition certainly has a lot to live up to! Looking at the specs, though – virtual hammer, grand weighted action; advanced string resonance; sample synth section; heavy-weight effects; OLED display – it looks as if it’s set to become an instant classic.

Pre-order the NORD Piano 3 here!

Waldorf KB37


“That modular synth stuff looks great… but how do you play it?” is a question that gets asked almost every day in the store, and Waldorf must have been listening! They’ve introduced an totally amazing looking modular rack host unit with a built-in keyboard and multi-way power supply. Winning!

Pre-order Waldorf KB37 here!

Roland FP-30 Digital Piano

Roland FP-30The new Roland FP-30 brings 88 notes of Roland’s incredible digital piano technology to the home in a compact, sleekit form factor that comes in at an incredible price; what’s not to like!

Pre-order the Roland FP-30 here!

LEAKED: Yamaha Montage


Nothing official has been said as of yet, but from leaked videos and images it looks to be Yamaha’s answer to KORG’s Kronos, and a possible successor to their long-running Motif series. Stay tuned for more info, although it could have something to do with synth-legend Richard Devine’s mention of “totally alien, new technology” from Yamaha coming soon”…

Roland EC-10 El Cajon

Roland EC10 El CajonIt might have already been leaked, but that doesn’t make the official announcement of the Roland EC-10 El Cajon any less exciting! It may not be the V-Cajon, but this combination of acoustic cajon with onboard electronic sounds is sure to sound great, be a lot of fun and simplify those acoustic gigs across the world!

Pre-order the Roland EC-10 El Cajon here!

Roland A-01 Module & Controller

Roland A-01Could this be the new hub of your hybrid studio? The Roland A-01 is sound module, controller and connectivity centrepiece that could be just the piece of gear you’ve been waiting for!

Pre-order the Roland A-01 here!

Roland System 500 Set

Roland System 500 SetThe grand reveal of the Roland System 500 at Musikmesse last year got a lot of people excited. Now, with the announcement of a complete Roland System 500 Set, Eurorack newbies can start off with a complete, working system that is all you need to get patching and make sounds, and existing modular fans can add the whole lot in a oner!

Pre-order the Roland System 500 set here!


Celebrate NAMM 2016: Win a Focusrite recording bundle worth over £500!

Red Dog Music is the UK’s friendliest musical instrument and pro-audio dealer. Between our 5000 square foot Edinburgh shop filled with an incredible range of products, and our London showroom in Clapham specialising in high-end instruments, dj and pro-audio, Red Dog Music has you covered from north to south and from performance to playback.

About The Author

Red Dog Music

Dawsons Music is delighted to announce that the Red Dog Music brand is now part of the Dawsons family. This is an exciting opportunity to bring both communities together and create a stronger, wider network of people passionate about music gear. We both share a common heritage to support musicians throughout the UK and Dawsons want to support Red Dog Music customers in their continued musical journey.

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