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Alesis Micron Analog Modeling Synth

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You'll be amazed at how the Alesis Micron Analog Modeling Synth can be so sophisticated, yet so affordable. It delivers 8 voices, each with 3 oscilla...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

ION analog-modeling sound engine in a compact package.

You'll be amazed at how the Alesis Micron Analog Modeling Synth can be so sophisticated, yet so affordable. It delivers 8 voices, each with 3 oscillators, 2 multimode filters, 3 envelope generators, 2 LFOs, sample and hold, and tracking generator. 4 multitimbral parts. Programmable step sequencer and arpeggiator. Programmable rhythm sequencer for drum kits. Dynamic realtime phrase sequencer. Stereo bus effects, including reverb and 40-band vocoder. Provides 1/4" balanced stereo analog outputs and inputs with 24-bit conversion. A 37-key synth-action keyboard with velocity sensitivity allows comfortable, expressive playing. Controls include 3 continuously rotational 12-bit parameter knobs, 2 assignable modulation sliders, pitch wheel, and expression and sustain pedal inputs. Unit compatible with ION programs.

FEATURES
  • Industry-leading ION analog-modeling sound engine in a compact package
  • 8 voices, each with 3 oscillators, 2 multimode filters, 3 envelope generators, 2 LFOs, sample and hold, and tracking generator
  • 4 multitimbral parts capability
  • Programmable step sequencer and arpeggiator
  • Programmable rhythm sequencer for drum kits
  • Dynamic realtime phrase sequencer
  • Stereo buss effects, including reverb and 40-band vocoder
  • 1/4" balanced stereo analog outputs and inputs with 24-bit conversion
  • 37-key, synth-action velocity sensitivity keyboard
  • 3 continuously-rotational 12-bit parameter knobs
  • 2 assignable modulation sliders
  • Pitch wheel
  • Expression and sustain pedal inputs
  • Compatible with ION programs
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
 
4.5

(based on 57 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (43)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (9)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (3)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

ripping soundz

First off..I would like to point out that on this synth, the idea is...You create your own sounds, then you create step sequenced patterns as well as complete drum beats...Read complete review

First off..I would like to point out that on this synth, the idea is...You create your own sounds, then you create step sequenced patterns as well as complete drum beats which you can play(and record) in real time or key in before or after the fact, then.... You asign these patterns and beats to as many keys as you want and then You save the keyboard setup. The key pad becomes somewhat of a mixer mute button..like when You hit a key it's as if another track(you created and saved and asigned to this key)plays and always in perfect timing with the other tracks you recorded..the drums are actually assignable as a multi track recording to one key or you can assign the beat piece by piece to individual keys. after you've created a bunch of patterns of songs in your head to the sequencer and assigned to individual keys you just press one key after the other and build the songs arrangement live and on the fly.(the latch button will keep a pattern playing together and on loop mode for the amount of bars you assign) The final recording of your entirely created songs beats, patterns and solos need to be recorded on some other recording device. For fun you can asign effects to a particular keyboard set-up and even assign multiple keyboard splits for soloing or fx. The synthesis process is fascinating and highly programmable as well and the whole setup is super smart(ex.hold down one of the few buttons and the keyboards 37 keys double as 37 more push buttons for multiple functions. It's sounds are better the the virus or anthing else on the market. It's effects are sparse but keep it sounding clean and warm and real(analog) sound. The vocoder needs to be improved but with a little knob twiddling it improves a little. I luv its preset sounds(patches) but don't care for most of its patters(but who cares..I mean, who in the world would use a companies songs or tracks and try to claim them as your own anyways??) That's the whole point--you can make your own patters and arrangements! All without even touching a computer. The final song cant be recorde in this synth and that's why it's not considered a workstation but after owning(and mastering it) you realize how smart it actually is. Also..from a design standpoint it's like a quirky, cute little modern product..oh yeah..it's presets patches are mostly in honer of all the classic analog, early digital and fm synths of the past. Some useful organs and strings too. It's pads shine and it's got a great electric piano..(no good acoustic piano though)..its bass and lead sounds are excellent. It also does video game sounds and other geeky blippy sounds quite well too. You can tell that the sound programmers are masters from the old school because A: the sounds are so genuine and B. they have little understanding of the more modern genre s'(becuase of preset patterns) It's like they masterred synthesis in the 70s' and 80s' but missed the boat on the rave/techno/dj culture that exists..i mean, the patterns and keyboards setups sound like how a person who is great at synthesis might try to emulate what they think is house or techno or breaks or whatever if they just heard it from time to time on tv or walking past a bar or blaring from their daughters bedroom or something.no offense though because this thing is a masterpiece! 5 more knobs,usb connection and power and an audio interface and this thing would be perfect.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Full review of Micron

Here is my take on the micron, having just used it yesterday for a good 4 hours. At first glance I was dismayed by the 2 modulation sliders harking back to old Roland synths...Read complete review

Here is my take on the micron, having just used it yesterday for a good 4 hours. At first glance I was dismayed by the 2 modulation sliders harking back to old Roland synths that just never tickled my fancy. Second I noticed the severe lack of nobs. The keys were sturdy, as was the frame, but I found that I had to crick my neck to find out what was going on. Compared to the microKORG this thing is definitely not ergonomic. Then I started the playing. I was impressed with the 8 note polyphony. That was where my happiness stopped. The pitch wheel has a very odd eighth-of-a-second delay that seemed to get worse as I ate up the polyphony. The drum kit was extremely quiet and thin which was a drag because the bass on this thing is flat enough. I drooled at the mouth when I heard there was 3 oscillators but spit after trying to edit them. I managed to get ONE classic 3x Osc. sound out of it but in the end it took me an hour to finish. The interface is terrible and the filter is supremely lacking (I'm not even sure if it can self-oscillate). The vocoder may be 16-band but don't think bigger is better. All 16-band means is that there are 16 editable channels. All of them sound like crap. I was horrified by the lack of waveforms as well. Newbs may look at this instead of the microKORG because of the bigger numbers and bigger keys. I just have two words for you. MIDI CONTROLLER! If you plug one into a microKORG, BAM! Instant satisfaction!

Reviewed by 57 customers

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Great Synth for a Budget!

By ClockWerkKeys

from Southern Indiana

See all my reviews

If your like me and on a budget, this is the Hands-Down pick for a versatile, great sounding Synth! I'm currently in two bands. One is Classic Rock and the other is Ambient. I've found something on this board for both styles. The Pads are SUPER, the Basses BOOM. Vocoder is lacking, but I didn't buy this board for that anyway. With a little tweaking, this thing goes from great to Excellent! Be warned...there is a learning curve with these controls, but nothing alittle time and practice won't fix. The quality in this piece isn't great. {For example, the main control knob on mine spins off-axis.} But hey, for the price it can't be beat. I have no qualms recommending this board for anyone from beginner to pro.

 
5.0

Amazing!

By PaulC

from So FL

First purchased the Novation XIOSYNTH but presets were corrupted on 2 different units. Got the Micron, which was my first choice anyway, and it is great! Hundreds of USABLE presets and room for hundreds more of your own creation. Wait for a deal at your favorite vendor and then jump on it! You won"t be sorry. One of those rare products that works as good or better than the hype!!!!

 
5.0

Sounds like my old analog Synths

By Jeff Myers-Du686

from Germantown,Ky

I play 2 to 3 nights a week and record in the studio too and am a 32 year Veteran Keyboard Player. I've owned a lot of Vintage Keys (when they were new, and not called "vintage"). Nowadays I mostly play Stage Pianos and for a top board something easy to get the pre-sets out of. But when I played this one and got all these 80's songs out of it, plus....a wurly, and........prophet strings, man!!! It's SAFE To JAM!! I'm gonna use it for my B-RIG SYNTH, over top a Stage Piano and leave my other Rig in the trailer, as well as some studio work. The wheel is fine, sounds great, the only cheap thing is the alpha pot, it's kinda loose but not bad. Want Vintage keys? Get this and either midi it out or just play it on the top tier. Take it from an old dog, it's got cool sounds.

 
5.0

Very powerful, super price!

By smartfeller

from California

See all my reviews

Just about all menus have shortcut keys that allow you to bypass the dialing/scrolling. I just wish the rythyms borrowed a few drum kits from the SR18. And it would be cool to have a Hammond emulation. Otherwise, you can spend days with this little guy. Sounds way better than the Korg.

 
5.0

Get it!

By TheHollow

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

This synth is amazing. I love the sounds more than any other synth thats come out in the past few years. The Ion is a little easier to manipulate obviously but if you don't have the bucks then get this bad boy & you wont be disappointed.

 
5.0

One Year Later....

By ETR2k3

from Ohio

See all my reviews

I've had my Micron for about a year now. I took the time to compare it with the microKorg, and decided that I liked the Micron's sound and look better. I've recently started to dive deep into the sequencing abilities of this synth, and I've been blown away with how easily I've managed to figure out how to create drum loops, patterns, and then setups to bring it all together. The only thing I've had any difficulty with is finding where to reassign the knobs, but if I had read my manual within the last 9 months or so, I'd probably know exactly how to do it.

 
5.0

Very useful little tool.

By Michael-kwq73

from Toledo, OH

See all my reviews

I purchased one of these over a year ago, and it is probably the most used of all my instruments. I am primarily a guitar player, and wanted to have a keyboard for a few songs and recording, and after much deliberation, I chose this over the MicroKorg, and I do not regret it at all. The real strength of this machine is the Setup function which allows you to layer and split the keyboard- so rather than scrolling through all the sounds (which is easier than some would lead you to believe, if you know how to use shortcuts) you can just shift the keyboard up a few "octaves" to the other sound, which you of course have transposed to counter the shifting on the keyboard. You can also save more sounds than the Korg.The only caveat- the vocoder isn't too great. I just purchased a Korg R3, and on that front, it beats the Micron. But on every other one, the Micron is a much more versatile machine, and much cheaper.

 
5.0

Little But Big

By vG1IIXC.U

from Tijuana, Mexico

the Alesis Micron is the synth that could, it's features are incledible, all the drum kids in this synth are amazing an very easy to change, the patters are awesome and the arpeggio feature on the patters is very reliable, the setups are espectacular. Everything in this synth is just amazing, it is worth every penny, the only problems is that you only have three knobs to comtrol de parameters and one knob that has the whole menu, but other than that I really recomend this synth for someone who is just starting to someone experienced.

 
5.0

obviously better than the microkorg

By Tyler Bell

from saginaw, michigan

if you are looking at this synth and the microkorg, don't be fooled into buying for the name korg. the microkorg doesn't do half of what this does, yet its the same price. this thing is amazing and i'm very relaxed to know i'll be using this every day.

 
4.0

bang for the buck....

By peebee

from Pawtucket, RI

See all my reviews

I bought the micron simply because it was small and I wanted a new toy. It has some of the best anlog drum sounds I've ever heard. The more I get into it, the more I discover it can do. It has the same synth engine as the ION and is just as powerful. To my ears it still sounds like a VA and not true analog. It's to pretty and has a digital sheen over the sound. Even said, the 40 band Vocorder alone is worth the price of admission. I've heard of a guy attaching a mike gooseneck to the back of it like the minikorg has. Cool!!

 
2.0

Full review of Micron

By shadow8224

from Elsah IL

See all my reviews

Here is my take on the micron, having just used it yesterday for a good 4 hours. At first glance I was dismayed by the 2 modulation sliders harking back to old Roland synths that just never tickled my fancy. Second I noticed the severe lack of nobs. The keys were sturdy, as was the frame, but I found that I had to crick my neck to find out what was going on. Compared to the microKORG this thing is definitely not ergonomic. Then I started the playing. I was impressed with the 8 note polyphony. That was where my happiness stopped. The pitch wheel has a very odd eighth-of-a-second delay that seemed to get worse as I ate up the polyphony. The drum kit was extremely quiet and thin which was a drag because the bass on this thing is flat enough. I drooled at the mouth when I heard there was 3 oscillators but spit after trying to edit them. I managed to get ONE classic 3x Osc. sound out of it but in the end it took me an hour to finish. The interface is terrible and the filter is supremely lacking (I'm not even sure if it can self-oscillate). The vocoder may be 16-band but don't think bigger is better. All 16-band means is that there are 16 editable channels. All of them sound like crap. I was horrified by the lack of waveforms as well. Newbs may look at this instead of the microKORG because of the bigger numbers and bigger keys. I just have two words for you. MIDI CONTROLLER! If you plug one into a microKORG, BAM! Instant satisfaction!

 
5.0

Alesis Micron Synth Keyboard

By Not clear enough

from Chicago

See all my reviews

I love this synth. My new secret weapon! The amazing oscillator and filter (Moog/Oberheim/Arp, Roland and many other types of sounds, built in very analog sounding(!) "drum machine" phrase sequencer, fx. (incl. reverb.) musical sounding Vocoder (you can use any dynamic mic. and a 1/4-XLR cable no adapters needed), Multi/Combi Mode setups for combining "patches with phrase sequences and drums. Wow!

 
5.0

This synth can do anything!

By Mr. Disco

from Mass

See all my reviews

I got this synth a couple months ago and it's done wonders.You can arrange any part to any key. you can create a drum loop, put it to a key, latch it and play. It has cool band presets like Pink Floyd and The Cars.and it's just and overall great synth. There where a few things i did'nt like though, like it comes with a bunch of setup presets making it hard to find your own songs, it also has a bunch of drum presets, and pattern preset. But I wouldn't let that stop you from buying this synth it's worth the money. Plug it up to a Midi and you've got a whole band!

 
5.0

Awesome Synth!

By SynthmazterCoop

from Clarksburg, WV

See all my reviews

This is a great synth. It is my first one and I am quite pleased. It is easy to work with, although the tunes need work. The patterns are extrememly easy to work with. However, it has frozen up on me, and I'm afraid it may do that at a show [as a previous review said]. It's a great value. There's so much programming with one knob, it's incredible.

 
5.0

Lots of features for the price! However......

By Jeremy Rogers

from Milwaukee, WI

I bought this little guy 4 months ago. I had been looking at it for about a year along with the microkorg of course. I am lead vocals and guitarist for my band and I needed something little and diverse that I could mess with when I wasn't playing my guitar. I like the sounds it has. Particularly the SFX and the pads. It also has a lot of vintage sounds which is what really attracted me to it. It is small and doesn't have many parts or knobs that have a high chance of breaking. If your a keybaord player I wouldn't add this to your set up if you want to have a couple sounds going at the same time. It takes way to long to navigate. You have to use one rotating knob that guides you through all 400+ of the sounds. I just program my 10 favorite sounds in the favorite section so I don't have to search for them. If you are playing bass or guitar and you need a second instrument then this is your tool. The korg is sweet also if you have a child's hands. However it does have a lot of more modern sounds and is easier to navigate. All depends on what you like I guess. I choose Alesis though:)

 
4.0

Great Synth!

By Adam Vass

from Indiana

See all my reviews

I have this and the microkorg, so i can make an accurate comparison. Way more tones on the micron. they arent as easy to tweak as they are on the korg, and the XYZ knobs on the face usually dont help. there is a lot of programming with one knob, so you have to program before you play, while you can work on the go with the korg. a previous reviewer had problems with the pitch wheel, which i have experienced as well. drum sounds mostly hiphop and techno. programmer very easy to use, much moreso than arpeggiator on korg. default tones need work, but in conjunction with the microkorg, you can become unstoppable.

 
5.0

Alesis Micron

By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

The Alesis Micron is just a great synth for the money and has all the sounds and parameters of the Ion, in an easy-to-manage size.

 
4.0

Only downside are the drums

By bns2000

from Zoo York

Okay, first of all, the drums suck. If they sound better than a Casio, then not by much. And the drum sequencer is basically a joke. Anyone used to mapping out a complex beat will not be inspired to say the least. Next up are the effects - yes, there are millions of effects but a lot of them seem to take a perfectly good-sounding note and turn them into some crazy space weirdo sound. I try to make music for humans not for aliens. And is vibrato that important that it has its own dedicated control? Yeah, for every song i do i want a ton of vibrato. Come on. Why is that not delay or reverb or a tonal shift instead of vibrato? BUT for $400 the keyboard sounds - bass, leads, synth sounds etc. are great. They are fat. They are rich. They are tweakable. And they can belong in a professional sounding recording. They are comparable to what you would hear in a Depeche Mode or Ladytron recording. My guess is that the key sounds on this are about as good as a top of the line synth back in the 80's were. Also the keys themselves are pretty solid and well-made. And the variety of sounds is big - 48 different basses, 127 "pads", etc. But again the drum sounds are Lame. So use it to make cool-sounding phrases and keyboard hooks - it is fun for this and the results are good, but you will need a drum machine or drum samples reason or acid pro or whatever for drums.

 
5.0

wow

By suppi-yQBEq

from connecticut

See all my reviews

This synth is amazing. The sounds are fat as heck, the programs are amazing, and the knobs are really fun to play with. I was really pleased with the lead sounds and how easy this thing is to play, you don't have to have any piano expirience to play this baby, especially on the leads. I also was really amused with the tone wheel, which has nice resistance and is incredibly cool to watch light up when you turn it lol.ps. If anyone thinks this is hard to use, read the pdf manual. It will clear everything up and open some cool features up to you.

 
5.0

Cool, but not as simple as some say

By Northwest Mike

from Bend, OR

See all my reviews

I just bought a Micron and I've spent a few hours with it, toying around. It has some amazing sounds and patterns for the money, but controlling it on-the-fly is pretty limited. There are only two controllers. If you want to change the sounds, you can go into a form of deep editing, but it looks awfully complex. I would say that it has an incredible bang for the buck, but it's not super easy to edit or tweak quickly.

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