March 3, 2013

Korg Monotribe System Update Adds CV/Gate Control

The Korg Monotribe is an analog ribbon station beast that is unknown to many, and loved by only a handful of synthheads out there.  One thing that would catch the eye of any potential shopper is the low price.  Ribbon synthesizers tend to cost less, because the method of inputting information by the user does not require fancy buttons and keys.  The Monotribe and the Monotron both have a fan base of music producers and tweakers who have found ways to connect them together and expand their sense of creativity.  Korg has taken notice to this trend as well and has released firmware updates to keep these old fashioned units fit for modern usage.

Their most recent update now allows for the use of control voltage signals to be processed by the unit.  This is not a new idea, and has been explored by the likes of Keith McMillen in his QuNexus controller.  Basically, it allows one signal to be processed in different ways, making it good for something with scale, such as a piano.  Even with this firmware update, there is still much more than could be improved upon, like proper MIDI connectivity.  Other hackers are looking for ways to translate from CV to MIDI, and vice versa.