Video: Exploring the Korg Monologue Monophonic Synthesizer

The Korg Minilogue was easily the most popular synth of 2016. So when Korg announced the follow-up Monologue in November, the synth world panged with deep synth hunger to give it a spin.

Well, it's finally here. And as you can see in the video above, our resident synth expert Justin had a blast digging into its feature set.

Core Monologue Features

As the name implies, the Monologue is a monophonic synth. And though it’s packed to the brim with features, we wanted to highlight a few of its coolest offerings specifically.

As Justin demonstrates, the Monologue has two VCOs with all of the standard waveforms you’d expect to find. But what’s more is that the Monologue allows you to further shape each of those waveforms. This essentially means that you can modify and manipulate the sound of each individual waveform in real time and is a feature not often seen on other synths.

The other standout feature is the built-in monophonic sequencer. It’s an incredibly hands-on feature that, in addition to sequence of notes, also allows you to record the movement of up to four knobs and replay them back in sequence. This way, you can take a really simple 16-note repeating phrase and make it more dynamic. It also has built-in presets that were designed by Aphex Twin.

How does it Compare to the Minilogue?

Of course, the biggest difference between these two machines is that the Minilogue is polyphonic and the Monologue is monophonic. Although this may seem like more of a limitation than an asset, don’t be so quick to jump to that conclusion. As Justin explains above, this monophonic synth allows for more variation and manipulation of the melody than you can achieve with a polyphonic synth.

Additionally, the Monologue has that killer sequencer and presets that most other offerings on the market just don’t have. The sequencer is extremely playable and allows users much more room to experiment with sequencing patterns than similarly priced synths that are currently on the market offer.

Bringing in Other Instruments

One of the coolest features of the Monologue is the ability to use it in tandem with other instruments. Justin demonstrates this feature with the Korg Volca Beats, running the sounds from the Volca into the Monologue and through the filter. When the Volca Beats (or whatever you choose) is paired with the Monologue, you can modify the Beats' sounds directly on the Monologue itself.

The fact that the Monologue has MIDI in and MIDI out in addition to analog clock input/output allows it to easily sync up with Korg synths and the Volca series.

With this kind of integration, you’re not limited by just the onboard features of the Monologue – you can easily add an instrument to the mix and make one, complete and cohesive piece of music.

Korg Synths Shop Now

See more Keyboard & Synth News from Winter NAMM 2017

comments powered by Disqus