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  • Filed under: Gear
  • 10/04/2013

This Week in Music Tech: Maschine Studio, Ewan Pearson on Ableton, Joker's Studio, New Moog Pedals, and More

Another seven days have passed and there is plenty to catch up with in the world of music tech. Our latest round-up highlights Native Instruments' newly announced Maschine Studio, the Aleph super-computer from the makers of the Monome, and a leaked first look at the new—and incredibly affordable—pedals from Moog. Also included is a look into UK bass wrangler Joker's studio, an Ableton seminar from Ewan Pearson, a chance to win a Moog Sub Phatty, and a look at the characters lurking around the "Music Instr" section of Craigslist.

In case you missed it earlier in the week, London's Point Blank Music School will be giving away a Sub Phatty analog synth from Moog to one of its YouTube subscribers. For those who aren't currently subscribers to the channel, one simply needs to sign up before midnight, October 7, to be added to the draw. The winner will also recieve a Pro Producer Course of their choice from the London production school along with the sought-after monphonic synth.

Native Instruments unveiled the Maschine Studio this week, a reimagined and enhanced version of the company's flagship Maschine production center. Along with the forthcoming new unit—which is expected to hit stores in November for a price tag of $999—NI also announced the Maschine 2.0 software update which will come standard with the Studio and be available to purchase by existing Maschine users come November.

A number of online hubs for synth and equipment nerds have been buzzing about the possible leak of a new series of pedals from Moog. The so-called "Minifooger series" of pedals seen in the image above appears to be a page leaked from an upcoming Sweetwater catalog which shows MF Ring, MF Delay, MF Tremolo, MF Boost, and MF Drive pedals all with a new "by Moog" tagged onto the end. Perhaps most importantly of all, all the pedals appear set to retail for under $200, which would make them the most affordable pieces of Moog-made gear ever. Create Digital Music does the best job of Minifooger fortune-telling here.

As part of Kompakt's takeover of Ableton HQ, veteran producer Ewan Pearson was invited to give a symposium on using Ableton Live and Logic to remix and produce. The 90-minute discussion delves into great detail on subjects such as internal and external signal processing, manipulating stems for remixing, and just in general making elements fit in the scheme of a production. Even for those not super keen on Pearson's own work, there is certainly much to learn from the man's process.

As part of its ongoing studio video series, Future Music Magazine has visisted UK purple master Joker to take a look inside his production studio and to delve into the individual parts and processes that make up the man's tracks. The 40-minute video is a little slow, but also rather extensive, and finds Joker himself asking "You know what I mean?" at least once a minute.

From the makers of the Monome comes the Aleph, a "powerful audio processor, synthesizer, noise machine, rapidly modifiable instrument... a platform for experimental practice and organic discovery." Essentially a computer whose dedicated function is to process and synthesize audio as well as serve a platform to power and program grid controllers, modular synths, and more, the Aleph appears to be as open-ended as the Monome, made for open-source tinkering, sharing, and experimentation. The unit is—quite frankly—a bit too complex for us to go into detail here, but further information about the Aleph can be found here, and it is expected to ship later this fall for a price of around $1400.

And lastly, like many of us, regular XLR8R scribe Leo Maymind has been through the ups-and-downs of buying gear on Craigslist. He's bought MicroKORGs from confused hipsters and even gotten some steals from a mad girlfriend or two in his time. Now, Maymind has distilled the characters he's met along the way into one snappy list entitled Oh, the People You'll Meet (Buying Gear on Craigslist). His full list of recognizable and relatable Craigslist types can be read here.

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