Elektron have taken one of their more inspiring recent products and added a keyboard. The result – an 8-voice polyphonic keyboard for 1320EUR, and a bunch of new playing features.
So yes, Elektron continues the move away from the company that makes powerful but mysterious boxes to something more hands-on. We’re going from menu diving to actually playing.
And indeed, it’s now the age of the polysynth. 8 voices for just over a grand ain’t so bad.
The Digitone was already sonically one of the most compelling instruments to come out of Gothenburg yet – a unique, powerful FM synth, so capable of all kinds of ringing, special timbres. Elektron haven’t been terribly creative with how they took the Digitone interface and made it a keyboard. A first glance shows something that looks like a fake image someone mocked up on Reddit. (Or, for Elektron die-hards, recalls the side-by-side design of the limited edition SFX-6 add-on to the Monomachine – something that was surely intentional.)
But take a second look, and what you see is – lots of additional playing controls, a shallow design that keeps everything within reach (rather than putting all those buttons above the keys), and some new ways to play and connect Digitone.
In short, what’s new:
Multimap – basically think regions/splits on the keyboard, but which work for patterns as well as timbres
Eight assignable knobs (not on the original)
New portamento/arpeggio features
Per-track, separate outputs – making this ideal for people who like to use hardware effects
But the sum total of this is special – all the pattern and parameter lock features of an Elektron box, plus a bunch of keyboardist-friendly features. The Analog Keys was the most recent stab at this (following Monomachine SFX-6), but the Digitone Keys doubles the polyphony and looks friendlier.
Product image reveals where this product was possibly found – is that the cave Thor goes to? The bottom of … a magic Norse grotto? Don’t know?
Full specs – yep, now I copy/paste. Stay tuned, as I’m heading over to see Elektron’s new studio in Berlin – further cementing our dear home as the electronic music capital of the world. (Though, please y’all, I love Sweden, too! Don’t take away an excuse to go there!)
Synth voice features
8 voice polyphony (4-part multitimbral)
Multiple FM algorithms
Multiple operator harmonics
1 × multimode filter per voice
1 × base-width filter per voice
1 × overdrive per voice
2 × assignable LFO per voice
2048 patch storage capacity on the +Drive
4 × synth tracks
4 × MIDI tracks
Arpeggiator per synth track
Individual track lengths
Sound per step change
128 × projects on the +Drive
8 × Banks 16 × patterns per project
Send & master effects
Panoramic Chorus send effect
Saturator Delay send effect
Supervoid Reverb send effect
Overdrive master effect
37-key semi-weighted, velocity sensitive keyboard with aftertouch
Assignable pitch and modulation wheels
8 × user assignable rotary encoders
2 × 1/4” impedance balanced main out jacks
8 × 1/4” impedance balanced track out jacks
1 × 1/4” stereo headphone jack
2 × 1/4” audio in jacks
2 × 1/4” CV/Expression/Sustain jacks
128 × 64 pixel OLED screen
48 kHz, 24-bit D/A and A/D converters
Hi-Speed USB 2.0 port
MIDI In/Out/Thru with DIN Sync out
Sturdy steel casing
Dimensions: W868 × D185 × H90 mm (including knobs, feet, and jacks)
Weight: approximately 6 kg
Dedicated MIDI controller mode
3 year Elektron warranty
Included in the box
Power Supply PSU-3b
Elektron USB cable
Look forward to checking this out in person; I hear they will have it for us today in Berlin.