Best keyboard synth – Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer. If you are interested in buying the Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer or you just want to know more about the piano, you should keep reading.

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Price

Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer is a well-made synthesiser and its price stands up for it. The prices are quite similar throughout the different renowned music shops. Depending on the piano series and also the website you are buying it from, but mainly it stays between 300-350 euros. You can check the latest offer here!

Product Description

MiniNova packs the sort of specs you’d expect to find in an instrument twice the size and sounds like one double the price. Whether you’re a music production novice taking your first steps in synthesis, the keyboard player in a band looking for a sturdy, road-worthy instrument, or an experienced sound designer. All of that after a pro-quality portable addition to your existing arsenal. Novation’s backpack-sized beast more than delivers. 

This larger-than-life USB bus-powered, 18-voice polyphonic micro synth features three oscillators and one noise generator per voice; 14 filter types; 12-band vocoder with VocalTune; 6 envelope generators; 3 LFOs; 20 modulation assignment slots; 5 simultaneous effects; with Mac/PC Editor Plug-in and Patch Librarian.

Pros 

  • It contains a fantastic selection of controls, effects, waveforms, and presets to ensure you have everything you need to get creative. Turn your audio inspiration into an actual track, sample, or song.
  • Beef up your sounds with countless filters and effects to further customize your sound on the fly. Simply use the buttons and select the effect on the screen before using the backlit dials to adjust the intensity. It’s that simple to use.
  • It contains a Vocoder feature, allowing you to record your voice into the synth and add these sounds to your samples, or for recording onto samples and synth sounds.
  • Perfect for beginner producers who are looking for a fully functional synth to help them get started and learn the basics while remaining powerful and professional enough for more experienced producers looking for a complete experience.
  • While small and compact, this device contains the same engine as the older, more premium UltraNova device, meaning you get the same level of power and control over your sounds as the industry-leading synths.

Cons

  • The dials and controls may seem a little small due to the compact size of the device, which may be a little difficult for people with larger hands. Also, labels on the controls look very small and may be difficult to read for some people.

Is Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer Worth it?

All in all, it’s easy to see that the MiniNova has an absolute ton of things to offer both new musicians and producers who are looking for a device to get started, plus experienced producers who want a complete and all-rounded production experience. This is one beasty synth, and there’s no denying it’s one of the best in the world.

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

Hand’s down the best feature of this device is just how much fun it is to use. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a hobbyist who just loves music, or a professional who wants to be creative in this way for a living, the highlight of your week is going to be turning this device on and jamming out. Also, it contains a wide selection of controls, effects. Recording possibilities and many other beneficial features to making music and enjoying the process. (

Specifications of Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer:

  • With sound generation from the UltraNova synth
  • 37 Velocity sensitive keys
  • Up to 18x polyphony
  • Mono-timbral
  • 256 Presets
  • Saves up to 512 patches
  • 5 Effects per patch
  • VocalTune- and classic vocoder effects
  • 12-Band vocoder
  • Arpeggiator with 33 patterns
  • Chord function
  • LCD
  • Patch Select knob
  • Pitch and Modulation wheel
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): 560 x 75 x 250 mm
  • Weight: 2.52 kg
  • Incl. Gooseneck microphone and Xcite+ software bundle
  • Suitable case: Article Nr. 389913 (not included)

Connections:

  • Audio input: 6.3 mm jack
  • Line output: 2x 6.3 mm jack (stereo L/R)
  • MIDI input and output
  • USB
  • Headphone output
  • XLR Mic input for dynamic microphones

Quality

Novation’s MiniNova has the beefiest synth engine ever put into such a compact and sturdy synth. You get 14 waveforms (square, sine, sawtooth, pulse, and triangle, plus variations), 36 wavetables, plus 20 digital waveforms. Each of the three oscillators (per voice) sports Density/detune for fattening up sounds, Virtual Sync, and Hardness – which functions as an additional lowpass filter. Speaking of filters, MiniNova is fitted with 14 different types (you can run two simultaneously), six envelope generators, three LFOs, and a modulation matrix with 20 slots in which you can string synth engine modules together to create a sonic beast. Effects? Definitely. With MiniNova, you can add up to five effects to each voice – that includes distortion, reverb, compression, EQ, chorus/phase, delay, and Novation’s proprietary Gator effect. The build quality of the Novation Mininova is extremely sturdy, but incredibly beautiful.

Additional Features of Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer

Novation’s MiniNova has unique and powerful sound-shaping capabilities for such a bantamweight. You get knobs, naturally, that let you tweak your sounds, but you can also “animate” sound using eight back-lit buttons that trigger mods in the synth engine that warp your patches in real-time as you play. There’s a large knob for filter cutoff so no matter what else you are doing, you always have instant control over the filter. MiniNova also sports a 33-pattern arpeggiator, and you can use the eight buttons to jam with these patterns, creating completely new sequences (in real-time) in the process.

Warranty

Warranty is offered from various wholesalers, who sell the product at hand.

Who Is Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer Best For?

The Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer was made with beginners, but also more experienced hobbyists in mind – Novation did not pack it with excessive functionalities and the function navigation is also very simple and easy. Although, intermediate players and enthusiasts will find it handy as well. There are some of the few features incorporated into this instrument that is supposed to prepare the player for a more complex experience in the future. Moreover, at around 350€, beginners, intermediates, and enthusiasts have the advantage of spending less to get a taste of what a good synthesizer is and decide if they want to continue in that path or not. Another advantage of the Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer is that it allows its players to create music and fine-tune sounds to their hearts’ desires. This quality does not only attract synthesizer beginners and enthusiasts, but it also puts the instrument in the good books of many experts. 

What Do People Say About Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer?

YouTube Review #1Novation’s compact MiniNova is a Mini-Keys Synth boasting 256 onboard sounds and massive sound and performance/editing controls as well as 37 keys and MIDI I/O making this a versatile compact synth that is ideal for producers and gigging musicians.

Youtube Review #2The Novation Mininova synthesizer was my first synth ever. I got it before I ever even knew anything about music production, let alone a daw. Little did I know how much I would love this synth when I finally began learning how to record music on ableton live. So whether you are thinking about getting this synth, or already have it, I hope this video is helpful to you. 

Amazon Reviews #1I have been searching for an affordable portable analog modelling synthesizer and was deciding between the MiniNova, Microkorg, and Roland JDXi which are about the same price (except that the JDXi which costs $100 more). My key criteria are the portability, has 37 keys (for live performance), availability of free patches. and features to allow the creation of my own sound. All of these synthesizers apparently fit the bill so it has been a tough rather difficult decision.

However, after I tried out the MiniNova at a local music store, my mind was made up right away that it was the right choice. The mini keyboard was so playable and sensitive that it got me sold as I play solo leads for my performance band. The layout of the control knobs and buttons are also very intuitive. What also surprised me was the availability of many high quality free patches (by going to the Novation site, Google and Youtube searches). Managing these patches was very easy by using the free MiniNova Librarian (a stand-alone app). We could create folders within the software for each set of patches. What also nice is that we can try out the sound by simply selecting it in the librarian and play it on the keyboard (there is no need to load the patch to the keyboard). I was able to try out hundreds of the free patches this way and create a special folder to store the ones I liked. Then all I needed to do is to load the sound files from this folder to the MiniNova for off line playing.

Another nice thing with the MiniNova is that it can been powered by a portable USB battery pack which is very convenient for using it where AC power is not available. It also has an editor plug-in which I loaded to Ableton Live. With the plug in , we can modify and / or create our own sound. The possibility is endless with the wealth of controls (oscillators, modulators, mixer) available within this plug-in. Another great way to use this synth is to select a sample you like and launch the Minova Editor to dissect the settings being used to produce the sound / effects.

Amazon Reviews  #2First off: never buy a mini keyboard if you’re trying to learn to play piano, or don’t already have a full-sized set of keys for general recording. The keys are half the size. Know what you’re buying or you’re going to be disappointed. I have seen too many reviews start out this way.

That said, this thing has impossibly good sound for the money, and the vocoder is the rich, cream cheese icing on the cake. Portability for sketching out tunes and noodling is a breeze. It sits comfortably on your lap. The keys are responsive. The knobs may need a little breaking in, as they seem scratchy at first. Tons of port options in the back. Patching jacks, headphone, usb, midi in and out, and option 9v adaptor when not plugged in to a computer. Lots of base patches and so many variations in real time with the knobs. I immediately fell in love.The lights are a bit bright for my taste. There may be a way to dim them, I haven’t looked. There’s definitely going to be some learning curve. But everything sounds so wonderful that I’m in no hurry to drill in to specifics, and am willing to take the time to organically find my sweet spots. The display isn’t anything to look at at, but it’s clear and easy to read, and shows a good dashboard set of info.

I just purchased a MOOG Sirin, which I also love, but it doesn’t have the mini keys to make it as portable as the miniNOVA. I think the two will compliment each other extremely well.

The Verdict: Is Novation MiniNova Analog Modeling Synthesizer Worth It?

Since Novation was born back in 1992, the company name has become synonymous with world-class analog modeling synthesizers and unrivaled MIDI controller keyboards and solutions. The product range continues to receive critical acclaim from the music press and win numerous awards for outstanding technology and usability. Fantastic build quality, true musical instrument feel, and intuitive controls are just three of the reasons why Novation’s digital musical instruments are simply a joy to play. To keep products up to date and in tune with the user’s needs, Novation continually provides improved operating systems and brand new software available for download. Firmware updates are fueled and inspired by suggestions from existing users, so comments about Novation products are actively encouraged. Considering all the above, it is definitely worth it!

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