Korg is difficult to describe as a company because of the sheer wealth of technological marvels that they count among their product catalogue. Across a broad spread of synth modules, workstations, keyboards and controllers – or Kontrollers, as the company calls them – they’ve become an unquestionable fixture in bands and studio setups.
The Monotribe for instance blends a powerful, editable analogue synth and ribbon with a step sequencer – essentially an analogue Electribe that’s long been on demand. The Korg KRONOS in particular stole the show last year, an astonishingly powerful workstation with a collection of synth engines that somehow managed to better the already-popular OASYS rig. The PA2X arranger keyboard also benefitted from an upgrade, now labelled the PA3X, and of course the M3 workstation is still going strong. The less-synthesised side of keyboards also saw its ranks swell with the arrival of the powerful SV1 stage piano, and live performance keyboards are perfectly covered with the MicroKORG and Microsampler.
Also quick to be accepted by the on-the-go production community has been the Nano series, which comprises nanoKONTROL, nanoKEY and nanoPAD – the trio have been designed as USB-connected controllers that each fulfil a specific roll in a tiny footprint – faders, pads and keys. It’s a tiny and effective solution to what might otherwise be a big problem.
Continuing the theme of pint-sized perfection is the Monotron, the tiny ribbon synthesisers that have been revived to much applause, with the more recent addition of models that feature scale choices and powerful delay effects. Incidentally, a complete range of plug-ins, labelled the Korg Legacy collection, will allow producers to wield the whole host of tones in the studio too.
Guitarists can use the infamous Pandora range for portable access to seriously-involved amp and FX modelling and recording functionality that will make rehearsal and lick-learning an absolute doddle.
Even the percussive product range is suitably ingenious, Korg’s Wavedrum allowing multi-sensor response to a plethora of useable, realistic electronic percussion sounds.