NI Monark

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NI Monark

Postby MetroSonus » Sat Jul 19, 2014 1:16 pm

I know a few of you guys have Komplete. Do you also have Monark? opinions?

For a while, I had my heart set on GForce Minimonsta, but then it struck me that it has the GForce sound in it and Monark just sounds different. It sounds more alive for sure and like it has more presence in the higher frequencies.

Any opinions? :wave:
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Re: NI Monark

Postby midinut » Mon Jul 21, 2014 3:50 am

Not yet, but I'll get right on it. I have Minimonsta, Aturia's Mini V, and MiniVogue (sp? the free one) and I'll do a comparison and let you know. I have pulled it up and it has a "fatness" to it that impressed me right off the bat. I didn't notice any effects on the few patches I pulled up whereas the Minimonsta uses effects on almost all the patches - it may be one of the things that attracted me to it. Don't have much time in yet on the Arturia Mini V yet either, but what I remember is that feeling that all these Arturia products have a similar sound and feel to them. Let me play with it tonight and I'll get back to you. The reason I haven't played with it any more than I did is because it's a Reaktor instrument so you have to open Reaktor and then open Monark from within Reaktor. Not as easy to get to as I would like.
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Re: NI Monark

Postby midinut » Mon Jul 21, 2014 6:22 am

Okay, so after a couple of hours of noodling with them, here's what I can tell you.

Monark definitely has the squawk, phat, squelchy, burping kind of sounds we normally associate with a Minimoog. It has no effects (that I can find) but considering it is a Reaktor Ensemble, that may be a moot point. If you can add effects into the ensemble then that would open it up even more. Of course an original Mini didn't have effects either - I guess I've just become spoiled rotten. And I'm sure I could have added insert effects in Cubase to liven it up if I had taken the time. Sweet instrument and I'm sure I'll use it in the future.

Minimonsta - I've liked it from the beginning. Actually I had their Oddity (ARP Odyssey emulation) first and after buying that I had to have MM. One of the things I really like about the GForce products is the ability to "morph" between patches. I also like the way that the knobs light up when you make a change. It helps to remember/see what you are doing. Another cool thing on the MM is the lower octave of reverse keys have different variartions of each patch. I still stand by my first statement about it that most of the patches are drenched in effects and that gives a great deal of them their charm. Take away the effects and they are just kind of "meh".

Mini V - Arturia did a fine job on theirs as well. Lo and behold I did find that up at the top of the screen you can add delay or chorus effects to their patches. After going through another smattering of the factory presets, they did a good job here as well. Almost as much balls as the NI Monark, but not quite. I seem to like that all three of the GUI's that resemble the Mini closely. There is something about the tactile feedback your brain receives when it works with a GUI that emulates the instrument that makes you "feel" like the sound is there. Either that or I've lost my mind.

So in conclusion, I think NI Monark has the most Moog ballsiness, the Mini V runs second and the Minimonsta last. As I said, the original Mini didn't have effects, but I think we've all found that adding a little delay, or reverb, or chorusing can really make these vintage sounds "come alive" if you will. Keep in mind please that this is just my opinion and my ears. Anyone else's mileage may vary. If demos are available (I haven't checked) it would be my suggestion to check all of them out and see for yourself. I hope this has been of some help. It's really been my first attempt (and a feeble one at that) to make a comparison study. I'm sure as I dig deeper in all my VST arsenal I'll be able to do better. One of these days I need to dig into the Kronos too! Dammit!
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Re: NI Monark

Postby MetroSonus » Mon Jul 21, 2014 12:29 pm

:clap: Thank you for the run down!!

I do tend to like the GForce products. I do really like Oddity and impOSCar has a cool sound to it. What got me thinking about it was listening to some sounds I made with MiniMonsta. They sounded neat and good and all that, but they lacked something and I agree, the underlying sound with that one is meh. I mean it wasn't bad, but it wasn't stand out, I should buy this over something else good either.

The reviews I read said that Arturia's version had more charm than the Minimonsta. That could likely be due to the differences on the raw oscillators (or the underlying engine) as we're both noting that the latter sounds meh on its own.

Effects, I'm not too worried about. I prefer those to be external anyway. It's a bonus when the on board ones are good, otherwise they don't factor into the equation for me.





If you take these two videos into consideration, Monark just has so much more presence. While the Minimonsta is still good, it's just not the same.

For 99$ I guess I can't go wrong. :snax: And there's no saying I can't have both, eventually. Despite being a mini clone, the minimonsta is obviously a different synth.
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Re: NI Monark

Postby midinut » Mon Jul 21, 2014 7:43 pm

Cool videos. It's always nice to have options. After that first video, I need to dig in and figure out how to use those effects he was using. Yeah, I'd say for $99 you can't go wrong. I paid that for Oddity when it first came out. No regrets there either.

Next up: ARP 2600 V versus TimeWARP 2600 anyone?

I had an Odyssey years ago when I was around 20. Couldn't afford a 2600 but used to wear one out at the music store almost every Saturday. I'd ride my bicycle about 12 miles just to play with it. I was around 14 at that time. 1972 or so?
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Re: NI Monark

Postby Plink Floyd » Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:59 am

midinut wrote:I had an Odyssey years ago when I was around 20. Couldn't afford a 2600 but used to wear one out at the music store almost every Saturday. I'd ride my bicycle about 12 miles just to play with it. I was around 14 at that time. 1972 or so?
Oh man, that's wai cool! I've never even been in the same room with a 2600, except @ teh Namm museum...

The coolest thing I can remember a local shop having in the 70s was a PolyMoog. A high school friend worked there as a sales/demo dude, so when times were slow we could jam on stuff. They also had a Farfisa Professional Duo (SynthaSlalom!) that sounded quite good through a Leslie.

A different shop had one of those Baldwin Electric Harpsichords like Mr. Suit found. They are way neato, I think.

Midi, what Osyssey model did you have, and wut are your thoughts on it?
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Re: NI Monark

Postby midinut » Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:14 am

I first had a Axxe before I went in the Army. After a couple of years in, I traded it for a white faced first gen that was used around 1978 or so. Kept it for about two years and had to sell off a bunch of equipment as I was moving to Hawaii. I got to Hawaii and played a gen 2 or 3 black face with the PPC and couldn't get it to sound as warm (IMHO) as my first one. Then they came out with the black/orange one and I couldn't feel the love on that one either. Kept my eyes out over the years for another white face but no luck or too damn expensive. In Hawaii I did have a Rhodes, a Pro-One, a Yamaha CS-60, and a PolySix ... So no complaints. Other than I only came home with the PolySix. Loved that CS-60 ... but it was a beast! The CS-80 V would be a lot more fun to play if I had a controller with polyphonic aftertouch and a ribbon. Just saying.

I always wished that GForce would've updated the Oddity to include recreations of all 3 Odyssey versions. Arturia or TimeWARP should do the same thing with the 2600 emu. There were 2-3 or 4 different 2600 models as well. Same with the Prophet 5. You had rev 1, rev 2, etc. Each one had differences that should be emulated as well I think. If you're gonna do it, do it right!
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Re: NI Monark

Postby Plink Floyd » Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:32 am

midinut wrote:In Hawaii I did have a Rhodes, a Pro-One, a Yamaha CS-60, and a PolySix ... So no complaints.

I should say...

:grin:
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Re: NI Monark

Postby gregwar » Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:00 am

I have the free arturia mini moog v2 it's ok but not spectacular

the imposcar 2 is a fantastic plug-in, no idea how it compares to the original(s) but I think it sounds great

I think I tried the minimonsta but at the time I had a voyager rme and didn't care for emulations. total ot but we compared my rme to an original 70s mini. I liked the rme more at bass because of the stereo filters and tuning consistency

last summer I got monark it's by far my fav emu of the minimoog. I don't feel the need to get a voyager now but I still want a keyboard version, non-old school with patch memory

I've mentioned this before but adding the sausage fatner really helps thicken up plug-ins that sound weak. the last time I used monark I had 3 instances going to a bus with sausage fatner on high-ish settings (like 25%) then I adjusted the send levels to taste

another thing worth mentioning is not every synth patch should be huge or your mix will be a wreck. sometimes I'll use arturia or another for a little bit of the moogish sound but not have it dominate the mix
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