I know a lot of my visitors come here from Old Holborn's Blog and expect a bit of right of centre libertarian politics (or just a dragon stomping around and swearing at stuff) but just for a change here's a little piece on what might become an occasional series on old synthesizers which, since Mrs Dracunculus bought me a Yamaha DX7 for my birthday last year I have become an occasional collector of.
The first one I'd like to tell you about is a real little gem of a keyboard, the Korg 707. Made in the late 80's it was very much aimed at the budget synth market with a 49 key keyboard and a rather cheapy looking plastic case. Its an FM synth with 4 operators and 8 voice polyphony and like all FM and digital synths of that era its a git to program (although lots easier than the DX7) although Korg, with an eye to live performance, put three sliders on the front so you can tweak the two envelope generators and the "Timbre" (basically the resonance Q) in real time. Play this little puppy and you start to use these controls a lot and very nice they are too. If you really want to go for that 80's synthpop band look you can run it on batteries and it comes with studs on the side so you can sling a guitar strap on it and wear it over you shoulder for that "I am an utter cockwallet" look.
This is my beast, its a bit tatty and the bottom C doesn't sound but as I picked it up for 35 quid on eBay I really can't complain.
Like any FM synth its very good at metallic and bell tones and I have to say although most of the presets suck donkey balls there are some real gems in there, especially the "Tine Piano" which you can hear in this little bit of music I composed.
November 707 - Dracunculus
All that is recorded directly from the 707 on the presets (no sequencing) and fiddling with the performance sliders (and a bit of reverb and compression in Reason) - yeah I know I'm about a good a musician as I am a blogger.
One of the nicest things about it is that the keyboard has full size velocity sensitive keys and, amazingly for something in this price range, full aftertouch, so it works surprisingly well as a MIDI controller and given that these go for 50 to 70 quid on eBay if you're in the market for a 4-octave controller you could do a lot worse than get one of these.
I like mine so much I'm thinking of getting a tidier one.
Rennard Scandal: Former Clegg SpAd Bridget Harris Speaks Out - 10 years ago when Bridget Harris was working at the Welsh Assembly, Lord Rennard, then Liberal Democrat chief executive made a series of unwanted advances ...
12 hours ago