Are you sick of hearing those awful tracks selling well, while your free downloads are barely touched? We feel your pain! But we might just have the answer to your prayers, in the form of the Moog Mother 32 synthesizer! Aspiring music producers have so much to help them these days, and there has never been a better time to enter this industry. Ever since his death at the age of 71, Robert Moog’s legacy has endured, and his synthesizers have become the go-to choice for experimental producers and musicians the world over.
With the world of technology how it is, there is so much amazing equipment coming out that can be used to help you maximize your role as a producer and get the best possible outcome for your music. Even the top producers in the world need to have the right equipment to work with if they are to secure the sound they want. So, we’re going to review the Moog Mother 32 synth and look at what it’s like for beginners, what it can offer, and whether it lives up to the hype.
A Modern Classic?
When trying to choose a synth, you want to pick something that’s built to last. A model you can still be using in a few years. A modern classic, built to last, and the verdict seems to be that the Moog Mother 32 is certainly worthy of this category. To be honest, with my experiences so far, I could honestly see myself looking back in 10 years and ranking this as a classic model. After their Sub-37 model, Moog have knocked it out of the park once again, with the Mother 32; a must-have synth, with a 32-step sequencer, and a whole heap of character.
I’m going to take you on a journey now, as I delve into the different perks and disadvantages of this model, and how much of an impact it can have for you as a beginner to the world of music production!
One of the things that first drew my attention to this synth was the design. I’m a stickler for aesthetics, and this just looks great. It’s certainly got that professional, high-quality design to it, and this makes it a great choice for beginners who want to have something that looks great. Packaged inside a smart-looking ergonomic aluminum box with wooden ends, this is a product that just feels so unmistakably Moog-ish!
This semi-modular desktop synthesizer packs a pint-sized punch. I love the fact that it offers great quality, is highly affordable, and it looks great to boot!
Obviously, if you want to get the most out of a synth like this, you’re going to need to know about the different features it offers. I was very impressed by the range of different features that this synth possesses, and these are some of the main ones that I feel make this product stand out:
- 32-Step Sequencer
- Semi-Modular Efficiency
- Low Pass & High Pass Ladder Filter
- 2 Voltage Controlled Mixers
- 5-Pin MIDI Input
These are just some of the excellent features that play a role in helping you to make the most of this synth. But you don’t just want a list of features; you want to know about the sound of this synthesizer, and how it can be used by budding music producers! So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the sound of this synth, as well as the best way of using it to get the best possible sound you can.
When it comes to using this synthesizer, the most important thing to keep in mind is the way it sounds, and the quality of the sound. What I love with this is that you don’t have to be super experienced at using synths to be able to make a great sound. The full, warm sound is impressive, and I love that it’s so easy to experiment with it. The primary sound comes from a single oscillator producing two waveforms, while a secondary sound source (in the form of an analog white noise generator) can be combined and mixed with the oscillator.
You can achieve the full spectrum of sound using the Mother 32, going with darker and lighter tones, as well as high & low, or dark & soft tones. The sound has enough of a spectrum that I found it was perfect for using in a lot of different scenarios. Creating new sounds, and telling stories through sound is the real strength offered by this synthesizer, and I’d recommend it to anyone looking to do things a little differently and explore alternate sounds.
So, now we come to the part I assume you’ve been waiting patiently for… what’s it like to use? Too many synthesizers out there rely on expertise, and you need to have in-depth knowledge and experience of synthesizers to be able to use them. That’s not the case here, you’ll be happy to hear! What I love about the Moog Mother 32 is that the manual has 9 different example patches that can be used, that are aimed specifically at helping beginners get to grips with the synth, and find their way around it.
And it’s just as well because I can see why this might be a confusing interface for novices. The knobs are not grouped into sections as sometimes happens with certain synths. However, you do only have 14 knobs and 9 switches, so I’d say it falls just shy of becoming a little overwhelming. I would recommend you start experimenting with sounds right away, and you will find that there is a lot to love about this model. The VCO and noise generators offer a lot of depth and range, while the PWM tone is sumptuous and stunning.
After just a couple of days, I had gotten the hang of this and created some really great patches. There is also a great range of presets and patch points, and I found this to offer precisely what I needed. I did make some errors when programming, but I enjoy the chance element to that sort of thing, and this made it more authentic for me. If you would prefer everything to be perfect, then I suggest reading the manual cover to cover, and watching some YouTube tutorials.
Ideal for Beginners
Some of the larger, bulkier synthesizers can be very intimidating to beginners. I know when I first dipped my toe in the waters of music production, I found the massive models completely overwhelming. What makes the Mother 32 perfect is that it is small and compact, but still packs a punch in terms of sound depth and quality. It can also be combined with other Eurotrack semi-modular equipment, making it a versatile, expandable, and efficient choice for those just starting out.
Music production can be an expensive hobby, I’m not going to lie about that. But, that’s why you need to make sure you make shrewd purchases as much as possible. The great thing about the Moog Mother 32 is that it is highly affordable and it plays a massive part in helping you make an affordable purchase that represents great value. At around $600, this is one of the best-value purchases you can make at the start of your adventure, and it’s going to open so many more doors for you in terms of sound experimentation.
If you want a bit of an insight into using this synth, then I’m going to share with you some of the sequencing tips that I found really useful when using this. During the creation of a sequence, you can pause what you’re doing, and edit the parameters you want. Here are some of my top sequencing tips for you to consider:
If you want to set note duration, you can use the Tempo knob to help you with this. The Octave LEDs can provide a nice guide to indicate the tempo, so make sure you use this. Make sure you turn the Tempo knob fully clockwise if you want to start creating a longer note.
If you press Accent, you will be able to add an accent, opening the VCA and VCF a little more during that step. If you play a MIDI note with high velocity, it will automatically set up an accent for you.
Ratcheting is a technique in which one stage of a sequence and be quickly triggered numerous times, with the idea of allowing greater control over timing and duration of sound.
Pros & Cons
Understanding the pros and cons of this model is important so that you can make your own mind up about it. So, here is a table listing what I feel are the advantages and disadvantages of the Moog Mother 32.
|Great sound||No MIDI out|
|Amazing design||No editing software|
|Offers plenty of versatility via Patch Bay||Patch Bays a little fiddly when heavily patched|
|Expandable with Eurotrack||Panel is a little cluttered|
Overall, this is definitely one synthesizer I would highly recommend for beginners. It has a few minor negatives, but on the whole, I found it easy and fun to use, and great value for money. I love the range and scope of sounds on offer, as well as the fact that it’s easily expandable. The design and portable nature make this a must-have for those who like to make music on the go, and this is definitely another Moog offering that will have a lot of fans.