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Overview by GAK

The Minilogue XD is the latest offering from Korg and put simply… it sounds incredible! It’s a four-voice polyphonic analogue/digital hybrid synthesiser with a tonne of other amazing features that demonstrate why it’s easily one of our best sellers. At this price point, it’s by far and away one of the best synths you can buy as it has the punchy analog sound and innovative capabilities of other keyboards that are more than twice the cost. Not only that, it has an intuitive interface which is essentially “knob-per-function”. This means it’s a great platform for beginners to get to grips with a subtractive synth and more advanced tweakers can precisely dial-in their patches with ease.

The Minilogue XD straddles the gap between the first Minilogue and the flagship Korg analogue poly, the Prologue. Whilst it’s inherited the same portable form factor and voice count of its predecessor, it’s architecture has had a significant upgrade with a digital multi-engine oscillator per voice and 32-bit floating-point DSP (stereo!) effects. Whilst it still has two waveshapeable VCOs per voice, a 24db per octave Low Pass filter, two envelopes and one LFO, the upgrades take its sound sculpting possibilities to new horizons.

This is a massive shot in the arm for the Minilogue XD’s sound design capabilities, as you’re able to blend the rich analog VCOs with the extremely versatile digital oscillator while enhancing the overall sound with three types of stunning, studio-quality effects (modulation, delay and reverb) that can be used simultaneously. There’s a huge amount of variation in each effect category plus they’re insanely high-quality, so you don’t need to rely on outboard gear or plugins to get the synth to reach its full potential. It’s all built-in!

The multi-engine digital oscillator offers three types of sound generation - “Noise”, “VPM” and “User”. “Noise” has four different types of noise that can have their colour shaped by the digital filter, perfect for sound effects and percussive tones. “VPM” (Variable Pulse Modulation) has sixteen different oscillators and is capable of producing two-operator FM. This sharp, overtone rich mode elevates the capabilities of the Minilogue XD far beyond that of a traditional analogue synth.

The “User” mode in the multi-engine and the effects section allows you to upload sixteen custom oscillators and effects. There’s already a vast array of fantastic oscillators/effects that you can download and if you fancy trying your hand at making your own from the sample code provided by Korg, you can use the “logue SDK” software. Korg have gone above and beyond with this feature, you can truly customise the synth’s sound to your heart’s content.

On top of this, you have a powerful sixteen step polyphonic sequencer, which can record in step-time (where notes/rests/ties are punched in one at a time) or real-time. The sixteen buttons on the panel can be used to instantly edit your sequence on the fly, a great addition for live improvisations. As if that wasn’t enough power, you’re also able to “motion sequence” the movements of up to four knobs, either smoothly (like an LFO or an envelope) or with a precise value for each step. This means you can use the Minilogue XD’s sequencer to create complex, evolving sounds that are bound to inspire you.

Whilst the original Minilogue had 200 patch memories, the Minilogue XD can store a whopping 500 programs so you’ll have plenty of slots to store your patches. If you’re an avid sound designer and find that 500 slots aren’t enough, you can use Korg’s Librarian to organise and back up your programmes with ease. This is particularly handy for arranging patches into setlists if you’re using the XD as part of a live rig.

If four-voices isn’t enough for your lush pad sounds, you can poly-chain the module with the keyboard or another module to turn the XD into a powerhouse eight-voice polysynth!

Korg Minilogue XD Module

Polyphonic Analogue Synthesizer

minilogue xd module is the new desktop module version of minilogue xd, the four-voice polyphonic analog synthesizer with a customisable digital multi-engine and built-in stereo digital effects.

The desktop module is equipped with the same controllers as the keyboard version, making it a great choice not only as an additional sound module for your keyboard or DAW but also providing excellent performability, giving you an easy way to include an analog polyphonic synth in your setup. It's also equipped with a poly-chain function that lets you connect it with another minilogue xd or minilogue xd module so that the two units can operate as a polysynth with a total of up to eight voices in your studio or on stage.

Equipped with an analog synthesizer circuit and a digital multi-engine Voice structure of minilogue xd is 2VCO + MULTI ENGINE, 1VCF, 2EG, 1VCA, and 1LFO. In addition to the distinctive circuits found in the series, such as wave shaping to shape the overtones of the oscillator and a sync/ring switch, there's also cross modulation, a two-pole filter that can be both sharp and fat, and a drive switch that adds thickness and drives signal into minilogue xd’s filter. Every parameter has been tuned in detail based on what musicians want out of their synth. The sounds range from the warm pads typical of analog to fat basses and crisp lead sounds, covering every situation.

The additional sound design possibilities of digital sound are delivered by the multi-engine: the third oscillator in addition to the two analog VCOs. This engine, which is equipped with three different types of sound generator (noise, VPM, and open-source user oscillators) lets you take advantage of a sonic character that's different than analog, and use it at the same time as the analog engine, infinitely expanding xd module’s potential through hybrid sound design.

High-quality digital effects minilogue xd’s high-quality digital effects use 32-bit floating point DSP processing, adding a finishing touch to its deep sound design platform. The three types (modulation effects, reverb, and delay) can be used simultaneously, letting you choose from a wide range of variations including chorus, ensemble, warm tape delay, and a diverse variety of reverb. The user effect slots allow you to load your own effect programs that you've created.

User customization brings out infinite potential The minilogue xd features a customizable open-source environment. The unit comes with 16 user oscillator slots and 16 user effect slots that you can customize. Oscillators and user programs that you’ve created with the SDK (Software Development Kit) can be loaded into the minilogue xd via the dedicated librarian software, as well as oscillators other users share online.

What sounds can you create using the fusion of expanded digital oscillators with analog synthesis? Create original programs, share code, and participate in the user community. KORG even provides sample code to get you started.

Polyphonic Step Sequencer One of the major features of the minilogue xd series is its 16-step step sequencer. Each of the factory-preset programs has an embedded sequence pattern created with performance in mind.

The step sequencer provides 16 steps, and supports both realtime recording and step recording. You can use the 16 step buttons to select a step directly, allowing quick editing to replace the pitch of a step or to mute it, or even improvisatory performances. Motion sequence lets you record the movements of up to four knobs, adding time-varying change to the sound, and you can record not only smooth changes in value but also values that change precisely at each step. You can use this to have different parameter values at each step; for example, you might create a drum pattern or sound effect from just a single program. This allows countless ideas to be unleashed.

  • The minilogue xd module comes with a diverse variety of music software from Izotope including “Ozone Elements” which lets you not only create songs but also master them using AI, “Skoove” which will help you improve your keyboard playing skills, “Reason Lite” DAW software, as well as software synths from KORG and other brands.
  • Controls: KEYBOARD switch
  • Poly chain function: Two minilogue xd units can play up to eight voices polyphonically.
  • Dimensions: (W x D x H)500 x 179 x 85 mm / 19.69" x 7.05" x 3.35"
  • Weight: 2.6 kg / 5.73 lbs.
  • Sound Generation: Analogue sound generator + Multi digital sound generator (Noise, VPM, User)
  • Maximum Polyphony: 4 voices
  • Programs: 500 voices (more than 200 preload, 300 user programs).Each program provides a program sort function that includes voice mode settings. Favorite function built in.
  • Voice Mode: 4 (POLY, UNISON, CHORD, ARP / LATCH). The VOICE MODE DEPTH setting allows different parameters to be varied for each mode.
  • Sequencer: 16-step polyphonic sequencer. Motion sequence can be used on up to four parameters.
  • Main Synthesis Parameters:
  • VCO1WAVE - (SAW, TRIANGLE, SQUARE), OCTAVE, PITCH, SHAPE
  • VCO2WAVE - (SAW, TRIANGLE, SQUARE), OCTAVE, PITCH, SHAPE
  • MODULATION - SYNC, RING, CROSS MOD DEPTH
  • MULTI ENGINE - NOISE/VPM/USER, TYPE、SHAPE
  • MIXER - VCO1, VCO2, MULTI
  • VCF - CUTOFF, RESONANCE, DRIVE, KEYTRACK
  • AMP EG - ATTACK, DECAY, SUSTAIN, RELEASE
  • EG - ATTACK, DECAY, EG INT, TARGET (PITCH, PITCH2, CUTOFF)LFOWAVE (SAW, TRIANGLE, SQUARE), MODE(BPM, NORMAL, 1-SHOT), RATE, INT, TARGET (PITCH, SHAPE, CUTOFF)
  • Main effect Parameters:
  • EFFECT TYPE (MODULATION, REVERB, DELAY), ON/OFF (SELECT, ON, OFF), TIME, DEPTH
  • MULTI ENGINE:
  • Noise Generator - 4 types
  • VPM oscillator - 16 types
  • User oscillator - 16 slots
  • MOD EFFECTS:
  • CHORUS - 8 types
  • ENSEMBLE - 3 types
  • PHASER - 8 types
  • FLANGER - 8 types
  • USER - 8 types
  • DELAY:
  • DELAY - 12 types
  • USER - 8 slots
  • REVERB:
  • REVERB - 10 types
  • USER - 8 slots
  • Controls:
  • Joy stick that can modify different parameters for each program, PORTAMENTO knob
  • Display:
  • Main - Real-time OLED oscilloscope provides visual feedback of parameter changes
  • MULTI ENGINE section - 7 segments x 6 digit LED display
  • Input/Output connectors:
  • Headphone jack (Stereo phone jack)
  • OUTPUT L/MONO, R jacks (monaural phone jack unbalanced)
  • CV IN 1, CV IN 2 jacks (3.5 mm [1/8"] monoural mini jack, Input voltage: -5 V – +5 V (Modulation mode), -3V – +5 V (CV/Gate mode)SYNC IN jack (3.5 mm [1/8"] mini jack, maximum input level 20 V)
  • SYNC OUT jack (3.5 mm [1/8"] mini jack, output level 5 V)
  • MIDI IN jack
  • MIDI OUT jack
  • USB B jack
  • DAMPER jack (half damper is not supported)
  • Power Supply - AC adapter (DC9 V)
  • Power Consumption - 8 W
  • Included Items - AC adapter

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  • James Campbell

    13/10/2019

    Excellent inspiring synth with very immediate sound control and a rich audio engine. Wish it had MIDI patch volume.. master volume is analogue.

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