Types of synthesizers and their differences
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Types of synthesizers and their differences

Back in the middle of the twentieth century, the first electronic synthesizer appeared – a musical instrument capable of creating sound using various synthesis methods. To date, there are several technologies for the production of this instrument, depending on which the type of musical synthesizer is determined . There are four types of synthesizer in total : analog, digital, digital with analog synthesis and digital with virtual analog synthesis.

The main difference between an analog synthesizer and is, of course, the sound synthesis method: it does not use digital technologies, but works with analog signals. In addition, the difference in the sound of an analog and digital synthesizer is also obvious . Sound produced with analog technology is perceived as warmer and more lively. The sound of a digital synthesizer , on the contrary, is cold.

Types of synthesizers and their differences

example of an analog synthesizer by Korg


The principle of operation of a digital synthesizer is completely different: in order to get the desired sound, you need to adjust certain parameters of the digital block.


an example of a digital synthesizer and Casio


When using a digital synthesizer, and with analog synthesis, the modification of an electronic signal using digital technology is used. The main difference from analog technology is the control of the fundamental oscillation generator with discrete values, and not with voltage.

Modeling sound with a digital synthesizer and with virtual analog synthesis is different in that it requires special software. It is with the help of software and a processor that digital signals are processed.


Types of synthesizers and their differences

example of a digital synthesizer with Roland virtual-analog synthesis


It should be noted that synthesizers can have not only different sound synthesis methods, but also different keyboards. So, a piano-like keyboard is called a keyboard and is most often used in electronic pianos. The push-button keyboard is used in electronic accordion, and the membrane (or flexible) keyboard is most common in children’s synthesizers .


Also, synthesizers that do not have a keyboard (the so-called sound modules) are distinguished as a separate type . Devices of this type are blocks and are controlled using a MIDI device (keyboard or guitar).

And one of the newest types has become virtual programs for the computer, which, by the way, are quite popular synthesizers due to their availability.

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