Gothenburg, Sweden-based manufacturers Elektron have unveiled the Analog Keys, the flagship synth in their line of performance-centered machines sporting analog synthesis engines. Expanding upon the company’s initial foray into analog synthesis, the Analog Four, the Analog Keys adds 37 semi-weighted, velocity-sensitive keys; a modulation joystick; and individual outputs per voice.
Along with these additions, a sound selection wheel and a host of dedicated buttons allow for easier navigation and less menu diving around the Analog Key’s complex, yet flexible, synth architecture. The Analog Key’s flexible architecture encompasses a variety of modes, allowing for 4-voice polyphony, 4 discreet monophonic parts, or 4-note unison for robust leads and basses.
Powered by dual analog oscillators, 2 sub-oscillators, and a noise generator, the synth’s 100% analog signal path is distinguished by its precise digital control – including Elektron’s sequencer-based parameter locks (p-locks) feature, a new performance mode offering instant access to user-defined parameters, and a joystick capable of morphing between 15 different parameters.
Compatibility with instruments old and new is ensured by the Analog Key’s dedicated CV sequencer track and CV/Gate and DIN sync outputs, as well the usual MIDI In/Out/Thru ports for syncing to modern-day DAWs and workstations. Noteworthy for existing users of the Analog Four is the version 1.1c OS upgrade, which brings most of the features of the Analog Keys to the Analog Four’s more compact, desktop-friendly form factor. Key among these is polyphonic operation, resonance boost for the onboard filters, and unlocking of the pre-installed +Drive (expanding available storage for presets and user-created sounds).