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Looking for a small, simple, portable module for gigs-Sonic Cell or Waldorf Blofeld?

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  • Looking for a small, simple, portable module for gigs-Sonic Cell or Waldorf Blofeld?

    In an effort to continually downsize my live rig (for space and time management purposes) I'm thinking of adding a small module to my live setup to be controlled via midi from either an AX Synth or just another synth in my current live rig. For most of this year I've been using a MicroX somewhat painlessly midi'd to my AX Synth on two tiers of an Aphex stand. I have the AX synth laying flat as a controller to give a greater range in keys/octaves. The Micro X is a decent sound set compliment to the other keyboardist in the band (using an M3 and Virus) but from a 'texture' quality it's pretty much 'one note'. That soupy, fx ladened patch construction that makes Korg sound so good via headphones and so muddy through live FOH mix.

    I'd like to add a synth module that's really portable (can fit into a backpack or gig bag) yet have a dynamic soundset. I tried using a Microstation and it's neither road worthy and it's the same as the MicroX... confectionery in terms of soundsets. I also tried the Venom. As cool as I thought the unit was, it didn't leave me feeling warm enough for a purchase (reminded me a bit of my Micron... liked it... just not enough to gig with). The Blofeld has me intrigued and to be honest... I feel a bit in the shadow of our other player using a Virus live. Everything that comes out of that beast is epic in every way (the Venom sounded understandably thin next to it). I've been to you tube, scrolled through preset videos but I can't get my hands on one to trial. Having something that sounds moderately VA to keep up using sawtooth, fat rez and detuned patches could be fun or alot of work... I dunno. Just wondering user experiences.

    Sonic Cell came to mind because I have a Roland XV5080 that I'm not altogether fond of (in terms of the modern dance material we cover it falls short in every way) but I do have an SRX 7 card which I use some patches from. The XV5080 is becoming a bit flakey (data wheel is skipping patches) and bulky even in a rack. Having Sonic Cell to quickly call up patches I need and use the sample playback features could be very useful. It could be a decent compliment to the Micro X for Rompler sounds. I'm wondering in terms of additional SRX cards and factory presets how many are gear toward VA emulation. I don't need live filters or knobbage. I just want a clear, articulate soundset to lay in the background while the other keyboard player is playing the main melody and song construction.

    We're playing alot of top 40 and having two keys players allows us to get a pretty close representation to the song (and electronic instrumentation) without resorting to backing tracks.

    I really don't want to spend more than $450... and both Blofeld and SC's are in that zone. Unless someone has another suggestion... rackable or small and portable that has a great library of sounds and offers sample playback.
    so over this signature BS!!!

  • #2
    The Sonic Cell would be decent and it would play your SRX board, but it has some quality control issues and features you may not use. $450 is good price for a new one though.

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    • #3
      Unless I missed something, the SonicCell does not have sample playback. The Blofeld does, though. You could also look at an SM Pro V-Machine.

      Also, if you're just looking for a box that can hold a couple of SRX cards but don't care about the SonicCell's other sounds/features, you could look for a used XV-2020.

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      • #4
        Unless I missed something, the SonicCell does not have sample playback. The Blofeld does, though. You could also look at an SM Pro V-Machine.

        Also, if you're just looking for a box that can hold a couple of SRX cards but don't care about the SonicCell's other sounds/features, you could look for a used XV-2020.


        I'm pretty sure that Sonic Cell supports sample playback. I thought one of the features that was advertisied was it's ability to playback .wav, .aiff, and mp3.

        Thanks for the lead on the XV-2020.

        I haven't read many great things about the SM Pro V-Machine. I remember the 'promise' when it was announced at Namm in 2009 but I don't hear anyone using it. Especially live. If I went that route I'd probably just wait for MUSEBOX.
        so over this signature BS!!!

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        • #5
          +1 on the XV2020. Cheap, can hold SRX Boards, good choice.

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          • #6
            The XV2020, last time I looked, was selling on Ebay for the same price as the XV5050. Might as well get that one
            <div class="signaturecontainer"><font face="verdana"><a href="http://www.reverbnation.com/christianschulze" target="_blank">http://www.reverbnation.com/christianschulze</a></font></div>

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            • #7
              +1 on the XV2020. Cheap, can hold SRX Boards, good choice.


              I'm seeing BIN on Ebay for $350. Seems a little steep... I bought a Micron recently for $200. Maybe I can do better local.
              so over this signature BS!!!

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              • #8
                I'm seeing BIN on Ebay for $350. Seems a little steep... I bought a Micron recently for $200. Maybe I can do better local.


                People can ask what they want, but he's never going to get $350 for that. Check ebay's "completed listings" and you'll see they often go for $150-$200. Be patient. ;-)

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