New Waldorf synth M

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Smapti
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by Smapti » Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:37 pm

It's missing many of the features that made the XT special (osc FM, the quality page with aliasing & clipping options, interesting filter types [sine waveshaper filter, FM filter that can be modulated by an oscillator, sample-and-hold filter]) and it only has a low-pass filter. So, it absolutely is not a modern version of the XT, which seems like a missed opportunity.

Reading the manual it appears to be very similar to the wavetable oscillator in the Iridium. I'm confused by the comments here knocking the Iridium; its wavetable options can get quite grungy in the classic Waldorf style. In any event, if you don't like the Iridium then you certainly won't like the M since it has the same design team and appears to have the same "vintage" wavetable options.

Anyhow, pulling the wavetable osc out of the Quantum/Iridium and making a smaller synth (with 6 outputs compared to 2 on the Iridium, which is a nice addition) makes sense to me, but only if it's a lot cheaper. If M is really going to be only $700 less than the Iridium then I'm confused as to what Waldorf is doing.
Last edited by Smapti on Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:43 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by J3RK » Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:39 pm

plainofjars wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 2:52 pm
J3RK wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 1:49 pm
Want it! I find this way more appealing than the Quantum and Iridium. It's basically what I liked about the uWave series, and XT series, all in one box. (with the analog filters of the Wave and uWave, though I haven't seen whether they're CEMs like the originals, or something new, or maybe SSI?) This is precisely the Waldorf synth for me.
SSI apparently. And missing the XT filter, but maybe could come in a firmware update at some point? Fingers crossed
I think that was a good move! I’m absolutely hooked on the SSI chips both for designing/building and the sound/function.

This synth seems pretty close to my ideal wavetable synth. (Teetering with the Hydra and XTk as my other favorites.)
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by tdel » Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:52 pm

submute wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:21 pm
Ignorant question from someone who never owned any of the Wave synths but has been looking a lot at different wavetable options lately, how would you compare this (I know, still brand new, no hands on experience) with the Hydrasynth?
M apparently has analog filters and VCAs, 4 part multi-timbrality, and 6 outputs; HS in comparison is a fully digital signal path, monotimbral, and only has a single stereo output.

Also, having used a HS desktop: it seems like the interface of the M has a lot more controls available directly on the panel.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by Mood Organ » Tue Sep 14, 2021 4:08 pm

Smapti wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:37 pm
It's missing many of the features that made the XT special (osc FM, the quality page with aliasing & clipping options, interesting filter types [sine waveshaper filter, FM filter that can be modulated by an oscillator, sample-and-hold filter]) and it only has a low-pass filter. So, it absolutely is not a modern version of the XT, which seems like a missed opportunity.
Smapti gets it.

It’s also missing the modulation matrix and modifiers - a big loss. And missing the FX section which, while not spectacular, was useful sometimes.

It’s not much like MWXT.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by geremyf » Tue Sep 14, 2021 4:30 pm

Also, though it's 4 part multitimbral, the manual says this:
There is one restriction regarding the use of the Modern
Oscillator mode in Multi mode: Only the first Part can use
the Modern mode.
So you can use the modern oscillators in only 1 of the 4 parts. That's a pretty significant limitation. So 3 of the 4 parts have the oscillator resolution limited to 8-bit, with no anti-aliasing or band limiting. If you like layering, I hope you also like aliasing.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by axm311 » Tue Sep 14, 2021 4:34 pm

starthief wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:01 am
"Those are the days again" is a pretty odd construction.
I laughed when I saw that as the tag line at the end of the video. Has a very all your base are belong to us vibe :)

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by tdel » Tue Sep 14, 2021 6:00 pm

geremyf wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 4:30 pm
Also, though it's 4 part multitimbral, the manual says this:
There is one restriction regarding the use of the Modern
Oscillator mode in Multi mode: Only the first Part can use
the Modern mode.
So you can use the modern oscillators in only 1 of the 4 parts. That's a pretty significant limitation. So 3 of the 4 parts have the oscillator resolution limited to 8-bit, with no anti-aliasing or band limiting. If you like layering, I hope you also like aliasing.
Ah, that's a shame.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by anselmi » Tue Sep 14, 2021 6:10 pm

this synth is like going back to the original Microwave times when they were discontinued and starting a new timeline, where this would be the actual Microwave 2 ... so forget about the extras that appeared on the XT

I think it holds the legacy very well ... I do not expect a giant leap from the original but these extras are welcome and I think that does not alter the character of the OG. It's simpler and sound is key.

It doesn't sound "digital" in a modern way, it's like old school digital but in 2021, parallel reality, retro-futuristic, you name it

I can clearly hear the digital oscillators and the analog part of the signal path as well, and they sound great together.

No FX?

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by sduck » Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:17 pm

The metal case - I hope it has that same always-semi-sticky paint that the XT has.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by BlinkyLights » Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:22 pm

I like it.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by bitflip » Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:33 pm

I'll go for it, if they'll take back these one-dimensional rocket and streichfett :sstorm:

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by Happyanimal » Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:41 pm

sduck wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:17 pm
The metal case - I hope it has that same always-semi-sticky paint that the XT has.
Oh yes, the Nextel.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by Happyanimal » Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:42 pm

Mood Organ wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 4:08 pm
Smapti wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:37 pm
It's missing many of the features that made the XT special (osc FM, the quality page with aliasing & clipping options, interesting filter types [sine waveshaper filter, FM filter that can be modulated by an oscillator, sample-and-hold filter]) and it only has a low-pass filter. So, it absolutely is not a modern version of the XT, which seems like a missed opportunity.
Smapti gets it.

It’s also missing the modulation matrix and modifiers - a big loss. And missing the FX section which, while not spectacular, was useful sometimes.

It’s not much like MWXT.

Is this true? Couldn’t imagine having any Waldorf without mod matrix.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by Mood Organ » Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:50 pm

Happyanimal wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:42 pm
Is this true? Couldn’t imagine having any Waldorf without mod matrix.
“unlike other Waldorf synthesizers, there is no modulation matrix in M. Making a conscious design decision to set up M’s modulation facilities directly on the corresponding display page, to paying tribute to the 1989-vintage Microwave.”

https://www.waldorfmusic.com/en/m

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by bitflip » Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:51 pm

i reeeeeeealy want to like it but will hafta wait for a well educated individual to tell me so in a sonically pleasing way.

* demonstrate me so

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by stikygum » Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:58 pm

EsquireKnight wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:14 pm
J3RK wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 1:49 pm
Want it! I find this way more appealing than the Quantum and Iridium. It's basically what I liked about the uWave series, and XT series, all in one box. (with the analog filters of the Wave and uWave, though I haven't seen whether they're CEMs like the originals, or something new, or maybe SSI?) This is precisely the Waldorf synth for me.
I'm on board with this too, and agree this sounds better to me than the Quantum and Iridium (sorry to any owners on this thread). I owned an orange Microwave XT desktop a long time ago, and this brings back many nostalgic memories but obviously with modern bits. This is the Waldorf sound that I remember.
They are all different and that's what I think I like about the M, but the Quantum is a whole other magical box that can't be duplicated elsewhere. Always comes down to personal aesthetic. I have the MW1, MWXT, and Quantum right now and my consensus after years of owning all of these is that these 3 are all unique and special and can't be replaced by the others. I would say that the XT can be replaced by the Quantum since the Quantum has all of the XT wavetables. But the difference there is the XT has this unusually warm yet digital grit to it that sounds unique to my ear especially for pads and weird sounds, though bass tends to sound really quite 90s. It's a weird combo of part of the XT can sound totally unique and another part sounds vanilla 90s. But the unique side it totally worth it for me. The Quantum is like a cleaner HiFi wavetable synth (though I can easily get dirty) and basses are insane out of it with that smooth round almost Roland like analog filter. The Quantum needs to be experienced because samples through it's synthesis is unbelievably good. I love it. And the Microwave 1 is the quite the unique sounding one of all these.
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by Sir Ruff » Tue Sep 14, 2021 11:12 pm

Happyanimal wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:42 pm
Mood Organ wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 4:08 pm
Smapti wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:37 pm
It's missing many of the features that made the XT special (osc FM, the quality page with aliasing & clipping options, interesting filter types [sine waveshaper filter, FM filter that can be modulated by an oscillator, sample-and-hold filter]) and it only has a low-pass filter. So, it absolutely is not a modern version of the XT, which seems like a missed opportunity.
Smapti gets it.

It’s also missing the modulation matrix and modifiers - a big loss. And missing the FX section which, while not spectacular, was useful sometimes.

It’s not much like MWXT.

Is this true? Couldn’t imagine having any Waldorf without mod matrix.
Modulation options on MW1 and to a lesser extent MW2 (only because there was more features to modulate) always seemed like total overkill. Maybe I’m just really boring, but with the MW, it’s like you modulate the wavetable, sweep the filter and… there’s “that” sound, done. I guess some people liked the logic/math stuff (was that mW2 only or mw1/2?) but it always seemed really academic to me. Or maybe I just don’t need ultra long evolving or rhythmic sounds. Quantum also probably has too much—really takes very little to make an awesome sound on it—but it doesn’t really get in the way and the most useful modulation is easily accessed without scrolling through any lists.

Anyway I think they made the right move in simplifying. 2 LFOs and 2+ envelopes for wavetables and slightly deeper stuff like ring mod volume has to be more than enough for most people.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by J3RK » Tue Sep 14, 2021 11:14 pm

stikygum wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:58 pm
EsquireKnight wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:14 pm
J3RK wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 1:49 pm
Want it! I find this way more appealing than the Quantum and Iridium. It's basically what I liked about the uWave series, and XT series, all in one box. (with the analog filters of the Wave and uWave, though I haven't seen whether they're CEMs like the originals, or something new, or maybe SSI?) This is precisely the Waldorf synth for me.
I'm on board with this too, and agree this sounds better to me than the Quantum and Iridium (sorry to any owners on this thread). I owned an orange Microwave XT desktop a long time ago, and this brings back many nostalgic memories but obviously with modern bits. This is the Waldorf sound that I remember.
They are all different and that's what I think I like about the M, but the Quantum is a whole other magical box that can't be duplicated elsewhere. Always comes down to personal aesthetic. I have the MW1, MWXT, and Quantum right now and my consensus after years of owning all of these is that these 3 are all unique and special and can't be replaced by the others. I would say that the XT can be replaced by the Quantum since the Quantum has all of the XT wavetables. But the difference there is the XT has this unusually warm yet digital grit to it that sounds unique to my ear especially for pads and weird sounds, though bass tends to sound really quite 90s. It's a weird combo of part of the XT can sound totally unique and another part sounds vanilla 90s. But the unique side it totally worth it for me. The Quantum is like a cleaner HiFi wavetable synth (though I can easily get dirty) and basses are insane out of it with that smooth round almost Roland like analog filter. The Quantum needs to be experienced because samples through it's synthesis is unbelievably good. I love it. And the Microwave 1 is the quite the unique one of all these.
I agree! I wouldn’t attempt to have one step in for another. I just lean (most specifically) toward the XT for exactly what you describe. It’s warm and squishy, but digital with warm artifacts. It’s a really weird combo, and I love it.

If I had the space, (and these days at current XT/XTk prices) funds, I’d probably have the M, XT, Hydra for my table synths. I pretty much have room for one of each type of synthesis though, so unless the M will fit reasonably well on the side of Hydra Deluxe. :despair: My desktop synth space is crammed.
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by stikygum » Tue Sep 14, 2021 11:22 pm

After listening and looking through the manual, I think Waldorf did a great job with this. The interface is great that is very XT inspired with a finish of the MW1. Very classy and sleek looking. Seems like they did a good job on achieving some old school grit too, which I wan't expecting. The modulation I think will please a lot of people who aren't into matrices.
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by EsquireKnight » Tue Sep 14, 2021 11:24 pm

stikygum wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:58 pm
EsquireKnight wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 3:14 pm
J3RK wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 1:49 pm
Want it! I find this way more appealing than the Quantum and Iridium. It's basically what I liked about the uWave series, and XT series, all in one box. (with the analog filters of the Wave and uWave, though I haven't seen whether they're CEMs like the originals, or something new, or maybe SSI?) This is precisely the Waldorf synth for me.
I'm on board with this too, and agree this sounds better to me than the Quantum and Iridium (sorry to any owners on this thread). I owned an orange Microwave XT desktop a long time ago, and this brings back many nostalgic memories but obviously with modern bits. This is the Waldorf sound that I remember.
They are all different and that's what I think I like about the M, but the Quantum is a whole other magical box that can't be duplicated elsewhere. Always comes down to personal aesthetic. I have the MW1, MWXT, and Quantum right now and my consensus after years of owning all of these is that these 3 are all unique and special and can't be replaced by the others. I would say that the XT can be replaced by the Quantum since the Quantum has all of the XT wavetables. But the difference there is the XT has this unusually warm yet digital grit to it that sounds unique to my ear especially for pads and weird sounds, though bass tends to sound really quite 90s. It's a weird combo of part of the XT can sound totally unique and another part sounds vanilla 90s. But the unique side it totally worth it for me. The Quantum is like a cleaner HiFi wavetable synth (though I can easily get dirty) and basses are insane out of it with that smooth round almost Roland like analog filter. The Quantum needs to be experienced because samples through it's synthesis is unbelievably good. I love it. And the Microwave 1 is the quite the unique one of all these.
Yeah, I made my comment from solely hearing short demos from Youtube today, I'm not an expert by any means, but from first blush, the M sounds about "right" from my audio memory of the XT even with its limitations that I've come to learn over the course of this day. :hihi: Lack of modulation matrix is surprising, but I want to give Waldorf the benefit of the doubt for now. Quantum sounds infinitely cleaner, and read something that samples are downsampled to 8 bits on the M likely to give a grungier tone.

And this will show my age, but does anyone remember how much Waldorf was pricing the XT when it was introduced? It was near $2000 and that was in 1997 dollars. I think we're in a golden age of synths right now, so many good options.

http://search.retrosynth.com/ah/search/ ... -v9712.111

Waldorf's goal here seems more to provide something to get you quickly to those sweet spots from their legacy wavetable synths, but with a reduced feature set. Pricing doesn't seem that all competitive, but I think this synth will probably sell well, if not I can see myself picking up one on the used market for a good discount.
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by stikygum » Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:02 am

I gotta give more praise for the UI and the screen. After looking through the manual more, the screen is really really nice for visual feedback :yay:
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by rowsbywoof » Wed Sep 15, 2021 1:26 am

Sounds good. Definitely sounds the part. That price is a bit of a shocker, though. $2499 at Sweetwater is way more than I was expecting.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by J0ris » Wed Sep 15, 2021 2:34 am

plainofjars wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 2:52 pm
J3RK wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 1:49 pm
Want it! I find this way more appealing than the Quantum and Iridium. It's basically what I liked about the uWave series, and XT series, all in one box. (with the analog filters of the Wave and uWave, though I haven't seen whether they're CEMs like the originals, or something new, or maybe SSI?) This is precisely the Waldorf synth for me.
SSI apparently. And missing the XT filter, but maybe could come in a firmware update at some point? Fingers crossed
Its filter is the SSI2144. Which to me sounds "ok", but not exactly special.

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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by Headphones73 » Wed Sep 15, 2021 3:08 am

$1900 Euros???? I’m good.
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Re: New Waldorf synth M

Post by kinkujin » Wed Sep 15, 2021 8:28 am

I dunno, the price doesn’t surprise me too much. It does mean that I’ll be getting mine used in a few years. But from what I’ve heard so far … I will be getting one eventually. Jeez.

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