Yamaha AN1X (1997)

Yamaha An1x

 
UNDER THE ROOF
Inside Yamaha AN1X

Inside Yamaha AN1X

Inside Yamaha AN1X

Inside Yamaha AN1X

Inside Yamaha AN1X

Inside Yamaha AN1X

Inside Yamaha AN1X

Inside Yamaha AN1X

 
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IMPRESSION
A synth of the very first hour in analog modeling. Built with the same case as the CS1x, this synthesizer is a marvel of emulation of « vintage » analog sounds. Sadly I have never accustomed (despite hundreds of hours of effort) to its interface and I must admit that most of the time I go through an AN1X editor on PC. But this says, I manage to create the desired sounds and I must say that the an1x is really an extraordinary synth ! Once dismantled, there are a large number of DSPs and specialized circuits, but its design dates back to 1997...

One finds the classical two oscillators DCOs (called « voice »), the mixer, the filter. These oscillators can also be synchronized with the ring modulation to create « FM » sounds. There is also a very powerful arpeggiator with a real mini-sequencer besides !
A tactile mini-ribbon expression (pressure and movement of the finger) makes it possible to modulate the sound other than by the usual pitchbend & modulation wheel.

The synth is multi-timbral with 2 sounds (split). The sound generated has a lot of warmth, very round and extremely well balanced. No blaring medium or residual blast. The waveforms are adjustable in rounded curves, and the possibilities of modulations are very wide … As a bonus an extended 10 notes polyphony… very welcome to create big thick pads or brass !

The effects section is also very well designed and the effects are also very well rendered.

I have, for long, thought that this kind of precursor synth was largely underestimated and very unfamiliar to people wanting to possess a V.A. synth particularly gifted for the creation of those old analog sounds. I think Yamaha released this synth too early (the competitors, then, were rather inclined to propose « groovebox » or trance / techno samples-based kind of synths) and Yamaha had poorly communicated on the real potential of this machine, which is just awesome !

I used the AN1X mainly on the 1st Modern Cubism album for some basses, leads and FX. But I’m sure I could use it daily if the interface was a bit more intuitive ;-)