MATRIXSYNTH: The Studio Electronics Midi Mini Synth - a vintage clone of a vintage classic

Friday, March 13, 2020

The Studio Electronics Midi Mini Synth - a vintage clone of a vintage classic

Published on Mar 13, 2020 Alex Ball

"Whilst synth clones are cropping up left, right and center at the moment, it isn't a new idea. A case in point is the Studio Electronics Midi Mini from 1989.

From asking around I've gathered that SE started this concept by taking the boards out of actual Minimoogs and housing them in a rack mountable case with extra features and midi. The midi to CV was done by Frankensteining a Roland MPU-101 into the rear of the synth and this was dubbed the "Midi Moog".

At some point SE started cloning the boards themselves from scratch and I presume this was because they wanted to produce bigger quantities and sourcing old Minimoogs and MPU-101s wasn't really practical when it came to that ambition. This new version was called the 'Midi Mini' and that's what we're looking at today. To confuse things, I'm told that there were some Midi Mini's with original Moog boards inside them too.

In addition to all the original features of the Model D, the Mini Midi adds a dedicated LFO, velocity sensitivity, aftertouch, oscillator sync, extra keyboard modes and more. This gives you the timeless sound of the Minimoog with extended sonic possibilities and seamless connectivity to a digital audio workstation."

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