My Atmospheric and Noise Quotients Just Went Way Up
Yeah, I know… buying the synths has (so far) really overshadowed properly mounting the synths. That day will come though. It has to. Living in a Jesus commune means I’m just a little shy on self-fulfillment space. Now if I want to have a auditorium concert, there are multiple options that I wrote about in a previous post A Musician Supportive Sober Home, however, my private studio space is very limited. Still I’m gonna imagine many bedroom producers have issues even worse than mine, so I’ll thank G-d for such a wonderful problem and move on.
A problem I have with saving up for a piece of reasonably expensive gear, is I have time to way overthink the choice of gear. Saving my coins for nearly a year total, I agonized between buying the Waldorf Quantum or the Sequential Prophet X first. Being more of an information technology kind of synthesist than a talented keyboard player, the sound design functions of the Quantum won out in the end. I still intend to get a Prophet X next year, unless something better presents itself.
OK, on to the Waldorf Quantum itself! The first thing I noticed after removing it from triple boxed packaging and firing it up, was that the 4th C key did not work and the keyboard was creaky. On a whim, I upgraded the OS to v1.3 from the v1.23 it came with. This was very easy to do, but there was no change. My reseller’s tech support confirmed they would replace the unit, so I’m waiting on a new one. I also noticed a Particle Oscillator button on OSC3 was named Resonator, another must return item. Tech support said defective returns on the Quantum are around 1% which is normal for electronics from my computer experience. Still, I think these 2 flaws are quality control gone a bit sloppy. In the meantime I get to play with a mostly functional synth until the replacement arrives.
So with 48 hours experience, I am still semi-lost on the machine but I can see the coolness of this synth matches the hype. As I mentioned above the OS is very easy to upgrade. With the SD card, I think it was a bit easier and faster than most USB type OS upgrades. Like everyone else, I anxiously await the OS 2.0 release. I’m not sure what to think yet about the 2.0 beta program.
This synth is built. It’s 40 lbs. folks, def not a lap synth. The Quantum Fatar keyboard is more similar to my Moog Subsequent 37 than my Sequential Pro 2, a little more solid feel of the three higher end keyboards I have. The Pro 2 feels lighter, faster with more of that ‘plink’. The Subsequent has more ‘plunk’ and the Quantum even a little more so. How’s that for scientific description?
Now I would expect no one would buy a synthesizer like the Quantum to use presets primarily. Still for $4k+ I think the preset collection should be world class. There are some really good presets on the Quantum, and some so-so ones. I hope Waldorf releases updated presets periodically.
Anyhoo, that’s all I have to say for first look at the Waldorf Quantum. I’m sure I’ll be posting more soon, as well as updating the Uptown Oscillators Waldorf Quantum page.
July 2, 2019 Update: Two business days later, Sweetwater had a replacement Quantum delivered which appears to be in very good order.
July 8, 2019 Update: The replacement Quantum has been rock solid and the impressive machine I expected.
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More Uptown Oscillators Waldorf Quantum related articles
July 28, 2019 – Some first month thoughts about Waldorf Quantum
October 2, 2019 – Inside the Waldorf Quantum Synthesizer
December 15, 2019 – 6th month thoughts about the Waldorf Quantum
January 10, 2020 – Wavetable Synth Comparisons