Doepfer Dark Energy III – relaunch of a classic

Dark Energy III is – just like its predecessor Dark Energy II – a monophonic analog synthesizer with USB and MIDI interface. The entire sound generation and all modulation sources are 100% analog. While its strong filter is the same as that of DE II, there are some minor differences in the VCO / VCA / LFO area …


The main differences between Dark Energy II and III:

  • VCO offers an additional triangle waveform
  • ready for immediate use: no heat-up period of the VCO
  • perfect 1V/octave VCO tracking over a range of 8 octaves (!)
  • separate reset inputs for the two LFOs
  • improved ADSR
  • access to additional functions via pin headers inside the unit for DIY modifications (e.g. linear FM, hard/soft sync)


The following additional signals and functions are accessible via internal pin headers:

  • VCO outputs: triangle, sawtooth, rectangle
  • VCO linear FM input
  • VCO hard sync input
  • VCO soft sync input
  • VCF outputs: lowpass, highpass, bandpass
  • LFO outputs: triangle, rectangle
  • ADSR output
  • Two inverters with input/output (to invert any signal, e.g. ADSR, LFO)

The function of these sockets at the front panel can be modified by removing jumpers and re-wiring the pin-headers: VCO PW CV, LFO1 Reset, LFO2 Reset, VCA CV In. For example the PW CV input can be converted into a linear FM input, or LFO/ADSR signals can be used as outputs instead of one of the LFO Reset inputs)



Doepfer Dark Energy III

Analog desktop-synthesizer
with MIDI, USB and alternative (internal) wiring options

Available April 2018

Price: 479 Euros

Website manufacturer:


Info / open / download:

Filed under 2018, General

“Es genügt, einen Ton schön zu spielen” sagte der Komponist Arvo Pärt im Jahre 2005. Diese Aussage ist ebenso einfach wie ich auch exzellent: Es braucht kein Meer an Tönen, denn entscheidend ist der Klang. Dass so mancher Vintage-Synthesizer der 70er und 80er Jahre teils unerreicht hochwertige Klänge liefert, steht außer Frage. Doch tatsächlich leben wir “heute” in einer nahezu perfekten Zeit. Einerseits hat man – mehr oder weniger – noch Zugriff auf die Vintage Analogen, andererseits wird auch bei Neugeräten die wichtige Komponente des hochwertigen Klanges wieder zunehmend berücksichtigt. Doepfer, Cwejman,, MacBeth, Moog, GRP, Studio Electronics, COTK, John Bowen und andere Hersteller bauen hervorragende Synthesizer, die den “Klassikern” in nichts nachstehen. All diesen (alten wie neuen) “großartigen” Instrumenten ist Great Synthesizers gewidmet. _________________________________________________________ In 2005 composer Arvo Pärt said: “Playing one tone really well is enough”. In other words, it is sufficient to play one tone 'beautifully'. I agree with that. All musical efforts are focused on the sound itself. Although I studied classical music (piano and drums), it’s the electronic sound that inspires me. Synthesizers are the epitome of new sounds and exciting tonal spheres. Today, many companies produce high-quality - excellent! - synthesizers: Doepfer, Cwejman, MacBeth, Moog, GRP,, COTK, Studio Electronics, John Bowen and others. It's their products I'm really interested in ... apart from Vintage Synthesizers, which I have been collecting for 20 years. Subsequent to our former websites Bluesynths and Blogasys, Peter Mahr and I have now created GreatSynthesizers. We hope you like it.