The Korg Monotribe is a pretty remarkable groove box: monophonic analog synthesizer – small drum machine – step sequencer … all in one.
Korg released a major update (Version 2) of the Monotribe Operating System a few months ago. The new features are very useful, even if they probably won’t “take your playing to a new dimension“, as Korg claims. A yellow overlay is available that maps out the new features found in the V2 upgrade, and a self-printable version of the overlay is for download at the Korg website.
Some of the new key features are:
- The sequencer alloted to the synthesizer has been doubled to 16 steps
- Active Step can now be individually specified for each part (allowing for poly rhythmical patterns)
- Gate Time Hold function has been added
- LFO now contains sample & hold
- Also new is the Half Tempo function, which cuts the tempo in half when synchronizing to an external input from the SYNC IN jack
- Daisy chain: linking two or more Monotribes. When sequence playback reaches step 8, the sequence will automatically stop and the next Monotribe unit will start playing. By loop-connecting the SYNC jacks, the playback can be kept cycling through multiple units!
Upgrade procedure is easy and pretty much old-school (just like the Monotribe itself). First, download the system data (sort of audio WAV file) from Korg’s website. Second, play back the file using a WAV file player (like Windows Media Player), directly in to the Monotribe’s SYNC IN jack. And that’s it.
(Warning: do not playback the system update file on any speaker or headphone system as this could damage the equipment and/or lead to hearing loss.)
Downloads and further information:
Attached are 4 Monotribe sound examples:
- Sequence 1 Basic Demo shows the general sound character of the Monotribe
- Sequence 2 Multiple Arpeggios is a layering of various Monotribe sequences, making it sound like multiple arpeggios
- Sequence 3 Poly Rhythm is a drum-pattern with a simple poly rhythm (bass, snare and hi-hat have different pattern lengths)
- Sequence 4 Sample & Hold starts with a sample & hold effect, and it impresses with a beautiful, rough bass sound