by Rob Puricelli | 4,7 / 5,0 | Approximate reading time: 4 Minutes
MiniFreak V2 Update

MiniFreak V2 Update  ·  Source: Arturia

Arturia MiniFreak  ·  Source: Arturia

Arturia MiniFreak Rear

Arturia MiniFreak  ·  Source: Arturia

Arturia MiniFreak Top Down

Arturia MiniFreak  ·  Source: Arturia

Arturia MiniFreak  ·  Source: Arturia

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Arturia update their hugely popular MiniFreak Algorithmic Synthesizer and its MiniFreak V software counterpart to V2 with a ton of cool stuff!

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UPDATE: December 11th, 2023

A little over a year since its launch, the MiniFreak synth and its identical software twin, MiniFreak V, have been given a nice, juicy firmware update. This brings a bunch of cool new features to play with and makes this brilliant synth even better than before!

What’s New?

Well, quite a bit actually. First up, we have Wavetables! When Arturia shoe-horned these into the MicroFreak, MiniFreak owners began crying out for this in their keyboards. Arturia have delivered with 32 factory wavetables built into the v2 firmware. There’s a new Super Unison effect that stacks up to six copies of the patch on top of the dry signal. This can give your patch incredible width. The Noise Engineering oscillator can now have Osc Freerun applied to it, another feature that the community asked for a lot. Users can now choose an LFO Shaper Rate. This allows the user to apply the rate corresponding to a single step or the entire Shaper Curve.

There are some tweaks to the Macro settings that make them a lot more expressive and users can now choose to send clock on/off or transport on/off via the Sync output. Finally, for MiniFreak hardware owners, there is a new Favourites section so that they can store up to 64 of their favourite presets. MiniFreak V users will also notice a new ‘Store’ option that allows them to buy new patch banks. These banks will work on both hardware and software versions. From today, there are three free banks of 32 patches each and two paid-for banks of 64 patches available to buy.

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Original Article: October 18th, 2022

Ahhhh, Freak Out!

If you thought that Arturia’s MicroFreak was a slightly mad, but hugely unique synthesizer, then buckle up for the MiniFreak! Building on the incredibly successful Micro, the MiniFreak expands all of those superb sound-shaping features and throws in a lot more.

For starters, gone is the unique touch keyboard of the MicroFreak, replaced by a full action 37-note ‘slim keys’ example. Sporting velocity sensitivity and aftertouch, this will appeal much more to the keyboard players amongst you. The most obvious change is that the MiniFreak is now a 6-voice polysynth.

It also delivers 12-voice Paraphony, Unison and Monophonic modes. As with its miniature predecessor, the MiniFreak uses digital oscillators pushed through analogue filters for some truly wild and big sounds. 20 different modes allow you to process each sound engine’s output with the other, as well as allowing you to stack them.

Arturia MiniFreak Top Down

Source: Arturia

Modulation

As you would expect from Arturia, MiniFreak includes a wealth of customisable modulation and manipulation tools. These are all accessible via an expanded modulation matrix featuring FM, ring modulation and customisable multi-segment LFO shapes.

It also features polyphonic ADSR envelopes, as well as retaining the Spice and Dice randomisation from the original MicroFreak. MiniFreak comes with stereo outputs and 3 digital FX slots. Each of those slots can be filled with one of 10 built-in Arturia FX that include rich choruses, 3-band EQ and distortion.

Arturia MiniFreak Rear

Source: Arturia

MiniFreak Goes Virtual!

In a first for an Arturia hardware synth, MiniFreak owners will receive a dedicated VST plugin version of the synth! The plugin is a complete replication in software of the MiniFreak’s sound engines, filters and presets. It will also allow you to control your MiniFreak from your DAW. Truly the best of both worlds!

Arturia MiniFreak V

Arturia MiniFreak V · Source: Arturia

MiniFreak will undoubtedly appeal to those who didn’t get on with its smaller sibling’s lack of real keys. It will also broaden the appeal of the Freak’s way of doing things. What remains to be seen is if Arturia has hidden any features in MiniFreak to be revealed later. Remember when they surprised us all with the MicroFreak’s vocoder functionality?

Arturia’s MiniFreak is on sale now.

UPDATE: MiniFreak V is now available for all MiniFreak hardware owners. Check out Robin’s thoughts here

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2 responses to “Arturia MiniFreak Hybrid Polyphonic Synthesizer”

    Golden age of budget synths.. says:
    2

    Nice budget synth. Have Arturia realised that many of us have got bored with VSTs and would rather spend time playing with our knobs? Looks solid enough to be a good buy for a home setup, with enough modifier options to not get bored too quick. Some fine budget synth hardware available right now, most of with enough flexibility to become yer ‘go to’ synth. All good.

      Don't let your dreams be dreams says:
      2

      Arturia needs to capitalize on this algorithmic sound engine and make a fully digital drum machine. I would snag that in a second without hesitation.

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