Mayer has announced the MD900 X-VA that evolves their M800 Eurorack synth module into a fully-fledged desktop synthesizer.
Over the course of the pandemic, Mayer has been busy redeveloping its M800 Eurorack based virtual analog and wavetable polyphonic synthesizer into a version 2. During the process and because of difficulties in getting the M800-R2 into production Mayer continued and evolved the development into a desktop synth called the MD900 which the company are showing at Superbooth.
It’s a 16-voice, 4-part multitimbral virtual analog and wavetable synthesizer. The parts share the 16 voices and have their own effects section, arpeggiator and step sequencer. Each voice has two digital oscillators which can run analogue waveforms or wavetables. All outputs are stereo and the stereo signal path is maintained throughout the synth. A mixer adds Noise from a sample-based oscillator and then routes through two stereo filters, two amps and into the effects section.
The waveforms can be morphed and modulated via PWM, Hard Sync, Formant, phase Distortion and other algorithms. Wavetables contain 256 waveforms and will generate variants if a wavetable has less than that. The filters are multimode and model classic analog filter types and can be pushed into self-oscillation.
The sequencer and arpeggiation section is quite interesting. It can handle up to 64 note patterns which can be stored and then in Clip Launcher mode you can trigger patterns into the 4 parts plus the Drum Instrument which is hidden away inside here somewhere. The Drum Instruments use samples outside of the synthesizer part of the machine and are organised into 14 different sounds and storable as kits. You can program 5 drum parts alongside the 4 synthesizer parts.
All of this is handled by 4 encoders and a row of buttons and touch display on the M800-R2 but in the MD900 the synthesizer parameters are all comprehensively out on the front panel. The colour screen is the same between the two devices and displays all the details, sequencing and clip launching.
It has a groove-box and workstation feel to it, more than being a synthesizer alone. There can be a lot of screen fingering involved but the display does offer up a great deal of detail and gives you a deep level of editing. The MD900 and M800-R2 share the same engine and so you can get the whole experience in a Eurorack module with lots of CV if you prefer.
The M800-R2 is available now for €1,400 in limited numbers and the MD900 will be released next year for around €3,000. That’s a lot of money!
For a full explanation check out the video from Synth Anatomy below.
Meyer is at booth O295.