The Korg Volca Keys is a small, portable analog synthesizer delivering a vintage sound and decent programming possibilities at an incredibly affordable price point. The Volca Keys has three voice polyphony and a built in looping sequencer (no step mode programmability here). An external MIDI keyboard greatly enhances the playing experience, and while Korg clearly had portability in mind, the speaker on the Volca boxes usually disappoints and the six AA batteries required to play on the go last you 10 hours at best.
The control face of this desktop synth is stripped back and easy to dial in. A single knob allows several voicing options, while you get three knobs for the VCO, VCF, LFO, and envelope options. The simplified programming workflow doesn’t limit the sound shaping possibilities here as much as you might expect; the Volca Keys can cover quite a bit of ground despite only generating sawtooth and square waves. The ring modulation, delay effect, 12db/octave low pass filter, and motion sequencer all provide you with enough room to play that you feel like you have a whole lot of synth considering the modest $150 price tag.
1/8th inch cables allow MIDI sync to other Volca units and also are needed for the single stereo out. The Volca Keys also has MIDI in and DC power jacks up top. Anyone looking for some serious sound shaping possibilities may want to search elsewhere, but for those new to analog synthesizers, the Volca Keys is a great option to consider.
|Polyphony: 3||Filter: Low Pass|
|VCA: ADSR||Format: Desktop Synth|
|Effects: Delay||Control: Midi|
|Dimensions: 193 x 115 x 46 mm|
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