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Korg's Monotribe Analog Synth Gets A Major Update

Published: Tue December 06, 2011  News Feed

Korg Monotribe Update

Korg’s Monotribe station is an analog sensation competing in a world consumed by digital technology. Following in the footsteps of the palm-sized Monotron analog ribbon synthesizer, the Monotribe takes analog synthesis further; birthing a whole new kind of synth.

The Korg Monotribe packs an amazing array of features and technology into its sleek, compact and portable body. Sharing the same DNA as the Monotron means that the Monotribe includes some of the same features that made the Monotron so popular amongst composers and performers but also delves deeper in the rich, organic world of analog synthesis.

What may surprise some is just how easy to use the Monotribe actually is. With simple, straightforward controllers for parameters like LFO and waveform patterns, the Monotribe allows you to make the music you want to make, without confusing you to the point that you lose interest altogether.

The Monotribe features built-in speakers and can be battery powered for on-the-go groove making. The advanced multi-function ribbon keyboard allows you to input your tunes directly into the system to playback and manipulate and the sync in and out jacks enable synchronised integration with multiple units.

The Monotribe’s auto-tuning provides stable pitch for accurate chromatic playability, uses the same VCF (filter) circuit as the classic MS-10/MS-20 and features a selectable oscillator waveform, noise generator, and versatile LFO.

With 3-part analog drum and rhythm section and active step and flux features for real-time dynamic loop manipulation, this groove machine will help you to deliver your creative ideas with style and personality.

Update Highlights


  • Synth part resolution has been doubled to 16 Steps
  • Volume Automation has been added to the synth part
  • Active Step can be specified for each part
  • Drum Roll capability has been added
  • Gate Time Hold function has been added
  • Synthesizer
  • Sample and Hold (S&H) function added to LFO - Unlike traditional LFO waveshapes that provide a constantly changing signal, the Sample & Hold feature takes a "sample" of the LFO signal and holds that level for a specific duration of time. The results are the highly popular and slightly random stepped-filter effects so famously used in analog synthesizers. By using noise as the input signal, the monotribe version 2 allows you to create effects that change in a distinctively random manner.


  • Connected sequences allow multiple monotribe units to play in rotation
  • Half Tempo function has been added

Short Cut Keys:

  • Four convenient shortcuts for creating patterns quickly

New Additions

The Gate Time Hold function lets you use the ribbon controller keyboard to play and record new pitch information while retaining the gate times recorded in the sequencer. Also new is the Half Tempo function, which cuts the tempo in half when synchronizing to an external input from the SYNC IN jack. In addition, there are now four shortcut keys that instantly initialize various types of sequence data or active step settings.

How to Update your Monotribe

Thinking of monotribe as an analog synthesizer, the procedure of for updating the Operating System is also a very old-school, analog-style method, reminiscent of loading data via the playback of analog cassette tape. Simply download the system data which Korg has encoded as an audio (WAV) file from Korg (here) or from the website of your local Korg distributor. Then, play back the file using a WAV file player like a Smartphone or using PC application software, directly in to the monotribe's SYNC IN jack. When the audio (WAV) file finished playing, your monotribe has been updated. It’s a traditional procedure revived for a new generation!

Do not playback the system update file on any speaker or headphone system as this could lead to damage to equipment and/or hearing loss. Neither Korg nor any of its affiliates will accept responsibility for any damages, personal loss or injury that may result from playback of the file.

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