I’ve had a number of people ask about my studio setup. I’ll say one thing- it’s fairly simple. Diapers, toys, clothes, food, school and the myriad other things that come along with family tend to take priority over synths, software, mics and preamps. There are those bits of kit that are indispensable; here’s a list, although it’s probably not all-inclusive:
I’ll start with my upright. It’s always on, ready to inspire. Unlimited polyphony and infinite tone. The Fender Rhodes. Calm, cool, and unassuming. Still can’t be beat by a plug-in. Mine is a 54 key version. Anyone else have one of those? My weighted controller is a Yamaha MO8, and I really like it, especially for the piano-type sounds. It doesn’t sound like a plug-in. Sure, it’s kind of kludgy to program, but it weighs considerably less than the MOTIF. I bought it a few years back for a tour; if I knew I was never going to move it I would want a MOTIF, but only for the expansion. Maybe a MOTIF rack is the answer to that… Anyway, back to the original topic. Ableton would be next. In a worse-case scenario, give me my laptop and Ableton. In a second-to-worse case scenario, give me my G-Media and Native Instruments plug-ins. I probably turn to those more than anything else, especially the Minimonsta, Oddity, Absynth and Pro53. Other softsynths would be the Olga, from Schwa Audio, and the Thor synth in Reason. Last but not least is my MG-1. I’ve modded it so it’s not exactly stock; it’s old and quirky but wonderful. My small controller is an M-Audio Axiom. Full-featured and built like a tank. I got mine a while back; three years without a case on the bus and several countries later and it still works perfectly. One of the knobs is crooked, but that happened when a bandmate borrowed it for a weekend.
There you have it. I should probably include my converters, which are Mytek. I should also mention my headphones, the Senheiser HD280. Not the greatest, but good enough and not so expensive that I’m afraid to throw a pair in my backpack.

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