Review: IK Multimedia UNO Synth ‘best budget synth on the market’ - InsideAudio

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25 Apr 2019

Review: IK Multimedia UNO Synth ‘best budget synth on the market’

25 Apr 2019
producer/hardware Review: IK Multimedia UNO Synth ‘best budget synth on the market’


After developing all kinds of software and hardware, this is IK Multimedia’s first step into the hardware synth market with the UNO Synth. IK Multimedia offers a wide product range for all musician needs. 

They are constantly innovating with stunning hardware and software for different experience levels of musicians.

The UNO Synth is a great step in making the bedroom producer more aware of analog synths and is an affordable option do to so. Let’s have a closer look and check if it’s worth it for you to buy this little sound-making beast!

General information about the UNO Synth

The UNO Synth is a small and lightweight device that would easily fit in any backpack or on any desk; about the size of a laptop keyboard (in most cases even smaller). There are 7 knobs on the synth to control different functionalities based on other settings. 

The other buttons are touch-based and respond very well. It comes with the standalone application ‘UNO Synth Editor’ to make further digital adjustments and offers a cleaner overview of what is happening within the synth. The device includes MIDI cables, so you can connect it to a MIDI interface and send MIDI out and in to get the sounds into your DAW.

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Beginners or professionals?

Yes, it is an incredible synth for any beginner to discover hardware analog synths, but it is also supported by some professional users like JunkieXL. This confirms that it is truly a high-quality and advanced synth, but with an interface that fits the needs of beginners.

This makes it an interesting product for beginners and professionals. With of course the price in mind, it is still accessible for a lot of people!

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A few functions and features of the UNO Synth

  • All-analog audio path with 2 VCOs, noise generator, resonant multimode VCF and VCA
  • 2 independent VCOs with Saw, Triangle, Pulse waveforms with continuously variable shape including PWM of the square wave plus a separate white noise generator
  • A 2-pole OTA-based analog resonant sweepable multimode filter with LPF, HPF and BPF
  • Custom-designed, dual-stage overdrive that provides filter input overdrive for classic synth saturation tone, from subtle warming to aggressive distortion
  • LFO with Sine, Triangle, Square, Up Saw, Down Saw, Random and Sample-and-Hold to modulate Pitch, Filter, Amp and continuous oscillator wave shapes including PWM
  • 100 presets and 80 of them you can re-write with your own settings
  • 10 mode, 4-octave arpeggiator
  • Real-time and step edit 16-step sequencer with 20 automatable parameters
  • Onboard multi-touch 27-note chromatic and scale keyboard with 13 scales
  • Sync Delay audio effect and 5 performance effects
  • Self-tuning with auto-tune calibration
  • USB MIDI and 2.5 mm jack MIDI IN/OUT (cables included)

Connecting and use

The UNO Synth can work independently when you place the included batteries and connect your headphone, allowing the user access whenever they want! This is a great feature that makes it a very portable device.

Via USB, you can connect it to a phone, PC or Mac. With the MIDI input and outputs, you can record tracks into your DAW and you can directly plug in headphones and a mixer. As you can see, there are a lot of possibilities to play around with the synth.

Perfect as a first introduction synth

All-in-all, we are very impressed by this small budget synth. It opens so many possibilities for bedroom producers that don’t want to spend €1000+ on an analog synth. It allows them to experiment outside of digital synths with a quality and cost friendly product.

For less than €190 (depending on the store), this is an affordable product with loads of options and room for the user to grow. We would recommend this to everyone that wants to dive deeper in synthesis. The sound is very warm and big sounding. The synth is mainly built from plastic, but there are not a lot of other options at this price-point. And on the other side, it’s not a football but a synth! 

IK Multimedia also developed a special bag for the synth so it fits very easily in your backpack without risk damage when transporting it.

Well done IK Multimedia. We look forward to what this company will bring us in the future.

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