It's always exciting when Moog announces a new synth. When the biggest name in hardware synthesis has a new product release, it's usually ground breaking. From the Mother 32 to the Polyphonic One, Moog really knows how to shake the synthesis world with innovative new products. With Sirin (pronounced siren), their latest offering, the reception seems to be mixed to say the least. Let's find out what the deal is with this synth.
Sirin is a desktop analog monosynth based on the Minitaur engine. The main difference being ‘more stable’ oscillators and a wider frequency range for the oscillators. Specifically, having the ability to player higher notes than the Minitaur.
Sirin is a two-oscillator synth with a ladder filter, an envelope each for the filter and the amp section and an LFO that can modulate the pitch of the oscillators or the filter cutoff. The two oscillators have a switchable sawtooth and square shape. There is no Pulse Width modulation. There is also no phase invert option to create pulse-width modulation. There is Hard Sync on oscillator 2 and the two oscillators do have level controls so you can choose to just hear the synced oscillator to get those screaming sync lead sounds.
The ADSR envelopes on the hardware have just three controls. The decay and release time are controlled with the same dial just like on the Minimoog. You can choose to disable the release stage entirely with the release switch. Tapping and holding down the Release button will enable independent control of the decay and release stages. A glide switch with a glide time dial wraps up all the hardware controls on the synth.
Fortunately Moog provides a software editor for remote control from a DAW. This editor is provided for free once you register your synth. The editor provides some additional controls like a beat frequency control for the second oscillator, LFO shape options which also include the filter envelope shape as an option. The LFO can also be synced to the DAW tempo making it very easy to integrate in a computer based production setup. I wish more synth manufacturers provided editors like this and being a free download, this is just the icing on the cake. Moog’s Minimoog Voyeger Editor goes for $80 so I’m glad Moog choose to not charge for the Sirin editor.
Connectivity is exactly like the Minitaur - audio in/out & 4 CV inputs. Pitch, Filter, Volume CV & Gate. Standard 5 Pin DIN MIDI as well as USB. I did pick up some noise on the unbalanced output, mainly when the USB MIDI was connected. Changing some USB hubs in my setup seemed to fix the issue. It worked better connected straight to the computer.
There is no doubt this is an excellent synth, with that classic Moog sound in a desktop form factor. But then so is the Minitaur. Moog seems to be competing with their own product with the Sirin. Sure the Sirin can produce a wider range of frequencies, but I really don’t see many people getting a Moog synth for playing notes C4 and above. Everyone wants to hear the deep low frequencies run through a resonant filter.
In summary, the Sirin is the Minitaur which can play higher notes. If you have a Minitaur and don’t care for high squeaky notes, you’re all set.