Review: Waldorf 2 Pole Analog Filter

Will Waldorf's 2 Pole analog filter give you more warmth than your average plug-in? Are its modulation options flexible for any studio integration? Mo Volans finds out in this review with video.  

Waldorf have been busy with some interesting new products recently. Amongst these is an affordable line of mono boxes that promises to bring analog goodness to the masses at an affordable price. This new product line was announced at NAMM earlier this year and the 2 Pole Analog filter was one of the stars. Let’s take a look at what’s on offer here…


Build And Design

Waldorf have always had a reputation for building synths with solid build and no-nonsense design. That is exactly what you get here, don’t expect the all metal construction of the Waldorf Wave synth, at this price point that would be more or less impossible in my book. 

You do however get a metal top plate and sturdy injection moulded base. This actually makes the unit feel very tough but also makes it very light for its size. I suspect this would make the 2-Pole excellent for live work.

This no-frills design ethos continues across the front panel, with solid metal switches, large plastic knobs and clear graphics. Everything has been well spaced out giving you plenty of room to tweak the controls. I certainly admire this decision over making the unit overly compact. The whole thing feels satisfyingly chunky. 

There are jacks on the back for mono audio (in and out) and three ports for CV control of the filter, envelope and gate. You also get a dedicated 12V power supply and even a power switch (which is becoming somewhat of a rarity). 

Sounds And Operation 


The best part of the Waldorf 2-Pole is without doubt the way it sounds. I thoroughly enjoyed playing with this and it oozes analog charm. From the self-oscillating filter to the two different flavors of distortion, it really does add some punch to anything you run through it. 

I was really impressed by the fact you have an LFO and envelope follower to use as modulation sources, and the amount of control you have over these elements is pretty staggering for a unit at this price point.

With the ability to fine tune the incoming and outgoing levels, add varying amounts of crunch and even trigger the envelope generator with illuminated buttons, Waldorf have really thought every aspect of this filter through. 

With the ability to fine tune the incoming and outgoing levels, add varying amounts of crunch and even trigger the envelope generator with illuminated buttons, Waldorf have really thought every aspect of this filter through. 

Of course, you can expect to find all the usual features here like a switchable filter mode selector (low pass, band pass and high pass), a serious resonance control and hard bypass switch for completely disengaging the whole filter section.

Thoughts And Conclusion 

Overall, this is a really excellent filter with plenty of flexibility. Add the CV connectivity and extensive modulation options and you can probably cook up a number of ways to integrate this into a modern studio set up.

I’ve truly enjoyed using this and may even pick one up for my own productions, with my only reservation being that I love to filter in stereo! Maybe Waldorf will produce a stereo version just for me. 

Joking aside, if you fancy a cool analogue filter to give you a little more warmth than your average plug-in then the 2 Pole should do just the job and then some.

Price: £169

Pros: Great fun to ‘play’, warm characterful analog sound. Good modulation options for the price and interesting CV connectivity.

Cons: I wish it was stereo! Some more varied wave shapes in the LFO section would have been awesome. 

Web: http://www.waldorf-music.info/2-pole-overview


Mo has been a professional in the music industry for around 15 years. He has released material with the world's leading record labels and also produces music for TV and Film. Mo is also a prolific writer and is a regular contributor to magazines such as Music Tech, Future Music and EQ magazine. There isn't a piece of music software tha... Read More

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