24 May 2021

MusicRadar on IK’s UNO Synth Pro

“Shames some much more expensive instruments!”

UNO Synth Pro aims to be the next-generation analog synthesizer for everyone. So how well is it doing? MusicRadar gave IK's new synth 4.5/5 stars in their recent review. Here's some of what they have to say.

Two models, one sound engine

"IK Multimedia's latest synth offering comes in two flavours; the desktop version with its touch-sensitive keyboard, pitch and mod strips, and the full version, which has a full-size, semi-weighted Fatar keyboard.

"The UNO Synth Pro, in both its guises, has two channels of gate and cv in and out, adding an extra layer of functionality that is rare at this price. The easiest way to take advantage of these is through the mod matrix, where the ports can be assigned however you like."

There is plenty of control available to shape just about any kind of synth sound you can imagine.

MusicRadar

Performance and functionality

"On to the sounds then – here the UNO shines and from here on out, both models are identical. The UNO sports three analogue VCOs and a white noise generator, all with some great tone-shaping options. Each of the three oscillators has continuous wave shape variations from saw to pulse width, with modulation.

"There are two analogue state variable filters, with dedicated cutoff and resonance controls. The potentiometers all feel smooth and firm, with a nice amount of resistance and, while the filter controls are dedicated, the function of most changes depends on the active menu.

"Thankfully, although there is some menu diving, it's all logically implemented. You'll find it hard to get lost. The filters themselves are state variable and they're totally discreet, with various modes and settings for amount and spacing, so dialling in complex tones is really easy, especially with the mod matrix."

High-impact effects

"The effects are limited to Drive, Chorus, Delay and Reverb, which may not seem like a lot, but I'd rather have fewer great effects than a host of average ones.

"All the effects sound wonderful; however, the drive – the only analogue effect here – is our top pick, as it provides plenty of warmth and can really scream. Team it with resonance and use the mod wheel to control it and you get some almost guitar-like lead sounds or aggressive basses.

"There is plenty of control available to shape just about any kind of synth sound you can imagine, with 256 preset slots to use, many of which come with entries all ready for you to play."

Stepping up the creativity

"For us, one of the stars of the show here is the sequencer. Sure you can hit record and capture a live performance and you can treat it like a standard step sequencer, but you can also sequence modulations per step with it."

What excites us is the fact that the UNO comes in at such a good price point and offers such a capable instrument. It has a really simple workflow too.

MusicRadar

"Select a step, out of the 16 step buttons, of which there are four pages, for 64 in total (more if you want to head into song mode) and adjust the parameter you want. Playback will have those modulations locked in place, giving your hands more freedom to interact on the fly. Complex performances are a breeze with this setup and it is a real joy to use."

MusicRadar's verdict

"UNO Synth Pro shames some much more expensive instruments, with a whole raft of functions and features you'd expect to pay twice as much for. All in all, this is a great instrument and one that definitely punches over its weight class, in terms of sound and functionality. The biggest decision here is not whether you should shortlist it, but which of the two variants to get."

Pros

Some excellent stereo effects
Sequencer is very capable
Full keyboard feels good

Read the full MusicRadar review here

Learn more on UNO Synth Pro

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