7 things we learned about Behringer's new synths this week

Behringer MS-1 MKII
(Image credit: Behringer)

Behringer has gone on one of its periodic news splurges, flooding social media with details of new products and ones that were announced some time ago but are now either ready to be released or at a later stage of development.

If you’re struggling to keep up with it all, fear not - here’s a handy guide to everything notable that the Big B has had to tell us this past week.

1. Toro tackles the Taurus

Teased a year ago, Behringer's Moog Taurus emulation looks like it's now production ready. This is a pure analogue instrument with two oscillators, a low-pass ladder filter and two envelopes, plus four quick-access preset buttons. Although it’s primarily a bass synth, the Toro has a five-octave range, while connectivity includes MIDI, USB and CV. There’s Eurorack compatibility, too. 

One thing that is missing, though, is a set of foot pedals. It was these pedals that helped to make the Taurus so popular among prog rock bands of the '70s, but if you're looking to channel your inner Geddy Lee, you'll need to bring your own and connect them via MIDI.

The price is now expected to be $349 - $150 more than was originally projected, but still a lot less than Moog charged for its Taurus III back in 2010.

2. Brains has been Reloaded

"Brains just became way more clever," says Behringer, on account of the fact that the 'Reloaded' update to this oscillator module throws five new synth engines into the mix.

These cover FM, TD-3 bassline, wave generator and synthesised vocal sounds, with the fifth new engine enabling you to route any external audio into Brains' V/Oct input and use its OLED display to act as an oscilloscope.

It's Brains with more brawn, basically.

3. The Pro-800 is almost here

Edging ever closer to release we have the Pro-800, a reboot of the Sequential Prophet-600 that adds a couple more voices, with each voice offering two VCOs.

The Pro-800 has been created with the help of synth designer GliGli, who specialises in modding the Prophet-600, and his improvements are present and correct here. There’s also a non-standard noise generator that was only found on the rare Japanese editions of the Prophet-600, full MIDI CC control, USB MIDI, a dual polyphonic sequencer, a dedicated LFO with six waveshapes and VCA overdrive.

Look out for it in April priced at $599.

4. The Solina String Ensemble is incoming

Another one that's been gestating for a while, the Solina String Ensemble is finally making its way to market, too. 

There are back orders to fulfil so it might be a while until you can get your hands on one, but if you do you'll be able to experience the original String Ensemble's violin, viola, trumpet, horn, cello and contrabass sounds, plus its a built-in chorus effect. 

Behringer’s remake (based on the ‘Revision B’ model) adds a phaser (in the style of the Electro-Harmonix Small Stone from the ‘70s), 5-pin/USB MIDI and external modulation/patching connectivity, all in a compact form factor.

This one will set you back $359.

5. We're getting close to the Edge

We'd almost forgotten about the Edge - a semi-modular percussion synth in the style of Moog's DFAM - but here it is, complete with a striking pink chassis and a sound “as bold as its looks”.

Edge is designed as a sidekick for Behringer’s Crave synth, from which it takes plenty of design cues.

Last we heard the price was going to be $219; hopefully that still stands. Edge is in production now.

6. RS-9 is like a 909 without the sounds

Behringer RS-9

(Image credit: Behringer)

Remember the RD-9, Behringer's emulation of the Roland TR-909 drum machine? Here's a Eurorack drum sequencer that's based on it... but without the sounds. Instead, it can be used to trigger up to 10 instruments.

It might be a little way off, though, as Behringer says that it's "currently checking the availability of all components so we can move it into production." This being the case, we reckon you've got a bit of time to save up the $179 you'll need to buy it. 

7. MS-1 MKII is a second take on the SH-101

Behringer MS-1 MKII

(Image credit: Behringer)

Behringer is have another stab at recreating Roland's iconic SH-101 synth, this time using the 662 chips from the original. These are said to deliver vastly improved VCF and VCA performance, and there's now a dual glide function, too.

That's about all we know about this one so far - more news as we get it.

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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