Moog takes a deep dive into the world of bass sounds with the new Mariana soft synth, and the good news is that it runs on iOS, Mac and Windows

If there’s one part of the frequency range that Moog has been synonymous with down the years, it’s bass, so it seems entirely fitting that the company is launching a new soft synth that’s devoted to low-end tones. Known as Mariana - it goes deep, presumably - this takes inspiration from Moog synths of the past  - the likes of the Minimoog, Taurus, Sub Phatty and Minitaur - while also promising to bring something new to the party.

Mariana is a dual-layer synth; layers can either be stacked together or played duophonically, and each layer offers two oscillators and a sub-oscillator. There are two classic Moog resonant filters, along with a third one that’s designed specifically for the sub-oscillator.

Effects, meanwhile, include tube, tape and overdrive saturation, and there’s a “tight” compressor for glueing everything together. You also get delay and chorus processors that can be applied on a per-layer basis.

Moog Mariana

(Image credit: Moog Music)

On the modulation side, there are three LFOs, three envelopes and two random generators per layer, plus a dedicated modulation editor. This enables you to design sounds that evolve over time - every parameter of Mariana can be modulated internally via MIDI, MPE, and virtual CV.

All of this functionality comes packed into what appears to be a typically straightforward Moog interface that also benefits from built-in metering. Although it has a definite bass focus, Mariana can also provide lead sounds, percussion and effects, and 200 presets come supplied.

This is Moog’s first release since the company’s acquisition by InMusic, and is also its first soft synth to run on not only iOS and Mac, but also Windows (it should be noted that the Moogerfooger effect plugins are also compatible with Microsoft’s OS). 

Mariana comes in VST/AU formats for desktop platforms and is currently available for the intro price of $49 (regular price will be $99). The iOS version has a launch offer, too - it’s down from $30 to $15. 

To celebrate Mariana’s release, Moog has enlisted actor, writer, producer, and comedian H Jon Benjamin to narrate a video that celebrates the company’s bass sound history, and there’s an hour-long deep dive tutorial video from Thavius Beck.

Find out more on the Moog Music website.

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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