Red Witch Synthotron review

Guitar synth/filter pedal for the space-deprived

  • £249
  • €299
  • $489
The Synthotron is a twin-voice analogue synth and an envelope filter in one box

MusicRadar Verdict

A game of two halves - funky and bonkers - sometimes at once!


  • +

    Perfect for sonic adventurers. Small footprint. Multi-functional.


  • -

    Synth tracking is a bit glitchy.

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The Synthotron from New Zealand firm Red Witch has two different functions that can be used independently or together, each with its own footswitch.

"The envelope filter is really cool for auto-wah and Mu-Tron-esque stuff"

The first is a twin-voice analogue synth, and the second an envelope filter that's really cool for auto-wah and Mu-Tron-esque stuff, but can also function as a sample-and-hold generator.

The synth (oscillator triggered by signal to voltage conversion) offers two channels, each with level, decay and a choice of octaves (unison, or one octave up and one or two octaves down).

It's monophonic, and tracks best further up the neck (anything below the 9th fret can be glitchy): it's probably best used mixed with some dry sound for solidity. You can also apply tremolo with variable speed. Synth and filter together is a recipe for sonic madness.

Not everyone wants analogue synth sounds from their guitar, but the Synthotron offers it in a small footprint with bonus funky-filter action.

Trevor Curwen has played guitar for several decades – he's also mimed it on the UK's Top of the Pops. Much of his working life, though, has been spent behind the mixing desk, during which time he has built up a solid collection of the guitars, amps and pedals needed to cover just about any studio session. He writes pedal reviews for Guitarist and has contributed to Total Guitar, MusicRadar and Future Music among others.