The Dark Energy analog Synthesizer goes into the third round and has been improved with a triangle VCO waveform, a better ADSR, no-heat-up period and more!
If you ask the community for a perfect analog Synthesizer for beginners, then the Dark Energy from Doepfer is quickly on the table. Well processed, great sound quality and many interesting features make the DE a very good synth for beginners but also for advanced users. At this year’s NAMM show, Doepfer Musikelektronik presented the third version of the Dark Energy.
The new version features a triangle waveform in the VCO, no-head-up period, wider tracking, new reset inputs for the LFO’s, an improved ADSR and more. The v3 now includes many user-requested features and makes the synth more versatile and complete.
Like its Dark Energy II predecessor, released to widespread critical acclaim back in 2012, Dark Energy III is a desktop monophonic analogue standalone synthesizer with wide-reaching CV/Gate, MIDI, and USB connectivity. Continuing that intriguingly-named lineage, likewise, Dark Energy III’s sound generation and all modulation sources are 100% analogue, with only its inbuilt MIDI/USB components entering the digital arena (as is obviously necessary, naturally). Needless to say, everything is built into a rugged black metal case with wooden side plates, while high-quality potentiometers with metal shafts are used; ultimately, each potentiometer is mounted firmly to the chassis, so no wobbly shafts and knobs — unlike some cheaply-constructed competing (non-Doepfer) designs. Dark Energy III is, indeed, essential an enhanced version of Doepfer’s desktop standalone synthesizer so central to the company’s product line for so long, but boasts several notable differences.
New In The Dark Energy III Synthesizer
- VCO has in addition the triangle waveform available
- no heat-up period of the VCO
- min. eight octaves perfect 1V/octave tracking of the VCO
- separate reset inputs for the two LFO’s
- improved ADSR
- access to additional functions via pin headers inside the unit for DIY modifications (e.g. linear FM, hard sync, soft sync, LFO outputs, ADSR output, all VCO waveforms, all filter outputs)
Several signal routings and functions are additionally available to any adventurous ‘Doepfer DIY’er’ willing and able to modify Dark Energy III’s front panel sockets by removing jumpers and rewiring the pin-headers for the VCO PW, Reset LFO1, Reset LFO2, and VCA Inputs. For example, the VCO PW input can be converted into a linear FM input, or LFO/ADSR signals can be used as outputs instead of one of the resettable LFO inputs. Indeed, (almost) anything is possible, including various VCO outputs (triangle, sawtooth, rectangle); VCO hard sync input; VCO soft sync input; various VCF outputs (lowpass, highpass, bandpass); various LFO outputs (triangle, rectangle); ADSR output; and two inverters with input/output (to invert any signal, such as ADSR or LFO).
Doepfer Dark Energy III analog Synthesizer is now available for 479€. An optional user-installable glide control kit, containing a prewired potentiometer with two nuts and a Dark Energy-style rotary knob is available for 10€.
More information here: Doepfer
Available here: Doepfer Dark Energy III