Korg drumlogue is a new drum machine hosting modern analog and innovative digital synthesis with sample support in a compact device.
In early January 2021, Korg showed new products. The modwave wavetable synth and the wavestate SE prototype with a new look. There was also an exciting sneak peek of a hybrid drum machine called drumlogue. An instrument that the Korg developers were working on at the time.
The interest in the small box in social media is still great today and I constantly get inquiries from you about when Korg will release it. I can finally answer the question. Korg officially introduced the drumlogue drum machine today. Ready for pre-order here: Thomann
Analog Meets Digital Synthesis
Korg drumlogue is a hybrid drum machine consisting of a mixture of engines. Interesting: compared to the prototype, Korg hasn’t changed anything significant in the design. It has a wrapped case with an aluminum control panel and wooden side panels. A bit angular and spacey from the design. Definitely not “more of the same”.
As announced in the 2021 trailer, the drumlogue was developed by Yoshihito Yamada and Etienne Noreau-Hebert, who were also responsible for the minilogue xd Synthesizer and the logue multi-engine SDK.
drumlogue consists of three sound engines split across 11 voices: analog and digital synthesis as well as sample-based sound sources. On the analog side, you will find four all-analog instrument voices, including kick, snare, hi tom, and low tom. Each instrument can be manipulated with front panel controls like decay, tune, drive, snappy…
In addition to the analog engine, there is also a deep digital engine. On the one hand, it consists of 6 sample-based parts with the ability to load your own samples. Korg has not communicated how many samples can be loaded into the hardware memory or how large it is. Since I see no memory slot, I assume that there is only internal memory. The samples can also be edited directly on the hardware with three parameters (attack, decay, tune).
Logue SDK Engine
Well, that’s not all. What makes the drumlogue so exciting is the digital synth part. This is based on the beloved logue SDK aka multi-engine (minilogue xd, prologue, NTS-1) but in an expanded version. According to the developers, it is now capable to load complete poly soft synths into the drum machine. So that you can also play directly
drumlogue ships with Nano, a new virtual analog Synthesizer developed in cooperation with the Ukrainian company Sinevibes. The genius developers of numerous great Korg plugins. Alternatively, you can load a multi-engine with VPM synthesis, a noise generator, or other custom algorithms. That will definitely be a festival of unique drum algorithms.
Then there is a multi-fx engine featuring reverb, delay, and master effects. This also has the mighty multi-engine at its core and can be equipped with any new algorithms. An exciting engine that promises a lot. Korg says that the most important sound-shaping parameters are directly accessible at any time via the clear control panel. The same applies to the individual volume controls for each of the 11 parts.
The sequencer is an essential part of a drum machine. According to Korg, the drumlogue’s sequencer is powerful, has 64 steps, a chain functionality, and offers numerous clever features for adding life to your tracks. Among other things, you can work with motion, add accent and use randomization.
The connections on a drum machine are just as important as the sequencer and Korg did a lot of things right here in my opinion. You get four assignable 6.3mm audio outputs and an audio input for routing external audio through the effects engine.
There is also a headphone input, sync in/out, MIDI in/out on classic DIN connectors, as well as a USB-MIDI host and device. This allows you to connect a MIDI controller or sequencer directly via USB. Big like for that.
From what I see and read it sounds like an exciting, modern drum machine. Above all, the digital multi-engine makes the device very tempting. I’m curious about which SDK-powered drum engines we will see in the future. I’m sure we’ll see a few more surprises.
How deep the individual engines are or how versatile the sequencer is, etc., I can’t say at this point. Korg didn’t send me a test unit for an advanced test. Nonetheless, I’m happy to see that the drumlogue has now made it to the finished product. Even in difficult times of chip crisis etc. And of course, there are countless YouTube videos to start with.
Korg drumlogue will be available in November/December 2022 for a price of 629€/$599,99 USD.
More information here: Korg
Available for pre-order here