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Waldorf Q Synth


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Waldorf Q Synth

Category:  Products / synthesisers / sample synthesisers

Added: 16-Feb-00  |  Author: admin

New price: US$ RRP 2,900  |   S/H price: Not listed

Waldorf Q Synth

Released in keyboard form in 1999 for £2199 GBP, with the follow up rack version arriving a year later in 2000, the Waldorf website says of the Q: "A German speciality since 1999 - and still one of the most powerful virtual-analog synthesisers in its class. Not least because its operating system has been regularly updated to keep features and performance up to date. Q’s sound design abilities and its user-friendly design are simply outstanding. Here’s why: Its recipe combines ingredients like the legendary PPG-filter, a 25-band vocoder, wavetable generators including sub-oscillators, surround delay effects, comb-filter and a whole lot more."


The upside of the Q according to owners, is the constant OS support & updates, but on release the Q Keyboard was incredibly buggy & pretty much un-usable, leaving SoS magazine to conclude: "The May SOS preview was originally planned as a full review, but -- even ignoring the bugs and crashes -- the operating system at that point was too unfinished to make this realistic"


However Waldorf kept at it with OS release after OS release and today it's a revered instrument



Old dancetech listings text

The 'Q' is a well rated 16-voice synthesizer with a 61-note velocity and aftertouch keyboard ... It has 58 controller knobs for lots of hands on programnming... and they all send midi...


3 oscillators Per voice, with sync and FM... you get 2 ring modulators, 3 LFO's, a noise generator, multi-mode filters and a stereo mixer also. You also get two effects per sound....


If you want the 'Q' to play different parts with different sounds, then the 'Q' provides 4 part multi-mode plus a drum part with drum synth algorithms...


Each part/sound also has access to a programmable arpeggiator...


You can also expand the 'Q' with more parts & voices (poly)...


The 'WALDORF-Q-16 Q-Voice Expansion' costs an rrp of (US$) 500-ish and expands the unit by another 16 voices to create a 32-note poly, 96-oscillator, 64-filter mega-synth..!!! ...blimey !!... tell you, this synth is WELL rated for the wierd and wonderful... these things will give you harsh and lush, strange and evolving etc... very potent...


any owners?.. comments welcome.. maybe you think it's not so hot?.. mebbe the earth moved for you?... do tell !!... wish I had one tho..


here's some spec's, and i did see a luverlee looking Blue one somewhere on the web... in fact doesnt it come in deep-red too???... here's some spec's list




  • 4 part multi timbral
  • multi editing (all 4 sounds at once)
  • 300 single programs
  • 100 multi programs
  • 100 step sequencer patterns
  • 58 endless dials
  • 39 buttons for editing
  • 2 x 20 character display
  • 5 octave keyboard
  • 1 Pitch Bend Wheel
  • 1 Modulation Wheel
  • 2 Control Buttons
  • 6 analog outputs (3 stereo outs)
  • 2 analog inputs (1 stereo in)
  • 1 S/PDIF output (44.1kHz / 48kHz switchable)
  • MIDI In/Out/Thru
  • 2 Switch Inputs (e.g. Sustain Pedal, Gate In etc.)
  • 2 CV Inputs (e.g. Foot Pedal, external controller etc.)
  • built-in universal voltage power supply
  • color Sahara


Parameters Per Voice:

  • minimum 16 voices, expandable to 32 voices
  • 3 Oscillators per voice
    • Pulse with Pulse Width Modulation
    • Sawtooth
    • Triangle
    • Sine
    • new oscillator algorithms
    • waves


  • Noise generator
  • Ring Modulators
  • Mixer with Balance, each signal source (oscillator, noise, ringmod, external audio material) can be balanced individually between filter 1 and filter 2


  • 2 Filters, different types, all including FM and distortion
    • Low Pass (12dB/24dB)
    • Band Pass (12dB/24dB)
    • High Pass (12dB/24dB)
    • Notch (12dB/24dB)
    • Comb Filter
    • sin x Waveshaper
    • etc.


  • Modulation Matrix with 16 slots, freely routable
  • Pre-routed Modulation destinations, sources selectable
  • modulation update frequency in audio range to allow the oscillators to be used as modulation sources
  • 4 Modifiers
  • Arpeggiator with user pattern, including accents, timing information, swing, glide, chords and more
  • Step Sequencer with 32 steps, polyphonic, different controller values per step
  • 3 LFOs up to audio range (> 1000 Hz)
  • 4 envelopes, enhanced ADSR configuration with loop and one shot function, bipolar
  • different trigger modes for each envelope, poly, mono, dual, unisono, manual trigger etc.
  • 2 individual high-quality effects per sound, each sound keeps its effects in multi mode


  • Effect Types:
    • Chorus
    • Flanger
    • Phaser
    • Overdrive
    • AM
    • Delay
    • Reverb

Product Manuals or Files

no user manual

Product Resources

User Comments

Product:  Waldorf - Q Synth
Name: Subtex
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: part-timer
Date: 28-Mar-00

Just received my Q rack yesterday in the mail..So far I can say it is a really nice synthesizer with tons of sound capibilities..Soundwise it sounds like a cross between the microwave and pulse..it seems like the possibilities are endless....

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Last added comment

Product:  Waldorf - Q Synth
Name: Frederik Heringa
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: Professional
Date: 26-Sep-02

The Q is great !
It has it's own specific timbre that comes back in all the sounds you create.
Don't buy this synth as your only synth.
Don't buy any synths as your only synths (except if you are in a rock band).

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