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Novation A-Station


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Novation A-Station

Category:  Products / synthesisers / modeling synthesisers

Added: 24-Jul-01  |  Author: admin

New price: € 285.00 - 190.95  |   S/H price: Not listed

Novation A-Station

Update: 8/8/05: new version (with new colour scheme) has been out for a while

NOVATION A-Station, three oscillator virtual analog symthesizer with hands-on control, 12 band vocoder and pattern based arpeggiator, 8 Voices, 19" 1RU, 25 Knobs, Arpeggiator, Reverb, Chorus, Delay

Novation are releasing the new A-STATION rack in the autumn... It's slated for a recommended retail price of 399, so I'd expect it to have a street price of 349 pretty soon after release which seems to be the norm... still, even at full RRP, 400 quid looks very enticing - here's the pre-release info page from Novation.

Novation breaks into the entry-level synth market with the stunning new A-Station polyphonic synthesiser.

This new Synth has evolved from the classic Novation Bass Station, bringing in the very latest Novation technology from award winners such as the Nova and SuperNovaII. With up to 8 voice polyphony, the A-Station is the ideal machine for the first home set-up or for experienced professionals looking to add an extra dimension of controllable sound power.

Booming Oscillators

Its powerful Oscillators provide all the classic waveforms including a Sub Oscillator for those sub bass floor shaking grooves. Oscillators may be Syncd or utilise FM for the generation of metallic of percussive timbres. A continuously variable Noise Source from Blue through White and Red complete waveform engine. External Audio can be input and used as an Oscillator source waveform or processed through the Mixer, Filter and Envelope sections.

New Enhanced Novation warm Liquid Filters

The filters in the A-Station synthesiser represent the state of the Art in Filter design. They deliver the liquid sound of an Analogue Filter. Selectable Low-pass, 12dB or 24dB, cut-off curves with resonance and overdrive make it easy to faithfully recreate anything from a distorted TB303 to tightly rounded Bass patch.


The onboard 12 band Vocoder makes it easy to add those favoured Robot and Talky effects to your mix.

Immediate, Powerful and record-able control to get 'That Sound'

Novation is famed for its control over the synthesiser sound. The A-Station front panel is immediately satisfying with every sound shaping control clearly visible. Call up one of the superb 200 factory preset patches, tweak it to get your sound" and instant save it in the user Program locations. Naturally the A-Station has a comprehensive MIDI spec. Novation pioneered the MIDI control and the A-Station is no exception. All the knobs transmit MIDI Controllers for easy recording of any movements in real-time on a sequencer.

Powerful on board Effects

The A-Station features a powerful built in Effects processor section. The Distortion Effect can add the edge to harder sounds or at high levels of drive,can make a sound scream. The Stereo Chorus adds that important depth and swirl and the Reverb adds that expensive extra dimension and realism. The Stereo Panner that can be assigned to LFOs and Envelopes allows enhanced dynamic control of the stereo image and finally the Delay engine can add remarkable time synchronised repeats to the performance.

Pulse and Sync to the Beat

The two LFOs on the A-Station feature Random, Tri, Saw and Square waveforms with Speed and Delay parameters. The built in Arpeggiators Speed, Synchronisation, Sweep Range and Pattern parameters are stored with the program for instant recall. The Arpeggiator and both of the LFOs can be individually synchronised to MIDI Clock in different time signatures. Additionally the Arpeggiator and LFO 2 can also be synchronised to LFO 1 in different time signatures. Both these possibilities allow the creation of really complex audio motion effects. Trigger signals may be generated from the External Audio Input allowing the external signal to be processed automatically by the internal Filters and Envelope Generators without the need for MIDI note or Gate signals.


The A-Station delivers polyphonic sound quality that has to be heard to be believed. It is compact, versatile and creative, with the degree of control that will enable you to get "that sound" quickly and easily.

Waveform Square/ Saw / Pulse / Tri / Sine
ENV2 Depth -100% to +100%
LFO1 Depth -100% to +100%
PWM Source ENV2 / Manual / LFO2

Range 16 / 8 /4 / 2
Detune +/- 50 Cents
Semitone Adjust +12
Waveform Square / Saw / Pulse / Tri / Sine
ENV2 Depth -100% to +100%
LFO1 Depth -100% to +100%
PWM Source ENV2 / Manual / LFO2

Oscs Level Off-Osc1-Osc2
Sub Osc Level 0 100%
Noise Level 0 100%
FM Level 0 100%
External Input Level 0 100%

Frequency 5Hz - 24kHz
Resonance 0 - Self Oscillation (24dB mode)
LFO2 Depth -100% to +100%
ENV2 Depth -100% to +100%
% Keyboard Tracking 0 - 100%
Cut Off 12dB Oct / 24dB Oct Low Pass

Envelope 1
Attack 250uS - 20 Seconds
Decay 1mS - 20 Seconds
Sustain 0 - 100%
Release 1mS 20 Seconds

Envelope 2
Attack 500uS-20 Seconds
Decay 1mS-20 Seconds
Sustain 0-100%
Release 1mS 20 Seconds

Waveform Random / Tri / Saw / Squ
Speed 0 Hz 1Khz
Delay 0 5 Seconds
LFO Sync Internal MIDI

Waveform Random / Tri / Saw / Squ
Speed 0 Hz 1Khz
Delay 0 5 Seconds
LFO Sync Internal MIDI

Reverb Depth / Type
Chorus Depth / Speed / Type
Distortion Drive / Type
Panning Auto-Pan / LFO Sync / Manual
Delay Depth / Time / Feedback
Vocoder On Off / Sibilance Level

MIDI Sockets In / Out / Thru
Audio Input Line Level 2 x Mono Jack
Audio Output Line Level 2 x Mono Jack
Power 9 Volt A.C. 500 mA

Dimensions W=483mm H=44mm D= 10mm
Weight 1.6 Kg

Looks pretty good I must say, and ideal for those wanting the SuperNova sound on a budget, plus the vocoder looks VERY interesting!!.... comments please...

Product Manuals or Files

no user manual

Product Resources

User Comments

Product:  Novation - A-Station
Name: Brett B
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: part-timer
Date: 25-Jul-01

I would rather have the older analog filters of the bass/superbass station with all the added features from the nova. But with the price of a used nova only a few hundred more i would probably buy a nova anyway. Is it mono-timbral? You have the micro-q, virus rack, etc... why not a micro nova! Be nice if it had more than one part though.

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Product:  Novation - A-Station
Name: bastiaan
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Date: 27-Jul-01

It sure looks sexy...but isn't this just a cut down, 1u rack version of the nova? Oh wait, it has FM....hmmm it's more like a mixture of the nova and the bassstation....

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Product:  Novation - A-Station
Name: Jason Hall
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: part-timer
Date: 30-Sep-01

Wanted - Secondhand/nearly new Novation Bass Station Rackmount. London/South East

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Product:  Novation - A-Station
Name: G Ransom
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: Professional
Date: 18-Oct-01

I know it's part of marketing and profit maximisation to withold functionality on 'cut downs'.
There's no other excuse on a digital machine where the extra expense to manufacture is a few lines of software code.

No Band or High pass filters?
No 'Supersaw' stacked multiple sawtooth waveform?

As two features which are getting MUCH use in todays dance productions, this isn't a very forward thinking attempt at a synth.

At least Two parts would have been useful, else you'd be using the whole machine for mono bass or lead parts.

Look forward to hearing the filters though.

Except for the limited FM and effects;
An old MKS50 or the like does almost as much, for 200 - And it's analogue.

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Product:  Novation - A-Station
Name: Jason
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: Professional
Date: 13-Nov-01

so it sounds real nice. The actual price
wasaround $550 (US), so although it has
put me back substantially, I am not at
all unsure of the purchase. I've gotten
to use a virus before, as well as a
supernova I and II, and it definately
requires a bit of getting used to the
lesser number of advanced controls you
can view at once. The 2-digit screen
sucks too. I wouldn't have minded 1 or 2
less knobs for a screen enlargement.
Can't really beat the flexibility fo

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Product:  Novation - A-Station
Name: Rein
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: part-timer
Date: 30-Mar-03

For only 295,- this machine surely rocks. Its sounds are warm and full and do the job for your specific needs. There are of course a few backdrops like the tiny 2 digit display and the fact that it's monotimbral, but hey, I got it for just 295,-! Don't expect it to fullfill all your needs, but if you use it in combination with some other gear this cute machine definitely supplies you with the sound your searching for. Add up the very good vocoder and the FX, which by the way are really good, they don't just sit on top of the sound, but they really merge with the sound, and this is in my opinion a top buy!

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Last added comment

Product:  Novation - A-Station
Name: Shayne Schecht
Email: Email supplied but hidden
Activity: part-timer
Date: 22-Jun-06

Over the years I have played around with alot of different synths since the 70's, but have never owned one of my own. I have several of the software emulators, and they sound great, but there are problems that I just can not get past like system overhead, so I bought an A Station. I am not a great keyboard player, but I have been working on being a better player, and I love the sound of the old analogue synths. I didn't want to spend a fortune on my first, but I wanted something that I could manipulate and pull the fat lead tones out of that was reminicent of the old Moogs, ARPs and Korgs. I already had an M-Audio Keystation 61es that I had bought to use as a trigger for my drum machine, as well as working on my playing using the software synths, and the hardware synth on my soundcard. I looked at several different modules, and most were just too pricey. The A Station listed at 699 USD, but was priced at 249 USD at Guitar Centre in Hollywood. After researching it online, I decided that this was the one I wanted.

I plugged it in, dove into the spaghetti pile of midi and audio cables in my studio, hooked it up to my keyboard and a practise amp, and it worked without a hitch! At first I had a minor complaint with the obvious steps when I adjusted certain controls, but after updating the OS to the most current, that was solved. I rang tech support to get some information on the upgrade, and Oliver, the agent was VERY helpful and gave me some great info and directed me to some good resources. That is what tech support should be like with every company. He also recommended MidiOX, and it has been an invaluable tool.

The preset sounds are great, and with a little tweaking and experimenting, I managed to create some patches that were exactly what I had been looking for to use with different material I was working on. It took a little work trying to figure out how to save modified patches, but after one or 2 attempts, it became a cinch. Accessing some of the effects and such could be a little less complicated, but if the patches are all set up before performance time, it becomes a non issue. The vocoder is a major plus. Works great, and does some cool vocal effects. The built in effects also work great on my guitar. Better than some of the dedicated effects I spent a bundle on.

I loaded a couple new patches that were on the Novation site, and there was some good stuff there. I did load a bank that overwrote all of the presets and the patches that I did, but the recovery process was easy and I was back where I wanted to be in minutes.

I can deal with the 2 digit display (altho a 3 digit would be nice) since I am used to that type of thing, and have gotten the hang of the flashing bank indicator.

I would DEFINITELY recommend this unit to synth freaks that love the fat old synth tones, and to players who are looking for a reasonably priced professional synth that has alot of great features, and is very tweakable. Also good for newbies that want to jump into the world of MIDI.

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