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Vermona is an analogue synthesizer and effect maker based out of Germany; they’ve been turning heads since their emergence in the early 2000s. Vermona was the East German brand that produced electronic music instruments during the GDR, but dissolved when the GDR fell. Bernd Haller, the designer of the GDR’s only analogue synthesizer, and two other former Vermona employees founded their own electronics company in the 1990s and began working on designs for new musical equipment. Their first product, MARS (Monophonic Analogue Rack Synthesizer) was acclaimed for its power, sound, and affordability, and set a precedent of quality and construction they’ve only improved upon in the years since. Vermona only deals in analogue circuits, providing a friendly physical interface and warmth the digital world is still trying to emulate. Their products are always innovative yet practical, never sacrificing usability while still finding new ways to interact with and be inspired by technology.
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REVIEW: PerFourMer MKii ($1350)
The PerFourMer MKii is an expansion of Vermona’s popular but discontinued PERfourMER synthesizer. The MKii is a single rack-mountable desktop unit that combines four discrete monophonic analogue synthesizers that each has a VCO, VCA, LFO, ADSR envelope generator, and resonant low pass filter. Having separate synth circuits built into one box opens up a wide range of sounds and makes the MKii incredibly expressive and useable, as you can choose to play it polyphonically, duophonically, or monophonically. Though separate, the oscillators can still interact through frequency and filter modulation as well being synced with each other. Each synthesizer channel has an input that can be used to replace the oscillator as the sound source, turning the MKii into a complex filter bank with four filter sections, four VCAs, four envelopes, and four LFOs. With so much power it may seem intimidating, the PerFourMer MKii was designed to be straightforward and easy-to-use by making all the parameters easily accessible and identifiable, leaving the path clear for experimentation and exploration into its deep palette of sound.