1 Alto Live 1604
This 16 channel desk can record 12 sources and has compression on the first six channels, four aux channels for outboard FX, an extensive effects section, four stereo channels and three band EQ and USB connectivity so you can record your master channel into your DAW.
£299, buy here.
2 Roland TR-08 Rhythm Composer drum machine
The legendary drum machine, the 808, is reborn with an analogue modelling digital engine. It’s much smaller, and has modern twists like USB (carrying audio and midi). If you can’t wait, Behringer has released an analogue homage to the 808 with filters and compression, too.
£289, buy here.
3 Modal Electronics Skulpt
British company Modal’s latest syth serves those on a budget and is a portable, four-voice, DSP-based poly-synth. For such a small machine it can make big sounds thanks to its two oscillators, each with four stacked for a total of eight per voice (32 in total).
£249, buy here.
4 Korg Monologue
These days the market for affordable mono synths is crammed with quality entries. Our pick is Korg’s Monologue, a sister to the similarly feature-stacked, affordable Minilogue; it’s a modern analogue monster. Korg’s Volca range is also worth checking, their latest FM synth another gift for the budget-conscious.
£215, buy here.
5 Behringer Neutron
Here, Behringer detour from emulating synth classics to deliver one of their own, the Neutron. It has an extensive 32 in/24 out patch bay, a delay, overdrive, a noise generator, a flexible LFO with five waveform shapes, MIDI clock sync and key sync to name just a few of its many features.
£297, buy here.