Cre8Audio has made a name for itself by building dirt-cheap Eurorack gear, putting what has traditionally be an extraordinarily expensive endeavor — building modular synth — in the reach of mere mortals. Now it's branching out to self-contained semi-modular synthesizers with the East Beast.
As the name implies, the East Beast is an east coast style synthesizer. In short it features a big sounding oscillator and a resonant filter for tone shaping. Those two particular components were built with help of the analog weirdos over at Pittsburgh Modular. The filter is a multi-mode design with high, low and bandpass options. The PGH filter is also lauded for its lack of "dead zones". And the oscillator has sine, triangle, saw, and square waves, along with pitched noise, that can be combined.
Of course and filter and oscillator alone do not a synth make. There's also a VCA, an envelope generator, an LFO, a 32 step sequencer and a digital multi-mode tool that can be an extra envelope, LFO or a random generator. It also has an arpeggiator and even a playable (but rudimentary) keyboard.
Of course, an analog synth with all those features isn't that unheard of. What makes the East Beast exciting is that it includes all of that, and a 20 point patch bay, for just $250. Being able to get something that, at least on paper, seems like a shrunken Moog Mother 32 for less than half the price is stunning.
There are still a lot of unanswered questions. But, considering that you can also take the East Beast out of its case and slap it in a Eurorack system, means this one of the most affordable ways to get into modular synthesis.
The Cre8Audio East Beast is available to pre-order now and should start shipping by the end of May.