Stylophone CPM DS-2: That’s no Stylophone, it’s an Analog Drone Synth


stylophone ds2 128x71 1Stylophone CPM DS-2: That’s no Stylophone, it’s an Analog Drone Synth

Stylophone DS-2

In a very unexpected move, Stylophone introduces the first in the Compact Portable Modular range of synths: the DS-2 Analog Drone Synthesizer.


How is this a Stylophone product? I mean, we were impressed with the Theremin box it revealed the other day, but it was still very much in a Stylophone style. This is something else, something fruity, something exciting, but is it what we want from such a classic company?

The DS-2 is a drone synthesizer with a pair of 3340-based analogue oscillators providing the bedrock of sound. These are accompanied by a pair of sub-oscillators and then feed into a pair of 3320-based high and low-pass filters. Stylophone is aiming for a classic sound here. You have a very versatile LFO with lots of waveforms and destinations to mess things about before falling into the mixer section and enjoying a pair of effects.

The oscillators feature variable waveshape with pulse width modulation, cross modulation and hard sync. The AL3021-based Reverb has eight algorithms in mono or stereo, and the PT2399-based Delay can also suffer at the hands of the LFO.

Stylophone did this?

The DS-2 is Eurorack compatible and has twelve patch points along with a pair of stereo outputs and auxiliary input. What is a bit more Stylophone-like is the inclusion of a built-in speaker and the ability to run it off batteries. Now that’s a bit more like it! But you can free it from the slightly weird-looking case and drop it into your modular system. I’m assuming it won’t mind if you send it a bit of sequenced 1v/Oct action into the Pitch input on the oscillators.

Stylophone DS-2

Stylophone DS-2

Stylophone has dallied in the past with more advanced synthesizers. The Gen R-8 offered something gnarly and interesting but felt a bit cheap and didn’t seem to fly. The S-2 looked fascinating but somehow never seemed to find its feet. Stylophone always seems to return to what it knows best – quirky little stylus synths. However, this looks rather fabulous and maybe Stylophone are about to hit on a vibe that really works for them. Everything about it is vintage, from the chips to the effects, and judging by the video, it sounds great. The only thing that slightly disappoints me is the styling. It’s all right, but they could and leaned into their classic 70s look a bit more.

Preorders are open; you only have to sign up on the Stylophone website. The price will be in the region of £209/€239/£259.

  • Stylophone website.
  • More from Stylophone/Dubreq.

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