iMono/Poly launched – Korg bring another classic synth to the iOS platform

Download from iTunes App StoreKorg have an impressive legacy in the world of the synthesizer starting way back when with some innovative hardware designs. And while they still make (and recreate classic synths) in hardware, they have also embraced the software synth.

Over recent years that has included iOS and, amongst the more recent releases are apps such as ARP ODYSSEi, iM1, iWaveStation and iDS-10. They have also released the excellent Gadget (now ported to OSX) and Module, there flagship iOS sample-based virtual instrument. It’s an impressive suite of apps.

Korg’s hardware Mono/Poly synth is a classic from the 1980s…..

…. and now we have another one. Launched today is iMono/Poly and no surprisies for guessing that it is a software recreation of Korg’s classic early 1980s hardware synth, the Mono/Poly. The Mono/Poly was a popular analog synth with 4 VCOs giving a 4-note polyphonic options or the choice of stacking them for a rich mono synth mode. The hardware filter had plenty of character and a combination of 2 envelope generators, 2 LFOs for modulation duties and a neat arppeggiator made for powerful, and portable, performance synth. The synth is still used today by acts such as the Chemical Brothers but it has appeared on countless electronic music tracks over the years.

… and now recreated as an iOS synths with some added extras (such as the XY pads shown here).

Anyway, we now have the synth recreated in an iOS app. You get all the features of the original hardware modelled as closely as possible but, of course, also get some additional modern touches such as two multi-effects engines, a system for eight virtual patches, XY pads and, if I’ve understood the details right, many more modulation options than the original hardware. It looks, and sounds, great but check out the trailer demo from Korg below for a brief listen.

As well as all the elements of the original, Korg have added a whole range of very useful modern touches to iMono/Poly to bring the workflow up to date.

As with other Korg iOS synths, if you purchase the main app, iMono/Poly will then also become available as a new gadget within Gadget. In this case, it appears under the title of Montpellier. It will be interesting to see how Korg respond to the rapid development of support for AU under iOS. All their major iOS synths obviously operate as ‘plugins’ (gadgets) within Gadget (and, under iOS, all the gadgets are available as plugins for hosting in other DAW/sequencers other than Gadget). Whether we will see the likes of iMono/Poly popping us as AU plugins in Cubasis or AUM, for example, remains to be seen. I do hope so though…..

You can still seek out the original hardware but, for a working model in good condition, I’ve sen them price well upwards of US$1500 (eek!). In app form, iMono/Poly is launched at a somewhat more manageable price of £19.99/US$19.99, 1/2 off what will be the eventual price as an incentive for early adopters. The app requires iOS9.3 or later and an iPhone 5s/iPad Air or newer are recommended.

iMono/Poly will also function as a gadget within Gadget…..

Korg continue to impress with the iOS music app collection. If you are looking for some classy iOS music apps to add to your collection, then do check out the original reviews of their other flagship iOS music apps Gadget, Module, iM1 and, of course, ARP ODYSSEi. They are all excellent and, while not the cheapest iOS music apps that you can buy, they most certainly offer excellent value for money.

A full review will follow as soon as I have had a proper explore….  However, if you are an avid iOS synth head – and a lover of classic synths delivered as cheap-as-chips apps – then watch the iMono/Poly demo video and prepare to hit the App Store download button while that special launch price holds :-)


Download from iTunes App Store

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    1. Instant buy.

    2. Hi Jon, thanks for the news,
      Do you know if it is modeled on the hardware as is the iOdissey, or if it is a simple copy paste from thier Old vst?

    3. Robert Goldberg says:

      What is a virtual patch? Tx.

    4. Maestro KÜHL says:

      The demo does no credit for this synth. It’s incredible. An instant buy. The sounds are so beautiful and versatile that this promise to be a workhorse. IAA and AB3 plus core midi is more than satisfactory, but how hard can it be to make new synths auv3 compatible? I mean… even the developer in my backyard masters the implementation of audio unit. This is Korg, a multimillion company. No excuses please.
      However – this beauty is forgiven because of its instant appeal. It also works in Gadget.
      Thanks Korg.

      • I do have Korg Gadget, I like it but it’s falling out of favour with me recently and this is due, in part, to the lack of AU compatibity. I think korg would know how to implement AU but probably for commercial reasons they don’t want to. It is a shame. But I’ll now pass on making any investment if it doesn’t have AU.

        • Hi All…. it will be interesting to see how Korg eventually approach AU. It is, of course, taking a good grip within iOS now… but Gadget, like Reason on the desktop until relatively recent times, is an ‘all-in-one’ closed environment. In essence, it offers all the key tools you need to make your music without needing to venture outside…. Some folks do, undoubtedly, like this approach; it’s streamlined and, with everything coming from one developer, it generally means fewer issues of compatibility. On the other hand, it makes it that much more difficult to bring in that killer app (or three) that you use and love that is not part of the Korg universe….

          Korg are not the only popular iOS developer yet to take on AU though…. and it’s interesting to speculate about the (probably various) reasons why that might be. However, if any of them are technical rather than commercial, here’s hoping iOS 11 (and any further tweaks it brings to the audio/AU feature set) can put those to bed…..

          Best wishes, John

    5. Another synth. Making synth sounds. Still my beating heart. And, no AU3. Outstanding. It’s a good example of why I recently deleted Gadget. I’d rather spend time and money with developers who want to move with the times.

      • Gadget is my favourite tool for music making on iPad. Sure it has no AU at this stage but I find it much easier to create tracks from start to finish.

        But yes… I have a lot of great synths that obviously don’t work with gadget so I’m forced to try and create with Cubasis. Cubasis is great for a traditional DAW brought to tablet but I find traditional DAW uninspiring.

        I’m hoping I can decipher Beatmaker 3.

        I have all the other Gadget synths but I’m holding off on this one because I don’t know really what it brings that’s special. Yes, agree it should be AU because it has the standalone element.

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