Flame showed a prototype of their first desktop synthesizer at the NAMM show 2019. The Mäander (with umlaut) as it is called comes as a surprise to us. A good one. In every way!

Thanks to its digital oscillator, an offspring of the 4Vox Eurorack module with four voices of four wavetable oscillators each, the Mäander is capable of generating an astonishing spectrum of sounds. Huge basses, velvety soft to metallic leads and pads as well as a wide range of effect sounds can be created in no time. The highlight of the instrument is its flexibly controllable, fully analog filter bank with twelve bands and eight filter types. In detail, you can find high-pass, three band-pass, notch and low-pass modes as well as combinations thereof. Also this filterbank has a Eurorack sibling – the Flame Curves. Here at NAMM we obtained very articulated, vocal-like sound results through this. Something that left us very impressed. A synth-architecture like this demands many modulation sources:  two LFOs with variable shape as well as sync, re-trigger and one shot modes, an ADSR envelope plus a nifty live sequencer are all integrated. The latter is more of a complex, yet easy to handle arpeggiator generating up to four “notes” and up to twelve filter channel tracks. Here we go!

Being a fusion of all the unusual concepts Flame presented over the past years, the Mäander surely will be an extraordinary instrument.  It also reminds us of a little bit of the Syntonovo PAN. But unlike this synth, which continues to be in “concept phase”, the Mänder will be available in May 2019. We can’t wait to give it a proper test drive!