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Formanta Polivoks Analog Synthesizer

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The Polivoks (also occasionally referred to as the Polyvox) (Rus.: Поливокс) is a duophonic, analog synthesizer manufactured and marketed in the Soviet Union between 1982 and 1990. It is arguably the most popular and well known Soviet synthesizer in the west, likely due to the uniqueness of both its appearance and sound.

The Polivoks has some features that are either unusual or uncommon on most analog mono synthesizers including a filter that can be switched from low pass to bandpass and two envelopes that can be looped over the AD sections.

Due to its unique history and relative rarity, the Polivoks has become popular as much for its unique sounds as for its aesthetics. It is often used by bands who take inspiration from the Soviet chic movement, as well as the ostalgie phenomenon in the former East Germany.

Technical Specifications
Type: Analog
Synthesis: Subtractive
Oscillators: 2
Waveforms: Pulse Variable, Saw Up, Square, Triangle
Envelopes: 2
Evelope Paramerters: Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release
Filters: 1
Types: Band Stop, Low Pass
LFO: 1
LFO Parameters: Noise, Sample & Hold, Saw Up, Triangle
Polyphony & Tuning
Polyphony: 2
Timbrality: 1
Tuning: Standard
Modes: Duophonic, Mono
Case: Keyboard
Keyboard: 49 keys, Non-weighted, Plastic
Controls: Buttons, Knobs, Pedal - Volume
Dimensions (WxDxH): 780 x 490 x 195 mm
Weight: 18 Kg
Audio Output Connections: 1/4" Phone Jack, Mono Out
Audio Output Count: 1
Inputs: 1/4" input
CV Ports: CV IN, Gate In
Power: 220V AC
Year Released: 1982
Year Discontinued: 1990
Units Made: 25,000
Used By
Franz Ferdinand, KanZer, Goldfrap, Kuba Kristo
Design Notes:

The Polivoks was designed at the Urals Vector plant, but actual production was handled at the Formanta Radio Factory in Kachkanar, Russian SFSR. It was intended to appear and sound similar to American and Japanese synthesizers from companies such as Roland, Moog, and Korg. The Polivoks was engineered by circuit designer Vladimir Kuzmin with the appearance of the instrument influenced by his wife Olimpiada,[2] who took inspiration from the design of Soviet military radios. Its retail price upon release was 920 rubles and over its lifetime around 100,000 Polivoks were manufactured - sometimes with a production rate of up to 1,000 units a month.
Manuals & Documents
Patch Sheet
Retail Street Price: 920 rubles - convert
Used Price: $800 - $1,500 - convert
References & Sources

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