Novation Bass Station II Analog Synthesizer

25-key Analog Synthesizer with Two Filter Types, Two Oscillators, One Sub-oscillator, Pattern-based Step Sequencer/Arpeggiator, and Aftertouch
5/5 22 Write review Item ID: BassStation2
Novation Bass Station II Analog Synthesizer image 1
Novation Bass Station II Analog Synthesizer image 1
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Novation Bass Station II Analog Synthesizer
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After Two Decades, the Bass Station is Back

The Novation Bass Station II 25-key monophonic analog synthesizer is a powerful reminder of Novation's legacy of synth prowess. As the name implies, the Bass Station II is primed for gut-grabbing bass sounds, employing two oscillators plus a sub-oscillator for foundation-shaking sonics. You'll find it's primed for leads and hypnotic arpeggiations too, and you can seriously mangle your sounds in real-time with distortion and FM effects. With an array of hands-on controls and a huge analog sound, you'll be inspired as soon as you get your hands on the Novation Bass Station II.

Novation Bass Station II 25-key Monophonic Analog Synthesizer at a Glance:
  • The right ingredients for epic, expressive sounds
  • Get creative with built-in arpeggiator and step sequencer
  • Two filter designs for two very distinct sounds
The right ingredients for epic, expressive sounds

While the Bass Station II packs the bread-and-butter synthesis controls to create a wide range of leads, pads, and effects, it's primed for heavy-hitting bass. Two main oscillators can be hard-synced for tighter, more punchy tones. And a sub-oscillator is on hand to fill out the bottom end. And because its 25-note keyboard supports aftertouch, you'll find it easy to really put some expression in your performances.

Get creative with a built-in arpeggiator and step sequencer

When you switch on the Bass Station II's arpeggiator you can choose from 32 different rhythmic patterns in different directions, with control over the octave range. You can also play up to four of your own patterns into the step sequencer, and play them back using one of the 32 rhythms. The step sequencer records legato and rests too, so you can create more expressive sequences on the fly than you can with simple note on/off sequencers found on some synths.

Two filter designs for two very distinct sounds

The Bass Station II packs two discrete filter designs, each with an overdrive circuit for seriously distorted tones. The "Classic" filter is based on the original Bass Station synth, giving you LPF, HPF, and BPF modes. The "Acid" filter is a diode ladder design that can get very squelchy - think 303 and you've got the idea.

Novation Bass Station II 25-key Monophonic Analog Synthesizer Features:
  • Monophonic analog synthesizer keyboard primed for huge bass sounds
  • Two discrete filter designs give you two distinct flavors to create your sounds
  • Dual oscillators can be hard-synced for tighter, punchier bass
  • Sub-oscillator with square, sine, and narrow pulse-width waveforms adds rich, full low end
  • Dedicated knobs and faders, and aftertouch allow for very expressive performances
  • 64 factory presets, 64 user slots
  • Built-in arpeggiator and step sequencer with 32 different rhythmic patterns
  • "LFO Slew" feature lets you distort the LFO waveforms for more modulation possibilities
  • External input for processing line-level audio signals
  • Powered by AC or USB bus power
The Novation Bass Station II is a versatile synth for bass, leads, and more!

Additional Media

Novation Previews Bass Station II
Musikmesse 13: Novation Announces Bass Station II

Tech Specs

Sound Engine Type(s) Analog
Number of Keys 25
Type of Keys Synth Action, Aftertouch
Other Controllers Pitchbend, Mod Wheel
Polyphony Monophonic
Number of Presets 64
Number of Effects 2
Effects Types Distortion, Oscillator FM
Arpeggiator Yes
Audio Inputs 1 x TRS
Audio Outputs 2 x TRS, 1 x Headphones
USB 1 x Type B
Pedal Inputs 1 x Sustain
Power Supply AC/USB
Height 2.5"
Width 18"
Depth 10.625"
Manufacturer Part Number NOVSYNTH03ULJP

Customer Reviews

Based on 22 reviews
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Yep, it rocks

Great sounds and flexibility, Saves patches! Not just for bass. Also, special shout out to Jimmy for always taking care of me. You rock!
Music background: Pro

What can we say?.... cannot find a better deal. The POWER and USEFULNESS of the pre-loaded patches... The full richness of this small unit! Use a MIDI keyboard if the 2 octaves ain't enough. This thing is a steal at this price considering its capabilities. You will NOT regret this modest purchase! It is truly, truly a thick synth monster!
Music background: Multi-Instrumentalist, old-timer, Analog-lover, home studio geek.

An Amazing Mono

Over the last 20+ years, I've owned and played a variety of different analog mono synths, including an Arp Odyssey, Micro Moog, Realistic Concermate, DSI Mopho, Moog Slim Phatty, and a Minibrute. I don't like any of those as much as as I do the Bass Station II. I mainly play ambient/Berlin school style electronic music, also influenced by the Cluster/Nue crew. I prefer softer tones on my synths, like bubbling LFO modulation, random sequence patterns, and gooey bass, and the BSII handles these kinds of sounds wonderfully. The synth's tone can be warm, soft, and subtle. However, that's not to say that it can't also be aggressive and harsh, because it can, especially when you turn up the distortion f/x. I've heard some people call this sound "generic" and in some ways I agree with that point. The BSII does not have a super unique sound like the Moogs, nor is it as idiosyncratic as the Minibrute. It's more of a bread and butter mono - it does a little bit of everything, and does it all very well. While it is light, and the body is made of plastic, it still feels very well built. The knobs are all bolted onto the body, the sliders feel good, the pitch wheel is sturdy, and the keys have good synth action. The switches feel a little cheep, and I wish the outputs around the back were also bolted to the body. Rounding out my small list of complaints/concerns - I wish the mod wheel had a little more resistance; it's loose and easy to bump into an unwanted position. At this price point, there isn't a better mono synth with keys around. I'd easily recommend this over the Slim Phatty, a synth almost twice the price. Right now I'm using the BSII along side my Slim Phatty, OP-1, Fender Rhodes, and iPad (running Thor and Nave), along with a variety of delay effects including the Strymon El Capistan, Digitech Timebender, and Roland RE-20. The BSII sits wonderfully in the mix, adding interesting textures and timbres that are fun to play, exciting to create, and a joy to listen to.
Music background: Recording Artist

A huge amount of functionality for tiny price

I have an original bass-station that regularly finds use, despite its age. I love the simplicity of design, the warm fuzzy filter, and the uncluttered interface. It was a great little simple, low-end analog. I recently decided to update to the new Bass Station, having perused its stats online, and been reasonably impressed by what it offered. I ordered it about a week ago, and it arrived in CA in 5 days. I'm quite prone to buyer's remorse, so I was trying to lower my expectations. I unboxed it, and within minutes... wow. This is a HUGE leap forward. I can't think of another analog synth with such a feature-packed gallery of sound-shaping abilities anywhere near this price. It is immense. The addition of the sub-osc alone takes the bass to earth-shattering depths. I know other synths have this feature, but it's a variable waveform sub-osc, and it's on top of 2 additional oscillators! I'm a fan of the original Bass Station filter. It seems as lovely as ever - with a wider range than before, from warm and fuzzy to brutal if you turn up the res and the overdrive. The welcome addition of sync allows you to create classic 'Cars' style leads (of course), or wobbly dub-steppy ripping mid-range sounds. The arpeggiator and the variety of rhythms (with a handy 'latch') makes it really easy to go into full-on acid mode with minimal effort, especially when combined with the 'Acid' filter. The keyboard feels surprisingly nice, and has both velocity and *aftertouch* (yup - you heard right). Even the pitch and mod-wheels feel great. I love the fact that all the more obscure parameters are within easy reach, too (I hate menu-diving). Press Function, the appropriately labelled key, and then alter the value with the arrow keys by the digital display. Done. Two mode filter? Check. Patch memory? Yessir - a ton of slots. LP, BP, HP options? Yup (on the BS filter, at least). Audio-rate filter modulation? Indeedy (holy cow)! I could go on and on. I listen to a lot of synth-based bands, and this little beastie deserves to become the new, ubiquitous synth seen at every gig. It sounds great, looks great, is really easy to use and - especially at this price - blows the competition away in every regard. The only negative thing so far is that there's no CV out (I have a modular, too), but... that's a real stretch-pick. I don't normally review stuff I buy. I certainly don't tend to write hyperbolic, super-positive reviews. I mean, who believes those? In this case, I feel like I have to make an exception, because this synth deserves a *lot* of love. If you're looking for a small, light, super-feature-packed, accessible, fun synth, give it a look.
Music background: Game-music creator, hobbyist

Exceeds Expectations

This is a great analog synth which allows you to adjust just about everything on the fly. The bass sounds are great, and the arpeggiator is very flexible. I am new to the synth game, but this has given me the sounds I was seeking, and more.
Music background: Composer and multi-instrumentalist

Sweetwater Advice

Bart Good

I own the Novation Bass Station II, and continue to be amazed by how nice the patches are. I've never encountered such an easy-to-use and amazing-sounding analog synth for so little money! Also, this is not just for bass sounds - there are plenty of sounds that can be used for lead and melody as well. It always triggers my inspiration and creativity, which is such an important attribute for a musical instrument to have.

Carson McClain

This is a completely different beast than the original Novation Bass Station, having been designed for today's desktop production and live performance. If classic 80s and 90s sounds are what you're looking for, this is a bargain!

Chris Nunley

Having the Bass Station II in my studio is a must! The bass sounds can be modified to fit any genre of music, the lead sounds can tear through any mix, and the arpeggiator is the easiest I have ever used, making live performance a breeze. Just dial in your sound or preset and select record. This synth is a great tool to have, not only for electronic musicians but for any band or songwriter looking to enhance their sound.

Shelby Strunk

Having an extensive background in live sound and recording, for me, the sound is the most important part of any instrument, and this synthesizer impressed me right out of the gate. After diving into the Novation Bass Station II's extensive functions, I found the sound-creation possibilities virtually limitless. It's everything I look for in a synth!

Jon Faloon

I purchased the Novation BassStation II and was immediately impressed with its wide array of sounds and creative nuances. I also found it to be incredibly intuitive and organized in a way that made it easy to make changes on the fly. The built-in arpeggiator and step sequencer are the best I've used to date, and this is definitely my go-to synthesizer when I play live with other musicians or when I record leads or bass sounds in the studio.
See also: Novation, Novation Synthesizers