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Moog Sub Phatty Analog Synthesizer Reviews

5.0 stars based on 25 customer reviews
Questions about the Moog Sub Phatty Analog Synthesizer?

Questions about the Moog Sub Phatty Analog Synthesizer?

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Sweetwater Advice

  • Nate Edwards

    Moog has done a beautiful thing in the Sub Phatty. Don't make the mistake of thinking that this is an "entry-level Voyager." The Sub Phatty is its own thing. The new oscillators (all analog, built in the USA like everything else Moog) have brightness, brilliance, and aggressiveness that the Voyager simply can't attain. The classic ladder filters maintain the mojo, and the simplified control panel and smaller chassis make it possible to build this synth at a really low price.

    Don't be fooled by its diminutive size; between the VST/RTAS/AU editor and the secret-ninja hidden functions accessible via button combinations on the front panel, you have a really huge breadth of sounds at your disposal.

    Bring it into your DAW through a nice channel strip and you have instant access to that huge analog sound that you want. A perfect companion piece to other analog synths, and a major upgrade for any in-the-box studio.

  • Ian Lemberg

    This analog synth has a true analog sound and is packed full of features. The multidrive knob lets me make gritty and powerful sub bass. The two oscillators and ladder filter on board give me everything from amazing synth leads to low punchy bass lines.

  • Lucas Anderson

    The Moog Sub Phatty is the sound I've been hearing and trying to recreate using plug-ins but coming up short. Just a couple of hours after bringing the Moog SubPhatty to my studio, I'd filled up all four banks with sounds that were better than any I've been able to create before. This is the lethal weapon of synths!

  • Jordan Dean

    With years of music production and sound design experience under my belt, I regularly get ideas for great sounds particularly bass lines I just can't create with plug-ins. That's why I picked up a Moog Sub Phatty. Its simple design may make the learning curve easy, but more importantly, it lets me start dialing in sounds from the moment I put my hands on it. Just the same, this configuration is more than enough to lay down all the rich and powerful bass sounds I can imagine. On top of that, the MIDI over USB function lets this classic Moog-style analog synth fit perfectly into my modern DAW workflow.

  • Joe Copenhaver

    The sounds in the Moog Sub Phatty have a depth and flexibility like no other. The sub oscillator, which generates a deep square wave, adds low-end beef to my synth sounds when I need to craft searing bass lines. And the all-analog signal path and flexible input/output options made this synth an excellent addition to my sonic toolkit.

  • from Nashville, TN June 14, 2017Music Background:

    Fantastic All-Around Synth

    This synth sounds exactly as it should. Despite some reviews, it performs lead as well as great bass sounds. Definitely has the "Moog sound". Very inspiring and fun because of the one knob per function, and for the under the hood features, the editor is very easy to use. HIGHLY recommend

  • from HEMET, CA May 25, 2017

    The best Synthesizer

    MOOG has always been my favorite of all Synthesizers. I own Roland, Novation, KORG, Alesis etc.. Always loved MOOG for the simple ways to create sounds. It is not a Synthesizer for warm lush sounds but more for creating Bass and Leads. I recommend this to any one trying to learn about basic synthesizer knowledge. I have had a MOOG Prodigy and Polymoog and loved them. You won't be disappointed at all. No other synthesizers compare to the MOOG period.

  • from March 1, 2017

    my first love

    This was my gateway drug to synthesizers. It's still my go to synth for live performance, because it's so easy to use and sounds incredible. I can't believe how much you get for the small price too.

  • from Ohio September 29, 2016Music Background:
    Multi-Instrumentalist/Basement Studio Owner

    One Synth, Infinite Sounds

    I've had the Moog Sub Phatty for about 3 months now, and this synthesizer is absolutely amazing! You have complete control over every aspect of the sound, and after figuring out how everything works, you have an entire world of unique, distinct sounds at your fingertips. Theramin-esque lead tones? Check! Squelching Acid Bass? Check! Anything you could want from an analog synth and more? The Sub Phatty's got it! I could go on and on about the versatility of this thing, but to summarize: the Moog Sub Phatty is packed with sounds, has great tone, (not only in its amazing, fat, booming, bass tones but also its treble range,) and doesn't break your bank account in the process! If you're an Analog nerd like me, you will absolutely adore this synth, and if you're just looking for an excellent lead or bass synth to add to your sound, I would highly recommend the Moog Sub Phatty Analog Synthesizer. Thank you Moog for an incredible product, and thanks to Sweetwater for your amazing delivery time and customer service!

  • from NC September 13, 2016Music Background:
    Guitarist/ Amateur Synthisist

    Not Your Basic Chubby Synth

    Moog has outdone themselves yet again. This chunky lil thang has got some beef. You may look at the keyboard size and be like "What? 25 Keys?? What can I do with this." The answer? Make psychedelic masterpieces. Not only can you construct gorgeous smooth leads..This thing is a full blown analog bass synth! Extreme girth achieved when you pump the Multidrive knob, similar to an overdrive/ distortion or Overload on the MiniMoog I suppose. I do recommend plugging it into a bass amp, just to hear those real low frequencies it can emit. But wow oh wow... This thing is something else.

  • from Colorado October 20, 2015Music Background:
    Recording/touring musician


    This was my first 'big' keyboard purchase, and I am thrilled with it! Plugging this in for the first time reminded me of my first time playing through a tube amp and saying, "ahh, there it is!" I am inspired every time I sit down, and I get to explore like I do with my guitar pedalboard. The minimalistic memory bank is perfect for my purposes of playing live occasionally. Coming from the 'plastic world' of iPad apps, soft synths, and digital work stations, this finally feels authentic! Like grilling burgers over charcoal in your own backyard.

  • from Phoenix, AZ April 17, 2015Music Background:
    Synth Enthusiast

    Beautiful Beast

    A wide range of color and tone to get out this machine. You will not be disappointed. I recently got a KORG SQ-1 from Sweetwater to trigger the Sub Phatty as well, and i couldn't be happier with the combination of the two. It sounds amazing.

  • from December 14, 2014Music Background:
    Producer, DJ, Songwriter, Label owner, Recording Engineer, Professional Artist


    Ive been getting a huge amount of people asking for the preset and soft synth I used for some of my new records and mostly about "White Rabbit (deep house remix)" on Beatport. I always laugh and say "sub fatty baby".

    This piece of hardware is a must have for the real producers out there. Truly the sub fatty is a piece of fine art!

  • from Staten Island , NY August 6, 2014Music Background:

    Not just for bass lines !

    First off, there is nothing and I mean nothing that can compare to fAt analog synths! I traded in my Roland gaia and immediately noticed such a difference when compared to the moog sub. Surprisingly I use this synth for leads..and not just aggressive saw type stuff but by dialing back the multi drive I was able to create soft and creamy leads as well. Loving to play 70s prog, I was easily able to create some very reminiscent leads of yesteryear. To sum up, for the price you are not getting a stripped down synth. This has all you need to get rocking without sacrificing anything at all! Thank you moog and Sweetwater!

  • from San Tan Valley, AZ July 3, 2014Music Background:
    Electronic Music Producer

    Amazing product

    I have a few other analog synths, but none of them can create basslines like this one. There is so much attack and punch even with lower notes. The filter sweep is off the charts. One of my favorites features is being able to put the glide into legato mode so you can make the notes slide only when they overlap and not on ever single note. If this is the kind of quality to expect from Moog, I cannot wait to get my hands on the Sub 37.

    I replaced a bassline on an existing track of mine. Usually i have to add some filtering, compression, eq, etc... to get the sound i want. With the sub phatty i actually found myself removing these types of fx.

    All around a great buy and you cannot beat the price for this sound.

  • from June 30, 2014

    Great product excellt service

    Mike Baldonato
    Was super always avaliable and knowledge
    The moog sub phatty is a great of eletric art do fun and easy any one can play thanks again

  • from Sunnyvale, CA June 13, 2014

    This is a great synth

    This is a great sounding, rock solid unit. The hardware is built like a tank. Not a single glitch, click or pop yet. The software is also great. This is a very powerful machine. The analog nature of it is also very special.

    It starts up almost instantly. Ready to play in under 2 seconds. All controls are available via MIDI CC, which is very nice for sequencing.

  • from Park Forest, IL May 27, 2014Music Background:
    Pro Musician and Producer

    Honestly blown away!

    I have been playing Moog synthesizers on and off for the better part of almost three decades now. All of my previous experiences were pre-owned as I was a baby in the late seventies and happened upon them at pawn shops. My wife really surprised me and bought me one for my college graduation (late bloomer). I am blown away and not only by the raw analog sound but the build quality is top notch. Here is an instrument that will last years to come and with no shortage of uniquely original sounds. The bass is fat, the leads are creamy and the stabs are punchy not to mention great percussive sounds. I couldn't be happier, I am very excited to start using this in my productions. Also, a big thanks to Sweetwater for helping my wife with the purchase.

  • from Los angeles, CA April 29, 2014Music Background:

    My first Analog synth!!

    I've been using digital synth like Virus TI, Sylenth1 etc and always wanted to try an analog one. This Moog Sub Phatty is seems like the right one for me to start. The sound is truly great and the plugin that comes with it helps me a lot to understand it and control it in a DAW.

    I highly recommend it.

    Also, call Tyler Moore! He is the best! I have been getting gears from him for the past 3 years. He has been great.

  • from Massillon, Ohio February 12, 2014Music Background:
    Recoding Engineer,Producer, Live Pro Bass Player

    Best bass synth!!!

    I've been playing Bass for 40 years, back when bass was so deeep an gritty bass guitar players in the funk world bought all sorts of stomp boxes to try an emulate the sound. but when you found out it was that very expensive #1 keyboard the Minnie Moog, you would just step back and wish... Now that bass players are mulitasking and playing bass on any keyboard they could afford.Now that the sub phatty is here Boy! oh Boy! the 70's & 80's bass sound is affordable... thank u Sub Phatty....

  • from Sikeston, MO January 5, 2014Music Background:
    Producer, Composer

    Analog beauty, reloaded....

    I received a SUBPHATTY as a surprise Christmas gift from my wife - I was amazed and speechless!

    I think Moog has hit the "sweet spot" in terms of price/performance ratio. This synthesizer is everything analog should be. Ruggedly built, gorgeous sounding and infinitely tweakable. I'm inspired. Not just for electronica music styles either. I find myself adding a little analog warmth to just about every track I produce, sometimes it dominates, sometimes it subtly adds flavor. But always, always musical and fun.

    Now this synth is not for everyone. There is some work involved in mastering its inner workings. If you want something polyphonic with effects and lots of instantly recognizable synth sounds get a nice virus or something. But for someone seeking a truly rich, natural analog synth that is truly PLAYABLE in real time with unparalled EXPRESSIVITY then this is for you. The editor librarian software is great for storing the millions of patches you will create.

    Try it, you won't regret it.

    And here's a cool tip - I have it running through my TC electronic DITTO LOOPER at all times. Now, when inspiration strikes, I'm looping and buliding ideas seamlessly and then saving the results to my DAW!

    Well done MOOG! This is true MUSICAL INSTRUMENT, which can allow you to truly express yourself in your own unique way.

  • from United States October 30, 2013

    excellent synth, best moog bang for the (size &) buck

    stellar synth, could not recommend it more! I had a slim phatty before this and finally have a moog that I love.

  • from Knoxville, TN October 12, 2013

    All The Bass You'll Ever Need

    This is my first Moog. I bought this after finding the bass on Prophet 12 just not fat enough. It is the perfect companion to the Prophet and the things I can do with Moogs truly analog machine are innumerable. I finally understand the analog vs. digital arguement now that I own this synth. It is the warmest, most fun thing to play. Immediately inspiring, totally accessible and capable of so many different sounds. I have no doubt this versatile machine will cut through any mix I put it in. It makes me smile every time I play it. Having a good reverb or echo pedal to run it through expands it's potential exponentially.

  • from newton, ma August 6, 2013Music Background:
    professional composer, pianist, sound designer

    Sub Phatty is Amazing

    the reasons it gets 5 stars:

    1. the build quality is phenomenal - very solid, industrial strength...nothing seems cheap
    2. the sound is top notch, and clearly moog..
    3. there is a knob for pretty much everything...i dont like going through menus to adjust an envelope, or mess with an LFO - on the subphatty, you just turn the knob...perfect intuitive layout
    4. it comes with a very well written manual that includes a concise overview of subtractive synthesis (highly recommend downloading the pdf from the moog site)
    5. maybe the most important reason - its a blast to play... it's just so much fun - it can do traditional moogey sounds as well as the new multidrive sound which is awesome

  • from United States April 22, 2013Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    Creamy Moog Lovely Unicorns

    I put my name on the list as soon as this baby went into pre-order, and Brenden Murphy did a great job getting me my synth! Okay, now on to the Moog. Phat. Lush. Warm. The Moog filter is a beautiful thing, and you'll know right away what all the fuss is about.

    The SubP isn't just for deep bass, although it does that very well. I was able to dial in some nice bell-sounding leads in a matter of minutes. I mean, this baby exudes improvisation.

    Paired her up with my DSI Mopho to add some variety to an impromptu track and they worked very well together. So glad I waited on the SubP instead of buying the LittleP, and I haven't even begun to scratch the surface of this thing.

    Build quality is top-notch. The SubP feels very solid, the knobs are smooth and durable. I love the feel of the keys and the mod/pitch wheels. Honestly, couldn't be happier with my purchase.

    P.S. Online videos don't do it justice. When you have it in your studio, you'll see a wold of difference.

  • from New Orleans September 4, 2016Music Background:
    Touring bassist.

    Tool of wizardry!

    This synth is easy to use, versatile and relatively inexpensive for a solid piece of Moog history. I couldn't give it 5 stars because I wish it had a backlight and I wish it looked a little more hefty, like maybe a wood finish option.

  • from Los Angeles July 9, 2014Music Background:
    hobbyist, weekend warrior, jazz, rock, pop

    love the phatty

    Fantastic. Dedicated knobs for each feature makes this a wonderful instrument on which to learn, yet sophisticated enough to produce serious Moog sounds and effects. Tweaking away to my heart's content!

  • from OH January 7, 2014Music Background:
    Home Studio Recording, Live Performance, Synthesizer Enthusiast

    Great for Leads Too!

    When I got in the market for a monophonic analog synthesizer, I looked first at the Little Phatty. A friend of mine had one and it sounded awesome, plus it was extremely well made.

    The biggest turn-off for me, though, was that it only had 4 knobs to control multiple parameters. Although the layout was pretty intuitive, I just thought it would be too involved to customize sounds on the fly, which might stifle my creativity. The really nice thing is that the Little Phatty has 37 keys, a full octave more than the Sub Phatty.

    When the Sub Phatty came out, I assumed that it was basically a synth for making bass type sounds only. I think the marketing drove that point so far that it neglected to show it off as anything other than a bass machine. This was not something I really wanted, since I like to have nice high leads and other sounds too.

    While reading a forum, I learned that this synth was not just for bass, and I really started to study this synth's features. I watched videos and realized that the "Sub" part of the name was most likely due to the fact that it has a Sub-oscillator (a square wave oscillator one octave below Oscillator 1).

    My decision ultimately came down to this: 37 keys and 4 knobs vs 25 keys and 1 knob per function (almost). I weighed the pros and cons of each for so long. Having that extra octave really opens up a lot of possibilities for bass and lead lines. I love knobs though, and being able to tweak things on the fly and see every parameter on the board is a huge benefit and encourages sound sculpting. If only the Sub Phatty was 37 keys!

    I decided to get the Sub Phatty despite only having the 2-octave keyboard. The knobs have almost entirely made up for it. There are times when I wish I had even just a few more keys to the left, but it doesn't frustrate me. Plus, I can always control it with a MIDI keyboard if I really needed to.

    Some side notes:

    There are hidden parameters that cannot be adjusted easily unless you memorize button and key combinations, or have it tethered to a computer, in which case you can use the free editor and librarian to change them graphically (after you register on Moog's website).

    One thing to mention about the software editor. You will have to update your Sub Phatty's firmware before it will work with the editor. I don't know about you, but I am always hesitant to update firmware on any device, let alone an expensive synthesizer. Fortunately, the engineers at Moog have made this a fairly simple process, and include step by step directions, which, when followed correctly, will get you through the update with no issues (unless your power goes out right in the middle of it).

    If you're like me, you might not want to have to press the "Activate Panel" button every time you turn on the Sub Phatty to know that your parameters will be how they appear. Watch out for the volume knob if you do not choose to activate the panel! I nearly scared myself to death wearing headphones when I pressed the first key because the volume level is stored within the preset, not dependent upon the actual volume knob position! Anyway, you can use the software to make your Sub Phatty automatically go into "Activate Panel" when powered on, of course, you must update your firmware beforehand to be able to do this.

    I'm still having as much fun with this synth as the day I got it. There are so many possibilities with this, and even with it's limitation on the number of keys, I have not felt hindered in any way. The 4.5 star rating is merely for the fact that this synth has hidden parameters, and since it does not have a built-in display (which I am very thankful for!), all of these parameters must be changed through button and key combinations or through the free editor software. To be honest though, the only parameter I changed with the editor was the automatic "Activate Panel" after powering on the synth.

    Regarding the Oscillators: When you turn their levels up to 12, you will consistently get harsher sounds. This is because Moog decided to let you crank them up even more than normal. If you are looking to coax smoother, rounder sounds out of this synth, back those knobs down to 10 and below, and make sure "MultiDrive" is off also. There are just so many possibilities with this thing.

    Whether you are considering this as your first analog synthesizer, or to add it to an existing collection, I would highly recommend it. If you are new to analog synthesis, the manual included will give you a lot of good information on Oscillators, LFO, Filters, and Envelopes, and how they work together.

    If you're worried about it not having enough keys, consider if it is more beneficial to you to be able to tweak every parameter and see your parameters based on knob position quickly, or more beneficial to be able to utilize another full octave. If your preference is more knobs, go with the Sub Phatty.

    If you need to be able to store a lot of patches, this may not be the synth for you. This only holds 16 (Though you can store more on your computer and load them through the editor software) If you need more patches, look into the Little Phatty (or the Slim Phatty to use with an existing MIDI controller/keyboard). Remember though, setting parameters on the fly is fun, and helps you gain a better understanding of synthesis. The ability to even store 16 presets is nice, and could really help while performing live when you don't have time to dial in a new sound between songs.

    Last notes:

    The build quality of this synthesizer is excellent, full metal enclosure, and very smooth potentiometers (the knobs). The pitch and mod wheels have the best feel of any synth I have used. They move easily, but are not loose, everything on the Sub Phatty is tight. However, I had to send my first one back, but only for cosmetic issues. One of the keys was slightly tilted (not level) and another key had a manufacturing defect on the underside that looked like the key molding process didn't finish properly. However, I got another one shipped to me next day as an advanced replacement so there was no down time whatsoever. Patrick Schaefer was awesome getting things rolling for me! This is why I buy from Sweetwater. The replacement came, and I've been happy since.

  • from United States August 6, 2013Music Background:

    Great Bang For Your Buck

    I traded my little phatty in for this baby, and let me tell you, this thing is certainly a bang for your buck. In many ways, it is just as good as the LP. Certain aspects, like the sub osc, and the multidrive, perhaps even earn it a notch or two over the LP. However, there are a few things that are not quite as sharp about the sub that I would like to mention. The main thing that I have noticed when playing, is that the filter doesn't blend in quite the same fashion as what I had become accustomed to with the LP. Namely, when pushed up towards its limit, the filter on the sub really sticks out more so than the filter on the LP. This tends to create a more edgy sound, but at the same time it is a little less interesting than some of the folding and crumpling effects that could be had with the LP filter/overdrive combo. I will say that when left to a lower level, the filter on the sub does a really nice job, so its possible the guys at moog simply allowed the filter to be turned up more on this one, and maybe I am just not used to that yet. For that reason I would still categorize this as a difference, and not a fault. There is one particular feature that this thing lacks, and that is the arppegiator. Arps are really nice to have, and I will miss having one at hand on the unit, however, considering how cheap this bad boy is, I can't really complain about this very much, and software arps are all other the place, so all in all its not that big of a deal. So enough ragging...on to the positives:

    I will start with the oscillators, which, in this model, are in quite excellent form. It really is a luxury to be able to turn on an analog synth, and have it playing in tune in mere minutes. Also, the addition of the sub oscillator is very nice, and is a great tool to have in the arsenal. I can't say that I have messed around with the noise generator too much yet, but it seems to be pretty much as expected, although since it is pink noise, the sound generated is of a much darker bias than "regular" white noise. The multi-drive circuit is very nice overdrive, and to be honest i end up with it turned on more than off, as it adds nice coloration to basically anything.

    I would say the thing I like the most about this baby is the sheer amount of knobs that populate the front panel. It is SO nice to be able to control two parameters at once without having to punch buttons to cycle through options. The knobs and keys feel really great and are of fantastic build quality, so I am feeling good about keeping the sub for a long time.

    All in all, this is a fantastic piece of equipment, and is worth every penny. Buying one of these really is an investment in a great company with wonderfully built, gorgeous sounding musical instruments. Whether this will end up a classic among moogs remains to be seen, but at $1000 I would say its worth a shot regardless.

  • from December 30, 2013Music Background:
    Hobbyist, Musician

    Very nice knobby monosynth

    It's hard to write something negative about this little unit, but I'll put here why I didn't give it a higher rating. Knowing this comes from Moog, it's hard to say that sound is a problem... this thing have a beautiful sound and a lot of features under-the-hood that expand the sonic possibilities.

    The construction is great, as any other Moog product, BUT for the first time I felt like a Moog could be better in that department. The knobs are nice, but loose the protective plastic cover quickly. The keys feel nice to play, but aside from having only 25, they get scratchy pretty quick too (comparing to it's older brother Little Phatty for example)... they're also not very well laid out and have some irregularities.

    Sound-wise, I think that there are few things that should be pointed out. This is a Moog, with the full bass richness of a Moog and everything you'd expect from it.

    The OSC section is great and you get a very nice pre-filter overdrive with the mixer - there is a weird waveform thing that doesn't exist in the LP: when passing thru the waves continuously, you can hear a "step" from saw to saw+square mix. The sub-oscillator is a great addition too.

    In the FILTER section, I was a little bit disapointed. The overall quality of the filter feels like a Moog, but the resonance doesn't interact with the cutoff as it does in older Phatties or Voyager. Not that this is a bad thing, just an input about this "new filter design". MULTIDRIVE doesn't really shine when compared with the OVERLOAD found on older units, wich is way better to me. The EG Amount lets you dial gigantic amounts, wich is GREAT. Filter tracking is precise.

    LFO is an improvement from the older Phatty. Gigantic range, a wide selection of destinations (3 simultaneously with different amounts) and sources. Just missed the OSC2 source, wich is pretty much "emulated" by using high-rates and LFO keytrack at 100% (yes, it does that!). The envelopes are also very nice, and have not just the usual ADSR, but also delay and hold parameters.

    My unit was uncalibrated when I got it. The filter range wasn't what it was supposed to be and I was having problems filtering low frequencies. Amos from Moog Music offered me the best support I've ever get from anything. Fully explained what to do in a detailed way... since I live abroad, I fixed it myself easily, just by turning a 'trimmer' inside the unit.

    The Editor/Librarian software available for free is a great feature for the Sub Phatty. It works good enough and gives you the oportunity to access the under-the-hood parameters in an easier enviroment. You can also save infinite presets and share them with ease. The included presets (including some I've made) are a nice way of knowing what is the Sub Phatty capable of.

    In the end, I think that this is a great machine, but one should consider the Slim Phatty + Minitaur combo instead, wich is almost the same money. To me, the Little Phatty still a better sounding Moog, but the Sub adds a lot of features that makes it also a great instrument and will make it's owners happy enough.

Questions about the Moog Sub Phatty Analog Synthesizer?

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