Ashun Sound Machine Hydrasynth Explorer Compact 8 Voice Synth

Introducing the Ashun Sound Machine Hydrasynth Explorer. Featuring a 37-note mid-sized keyboard it offers the same 8-voice sound engine as the Hydrasynth Keyboard and Desktop.

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Ashun Sound Machine Hydrasynth Explorer

Introducing the Ashun Sound Machine Hydrasynth Explorer. Featuring a 37-note mid-sized keyboard it offers the same 8-voice sound engine as the Hydrasynth Keyboard and Desktop. The KEY-BED provides you with great playability and expression as it features polyphonic aftertouch. The inclusion of a battery-powered form factor and reduced footprint makes the Hydrasynth Explorer a great versatile portable synth for home, studio and live performance use.

Portable Polytouch KEY-BED

The 37-note mid-sized semi-weighted KEY-BED offer users polyphonic aftertouch for full expression. The high-quality key bed allows for both ON/OFF velocity and aftertouch as well as full polyphonic aftertouch. You can power the Hydrasynth Explorer with a power supply or with 8 x AA batteries (not included). When powered with batteries, the Hydrasynth Explorer has a life expectancy of around 3-4 hours. This however depends on the type, make, and model of the battery manufacturer.

Oscillators and Mutators

The Hydrasynth Explorer offers 3x Oscillators that provide you with a selection of 219 single cycle waveforms. Because creating user WAVETABLES on synths is arduous or downright impossible the Hydrasynth Explorer offers Oscillators 1 & 2 to have a WAVE-LIST mode instead. The WAVE-LIST mode gives uses to pick and choose from 8 waves and from a bank of 219 so you can arrange them in the order you want. Once selected you can then morph from one to another.

Mutators allow you to modulate, bend and sculpt a new sound. Oscillators 1 & 2 can be routed into Mutators in order to alter the sound in new (and old) ways. When using a Mutator it can also generate its own waveforms in both FM and Sync modes. This means that that you do not have to use another Oscillator. However, the routing is flexible so you can choose the other Oscillators as mod sources if you like.

Mixer/ filter routing

When using one of the 3x Oscillators they are fed into a mixer with the Noise generator and Ring Modulator. Aside from panning, you can mix the levels of the input source. The balance control allows you to choose how much of each source signal is routed to filters 1 & 2. You can also set the filters to series and parallel for ultimate flexibility.

LFO’s and Envelopes

The Hydrasynth Explorer features 5 Low-Frequency Oscillators. You can create patterns of up to 64 steps with the STEP mode function. This provides you with an amazing amount of possibilities as you have 5x mini step sequencers that allow for shaping your sound. The Hydrasynth Explorer also offers 10 standard waveforms to choose from.

Furthermore, 5x DAHDSR Envelopes have been included. The 6x stage envelopes feature Delay, Attack, Hold, Decay, Sustain and Release stages. Setting a time setting for the stage can be set in seconds or in time divisions which ensures the envelopes can be played in sync with your song. The envelopes can be triggered from multiple sources as of (UPDATE 1.5).

Modulation Matrix in the Hydrasynth Explorer

32x user-definable modulation routings offer plenty of ways to use the 29 modulation sources and 155 modulation destinations. The powerful synth engine allows for modulation destination including effects and the arpeggiator. This also includes the Modulation Matrix Points themselves to also become modulation destinations. Modulation sources & destinations include the CV Mod In & Out jacks as well as MIDI CC’s

Arpeggiator & CV/GATE

The arpeggiator provides uses for standard note arpeggiations and further offers a built-in phrase arpeggio. In order to add life and spontaneity, parameters such as RATCHET and CHANCE can generate rhythmic patterns with some randomness in your performance.  You can also modulate most of the parameters in the arpeggiator so imagine using LFO’s, Envelopes, Polyphonic Aftertouch or the Ribbon controller to modify your arpeggios in real-time.
Aside from the standard MIDI and USB/MIDI interface the Hydrasynth Explorer goes a little deeper. It also offers the use of CV/GATE interfaces for connecting to the modular world. It supports the Eurorack that use standard voltages and also includes the 1.2V per octave Buchla standard as well as some of the Japanese Volts>HZ products.

Hydrasynth Explorer Macros & Patches

In a live performance situation, the patch MACROS allow the user deep control over the engine. Each of the 8x assignable encoders and buttons can be routed to 8 destinations. This results in a complete sound transformation that can take place with the press of a button or the turn of a knob.

With 5x banks of 128x patches in total, the Hydrasynth Explorer offers plenty of choices. The included browser makes searching for the right patch in the library easy. When using the PC/MAC based Patch Manager application it also offers you to create a favourite order that you are comfortable with. You can also load in new patch libraries for future use.

The Hydrasynth is also available as the ASM Hydrasynth Deluxe 16 Voice Dual Engine Synth.
  • 8-voice polyphonic digital wave morphing synthesizer
  • POLYTOUCH™ Polyphonic Aftertouch
  • Note on/off velocity keyboard with 37 mid-sized keys
  • Battery-powered operation using 8xAA batteries (not included)
  • MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression) compatible
  • Microtuning support via MIDI Tuning Standard files
  • 3 Oscillators per voice with 4 Mutators total
  • 1 Multimode filter and 1 variable LP-BP/Notch-HP filter per voice
  • 640 program locations with Category search
  • CV/Gate interconnectivity


Tech Specs

Type: Polyphonic Wave Morphing Synthesizer

Sound Engine Type(s): Wavescan

Analog/Digital: Digital

Number of Keys: 37 mid-sized keys

Type of Keys: ASM POLYTOUCH™ Polyphonic Aftertouch Keyboard, On/Off Velocity-sensitive

Other Controllers: Pitch Bend, Mod Wheel

Polyphony: 8 voices

Number of Presets: 640


  • 3 x Wavescan oscillators (219 Waveforms),
  • 4 x Mutator waveshapers (8 Types),
  • Noise (7 Types)

Mutators: 8 Types (FM-Lin, WaveStack, PW-Orig, PW-Squeeze, PW-ASM, Harmonic Sweep, Hard Sync, PhazDiff)

Noise: 7 Types (White, Pink, Brown, Red, Blue, Violet, Grey)

LFO: 5 per Voice (Sine, Triangle, Saw Up, Saw Down, Square, Pulse27%, Pulse13%, S&H, Noise, Random, Step), Tempo syncable, Semitone Lock

Envelopes: 5 per voice, Tempo syncable, Variable trigger sources

Filter Types: 1 Multimode Filter (16 types) and 1 Variable LP-BP/Notch-HP filter, series or parallel routing


  • Filter 1: (LP Ldr12, LP Ldr24, LP Fat12, LP Fat24, LP Gate, LP MS20, HP MS20, LP 3-Ler, BP 3-Ler, HP 3-Ler, LP Stn12, BP Stn12, HP Stn12, LP 1 Pole, LP 8 Pole, Vowel),
  • Filter 2: (LP-BP-HP, LP-Notch-HP)

Effects: 9 Insert Effects, 5 Delays, 4 Reverbs.

Effects Types: Chorus, Flanger, Rotary, Phaser, Lo-Fi, Tremolo, EQ, Compressor, Distortion, Delay, Reverb

Arpeggiator: 8 types (Up, Down, Up&Down, Up/Down, Order, Random, Chord, Phrase)

Other: Mod Matrix (32 slots), Macro Controllers (8), Favorites (32), Randomizer (Patch and Module), MPE Compatibility, Warm Mode, Microtuning

Audio Outputs: 2 x 1/4″ Balanced (L/Mono, R)

Headphones: 1 x 1/4″

USB: 1 x Type B

MIDI I/O: In/Out

Pedal Inputs: 1 x 1/4″ (sustain)

Other Outputs: 5 x 1/8″ Outputs (CV, Gate, Mod1, Mod2, Clock)

Power Supply: 12V DC switchable power supply

Height: 5.8cm

Width: 55.4cm

Depth: 24.7cm

Weight: 3.46kg


For more information, please visit the manufacturer's website.