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Mathew Vaughan

Mathew Vaughan

August 19, 2022
Plugins, Reviews

The Best Minimoog Emulation Review

We’ve seen them all. Diva, Mini V, Model 72, Monark, Minimode and The Legend. But only one can rule them all… read on to see my review of and why I think the UAD Moog Minimoog is the ultimate emulation of the Moog Model D monophonic Synthesiser.

A Little Context

Original Moog Minimoog Model D
Moog Minimoog Model D

The Minimoog Model D was first released in the 1970s and had been invented by Moog’s founder Dr. Bob Moog. Since then the synthesis has become one of the most revered articles of hardware in the music industry for both Live and Studio use.

The Minimoog was a significant development with regards to hardware synthesis. This was because the synthesiser was the first truly compact synthesiser and it was its own instrument. It had a unique sonic profile that didn’t try to emulate other instruments. The UAD emulation of the minimoog is no exception!

Moog Minimoog Voyager
Moog Minimoog Voyager

The Model D eventually morphed into the Minimoog Voyager which released in 2002. In recent years, the Model D has been recommissioned into the music industry by Moog. As well as of course spawning a few copycats along the way!

UAD Minimoog – The Best Emulation?

Universal Audio UAD Moog Minimoog Model D emulation review.
UAD Moog Minimoog Plugin

Poor emulations have been teasing us for years with the potential of an official plugin by Moog. Better yet, Universal Audio were employed to be the masterminds behind this highly accurate representation of the Model D. After years of being teased with poor emulations that typically couldn’t get the external input volume feedback circuit working correctly, we finally have an emulation worthy of the Moog name.

Universal Audio is originally known for their ‘DSP only’ plugins where you would typically have to purchase one of their interfaces. With the addition of Universal Audio Spark, anyone can now own some of the best plugins on the UAD platform including the Moog Minimoog!

After trying out this plugin and others, I have personally found this the most accurate when comparing to my previous experiences using the genuine hardware. Other plugins typically fail when it comes to emulating the feedback of the ‘External Input Volume’ control. In addition, other emulations typically do not always totally emulate the exact sound of the Minimoog.

In particular the Mini V by Arturia has a strange lowpass filter on the high-end which is not characteristic of the original hardware unit and other emulations either sound too cold and ‘digital’, or they simply do not yield the high accuracy of modelling that the original unit demands.

A runner-up to the UAD Moog Minimoog is the Model 72 by Softube. This is by far the second best minimoog emulation with regards to accuracy and includes valuable feature such as a doubling feature built in without needing to always use two instances of the plugin to get a stereo synthesised section.


The minimoog often provides the ‘phat’ low-end sound many strive for when designing bass or sub-bass instruments. By far it is the most nuanced emulation of all of the software versions of the minimoog out there and is likely a must-have in your DAW plugin toolkit!

Overall, I rate this plugin a score of 7.8 out of 10:

  • Ease of use: 7/10
  • Sonic quality: 10/10
  • Features: 7/10
  • User interface: 9/10
  • Price: 6/10

Enjoyed this review of the UAD minimoog? Check out my review of an amazing EQ plugin that compliments the UAD minimoog well (hint: it’ll make your music better). Or use the link below to check out the minimoog on Universal Audio’s website and purchase today!

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