Gear Of The Year 2017 – The Best Eurorack/Modular

Still enjoying an ever increasing resurgence, deciding on the best eurorack/modular release gets harder every year. Here’s what won us over…

Winner – Electronics Tonestar 8106

Price £499
Contact MSL Professional on 0207 118 0133,


The rise of the Eurorack is one of the biggest stories in music production in recent years with dozens, actually hundreds, of small companies starting to produce modular components for people to build their own systems. Studio Electronics is one of the oldest companies involved in it and one that has stuck to its analogue guns through a time when everyone went digital.

It’s famous for producing filters based on classic synths – ARP, Moog, Yamaha and so on – but also produces complete systems, such as the award-winning Sensei. Its Tonestar 8106 is the winner of this year’s Best Modular award, and it has to be noted that it won it by some distance…

Tonestar 8106 is a full synth voice (you can buy the filter separately, too) based on a Roland filter, specifically the Jupiter-8/Juno-60 and 106.

“I love this new take on an old classic,” said reviewer Dave Gale. “It’s full of character, with plenty of charm, too, and can be subtly sweet or suitably harsh, according to how you feel. I’ve always loved the Tonestar 2600 but somehow, I find the 8106 Tonestar even more endearing – It sounds fantastic, and has all of those Roland calling cards.”

Highly Commended Eurorack/Modular – Erica Synths Pico System 1

Price €1,210
Contact Erica Synths


The idea of creating your own Eurorack system is that it’s tailored to your specific needs, but if you’re new to the phenomenon (or just a bit bone idle), you can get complete systems ready-built. Pico System 1 is just such a system, but is tiny. You get everything you need – 14 modules carrying out a dozen functions – packed into a unit just 42HP wide. It’s a brilliant all-in-one unit.