Minimal synth is a form of minimal wave in which the synthesizer is the dominant musical instrument.
Minimal synth releases were mostly put out from late 1970s to middle '80s, remaining underground, and were obviously never aimed for MTV/VH1 play. The genre is characterized by dark and moody tones. It has a bleak stripped down sound, with instrumentation consisting generally of raw analog synths, a pulsating drum beat, and cold vocals. This same sort of music without the vocals is also referred to as minimal electronic.
Minimal synth records tend to show a DIY quality, some are fairly experimental when compared to other forms of pop music. The overarching genre of most early '80s synthpop is new wave; the same applies for minimal synth. The umbrella genre is New Wave in its minimal form: Minimal Wave. The minimal synth features explained in this description are often favored by fans of darkwave and the avant-pop and electronic music fans.
Many minimal synth records are perceived as cult by music researchers/collectors, as they were released in very limited quantities at the time. They are considered superior and unique in comparison to more commercial synthpop of the '80s era, and minimal synth 7"s can go for several hundred dollars at online auction sites.
More recent examples of the genre are bands such as The Phone and Jonni Mogul, with labels such as Attractive and Anna Logue becoming increasingly sought after by fans. .