In its most common form Minimal Synth is entirely based on analog synthesizers and drum machines.
Minimal Synth golden era was from late 1970s to mid 1980s, obviously it never was aimed for MTV/VH1 play and has remained underground. The genre is characterised by dark and moody tones. It has a bleak stripped down sound, with raw analog synths, a pulsating drum beat, and cold/detached vocals. This same sort of music without the vocals is also referred to as Minimal Electronics.
Minimal Synth records tend to show a DIY quality, some are pretty experimental when compared to other forms of pop music. The overarching genre of most early '80s synth pop 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 favoured by dark wavers and the avant-garde pop and electronic music fans.
Many Minimal Synth records were released in very limited quantities at the time, so have become collectors’ items and 7"s can go for several hundred dollars at online auction sites. Even current acts, such as The Phone and Jonni Mogul, and releases by labels such as Attractive! Co-ordinates and Anna Logue Records are increasingly sought after.
Some examples of influential artists are John Foxx, Kraftwerk, Visage, Brian Eno, YMO, The Human League, David Bowie, and Soft Cell. Some noteworthy minimal synth artists include: Nini Raviolette, Jeff & Jane Hudson, ADN' Ckrystall, Guyer's Connection, The Short Wave Mystery, Oviformia-SCI and Napalm Babies.