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The Shape Of Things To Come

Another selection of brand new products about to be launched in this country.

With a multitude of oriental samplers pouring onto the market, it's good to see a company that entered the field back in 1981, E-mu Systems, introducing their own sub-£2000 sampler in the shape of the new Emax. Benefitting from much of the proven technology of the Emulator II, the Emax comes in both rack-mount expander and keyboard versions, offering eight voice polyphony and up to 17 seconds sampling at a 28kHz sampling rate. For maximum flexibility a choice of eight different sampling rates from 15kHz to 40kHz are available and up to 122 individual samples may be assigned to the keyboard at one time.

A special feature of the Emax is its new 'Crossfade Looping' technique that ensures glitch-free loops. In addition to the digital sampling, there's a full analogue processing section which includes VCF, VCA, LFO and five-stage Envelopes. Other features include an onboard multitrack MIDI sequencer, arpeggiator, individual voice outputs, stereo output, programmable panning and built-in 3.5" mini disk drive.

The Emax will be available from selected dealers throughout the country. (Contact Details)

The summer releases from Soundcraft at this year's APRS included the new TS12 in-line 24-track mixer. Each channel offers powerful control with 4-band EQ, 6 auxiliary sends and two programmable mute groups. The TS12 also provides for SMPTE and MIDI control of switching functions to interface with an external control device. A further feature is the 352 point bantam-jack patchbay.

Also introduced is the upgraded Series 600 mixer now fitted with an integral patchbay. And finally, following in the footsteps of the Series 200 and 200B comes a low:cost Soundcraft mixer designed especially for live work - the Series 200SR. This is ideally suited to small bands and PA applications and comes in 8,16 and 24 channel formats. (Contact Details)

Launched at the recent British Music Fair was the Sequential Studio 440. This latest product combines in one instrument, a 12-bit eight-voice digital sampler, a drum machine and an 8-track MIDI sequencer. The Studio 440 offers the same audio quality as the well established Prophet 2000, with three selectable sampling rates yielding sample durations from 12.5 to 33.5 seconds. All samples may be modified by the analogue processing section and played back via a MIDI keyboard, the 440's front panel pressure pads, or the integral sequencer, with each of the eight voices available through a separate output on the rear panel.

The Studio 440 sequencer section is configured to act like a multitrack tape recorder and offers 40,000 note capacity, 999 measures per sequence and 99 sequences, with two discrete MIDI Outs which allow up to 32 channels of MIDI control.

Also included is a 32 sound drum machine which is organised as 4 banks of 8 velocity-sensitive samples.

With such a powerful instrument the range of external interfaces are also extensive and allow synchronisation to any SMPTE standard, clock pulse modes of 96, 48 and 24 ppqn, MIDI clock and the newly agreed 'MIDI Time Code'. All data and samples are stored onto 3.5" disks and additional editing software from the independent company Digidesign, will be available shortly. (Contact Details)

If you're interested in MIDI software, the Performer package from Mark Of The Unicorn offers as they say: "A recording studio at your fingertips". Written to operate on the Apple Macintosh computer, the Performer offers a powerful real-time/step-time MIDI sequencer with 200 tracks (!) and 50,000 note capacity. The software makes full use of the Mac's pull-down menus and allows extensive editing of all musical and MIDI data. The Performer software forms part of a suite of programs which includes a music notation printout package called Professional Composer. (Contact Details)

New from Beyer Dynamic comes the M380. This microphone has been specially tailored to meet the requirements of high sound pressure levels and is ideally suited to the recording of drums and bass guitars. Also from Beyer is the MC740 studio capacitor mic which provides switchable pickup patterns, with a choice of omnidirectional, cardioid, hypercardioid and figure-of-eight characteristics. (Contact Details)

Not content with the successful S-900, Akai have now launched the X7000 Sampling Keyboard. This is the first keyboard-based sampler from Akai and is closely related to features found on the S-612 rack-mounted sampler. The X7000 combines a 61-note velocity sensitive keyboard, 6 split points and up to 8 seconds sampling time. Sounds are stored on an internal 2.8" disk drive and all samples are compatible with the existing S-612 library. (Contact Details)

For DX7 owners come two new voice ROM cartridges from Rittor Music. Each ROM features 64 original voices programmed by well-known Japanese synth players. At present two different ROMs are available in this country with more to follow very soon. In the meantime 'Shofuku' Part 1 and Part 2 await your ears! (Contact Details)

Presently stirring up a lot of interest is the soon to be released DEP-5 from Roland. This will be a multi-effects unit using 16-bit digital technology to produce a range of effects for both studio and live applications.

At the heart of the unit is a digital reverb system offering 15 basic reverbs configured as 8 room settings, 5 halls and 2 plates. A three band equaliser gives Low & High cut/boost and parametric Mid control and the DEP-5 also offers a digital chorus section. All effects may be accessed simultaneously and 11 different combinations are provided. Front panel controls allow 99 programs to be stored and recalled manually or via MIDI program change numbers. (Contact Details)

Shown alongside the recently revealed FB-01 FM expander at the British Music Fair was the latest sequencer from Yamaha, the QX5.

The new QX5 is effectively a big brother to both the QX7 and QX21, offering an eight-track MIDI sequencer with 20,000 notes capacity. Events may be recorded in real-time or steptime played back and edited with full flexibility. Additional features include FSK sync-to-tape, extensive event, measure and track editing, 32 'macro tracks' and MIDI filtering.

Also shown was the new DX27S, which is similar to the DX27 FM synthesizer with the addition of stereo chorus and a speaker attached to either end of the keyboard. (Contact Details)

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Ensoniq Sampled Piano

Sound On Sound - Copyright: SOS Publications Ltd.
The contents of this magazine are re-published here with the kind permission of SOS Publications Ltd.


Sound On Sound - Sep 1986

Donated by: Gavin Livingstone


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