Added: 05-Jan-99 | Author: admin
New price: discontinued | S/H price: cheap, sub-100 GBP, but starting to become rare
Korg DSS-1All I know about the DSS-1 is that it is fabled for it's sound & filters..... The best I could find is this review by Thomas Kolb..... Visit his website, he's reviewed alot of kit......click
So here's some clips.....
THE KORG DSS-1 - Author: Thomas Kolb, 1998
The DSS-1 is one huge and powerful machine. Not only in its
physical size which is quite substantial, but the possibilities to create your own sounds
are nearly endless. The synth features both conventional digital subtractive synthesis,
harmonic synthesis and sampling for its sound source. There is even a possibility to
actually "draw" your waveform with a data slider.
The sampling board uses 12-bit resolution, but the quality of the samples are not very
high - in fact they sound amazingly grungy, full of strange artefacts, specially at the
low end of the keyboard. The provided memory is ridiculously low: only 256 KB and no
possibility to upgrade, allowing the synth a total of 5.5 seconds of sample time at 48
kHz. So forget about drum loops and sampled guitar licks - the
first and foremost a synthesizer, and synthesis is what it's good at. I found that the
best samples are no more than just ten milliseconds, cycled to create new, complex
The harmonic synthesis function is nice but completely useless - there is no way I will
sit down and edit hundreds of parameters just to make one waveform. And as far as I know,
there is no computer interface to the
The "slider draw" function is the most efficient way to create a waveform -
you just punch a button to start recording and "draw" your waveform with one of
the data sliders. The result is completely unpredictable, which is quite fun. Of course
you will quickly realise that rapid, jerky movements of the data slider will produce
timbres with lots of overtones and harmonies, while slow and gentle movements will make
dull and soft timbres. Creation of different pulse-waves is dead simple - just move the
slider from one end to the other in one quick move.
Once the waveforms have been created, there is a vast number of parameters to be set to
tailor each sound to your liking. Most of the parameter settings are fairly
straightforward and should give no problem to the experienced synthethist - although some
parameters, like "bit resolution" are not so clear in their function and the
result they yield.
To further spice up the result, there is a dual digital delay section provided, with
echo, chorus, phaser and flanger effects. The dry signal appears at the centre of the
stereo field and one effect per channel, left and right can be set individually.
There is also a great "unison" feature in which all oscillators are slightly
detuned and fire at once for each key depression, which makes it possible to create some
real big and impressive, fat monophonic noises.
Unfortunately the usage of this machine is all but user-friendly, and the teensy LCD
display - although backlit - does little to help. My biggest complaint is that the sounds
are all stored in volatile memory - they will vanish into cyberspace when the unit is
turned off and need to be reloaded from disk. You have to remember to keep saving, saving
and saving all the time - the waveforms, the setups, the parameters. And the disk drive is
a slow bastard - probably the slowest one I've ever seen - it takes a full minute to load
one sound bank.
It's a pity, because with some careful effort, the machine can be made into one of the
cruellest sounding beasts I've ever heard so far - and I've tried a lot of synths, believe
Well....Good review huh ?...... and that's pretty much how I know of this unit outside of the spec's.. it has an amazing sound, and although the memory is small, it's a sonic ....like he says... a beastie !!...... well worth checking out if you see one... they are very rare....[kilo]
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Total stars: 50 | Total votes: 11