Here is the Korg DSS-1, an 8-voice, 16-oscillator
sampler/synthesizer from the mid-1980s. This is an
extremely deep machine - the editing capabilities are
This was a very respectable sampler for the time, and utilized 3.5" double side/double density floppy disks - like many of its counterparts.
The internal memory of the DSS-1 can contain up to 32 patches at once, but there are four "Systems" named A, B, C and D (blocks of 32 patches each) on a disk, so one can save up to 128 patches on one diskette.
The DSS-1 features the typical Korg joystick, perfect for controlling pitch-bend, vibrato, filter modulation and other effects.
Keyboard controls include velocity, aftertouch, and key transpose - all programmable. These features add a great level of expressivity to this instrument.
Like for the majority of samplers, it's possible to assign (and split, layer etc) several individual samples to the keyboard (multi-sampling). The DSS-1 allows a maximum of 16 individual samples (although you can stretch it to 30 splitting the oscillators), and it's possible to use any sample, at any of the available frequencies, and/or mix and match with the created ones via additive/hand drawn. Korg refers to this as a "multisound". The DSS-1 can sample at four frequencies: 16kHz, 24kHz, 36kHz, and 48kHz.
Additionally, the DSS-1 can create new waveforms (one full cycle only - turning on the loop on/off parameter is needed to hear anything), in two ways: Additive Synthesis, and "Hand Drawn" (moving slider A to shape the waveform). There are many parameters to shape the newly created waveforms. I am including a few audio examples from both the Additive and Hand-Drawn methods below in the review.
Once a sample/multisound is created, it's possible to edit many parameters, including very good-sounding VCF and VCA.
The effects include equalizer, and two DDLs (Digital Delay Lines). These can be used in a variety of ways, often contributing greatly to the general sound of the DSS-1.
Additive Synthesis audio demos:
Hand Drawn audio demos:
Check out the original Korg DSS-1 Sound Library page for more audio demos from this wonderful machine.
|Korg DSS-1 specs|
|Year of release:||1986|
|Sound generation method:||sampling, additive synthesis, "hand drawn"|
|Preset memories||32 in memory, 128 on disk|
|MIDI:||In, out, thru|
|Sound expansion capabilities:||sampling; diskettes|
|Dimensions||1171 (W) x 436 (D) x 123 (H) mm|
|Keyboard||61-keys, with velocity and aftertouch|
|SITE||Type of resource||DESCRIPTION|
|Manufacturer site||home page|
Korg DSS-1 review with audio demo - February __, 2009