Vintage Sampler Showdown

A forum for discussing the pros & cons of buying a particular synth and for advice on buying synthesizers.
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Joey
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Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by Joey » Mon Mar 09, 2009 3:45 am

So i'm looking into getting one of the vintage samplers with analog filters

I've narrowed it down to three competitors i know are popular

Emulator II
Prophet 2000
Korg DSS-1

So i'm really looking for one with analog filters, that is easy to use, and wont break on me

what else is there? what do i need to know before buyign one of these? how easy are they to edit?

thanks guys
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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by Sir Ruff » Mon Mar 09, 2009 3:55 am

wow, you're really going vintage all over!: vinyl, samplers... what's next, an acoustic instrument? :lol:

The one thing I would mention about your list-the DSS does not have very much memory compared to the other two. So it is more of a sampling synth rather than straight sampler. you may or may not care about that. Just from what I've read (while trying to find one myself), the p2000 might be the easiest to use, and least likely to break. It might not sound as good as the other two however (and good luck finding an emulator!)
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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by JB » Mon Mar 09, 2009 9:54 am

You'll probably find that the Emax (orig/SE) would be the cheapest option.

S.C.I. reliablility is questionable (if my Studio 440 was anything to go by) but Prophet 2000's, being simpler beasties, may be more robust.

I guess the other option is an Ensoniq Mirage, but good luck with using the worlds worst UI.

Prophet 3000, Simmons SDX & E-mu EIII (orig) would be the most desirable :)

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by nathanscribe » Mon Mar 09, 2009 2:19 pm

JB wrote:I guess the other option is an Ensoniq Mirage, but good luck with using the worlds worst UI.
Until the MicroKorg came out, that is.

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by OriginalJambo » Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:41 am

nathanscribe wrote:
JB wrote:I guess the other option is an Ensoniq Mirage, but good luck with using the worlds worst UI.
Until the MicroKorg came out, that is.
Oh come on, it's not that bad. Once you know where the all parameters are you'll be flying around it.

I'd suggest an original EMAX - shouldn't break the bank.

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by micahjonhughes » Tue Mar 10, 2009 1:45 am

I love my Emax. Be sure to get the original with analog filters, not the all digital Emax II.

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by piRoN » Tue Mar 10, 2009 6:04 am

the p2000 might be the easiest to use
The Prophet 2000 is the hardest to use out of any of my samplers. Sounds fantastic, but not something I'd want as my only sampler. It also has annoying limits on how far it will transpose samples.
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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by nathanscribe » Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:41 pm

OriginalJambo wrote:Once you know where the all parameters are you'll be flying around it.
Don't forget,Isoldmine to you. :wink:

I just don't like matrix editing, and found the mK's text awkwardly coloured. Anyway, people often say the Mirage is hard to program, but it's not. There are so few parameters, it soon becomes second nature.

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by calyx93 » Tue Mar 10, 2009 1:45 pm

piRoN wrote:
the p2000 might be the easiest to use
The Prophet 2000 is the hardest to use out of any of my samplers. Sounds fantastic, but not something I'd want as my only sampler. It also has annoying limits on how far it will transpose samples.
The Emax has annoying transposition limitations as well - at the highest sampling rate, you can only transpose a sample up a couple of notes. However, you can transpose down as much as you like - weird.
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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by Automatic Gainsay » Tue Mar 10, 2009 11:33 pm

OriginalJambo wrote:Oh come on, it's not that bad. Once you know where the all parameters are you'll be flying around it.
Translation: "It's easy! Once you know how to do it, you'll know how to do it!"
:wink:
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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by JMP » Wed Mar 11, 2009 4:19 pm

Only owned the EII out of your three choices Joey and you'll already know my recommendation on these... But, be prepared that if/when you find an Emulator II almost all up for sale need something sorting on them.

Many things can be sorted yourself but more difficult potential issues are PSU's and 5.25" drives. Fortunately for you, I understand the US EII's had better quality PSU's than those shipped to UK so you may be OK there but floppy drives are often at the end of their lives and replacements are extremely difficult to find. 3.5" drives are available but you may need to source a 3.5" floppy to boot the EII from another user with this drive already fitted. If you do get one, look for a serial number above 1100 if possible and check the internal logic PCB says Rev 1, much less hassle if you wanted a Mac/Sound Designer link up in the future.

P.S. The Emulator looks WAY more cool than the other two. :wink:

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by OriginalJambo » Wed Mar 11, 2009 11:23 pm

nathanscribe wrote:Don't forget,Isoldmine to you. :wink:
Well it was more of a trade, but the point still stands. :D
I just don't like matrix editing, and found the mK's text awkwardly coloured.
I don't mind matrix programming actually - it's the menus that really kill me. I think I could easily deal with any matrix driven synth over something like a D-50 - man it's a complete b***h without the PG-1000!

On this note the EMAX is parameter access but is still rather easy to operate, given the depth of the engine and the constraints of the UI.
Last edited by OriginalJambo on Mon Mar 16, 2009 6:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by nathanscribe » Thu Mar 12, 2009 12:38 am

Re: MicroKorg: You're right, and I think what I traded it for shows where my preferences lie... (and don't you dare say "presets"!)

Re: samplers again - Mirage in particular:

The larger feature-set of more recent samplers is something I find more daunting than hexadecimal or 2-digit displays. I wouldn't let the display, and rumours of difficulty, put you off trying one. The Mirage is only a mono sampler and uses DD floppies, but they're still around in hidden corners of the web. If you want a sampler with proper analogue filters, it's likely to be of the arcane variety anyhow - so any choice will have its problems. I prefer to think of them as 'quirks'.

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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by Joey » Thu Mar 12, 2009 12:49 am

well one of the requirements here was that it has a keyboard

so if i'm buying a keyboard sampler i might as well get one with analog filters

i'm more interested in the character of sound rather than feature set, i want to use it as a synth with sampled waveforms basically

like the nord wave, but way cheaper
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Re: Vintage Sampler Showdown

Post by JB » Thu Mar 12, 2009 9:35 am

nathanscribe wrote:The Mirage is only a mono sampler and uses DD floppies, but they're still around in hidden corners of the web.
If the Mirage floppy drive is anything like the EPS you can cover the hole opposite the copy-protect hole on a DS-HD diskette and the sampler will think it's a DS-DD disk.
DS-HD diskettes should be easier to source.

JB

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