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  Wasp At a Glance
Click for larger view arrowReleased: 1981(?)  Specifications
arrowUser rating: 4.4/5 |  Read reviews (18)
Dave Sherriff (dave.sherriff@bgtransco.co.uk) writes:
This is a monophonic synth from British firm Electronic Dream Plant (great name, but now defunct). It was made of plastic, with a totally flat keyboard (you just touched the 'keys' to play). It could run on batteries and rumour has it Hawkwind went busking on the London Underground with them. It's not a classic monosynth, but can still do good bouncy basslines & synthy twangs + noise based percussion stuff. Id doesn't have CV in our out - just non-standard EPD digital sockets. There are however several MIDI-CV converters around that can also 'do' Wasps. The people behind EDP later went on to do the OSCar monosynth.

AdamT :
Great little machine that originally retailed for £199 (1978-1981), three versions, the original plastic cased one was a real classic with Maplin knobs, inboard bassy sounding elliptical speaker and a horrible 25 note capacitive (non-moving) keyboard similar to the EMS Synthi AKS, this ran from six HP11 batteries or external mains. the cases crack easily and the yellow naturals on the keyboard wear with use until the white background shows through

.. This was followed by the Wasp deluxe, this had a deep wooden case, a horrible buzzy round speaker and a 3-octave proper keyboard. It also had external input and level controls for the oscillators, this was mains only ...

The last version was the WASP Special which was the Original in a wooden case (complete with capacitive keyboard, Black and Gold this time!), and all black knobs. it had none of the functionality of the Deluxe, no speaker at all and mains only, I had one of these and the PCB rattles about unlike the others. This is also the Rarest version, wish I`d kept it.. All version of the wasp are DIGITAL!, yep in 1978!. despite this the sound is excellent, full and warm through external amplification and the 24Db filter operates in Hi, Lo and band pass modes but doesn`t self oscillate. the Filter EG is weird with only attack and decay but has a Delay/repeat control, the sustain level is set by a combination of the Cutoff knob and env depth control (this is capable of inverse env operation too). there is sample/hold on the LFO as well as noise and four waveforms for modulation of either the OSCs or the filter. No performance wheels, but has a pitch bend knob and the glide lags one oscillator slightly (like the Korg Mono/Poly) for excellent effect. the last thing is a Bi-directional Digital bus that connected to the Spider digital sequencer (if you can find a working one,, doubtful) and the Caterpillar Poly-KBD which turned 4-wasps into an Ersatz Oberheim 4-voice.

Wasps aren`t very reliable although they tend to outlive Cris Hugget`s later OSCar (electronically at least) but they`re VERY fixable as there are no custom chips or Microcontrollers That deemed the Spider sequencer so unrepairable. The major prob with the wasp is Price.. They were a bargain new but now you`d be hard pushed to find one even at the original price and despite there being around 3000 originals built, like Stylophones, a lot would have ended up in the bin once the case fell to bits or the keyboard packed up. This is a shame because they have a far better sound than a lot of synths and Kenton do a Wasp-Midi converter to save using that crap keyboard.

I`ve seen them advertised for as much as £350!, and for this money you`d be far better off with an SCI Pro-1. The Collectors have moved in good style I`m afraid, if you can get one for £200 it`d be a good and fun purchase if you have a Kenton Pro-2 or Pro-4 to add the Wasp Port to..

Comments About the Sounds:
2 oscillator analog monosynth - not a great filter, but it can do hi & band pass (as well as standard lo pass). Separate envelope for the filter, which is nice.

(Thanks to Dave Sherriff for this info.)
and Will Gregory for the pic

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