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  TS10/12 At a Glance
Click for larger view arrowReleased: 1993  Specifications
arrowUser rating: 4.4/5 |  Read reviews (15)
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Håkan ZAP (http://www.lysator.liu.se/~zap) writes:
The TS-10 and TS-12 is the same synth, only the keyboard differs. The TS-10 has a 61 key "synth action" keyboard with polyphonic aftertouch, whereas the TS-12 has a 76 key wheighted piano type keyboard. (And it's really nice to play!)

This is a wonderful workstation synth, although it's use in this modern techno trance era is a little bit limited, due to the lack of resonant filters!

However, it has quite a few remedies for that misfeature:

  • Transwaves! Morph thru a set of similar waveforms in realtime, modulated by whatever you want! (i.e. sample a resonant filtersweep, and you're off in TB-303 land!)
  • The EXTREMELY cool effects processor. It's the same chips as in the Ensoniq DP/4, which shows quite clearly on effect patches like "guitar amp" or "rumble filter"... what rumble to filter out? The rumble in the TS itself? :-)
  • There's an effect algorithm for envelope VCF! Sure, you dedicate away the effects processor for a single howling resonant filter, but it's cool!
  • I especially like the effect algorithm "VCF-DIST-VCF". Yep, you heard me: An enveloped resonant filter, in series with a distortion, and then another resonant filter after that!!
  • ...and the effects parameters can be modulated too! Rotary speaker speed, reverb length, or resonant filter cutoff, or anything else, can be mapped to a modulation source....!

This is a nice machine, and even if you don't have a sampler, there is PC software to write disks that the TS can read. Generally, I wouldn't part with my TS-12....

Upsides

  • Nice set of drumsounds. How about 909- and 808-like kicks and snares, "loop" kick, hip hop kicks and snares....
  • Cool voice architecture, with transwaves and wavelists (where you actually can program a whole drumgroove in one sound!)
  • Flexible modulation functionality
  • EXTREMELY cool effects processor
  • Reads EPS and ASR sample disks
  • Easy to program, nice and logically laid out display with "soft buttons", and almost every major area in the synth has it's own button.
  • Completely brilliant in the acoustic side! Strings, pianos, flutes....argh!! Too good to be true!
  • Multiple outs (2 stereo outs, but normally you use it as one stereo out and 2 independent mono outs)
  • The 24 (yes, 24!!) channel sequencer is really nice!! 12 channels are used in a pattern/song configuration, like a drum machine or similar, 12 tracks are independent "full length" tracks on top of that.

Downsides

  • Lack of resonant filters (except thru tricks)
  • Confusing "dual voice architecture": The TS sounds use their own architecture, sounds loaded off ASR and EPS disks use the ASR/EPS voice architecture
  • Not too hot emulating analog machinery, except maybe using transwaves, and/or samples of the real thing.
  • Heavy!! Very! But can handle some abuse! (metal edges)

This is pro stuff, we are talking 108dB signal/noise and 18 bits (yes 18, not 16) balanced out's here....

Comments About the Sounds:
The acoustic stuff is breathtaking. Drumsounds are numerous, and well done. It's weakest part is in analog sounds, although it has quite large set of samples of analog waveforms and sounds. But a sampled, resonant bazz gets old real fast...

One interesting "speciality" is the patch-select buttons, two pushbuttons located beside the mod/pitch wheel. These buttons turn each sound into 4 variations of itself! So when you try one of these, make sure to try each sound on it with the left, then the right, then both patch select buttons down. Effectively 4 variations of once sound - really cool.

(Thanks to Håkan ZAP for this info.)

Links for the Ensoniq TS10/12
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 More Synth Gear  Best US prices on many current models
x ensoniq ts12 homepage (german)
x HardSoundz.com best and cheapest disks for ASR/TS machines
x desejo obter manual ensoniq ts12 traduzido em português ensoniq ts12
x Sound Logic Hard-to-find hardware & software upgrades for many samplers and keyboards.
x The Ensoniq room at Synthmuseum.com History and technical information about Ensoniq instruments.
x Route 66 Studios Cooling kit, service manuals, owners manuals.
x midi midi servicio tecnico para musicos ts 10
x SoUnDEnGiNe.com Transwaves CDROM for those TS owners with SCSI
x The Patch King The Best Sounds @ The Best Prices. Thousands of new sounds for over 100 Synths and Samplers. Check us out!
x Cheapest TS10/12 Sequencer upgrades! A limited supply of TS10/12 sequencer upgrades from a TS enthusiast.
x the ensoniq ts12 homepage the english version
x Ensoniq Links manual TS12 em português
x SYNTEC Wall of Sounds CD-ROMs Sound Food for your Ensoniq EPS-16+, ASR-10/88, TS-10/12, ASR-X

Try the Ensoniq links page for more..

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