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  SDX At a Glance
Click for larger view arrowReleased: 1988  Specifications
arrowUser rating: 4.3/5 |  Read reviews (3)
Justin Bennitt (justin.bennitt@btinternet.com) writes:
Late eighties drum sampler that developed into a fully fledged keyboard sampler just before Simmons went under. Sampling is 16 bit full-bandwidth. Editing is via the integrated 9" CRT or on an optional external monochrome/green screen. Features include full graphical sample editing with normalize gain, bi-directional looping, crossfade looping, reverse sample (on user selected area of sample), resonant low-pass filters (self oscillating) with dedicated 5-stage envelopes for both filter cut-off and resonance with envelope depth controllable by velocity and MIDI controller (assigned to drum pad position). Additional envelopes for sample amplitude, pan position, noise generator level and pitch (all per voice). There are also 4 LFOs (also per voice) with MIDI depth control modulation. The "Zone Intelligent" pads send MIDI values for both velocity and pad position (sent as a MIDI controller message) with the snare and cymbal pad both having an additional zone on the rim, there is also a dampen feature on the cymbal pad to cut samples short. Pads can be assigned up to 9 layers (i.e. individual samples plus a noise source) with velocity or pad position determining sample switching or fading (or filtering, or panning, or pitch, or sample start point, or sample length, or just about anything!). The main unit also houses 16 velocity sensitive pads and there is even an integrated trackball. Even today no other dedicated drum sampler approaches the power of the SDX however no other drum sampler is even half of the size of this beast or a quarter of the weight (it dwarfs an SP1200 and MPC60). The unit as standard came with 2Mb of RAM upgradeable to a maximum of 8Mb. Supports both 12-bit and 16-bit MIDI sample dump standards.

Comments About the Sounds:
The sounds are as good as your samples but the resonant analogue filters are fantastic. The filters self-oscillate - well.

(Thanks to Justin Bennitt for this info.)

Links for the Simmons SDX
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 More Synth Gear  Best US prices on many current models
x Goto Studio/Drums UK based rock band which only uses SDX drums. In fact they use two SDX systems!
x My show off page Info and opinions on synths I own or owned
x Simmons SDX #118 for sale SDX #118, well cared-for, refurbed by Bill Bruford's engineer. Included: Manual, OS 3.11, 2 flight cases, samples, internal and external hard drive, SDX hi-hat pedal, Tama kick pedal, Ultimate Support racks, 8 ZI pads (2 Symbals, snare, 5 toms), Hexabass.

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