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SNAMM03: Sampling Electribe From Korg
A tube sampler, really? 21/07/03
The new Electribe SX
The Electribe MX was a pretty popular release at the Musik MESSE earlier this year, with it’s comprehensive synth engine, pattern sequencer and valve enhanced output stage providing an interesting twist on the sonic possibilities ably demonstrated by Korgs own James Bernard (see MESSE story).
Prior to Summer NAMM, rumours were rife about a new sampling unit and at the show this was confirmed with the presence of the brand new Electribe SX Music Production Sampler also featuring Korgs own Valve Force circuitry which employs two 12AX7 vacuum tubes at the output stage for added analog warmth and saturation. With 128 pre-loaded patterns the SX offers 16 parts for building patterns. Nine parts are “one-shot” samples, or Drum Parts, while two Keyboard Parts allow samples to be played melodically at various pitches using the step keys or a MIDI input. Sampled loops can be assigned to the two Stretch Parts, and their tempos can be adjusted without affecting their pitch, which enables playback synchronization of different loops. Phrase samples can also be “Sliced,” or divided up at the rhythmic peaks of the sample. Once sliced, individual samples can be muted to generate new grooves. A generous 285 seconds of memory (at 16-bit, 44.1kHz resolution) can be used to create up to 384 user samples, which are saved to Smart Media.
Three on-board stereo, digital multi-effects processors can be used simultaneously, each offering 16 effects such as reverb, delay, flanger, and chorus, as well as more extreme effects like talking modulator, tempo-based delay, grain shifter, decimator, and more. Each part can be routed to any of the three effects processors and multiple effects can be chained together.
Both Electribes are equipped with new multi-mode resonant filters offering four filter types, as well as a new modulation matrix enabling the user to create their own unique sounds. Real-time and step sequencing functions are also provided, as is a new performance arpeggiator with a ribbon controller and slider that allow the user to enter data or improvise over a pattern in real-time. The ribbon controls the length of a note while the slider controls pitch changes (selectable from 32 musical scales the Electribe will generate). Korg’s proprietary “Motion Sequence” function is also included and can record up to 24 real-time knob movements per pattern. Finally, Tap Tempo, MIDI Clock, and Auto-BPM detection facilitate easy lock-up with any external device or source needed.
The Electribe SX will be available October 2003, with suggested list pricing of $850.
Watch this space for a video demo of the SX.