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Roland S-10 old school sampling and why the S-10 is king - Free samples included
Old 20th August 2017
  #1
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Roland S-10 old school sampling and why the S-10 is king - Free samples included

The S-10 was one of my first samplers back in the day and it (and its big brother) has that sound that just works so beautifully for the sound I'm going for, 80s synth-pop, that despite its clear limitations it still rocks imo. The arpeggiator is a killer feature too.
I have Kontakt in my DAW, but sampling into that (like a Juno 60) and this gives very different results and the Kontakt sound just makes everything sound 2017 while the sound of the S-10 sounds like it's coming off a VHS tape and thats exactly what I want... ;-) Free samples included

Old 20th August 2017
  #2
Marked for later viewing...
Old 20th August 2017
  #3
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usedtohaveajuno's Avatar
Love this so much - thank you!
Old 20th August 2017
  #4
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My first sampler was the MKS-100. Loved those sounds on the Roland Quick Disk library, and it was also so easy and fast just to sample anything. Definitely not as fun with software, and that great 12-bit sound. Have to say the S-10/S-50 were just gorgeously designed too. I kind of find the NI Komplete Kontrol keyboards to have kind of the same look.

Last edited by Arcadia; 21st August 2017 at 09:48 AM..
Old 20th August 2017
  #5
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Show us how to get this classic sound:

Old 20th August 2017
  #6
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S-10 was my first sampler as well. I ended up with an S-50 to go with it. Then I got into Emu and Akai and haven't had a Roland sampler since. Good luck finding those tiny floppy disks.
Old 20th August 2017
  #7
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I LOVED my S-10, still do but has been disassembled awaiting repairs for years. I finally bought some replacement belts for the drive but now I'm not sure where I put the drive and other parts I removed! The S-10 was my first sampler and I did a lot of music with it

I later got a S-550 but there was something I really preferred about the S-10. Maybe it was the awesome arpeggiator? I remember finding loops points was often frustrating though!

I also bought a used MKS-100 and MKS-220 several years ago but both have failed disk drives.
Old 20th August 2017
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ImJohn View Post
I LOVED my S-10, still do but has been disassembled awaiting repairs for years. I finally bought some replacement belts for the drive but now I'm not sure where I put the drive and other parts I removed! The S-10 was my first sampler and I did a lot of music with it

I later got a S-550 but there was something I really preferred about the S-10. Maybe it was the awesome arpeggiator? I remember finding loops points was often frustrating though!

I also bought a used MKS-100 and MKS-220 several years ago but both have failed disk drives.
The drive on mine is gone as well, but I don't care about those QD now a days, I just MIDI sample dump for saving and loading to the PC and it works beautifully.
Old 20th August 2017
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rotundness View Post
S-10 was my first sampler as well. I ended up with an S-50 to go with it. Then I got into Emu and Akai and haven't had a Roland sampler since. Good luck finding those tiny floppy disks.
Yeah, the S-50 is the same sound. The Quick disk floppies I don't care about anymore. I have some but the drive doesn't work. MIDI sample dump, both ways, is way better the way I use mine today. Got all the floppies stored as sysex on the PC now.
Old 21st August 2017
  #10
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Would you mind making a simple test recording so that I can determine the playback sample rate and the type of interpolation? I'm pretty sure it's linear interpolation, but I don't know the sample rate (and the sample recording rate isn't a reliable indicator of this).

I skimmed some service manuals and it seems that the S-10, MKS-100, S-220, S-330, S-50, S-550 and W-30 are all based on the same hardware. I think only the S-330 and W-30 add digital filter ICs; the others use software-based non real time filtering that modifies the sample data itself.
Old 21st August 2017
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elkanah77 View Post
Yeah, the S-50 is the same sound. The Quick disk floppies I don't care about anymore. I have some but the drive doesn't work. MIDI sample dump, both ways, is way better the way I use mine today. Got all the floppies stored as sysex on the PC now.
So you need to transfer any samples via SDS everytime you use it? Seems like you need a lot of patience for that... Of course 1s samples might not take so long to transfer.

Do the S10/S50 have SCSI? I have two old Peavey SP units that I transfer samples into via SDS but only need to do it once as I can save to a SCSI2SD.
Old 21st August 2017
  #12
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Which SDS applications for the S-10 are there to manage your samples?
Old 21st August 2017
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dvdborn View Post
Which SDS applications for the S-10 are there to manage your samples?
Like I show in the video and link in the description, I use the old S-10 manager that uses the protocol MIDI sample dump. The S-10 lets you save and load samples on and off the PC. Works really well and fast too, but then again the samples on this isn't that big.

You could also use any sysex program like BomeSX, I use that too sometimes. Works equally well, but the S-10 lets you edit the samples a little more if you want.
Old 21st August 2017
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cramse View Post
So you need to transfer any samples via SDS everytime you use it? Seems like you need a lot of patience for that... Of course 1s samples might not take so long to transfer.

Do the S10/S50 have SCSI? I have two old Peavey SP units that I transfer samples into via SDS but only need to do it once as I can save to a SCSI2SD.
It doesn't take long at all and quicker than the uh, quick disks anyway. I have mine permanently hooked up through a dedicated USB-MIDI interface so I just load up samples as I need. Samples for the S-10 isn't big. Around 70kb each for one slot.
There's no SCSI built here, but for the S-50 there are some options to chose from, but nothing standard bulit in.
Old 21st August 2017
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
Would you mind making a simple test recording so that I can determine the playback sample rate and the type of interpolation? I'm pretty sure it's linear interpolation, but I don't know the sample rate (and the sample recording rate isn't a reliable indicator of this).

I skimmed some service manuals and it seems that the S-10, MKS-100, S-220, S-330, S-50, S-550 and W-30 are all based on the same hardware. I think only the S-330 and W-30 add digital filter ICs; the others use software-based non real time filtering that modifies the sample data itself.
The S-10 has Linear Interpolation and it wasn't until the S-770 around 1990 that Differential Interplation came into play for Roland as far as I can remember.

The choice between 15 and 30 khz is the only option on the S-10 when it comes to recording and it's the detoriation of sound in the lower octaves at playback that really make this a keeper for me. There's something beautiful about this sound that appeal to. Always has.

If you hook up with me at Facebook on https://www.facebook.com/espenkraftmusic I'll see what I can do in regards to a audio test ecording for you a little later.
Old 21st August 2017
  #16
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elkanah77 View Post
The drive on mine is gone as well, but I don't care about those QD now a days, I just MIDI sample dump for saving and loading to the PC and it works beautifully.
The Yamaha MDF-1 has a QD drive. I found one on eBay for $10, and the drive still works. I plan on swapping the drive into the S-10.
Old 21st August 2017
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister F View Post
The Yamaha MDF-1 has a QD drive. I found one on eBay for $10, and the drive still works. I plan on swapping the drive into the S-10.
Nice. I used that datafiler with the Alesis MMT8 sequencer for a couple of years way back. Worked great.
Old 21st August 2017
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elkanah77 View Post
The S-10 has Linear Interpolation and it wasn't until the S-770 around 1990 that Differential Interplation came into play for Roland as far as I can remember.
The interpolation is responsible for the gritty sound at low pitches, and the playback sample rate affects the aliasing at high pitches. My best guess is that output sample rate is about 30 kHz (the reconstruction filters are 13.5 to 14.5 kHz, depending on the model). This would put the sound quality pretty much on par with the Ensoniq EPS.

I know the D50 uses linear interpolation with a 32 kHz sample rate, and I expect the U series and D70 would be similar.

Quote:
If you hook up with me at Facebook on https://www.facebook.com/espenkraftmusic I'll see what I can do in regards to a audio test ecording for you a little later.
I'm not on facebook.
Old 22nd August 2017
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
The interpolation is responsible for the gritty sound at low pitches, and the playback sample rate affects the aliasing at high pitches. My best guess is that output sample rate is about 30 kHz (the reconstruction filters are 13.5 to 14.5 kHz, depending on the model). This would put the sound quality pretty much on par with the Ensoniq EPS.

I know the D50 uses linear interpolation with a 32 kHz sample rate, and I expect the U series and D70 would be similar.



I'm not on facebook.
That's ok. I'll give you a link if and when I get to it.

If it's on par with the EPS I don't know, what I do know is that I like the particular sound I get from it and for my music it has amagical low end unlike my other samplers and that's all that matters to me. Theoretical numbers are not interesting, musicality of sound is.
Old 22nd August 2017
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elkanah77 View Post
That's ok. I'll give you a link if and when I get to it.
It would be sufficient to take a very bright sample (like white noise or a cymbal or something) recorded at 15 kHz, then play it at both a very low pitch (like the lowest possible pitch) and very high pitch (with vibrato or pitch bend so that aliasing is audible).

Quote:
If it's on par with the EPS I don't know, what I do know is that I like the particular sound I get from it and for my music it has amagical low end unlike my other samplers and that's all that matters to me. Theoretical numbers are not interesting, musicality of sound is.
Well I'm trying to document various sound synthesis ICs, so it is of interest to me. And it's certainly also relevant for anyone who's trying to, for example, obtain a similar sound in software.
Old 22nd August 2017
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
It would be sufficient to take a very bright sample (like white noise or a cymbal or something) recorded at 15 kHz, then play it at both a very low pitch (like the lowest possible pitch) and very high pitch (with vibrato or pitch bend so that aliasing is audible).



Well I'm trying to document various sound synthesis ICs, so it is of interest to me. And it's certainly also relevant for anyone who's trying to, for example, obtain a similar sound in software.
Sure, it'll be fun to test that out. I'll try and do something tonight (european time) and post it
Old 22nd August 2017
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
It would be sufficient to take a very bright sample (like white noise or a cymbal or something) recorded at 15 kHz, then play it at both a very low pitch (like the lowest possible pitch) and very high pitch (with vibrato or pitch bend so that aliasing is audible).



Well I'm trying to document various sound synthesis ICs, so it is of interest to me. And it's certainly also relevant for anyone who's trying to, for example, obtain a similar sound in software.
Here is a link to a Crash cymbal sound recorded at 15 Khz and played back up the octaves and down to the lowest. You can clearly hear artifacts for sure.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/3e5h7ar17i...pDown.wav?dl=0
Old 22nd August 2017
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elkanah77 View Post
Here is a link to a Crash cymbal sound recorded at 15 Khz and played back up the octaves and down to the lowest. You can clearly hear artifacts for sure.
Thanks. The output sample rate is indeed 30 kHz (no real surprise there). And I don't think there's any oversampling or anything happening. So that part is straightforward. But unexpectedly, it's actually not using linear interpolation. It's some sort of high order interpolation that performs surprisingly well. You do hear some amount of artifacts (this is pretty much unavoidable if you're not using either oversampled data or bandlimited interpolation), but it's actually far less grungy than I expected.
Old 23rd August 2017
  #24
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budget samplers using quickdisks becoming vintage?
what is next?
Old 23rd August 2017
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acreil View Post
Thanks. The output sample rate is indeed 30 kHz (no real surprise there). And I don't think there's any oversampling or anything happening. So that part is straightforward. But unexpectedly, it's actually not using linear interpolation. It's some sort of high order interpolation that performs surprisingly well. You do hear some amount of artifacts (this is pretty much unavoidable if you're not using either oversampled data or bandlimited interpolation), but it's actually far less grungy than I expected.
Happy you found the test satisfactory. No matter what the actual interpolation is, I find the sound it produces to be unique and nice and perfect for getting a 80s vibe. It's not leaving any time soon
Old 23rd August 2017
  #26
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Still have/use my S-50, bought new in '86 for over $2k (along with a CRT with 64 different colors for $500). Gotta say, they were built to last. Downloaded entire Roland lib. off the net with my 56k modem. Took months.
Old 23rd August 2017
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilRoy View Post
Still have/use my S-50, bought new in '86 for over $2k (along with a CRT with 64 different colors for $500). Gotta say, they were built to last. Downloaded entire Roland lib. off the net with my 56k modem. Took months.
Man, I had a 28.800 modem and even though it took forever like you say, I sometimes wish back to that time so bad because of all the fun.
Old 23rd August 2017
  #28
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Qd so warm
Old 24th August 2017
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by earwolf View Post
Qd so warm
It melts...
Old 30th November 2017
  #30
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Originally Posted by Mister F View Post
The Yamaha MDF-1 has a QD drive. I found one on eBay for $10, and the drive still works. I plan on swapping the drive into the S-10.
Made the swap. Not hard at all. The bottom plate on the drive itself is different, three screws to change it and the Yamaha drive was ready to go into the S-10. Roland drive on the left, Yamaha on the right.

I'll replace the belt on the original drive and eventually swap it back in. Checked the battery while I was in there, still reading 3 volts so I left it. Fuses were all good too. This S-10 is super clean.
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