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List of Synthesizers featuring rare features Keyboard Synthesizers
Old 5th September 2014
  #1
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AnalogGuy's Avatar
List of Synthesizers featuring rare features

Here's original thread:

https://www.gearslutz.com/board/elec...e-updated.html

I had been inactive so it became archived and therefore isn't able to be edited.

Also, for anyone complaining like "you list a 'rare' feature and then 30 synths are included?": The point is not to show some ultra rare features that only include couple synths, but to make a list of somewhat uncommon and widely underrated features that are rarely ever mentioned commonly or even at the owner's manual. For example, I use keyboard that is capable of polyphonic aftertouch and then I wanted to know what synths can respond to polypressure so I could expand the amount of palette, and that was the problem since without any help I would need to search thru each synth's manual. Oh and yes, sometimes even manual doesn't tell me that the feature is included. Instead, now I can very conviently just take a look of this list and then decide what synth I could buy for this special purpose.

Ask yourself, how many currently modern keyboards contains polyphonic aftertouch!

___________________________


I had an idea of making list of all synthesizers and keyboards which have some very specific feature that is not usually common. Of course I just can't know everything so I expect you guys to notify me of errors and synthesizers/keyboards not listed here. Previously I found some site having complete list of all synths that can generate Polypressure but can't find it again so i decided to do new list by myself. You can also point me some rare features which i should keep listed. Anyway Here it goes. I would like to keep list only for hardware.

Remember: "Needs confirmation" means that I need someone who owns or knows the hardware and can confirm if the feature is really included or not.


Keyboards with Polyphonic aftertouch (regardless of the midi implementation):

Yamaha
CS-80
GS-1
DX-1

CME
XKey (personal note: Polyphonic aftertouch in 2-octave keyboard, what a joke!!!)

Generalmusic / GEM
S2
S3

Elka
MK55
MK88

Ensoniq
EPS
EPS-16+
SQ-80
TS-10
VFX
VFX-SD
ASR-10

Kurzweil
MIDIBoard

Roland
A-80
A-50

New England Digital
Synclavier (Needs confirmation of the model or version!)

Rhodes
Chroma
MK 7 AM

Infinite Response
VAX 77

Keith McMillen Instruments
QuNexus



Responds to polyphonic aftertouch via Midi (PolyAt implemented in synth engine):

Alesis
Micron
Ion
Fusion
QuadraSynth
QS serie
S4 / S4 plus

Ensoniq
ASR-88
KT-76
TS-12
Fizmo

Generalmusic / GEM
S2r

Rhodes
Chroma Polaris

Dave Smith Instruments
Poly Evolver

Waldorf
Blofeld
Q
MicroQ
Wave
Microwave I
Microwave II
Microwave XT

Korg
OASYS

Kurzweil
K150
K250
K1000
K2000
K1200
HX1000
GX1000
SX1000
PX1000
PX1000+
Mark Pro One
Mark Pro Two

E-MU
Emax
Morpheus
UltraProteus

Roland
D-70
JV-1010
JV-1080
JV-2080
XV-2020
XV-3080
XV-5080
XV-5050
SoundCanvas SC-55
HPD-10
HPD-15
Juno-D / Di

Yamaha
TG500



Midi Mono mode allowing "fake" polyphonic aftertouch

Sequential Circuits
Prophet T-8

Oberheim
Matrix-12
Matrix-1000
Matrix-6(r)
Xpander



Keyboards with horizontal aftertouch (ie, "wiggle keys" moves sideways and the modulation is determined by the position of the key, allowing to perform for example, "manual vibrato" which isn't possible with vertical aftertouch)

Crumar
composer

Estradin
Altair 231 (needs confirmation)

Yamaha
GX-1 (Both vertical and horizontal aftertouch!!!)
EX-1
EX-42
D85 / Model 415
D80
EL-90
EL-900(M)
ELX-1(M)
STAGEA ELS-01C (HORIZONTAL touch as well as Initial and Aftertouch in the same keyboard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
STAGEA ELS-01X (_________________________|____________________|_________________________)
STAGEA ELS-02C (_________________________|____________________|_________________________)
STAGEA ELS-02X (_________________________|____________________|_________________________)
YC-20
YC-25D
YC-30
YC-45D



2 Midi busses (or extra inputs/outputs, marked separately):

Akai
S5000
S6000

Generalmusic / GEM
S2
S2r
S3
Equinox 61
Equinox 76
Equinox 88 PRO
Genesys S
Genesys Pro S
WK 4
WK 8 LE
WK 8 SE
SK 760
SK 880

Kawai
Gmega (2 x IN/OUT)
K11 (2 x IN/OUT)
K5000

Korg
Radias
T1 (4 x outs)
T2 (4 x outs)
T3 (4 x outs)

Novation
X-Synth

Oberheim
MC3000 (2 x In, 2 x Thru and 8 x Out!)
MC2000 (2 x In, 2 x Thru and 4 x Out)

Peavey
DPM-C8 (2 x Midi IN and 4 x Midi Out)

Yamaha
A5000
EX-5
PSR-9000 / PRO
QY-700
Tyros 1 / 2 / 3
TX816 (independent modules)

E-MU
E4K (optional)
Proteus 2000 (2 x IN)

Technics
WSA1
WSA1r

Roland
A-70
A-80
A-90
XV-5080 (2 x IN)

Waldorf
Wave (2 x Out)



Release velocity:

Generalmusic / GEM
S2r
S2
S3

Access
KB
KC
TI/TI2
Indigo
Polar

Alesis
A6 Andromeda
QS serie
Ion
Micron
Fusion

Clavia
G2

Kawai
K4
K5

Kurzweil
PC1X
PC1SE
PC161
PC2
PC2x
PC3
PC3X
K2000
K2500
K2600
K2600X
MIDIBoard

Novation
X-board

Oberheim
Matrix 12
Matrix 6
Matrix 6r

Roland
XP-50
JV-1080

Waldorf
Blofeld
Q
Q+
MicroQ
Microwave II
Microwave XT



Keyboards with 3 Wheels:

Akai
MiniAK

Alesis
Ion

Casio
VZ-1

Clavia
Nord G2X

Crumar
Spirit

Hohner
HS-2

Korg
Prophecy (Third wheel is a "log", combined mod-wheel and pressure-sensitive ribbon controller)

Oberheim
MC3000
MC2000

Quasimidi
Raven

Peavey
DPM-C8

Technics
SX-WSA1

Yamaha
EX-5
EX-7
SY-77
SY-99
VP-1
VL-1
VL-7

Waldorf
Wave



Glissando (Chromatic portamento):

Alesis
Micron
Ion

EMS
Synthi A / AKS

Formanta
Polivoks

Kawai / Teisco
SX-210
SX-240
S-100p

Korg
X-911

Roland
Jupiter 6

Vermona
Mars

Yamaha
CS-01
CS-50
CS-60
CS-80
CS-20M
CS-40M
CS-70M
DX-7

Waldorf
Q
Microwave I
Microwave II
Blofeld



Built-in Ribbon controller:

Alesis
A6 Andromeda

Electro Harmonix
Mini-Synthesizer

E-mu
XL-7
MP-7

Korg
ElecTribe-MX (EMX-1)
M3 (+ touch-screen controller)
Prophecy
Trinity
Triton
Z1 (touch controlled "XY" pad)

Kurzweil
K2500 (2 ribbon controllers!)
K2600 (2 ribbon controllers!)

Moog
Liberation
Multimoog
Micromoog
Minimoog Voyager (3-D "XYZ" Touch Surface)

Oberheim
OB-12

Roland
AX-1
JP-8000

Siel
DK 70

Yamaha
AN1x
CS-6x
CS-60
CS-80
DJX-II
DJX-IIb
EX-5
EX-7
GX-1
KX-5
Motif
SU-10
SU-200
SU-700
YC-30
YC-45D



Can control and/or use both CV and midi (regardless of the features like capable of being converter):

Control Synthesis
Deep Bass 9

MFB
Schlagzwerg
Krafzwerg
Synth II (CV/Gate Input only)

Doepfer
A-100
MS-404

New England Digital
Synclavier

Novation
BassStation rack

Syntecno
TeeBee

Spectral Audio
Neptune I / II
ProTone

Technosaurus
Microcon II

FutureRetro
Revolution
777

PAiA
Fatman

Studio Electronics
ATC-1

Buchla
700 Series

Oberheim
Xpander

Tom Oberheim
SEM

Moog Music
Minimoog Voyager
Little Phatty

Yamaha
DX-1

Waldorf
Pulse plus
Q



Arpeggiator and/or sequencer can be used as modulation source:

Access
Virus TI (OS4)

Alesis
Andromeda A6
Fusion
Ion
Micron

E-MU
XL-7
MP-7
PX-7

GRP
A4
A8

Korg
Radias

Roland
EF-303

DSI Instruments
Prophet '08
Mopho

Waldorf
Q

Yamaha
CS-30



Keyboards/Synthesizers/modules with balanced XLR output(s) (Excluding expansions and add-ons):

Akai
S6000

ARP
Odyssey Mk III
Omni

Casio
FZ-10M
FZ-20M
VZ-10M

Elektron
Monomachine (Only TRS 1/4")
Machinedrum (Only TRS 1/4")
Octatrack (Only TRS 1/4")

Fairlight
CMI Series 30A (30th Anniversary)

Hohner
HS-2/E

Kawai
MP9000

Korg
WaveStation A/D

Moog
MemoryMoog

Open Labs
Open Synth Neko 64

Roland
GR-700
Jupiter 6
Jupiter 8
MKS-80
V-Synth XT (only TRS 1/4")
Fantom X (only TRS 1/4")
Fantom XR (only TRS 1/4")
Fantom G (only TRS 1/4")

Rhodes
Chroma

Yamaha
DX-1
DX-5
CP-70B
CP-70D
CP-80D
CP-70M
CP-80M
CS-20M
CS-40M
CS-70M
TX816



Polyphonic 2-VCO per voice synthesizers with MIDI implementation being capable of Velocity & Aftertouch (expansions excluded):

Akai
VX-600
AX-80

Alesis
Andromeda A6

Jomox
Sunsyn

Oberheim
Matrix-12
Xpander

Octave Plateau
Voyetra 8

Rhodes
Chroma

Roland
MKS-80 Super Jupiter

Sequential Circuits
Prophet T8

Studio Electronics
Omega
CODE





Other features I will finish later:

LFO to midi sync
Midi merge (IN signal is going to OUT too)
Breath controller input
Pitch bend affects only to held down keys
Midi with computer connection
Pitch to midi
Separated FM modulation for filter



Please notify me about something else rare feature you think should be separately listed here too.

And please confirm those couple unsure keyboards...

Last edited by AnalogGuy; 16th February 2015 at 12:55 AM..
Old 5th September 2014
  #2
Deleted User
Guest
The Blofeld has release velocity.
Old 5th September 2014
  #3
Deleted User
Guest
Isn't the pitch by velocty function of the JX-8P a rare feature?
Old 5th September 2014
  #4
Lives for gear
 
D_Davis's Avatar
 

Panning for each voice:

Oberheim OB-8



Polyphonic Portamento:

Oberheim OB-8



4-way Modulation Joystick capable of modulating up to 20 different sources:

Analog Keys
Old 5th September 2014
  #5
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robinkle's Avatar
Total Daw Integration Midi & Audio -Plugin:
Access Virus TI.
Yamaha Motif XF.
Novation UltraNova
Old 5th September 2014
  #6
Lives for gear
 

The Hammond Novachord had six vibrato generators applied to chromatic pairs of notes, so each note in a chord would have a different vibrato.
Old 5th September 2014
  #7
Lives for gear
My Kurzweil K2500 with KDFX has many odd features. I don't really know where to start. Is there a standardized form for rare features I could fill?
Old 5th September 2014
  #8
Gear maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnalogGuy
Pitch bend affects only to held down keys
Yamaha DX7s and DX7II. Pitch bend modes: held keys only where sustain pedal doesn't count as key on, highest note, lowest note and normal.

Obviously, breath controller input is a common feature in Yamaha DX series too.

Another rare feature (DX7s & DX7II): random pitch for each key press - the idea is similar to the "osc slop" in DSI synths but notes only drift out of tune when you retrigger them.
Old 5th September 2014
  #9
Gear Guru
 
zerocrossing's Avatar
Thanks for this! ...but I'm a little confused by some of the nomenclature.

"Polyphonic aftertouch (regardless of the midi capabilities)" Does this mean "Their internal engines respond to poly pressure from their own keys, but they may or may not send it"? I think it would be helpful to add asterixis to each synth name.. .maybe *=only responds internally **=responds internally and sends and ***responds, sends and receives poly pressure information.

Also "Responding to polyphonic aftertouch (PolyAt implemented in synth engine)" does this mean that if you send them poly pressure they'll use it but they do not have the capability to generate it themselves?

Anyway, I think it's a bit confusing. I think if you took those first two categories and made them one list using asterisks to denote each permutation of implementation it would be more clear. I propose...

* synth engine only responds to poly pressure from it's own keys
** synth engine responds to poly pressure but does have keys or keys don't send
*** synth engine responds to it's own keys and receives poly pressure
*** synth engine responds, sends and receives poly pressure

I think that's every permutation that we'd be interested in, no?
Old 5th September 2014
  #10
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AnalogGuy's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by zerocrossing View Post
Thanks for this! ...but I'm a little confused by some of the nomenclature.

"Polyphonic aftertouch (regardless of the midi capabilities)" Does this mean "Their internal engines respond to poly pressure from their own keys, but they may or may not send it"? I think it would be helpful to add asterixis to each synth name.. .maybe *=only responds internally **=responds internally and sends and ***responds, sends and receives poly pressure information.

Also "Responding to polyphonic aftertouch (PolyAt implemented in synth engine)" does this mean that if you send them poly pressure they'll use it but they do not have the capability to generate it themselves?

Anyway, I think it's a bit confusing. I think if you took those first two categories and made them one list using asterisks to denote each permutation of implementation it would be more clear. I propose...

* synth engine only responds to poly pressure from it's own keys
** synth engine responds to poly pressure but does have keys or keys don't send
*** synth engine responds to it's own keys and receives poly pressure
*** synth engine responds, sends and receives poly pressure

I think that's every permutation that we'd be interested in, no?

Good point, it seems like long time ago I forgot to add couple things I should have done ages ago.

From the beginning "polyphonic aftertouch" meant every kind of keyboard being capable of doing polyphonic aftertouch without making difference whether the keyboard contains midi implementation and whether it's capable of sending polypressure to another midi device. If the polypressure keyboard contains midi, it's very likely to be able to send polypressure foward too.

The second section is for devices capable of using polypressure internally, meaning that you are able to use it as modulation source to affect sounds instead of just bypassing midi data, but not being able to generate it by themselves meaning that they require external Midi keyboard or other device sending polypressure data. They can receive, not generate.

I edited the titles now and I hope this made things clear. I don't intend to use asterisks.


P.S. One problematic thing is that some midi synths claims to have polyphonic aftertouch implemented but in practice it means only being able to receive them and sending foward (for example, via internal sequencer) but they are NOT able to use them at the synthesis engine, meaning you can't use it as modulation source to affect internal sounds in any way. Of course I exclude these kind of synths from "responds" list. It's usually an error from people who quickly looks at the midi implementation chart and sees polyphonic aftertouch included but it never tells whether it's actually implemented at the synthesis engine or not. Yamaha EX-5(r) was this kind of error.
Old 5th September 2014
  #11
Kurzweil PC3 series all respond to PolyAT (it's a common parameter in VAST). Thus I'm 99% certain that all the current Kurzweil range that can load .PC3 files also responds to PolyAt -- PC3, PC3LE, PC3K, SP4, Artis, and Forte.

My PC361 can respond to CV, albeit the usable sampling frequency is around 15hz.

The EMU XL7/MP7/PX7 all have two independent MIDI outs.
Old 5th September 2014
  #12
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firby's Avatar
 

ARP 2600
Roland HS60

They've got SPEAKERS man!
Old 5th September 2014
  #13
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AnalogGuy's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by firby View Post
ARP 2600
Roland HS60

They've got SPEAKERS man!
Also don't forget EMS putney. It's such a cheap, consumer grade stuff with internal speakers
Old 5th September 2014
  #14
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GeminIAm's Avatar
Them weird joysticks found on the Wavestations / Prophet VS.
Old 5th September 2014
  #15
Lives for gear
As for ribbon controllers, don't DSI's three newest have them built in (two each)? Tempest, Prophet 12 and Pro2
Old 6th September 2014
  #16
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robotunes's Avatar
uses PCM samples as fm operators: sy77, tg77, sy99

isolate samples in the pitch, formant, and time domains and allows independent control of each: vsynth, vsynth xt, vsynth gt (this is a function of the sampler portion of the vsynth, but it does have a VA engine so it is a synth too. it's up to you to decide whether to include vsynths in your list)

vocal harmonizers built in: vsynth xt, vsynth gt

analog that modulates the filter with audio oscillator (not lfo): future retro 777, bass station 2, a few others i'm forgetting
Old 6th September 2014
  #17
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robotunes's Avatar
in multi/combi/performance mode, a different patch/voice plays with each key press*: tx802, v50, tx81z, dx11

(*depending on settings. you can accidentally or on purpose cause a voice to play twice or more in a row)
Old 6th September 2014
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by OktoberStorm View Post
Them weird joysticks found on the Wavestations / Prophet VS.
Yes, definitely add a Vector Synthesis joystick to your unusual feature list.
Old 6th September 2014
  #19
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kpsiegel's Avatar
 

Solaris also has a vector joystick, ribbon controller and also rotors. I think rotors are pretty unique.

Hey, nobody mentioned D-beam yet ;-) Roland V-Synth, etc.

The Solaris, Radikal Accelerator, and the V-Synth can also use the sequencer as a modulation source. The Virus was mentioned previously.

The Radikal Accelerator has an internal gyroscope so that X and Y rotation of the entire keyboard can be used as a modulation source. Very unique and, for me at least, entirely useless.

The Knifonium is an all tube synthesizer. A unique construction and a totally unique sound. It also has balanced outputs. It also has separate CV control of each oscillator.

Andromeda A6 and Ion have definable envelope segment curve shapes. A truly awesome feature.

As mentioned by another poster, the K2xxx series has a lot of pretty unique features. Hard to list them all. Two ribbon controllers, one of which is not only position sensitive but pressure sensitive.

Future Retro 777 has a 7 pole low pass filter.
Old 6th September 2014
  #20
Gear Head
The Ensoniq SD1 isn't mentioned in the poly-AT list. Some might argue it's a just an expanded VFX-SD but still.

The Chroma Polaris has these funky paddles instead of wheels, that's gotta count for sonething.
Old 6th September 2014
  #21
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Teknobeam's Avatar
 

MKS 80 Variable polyphonic osc. detune.
Old 6th September 2014
  #22
|-|
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|-|'s Avatar
Therevox
Not sure how or where to sit that, but definitely unique.
Old 6th September 2014
  #23
Gear Addict
 
WOLF424's Avatar
Waldorf microQ keyboard version has CV input.
Old 6th September 2014
  #24
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cr73645's Avatar
Can control and/or use both CV and midi (regardless of the features like capable of being converter): Mutable Instruments Anushri

Arpeggiator and/or sequencer can be used as modulation source: Mutable Instruments Ambika has 2 individual sequencers to modulate parameters.

The Ambika also has something that I've never seen on any other synth: it is capable of doing a complex voice allocation of each voice. You can use it as a 6-voice polysynth, 2 monosynths and a 4-voice poly, 3-voice poly and 3 mono, 6 monosynths, and everything in between. It's really unique, and not only rare.
Old 6th September 2014
  #25
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by chemosit View Post
Yes, definitely add a Vector Synthesis joystick to your unusual feature list.
Yes, I had a Yamaha SY22 years ago that had this.
Old 6th September 2014
  #26
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NWSooner's Avatar
 

John Bowen Solaris has a ribbon controller.

Eletron Analog Four, A4 Keys, DSI Pro 2 with CV/gate.

DSI Pro 2, sequencer as a modulation source
Old 6th September 2014
  #27
Gear Maniac
 
synthmaniac's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NWSooner View Post
DSI Pro 2, sequencer as a modulation source
Other synths I know which can do that:
all DSI synths (except prophet 12 - no sequencer)
Korg Radias and R3
Old 6th September 2014
  #28
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NWSooner's Avatar
 

Oh, Solaris can use the sequencer as a modulation source too.
Old 6th September 2014
  #29
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NWSooner's Avatar
 

Alesis Andromeda, CV/gate.
Old 6th September 2014
  #30
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rachel's Avatar
The OSCar has the formant filter that can be stretched into two filters.
It also has the harmonic waveform editor that lets you create your own oscillator sources.
It also has duophonic capability, an arpeggiator, a sequencer, patch memory and MIDI
all in one monosynth. That has to be a record, no other monosynth has a featureset
anywhere like it!


rachel
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