Top 5 Greatest Samplers - Episode 4

There is an S in Roland...      12/11/07

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13:10 mins
Welcome to number 4, the penultimate episode of the Top 5 Greatest Samplers of all time... Ever! Of course, There are lots of other classic (and not so classic) samplers... Casio’s FZ-1, the affordable 16 bit sampler from Japan. Or the K250. Kurzweil's '84 release with features that out shone many of its contemporaries. Then there's the Synclavier and Roland's W30 (a favourite with Prodigy). And we're not forgetting all the modern synths that include sampling as a matter of course. But we just haven’t got enough room to mention them all in this short mini series... So we hope that the five mighty instruments we’ve chosen will satisfy your gear lust at least for the time being. Of course, there’s still one show to go and maybe this episode will give you some clues as to what we consider to be the most ground-breaking samplers ever invented. (no, it’s not the Electro Harmonix Super Replay…But, nice try... nice try!) Anyhow, without further babbling, let’s get on with episode 4 which is all about not one, but a whole range of samplers…

4. Roland 'S' Series samplers Roland's S-10 introduced a phenomenal series of samplers that excited and engrossed an entire generation of users in the mid 80's.
Roland used a basic marketing model (affordable digital sampling) to introduce a whole range of products over a number of years. The S-220, a rack version of the S-10 was followed by the S-50 keyboard and S-330 rackmount which were superseded by the S-550 and S-770. The ‘S’ series were renowned for their lush libraries and generous number of outputs. The operating system, although sometimes tiresome to navigate was advanced for the time and helped considerably by the introduction of a mouse and monitor giving the ‘S’ range direct lineage to the later computer driven samplers. Features included waveform smoothing, auto looping and a ‘previous’ function, which allowed you to sample input on-the-fly. They also included Time Variant filters (like the LA-type synths), which made the TVA’s and TVF’s more precise.
They sampled into 2 banks: A and B (a necessary feature which often caused confusion), and saved onto 3.5 floppies. The utility disks also came on a floppy.
They also sported a very basic sequencer. The S-550 came with 1.5meg memory in a 2U rack and the S-770 squeezed into 4U. The S-760 came along in 1994. This 1U was expandable to 32meg and had digital I/O’s. It could also read the Akai S1000 and S1100 sample libraries. That’s it for this week. Join us again in 2 weeks time when we will be revealing the all time greatest sampler... Ever!

See you then!

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10 Comments...  Post a comment    original story
beej    Said...

Top stuff as always chaps! Love 'em!

What's next I wonder? - Top 5 greatest drum machines? - Top 5 greatest synth presets? - Top 5 greatest synth records? - Top 5 synth riffs? - Top 5 most cryptic/hard to use instruments? - Top 5 greatest instruments I most regret selling for £20 that's currently still worth £1200, in order to buy something that was £1200 and now worth £20?

Or maybe the Top 5 Sonic State Top 5 series?

Whatever you bring us, I'm sure it will be just as entertaining as these! :)

12-Nov-07 08:41 AM


Nick    Said...

Beej, your too kind - I will be happy to take the praise as Simon is on holiday ;-)

12-Nov-07 09:10 AM


Robs    Said...

That drum n bass tune (heavy and ambient) near the middle of the vid was brilliant. Whats the name of that track?

12-Nov-07 04:37 PM


NICK B    Said...

I'm not sure, but it sounds a bit like Roni Size - Simon is on hols, but will askhim when he returns

13-Nov-07 04:20 AM


Kris    Said...

S1000 next? or maybe the whole package with mpc's and everything heh.

13-Nov-07 05:42 AM


Marc JX8P    Said...

It's got to be the S1000... That must be one of the most important and widely used samplers ever.

I was thinking though, I'd loved to see a series of top 5 most-difficult-to-use/program-instruments ever, that'd be a laugh! :-)

Anyway, loved episode 4 and looking forward to episode 5!

13-Nov-07 06:58 AM


Simon Power    Said...

Sorry to disappoint...the drum n' bass thing was just a little something I knocked up for this episode. Glad you liked it though, Robs!

19-Nov-07 09:52 AM


CountFeedback    Said...

Roland S-series? I like Roland synths but they don't deserve a space in the top 5 samplers. how are they going to fit the MPC-60, S1000, SP-12000, Synclavier, FZ-1 and the Linn 9000 all in only one more space?

23-Nov-07 05:40 AM


ctp    Said...

SORRY I JUST HAD TO LEAVE A MSG HERE SAYIN , I USE KONTAKT FOR SAMPLING! I NEVER USE FACTORY BANK SOUNDS! IT IS COMON PLACE IN HIP HOP PRODUCTION TO USE SOFTWARE SAMPLERS TO ACTUALY SAMPLE, THE FREE LIBARYS ARE A NO GO FOR PRO PRODUCERS, THE GUY AT THE END IS TALKIN SHITE I CAN NAME 100 PEOPLE WHO USE KONTAKT TO SAMPLE! SORRY BUT ITS TRUE HE DONT KNOW WAT HES ON ABOUT.

29-Mar-10 09:06 AM


Danny    Said...

Glad you could be here back in 2010 to police on man's opinion about Kontakt and do so IN ALL CAPS!!!!! heheheh :)

16-Dec-13 07:14 PM


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