Synth Site: Akai: S01: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 3.8 out of 5
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squezel a hobbyist user from holland writes:
I recently bought a s01 and this is a ultimate sample-weapon 4 me! Becauz I always make my beats/samples/tunez on my PC, I don't need filters etc. on my sampler, cauz they are already sounding great :) With the akaidisk program, I can easily transfer WAV->akai. It's also capable of putting samples on different keys on your keyboard (great 4 live-act). If you're handy with sample-editing on your PC, s01 rulez!

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Thursday-Aug-23-2001 at 03:28
a part-time user writes:
I'll list both Good and Bad points of the s01 - and some alternatives:

why do i believe this thing is easily worth 75$?

because it's extraordinarily easy to setup rec level/ playback level/ load/ save/ trim/ loop/ set release/ transpose... your samples. that's basically why. its clean sound is also hard to tell apart from 'true' cd-quality (it's fixed 16bit mono at 32khz samplerate). it features 2 midi-ins which is nice and handy (and closest you're gonna get to a luxury on this machine anyways). the ease of use deserves extra mention - even without the manual. i totally love it!!

what are its downsides? - (oh, they are many and some are almost fatal) it lacks filters, eq, internal efx and most of all it lacks multiple outputs!! scsi is also unavailable (though this is not as bad as it sounds because the thing only has 1mb memory (max=2mb), which fits a hd-diskette quite nicely (mine is 1mb).

so, if you take the time to apply effects, compression, filter(s) before sampling or take the time to 'update' your samples as you work on a track, the machine will work (and continue to work) like a charm. its sound is hifi if desired and interfacing is simply unmatched afaik, but the mono-output definitely spoils some of the fun- no matter where you come from. I once was the owner of an Emu Esi4000, a machine that is extremely capable (in both the synthesis/ ram/ scsi/ multiple outputs-departments) but which ultimately felt more about overcoming technical difficulties than making music imo. it can of course be mastered, but it's not something you do in a week if you startwith zero background. that said, i loved some of its unique functions (like the transform multiply or the dopppler effect). it also had a ton of quality filters (though i wouldn't buy the turbo-upgrade again as it lacked resample - talking about a fatal flaw!!) but still i prefer the humble s01. simplicity really is king.

if you want a 12bit-gritty version of the s01 (though its also quite a bit more complex), check out the Roland s330 (or s550). it also features -i believe- 8 outputs, which is an invaluable feature!

if you want more ram (16mb), a simple sequencer, get the Akai s20.

summary: apart from the aforementioned quibbles, its perfect at what its supposed to do which is being a limited budget sampler that will help you make music instead of becoming a nerd.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Monday-Jul-23-2001 at 21:16
boo a hobbyist user from Canada writes:
More a tip then a review - try looping a sample and dropping the MIDI Transpose below -40 for some digital freak outs. Also, for those without manuals, you can reverse samples by setting the end point before the start point. Not a bad little machine for all its limitations.

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Wednesday-Mar-28-2001 at 01:11
Steve Crane a hobbyist user from Oklahoma writes:
This sampler is a no frills workhorse. No filters. No extras. No Mega-memory. It is however, built like a tank,and makes great quality samples- easier than any sampler I have ever used. It is also the best value I have seen in a high quality sampler.Mine was like- new with a manual for $140.00. But it sounds like a million.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Mar-27-2001 at 17:31
writes:
I used to like this piece of s**t. I have to say its caca for $200. It holds 8 samples. Has 1 meg, alright 2 if expanded. But normally 1 wich is about 15 seconds of mono. no display. Sure its usable, but its not worth $200. more like 100. It is a good rack mod to use for synth sounds and s1000 disks, and drum sounds. But for looping break beats......... please, nowadays a better deal is the s20. which has everything and more of the s01. Its stereo, can have 17 megs, 1 standard with 33 seconds of mono. 16 samples. Its got beat loop which makes it great for matching break beats with other stuff. Can take clean and turn it dirty. Its cool! I wish it had BPM, well it has "Tap" which is close. In conclusion, If you want a cheap akai sampler I dont buy the s01 if it is more than $150 and you know what your getting into. An s20 is now about $70 more (used) and a far better deal. s01 is neat but overrated.

Rating: 2 out of 5 posted Sunday-Feb-11-2001 at 16:22
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