Synth Site: EMU: Morpheus Z-plane: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.3 out of 5
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Nick Nova a part-time user from Belgium writes:
Allthough I give it a 4, I really love this little module. It's very versatile and can emulate almost any sound that comes into your head. Also if you're improvising for a new or bit weird sound, it asks for being programmed. Next to that it can do very nice endless evolving sounds.

Only downside in my opinion is that you can't totally fine tune your sound at the small edges. You have 197 complex filters to choose from, but there isn't cutoff or resonance to really get it right. The other parameters that effect the filter can change the sound in a good way, but a little unpredictable.

But I repeat: it's a very nice unit which suits best between the bass area and the leadsounds. It can't produce either of them quite good (I think you'll need dedicated units for that), but between them, it shines.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Sunday-Jun-30-2002 at 15:40
a part-time user writes:
its all a matter of taste, of course, but I have owned both the Morpheus and also the UltraProteus and here's why I have kept the UltraProteus and sold the Morpheus.

1.) Twice as many sounds in the UP which has 16MB of ROM instead of only 8 in the Morp 2.) The UP sounds are far more useable for me since they are more bread and butter type sounds, whereas the Morp sounds tend to be very digital and fake or dated sounding to me. 3.) After using both, I kept reaching for the UP every time. Only once in a while would I go for the Morpheus, and finally, it became never.

These are just my opinions, but I would strongly recommend the UP over the Morpheus to anyone who's in the market.

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Saturday-Apr-20-2002 at 02:34
Charles a hobbyist user from US of A writes:
Yuh the wind controller trick will work, but also what I have done is use the vector joystick on my yamaha tg-33 (a wavestation or prophet vs should work dandy as well) to control X and Y the filter, transform, pitch, and other fun things real time. Works great for exploring the different filter combinations since having one data entry knob is no good ;] This synth isn't hard to program either once you get used to the interface, of course I've been using one for years so... anyway on the tg-33 the controller numbers for X and Y are 16 and 17 i believe. i should likely try the 4 sliders on muh alesis wedge out too..

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Monday-Jan-21-2002 at 15:20
Brutal Enigma a part-time user from Texas writes:
I have almost as much fun programming this synth as I do playing it. It is possible to use the LFO's and funtion generators to write a whole song ! (I do alot of experimental textural stuff). I mean, you just hold down a key and let the function generators modulate pitch, filter settings, cross-fading between 2 samples in a voice. Does anyone have any information for the various intervals or frequencies of the LFO's and function generators ? On the screen (and in my manual) the amounts are just arbitrary numbers.

I also like to play this thing with my Yamaha WX5 wind controller. Assign the reed sensor to filter morph and the breath and thumb-wheels to various other controllers and you can make this thing sing with all the expressiveness of a "real" instrument. I like it better than Yamaha's own dedicated WX-? modules.

Programming is complex, even with Sound-Diver, but well worth it. I wouldn't reccomend using the Morpheus as your main tone source but it's the best second module I've ever heard in its price range (I paid $385 used).

It has a unique character that can't be copied - but it might start to sound kind of stale after awhile if you don't have another box to mix it with. I love the Kawai K-5000 and I used to love my FIZMO until it broke (twice !)

My partner makes all the analog and traditional melodic sounds. If you work alone and can't afford more than one synth, get something else. If you want something unique and powerful to complement your rig, the Morpheus is a beautiful thing.

The effects architecture is weak if you use it in multi-mode. That's the only real problem that ever bothers me. The EFX are fine as a way to spice up a given sound. The FUZZ is especially nasty and not very versatile but I love what it does to the rather thin drum sounds.

I occasionally hear some noise on slow attacks and long releases but only when I have filter or pitch settings way beyond what the "normal" range would be. By far the warmest wavetable type synth I've ever listened extensively to. Not as warm as a top-notch VA but impressively close for a ROMpler type unit.

I wouldn't sell mine for how cheap they seem to be going for these days. I might get an UltraProteus soon because I hear it is quite close in design but with different (and more) samples to start from.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Sunday-Nov-04-2001 at 05:07
spectralab a professional user from Canada writes:
OK, there are a few synths out there that are equal to this one in terms of creating un-real sounds (FS1-R, K5000, MWXT, Fizmo), but there are things unique to each and Morpheus is no exception. For a sample-playback based machine, it allows you to do a LOT to tweak the samples. First of all, every patch can (but doesn't have to, if you choose otherwise) contain primary and secondary samples, filters, envelopes, function generators, etc... certain parameters allow you to trigger one sample and have it morph/crossfade into the other. Each sample gets it's own filter (of which there are 197 to choose from), envelope, etc. Samples can also be reversed, tuned across a 4 or 6 octave range, transposed +/- 3 octaves (bear in mind, one works on the sample itself, one works on keyboard placement)... other parameters like "double & detune" can fatten them further... flexible LFO's, 5 stage envelopes plus a six-stage auxilliary envelope (freely assignable)... are you getting the picture? The coolest thing by FAR are the function generators; basically an eight-stage, freely designed envelope with all kinds of slopes (ie. random, chaos, zigzag, linear, exponential, etc.); parameters which allow for random level jumps and conditional segment jumps... and a 20x20 mod. matrix (10 note-on, 10 real-time controllers)... assign those function generators to the filter parameters and just listen...

On board samples are decent, lots of "real" instruments (which are useful as starting points if you pitch & transpose them a LOT) plus all the basic analog waveforms and various additive/harmonic waveforms as well...

my only beef: I wish you had the option to adjust traditional filter parameters (you know, cut-off, resonance, that sort of thing)... instead, you get to set rates and amounts for how much each one sweeps around a sort of pseudo 3D-plane... but there are enough of the damn things that you should be able to find one that suits your applications.

Effects are pretty weak, but if you're using this unit seriously, then you have an external processor or two...

There are also "hyperpresets" (basically up to different "prests" (patches) mapped across a split keyboard) - can't comment cos I don't use them, I'm a one-sound-at-a-time user.

Well, hopefully I've provided some insight as to why any serious sound-designer/electronic musician should own this beast, and you can scoop em for pretty cheap (if you can find someone willing to sell, that is) - I got mine for $350.

All in all, there are some smoke and mirrors in the parameter terminology, but this machine still does some pretty damn cool stuff.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Saturday-Sep-30-2000 at 06:33
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