Synth Site: Ensoniq: ESQ1 Workstation: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.4 out of 5
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Cleatus from sILLINOISe writes:
My buddy has one at his house right's his uncle's and he's "borrowing" it for a while. My friend had several sequences on it, hip-hop type stuff. It actually puts out an outstanding amount of bass if you know how to do it right, like he does. But that's not what impressed me.

I found this card, I don't know if this was his uncle's work or if it was some factory preset card, but there was this sound called "seagulls"...heh made this weird sound like a cheezy 80's synthesized ocean sound. Now my friend doesn't know about programming the voices themselves, so I took this sound and detuned the main oscillator WAY down, then I added a tremolo-type LFO to it and took the other two sound which I think were sine waves and I changed them to one of the noise oscillators. Oh MY was wicked my friend started freaking out. He jumped when the sound escaped from the amp. :)

This thing makes GREAT pad and industrial sounds... also w/ those LFO's you can make some awesome "hazy" (slow, "detuning" LFO) sounds, especially nice on medium-pitch saw waves. Also good for Stabbing Westward/Nine Inch Nails - type ditties. Think 80's oldskool, but with some ahead-of-its time capabilities. I don't have one yet but I will get one ASAP.

Oh yeah and stop complaining about the absence of hi-hat...if you put a little amount of time into and do some hi-pitched noise oscillators coupled with little "ticks" then you should be able to make some...and pretty trippy ones at that.

Overall phat synth.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Apr-13-1999 at 10:37
Dorien Grey a professional user from usa writes:
I love my ESQ-1 no matter what anyone into bashing Ensoniq may say... This synth is one mean machine!!! First off, it is a sturdy, Terminator type of construction that is nice & sloid/heavy. So you know its not gonna break if some frat/drunk(sic) slams into it at a gig... I have a flight case for mine too cause Iam touchy about dust & spills when I am not plugged in... The Patch editing on this thing is pretty darn amazing. I mean you have 3 osc per voice & lots of waveforms & a shedload of mod routing possibilities... If you know how to program a synth patch, this sucker will surprise you with the endless amount offuturistic soundz you can come up with. Even though I have my PC pretty well tweaked with every type of synth patch & wav you can imagine-- Istill like to spend 1 or 2 nights a month programming new patches on my ESQ-1 because of the unique sonudz I get on there... Its great for weird/experimental/industrial or even your raver/techno accents/pads... I love it & I would poke out my freakin' eyes before i would ever part with mine...I will buy another one someday, too. You can store 120 patches at a time on there & then just bulk send it to a PC librarian program to save the banks while you program some new patches...This synth is a beast if you get to know its elaborate voice architecture... If you are into a powerful sound, this mother can be pretty handy. Anyone looking for a Download-y/Puppy-esque type sound could do alot worse than this sucker... Its built like a tank, too as I said. For 300-350 smackers--it friggin' rules!!!!!! Dont hate me if you disagree, I just calls it like I sees it, pal...Oh, yeah, i have a Mirage too although i'm not as psyched about it... Its strictly for experimental/industral (my faves!) IMHO....Later Days, synth cadets & ivory ticklers & all you other hackers...

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Feb-23-1999 at 21:26
G3 Man writes:
This thing is the bomb It can make sounds like nothing ever heard on other units ! The cool combo of 12 bit waveforms and curtis filters is cool to put it mildly. The only thing that can beat this in the 'evil' sounding synth department would be it's big bad cousin the SQ-80

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Wednesday-Feb-03-1999 at 22:28
Mark Christopher a hobbyist user from Los Angeles(Mexico or Mehico) writes:
Darn, I miss my Esq1.. I sold it for $175.00.. Ensoniq Esq1 is good for basses, pads, fx, and it's very very fat like my girlfriend. Dont sell your's you will regret it like me.. This synth can be your center piece.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Monday-Jan-25-1999 at 00:35
h a hobbyist user from russell writes:
I've been using the esq-1 for about a year now. It has a great deal of modulation capabilities. Recent example: Each sound you make can use up to three dco's. Each sound can be layered with one other sound. Recently I made a patch where each oscillator hits one note--press one key, get six notes in descending order. Soundwise, the esq-1 is dark but not aggressive. Imo, the synth is best used for making industrial music. The raw waves are very bland and thin, but the modulation capabilities make up for this.

Rating: 2 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Nov-17-1998 at 11:40
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