Akai S612

Akai S612 Image

The S612 was one of Akai's first professional rack-mount samplers, released back in 1985. Some of its features included 12-bit sampling from 4 to 32kHz with loop and truncate functions, an overdub function and mic or line input jacks. Internal memory is only 128KB which gives a maximum of 8 seconds sampling time at the lowest sampling rate available. An optional disk drive that features the quick disk (QD) 2.8 inch format is needed for permanent storage of samples. Only one sample is stored to each side of the disk.

You won't be able to do much with the S612 these days. However it bears some classic traits that may still be of interest. It features a continuous variable low-pass filter and an LFO for modulating and giving your sample an animated edge. It's also fairly simple and straight forward to operate, responds to external triggering and is still very well suited to any MIDI studio applications. It's definitely a limited sampler, but it makes a cheap back-up instrument that may come in handy for lo-fi sounds or triggered effects. It was Future Sound of London's first sampler.

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44 Visitor comments
Analogue Crazy
April 26, 2010 @ 4:26 pm
Was used by Martin Gore of Depeche Mode during the mid 80's.
Atomic Shadow
March 2, 2010 @ 9:56 am
I have one and I use it. The external drive thing has a ton of factory sound discs but I never use it for backup or loading sounds. This 12 bit thing is a must for crunchy drum samples or just playing some random noise at pitch across the keys. It is more a sound design tool these days. Best $75.00 I ever spent.
August 19, 2009 @ 8:12 pm
The good: Awesome lo-fi sampling, probably the easiest of all samplers to use, great filters, inexpensive to pick up used. The bad: Not a lot of sampling time, you will need to have a second one on hand for parts/repairs, used ones in good condition are hard to find. The ugly: Uses quikdiscs (oy!) for saving sounds and that is only if you can find the module that plugs into the sampler (good luck wit dat!). I guess the thing to do would be to use it to make your sample and then use a newer sampler to sample from the S612. That would be interesting to do with say, a Korg Triton.
May 28, 2009 @ 1:22 pm
Definately the most amazing bit of lo-fi looping kit. Used to sample bass drums off [beep] e keyboards onto mine.... Loop them,go midi, and with a bit of tape on the old middle C you're totally hands free to use that awsome filter and what ever else you need the digits for, has the most awsome sweep... Definately Arni, you can spend hours with those sliders. Painful at times but perserverance gets you some amazing sounds. All hands on thats what I like about the S-612 no menus, no back lit display, plug it in and away you go.....
March 9, 2009 @ 10:35 am
Makes a nice team to my X7000, S01 and SG01 piano module... AKAI gear set benchmarks and still use it for lofi ol'skool sounds, cheers.
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Rated 3.42 (196 Votes)

  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Demos & Media
  • YouTube Thumbnail
    Akai S612
    by Frippertronik

    Manual - Click this link to download the Akai owner's manual.

  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 6 voices
  • Sampler - 12-bit linear, 4kHz - 32kHz (variable) sampling rates
  • Memory - 128 KB (8 seconds at 4KHz)
  • Modulation - LFO with sine wave, speed, depth and delay controls
  • Filter - Continuous variable low-pass filter
  • Keyboard - None
  • Effects - None
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1985
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from Akai Pro

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