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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42 Visitor comments
November 29, 2013 @ 7:10 am
With same rate absolutely identical, was expecting some difference there at least with lower rates, even filter sounds identical. Like I said it lacks mojo when compared to other 12-bit's "s950 is akai's goto mojo sample" is true, wont mean much as myth is Akais have some.. they dont.
November 24, 2013 @ 9:56 am
s950 7.5kHz - 48kHz
S612 4khz - 32khz

Identical I don't think so maybe at similar samplerates but both have there uses.

Saying the s612 has no mojo makes you look a fool as the s950 is akai's goto mojo sampler then saying the s612 sounds the same as the 950 makes me question your ears.

The s612 is the best akai 12bit sampler the 950 is a general progression from the s612 >s700(menu based interface was first introduced still used QD) >s900(budget 950 memory cannot be upgraded.>950 the last great akai 12bit rack sampler.

Both are must have units.
November 20, 2013 @ 2:57 am
just made side to side comparison with s612 and s950 and they sound absolutely identical
September 16, 2013 @ 10:34 am
it's good 4/5, only minus comes from blame sound, no "mojo" when compared to e-mus ensoniqs even roland is fatter, but interface is superior for sure and resampling function is very inspiring.
August 14, 2013 @ 7:07 pm
The current value in the UK in 2013 is anywhere from £50-£250 (max) with disk drive unit. They won't fetch anywhere near a grand anytime soon, if ever, simply because of their severe lack of memory, being able to store only 1 sample in memory and 1 per side of disk if you have a working disk drive and any extremely rare quickdiscs. Also the sample in memory is lost when the unit is switched off.
Interesting and fun to use. Nice sound if you like that sort of thing. Better used as just an effect/filter. I wouldn't pay any more than £100 without disk drive and discs.
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Rated 3.4 (191 Votes)

  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a 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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