Akai's 12-bit S700 was released in 1987 as a rack-mount spin-off of the X7000 keyboard sampler. The S700 is a very user-friendly sampler. It's much like the S612 that preceded it, but with some improvements. It has the same filters and effects as the S612. Its sampling frequency ranges from 4 to 32 KHz and it supports up to 8 seconds of sample-time. Its polyphony is limited at just 6 voices and unfortunately it uses the totally obsolete 2.8-inch QuickDisk format for loading and saving samples.
A unique limitation of its sampling, the S700 is capable of recording only six 0.8-second samples at its maximum bandwidth setting of 16kHz. It samples in mono and using twelve bits it has a distinctly lo-fi sound quality. Yes there's a low-pass filter and no, it's not resonant. So, limited memory, sound quality and data-storage may label the S700 as a dead end. But some think it's got character and continue to use them today. It's a dinosaur, and some people may like that about it!
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Images from Akai Pro
Additional info from Jannis Decker
Reviewed November 2007