E-mu Proteus

E-mu Proteus 1 Image

Proteus 1 (1989)

Throughout the 1990’s, E-mu came to be known for its rack-mounted synth and sampler modules. In 1989, the Proteus was the first rack-mount module E-mu produced, and it was a huge success for the company. The Proteus 1 is an economical one-space module consisting of your basic rock and pop sounds. It has 4 MB of sounds from the EIII library such as samples of pianos, organs, strings, horns, guitars, basses, drums, Latin percussion, and more all at your fingertips. The Proteus offers professional features such as full 16-part MIDI multitimbrality, 32-voice polyphony, 16-bit ROM samples, six individual polyphonic outputs and extensive editing and modulation capabilities. There is also E-mu's RMidiPatchS that allows direct real-time control of over 40 parameters for keyboard, midi controllers, internal LFOs and envelopes. It has been used by Astral Projection, Pet Shop Boys, Vangelis, Genesis, and Information Society.

E-mu Proteus 1 Pop/Rock Image

Proteus 1 Pop/Rock

E-mu Proteus 1 Plus Orchestral Image

Proteus 1 Plus Orchestral

The Proteus 1 model was expandable with an additional 4 MB of orchestral samples (from the Proteus 2), making it a Proteus 1 Plus Orchestral. This gave you 4 MB of Pop/Rock sounds plus 4 MB of Orchestral sounds - 384 patches total! Presumably, when the Plus 1 Orchestral came out, the original Proteus 1 took on the Pop/Rock label to make it perfectly obvious what sounds each Proteus 1 model came loaded with.

E-mu Proteus 2 Orchestral Image

Proteus 2 Orchestral (1990)

In 1990, the Proteus 2 was released which is identical to the Proteus 1 in most every way except that it has 4 MB of purely orchestral sounds - the same sounds from the Plus Orchestral ROM card, which also happen to come from the EIII library. This was the first time really high quality sounding orchestral sounds could be had in a dedicated sound module.

E-mu Proteus 2 XR Image

Proteus 2 XR (1990)

The standard Proteus 1 and 2 could be upgraded to XR versions (extended RAM) as well. These doubled the RAM and memory up to 8MB, adding another 192 of user patches (128 preset / 64 user) for a total of 384 patches.

E-mu Proteus 3 World Image

Proteus 3 World Instruments (1991)

The Proteus 3 is identical to the previous Proteus models except that it features an ethnic World set of sounds. It's full of 16-bit samples (4 MB expandable to 8 MB via an XR upgrade) of shofars, flutes, celtic harps, tablas, tamburas, banjos, didjeridoos, bagpipes, etc.

E-mu Proteus FX Image

Proteus FX (1994)

A Proteus FX module is also available. It features sounds from both the rock pop and orchestral modules. It also adds two digital effects processors with reverb, delay, chorus and more. Surprisingly, the FX surpasses other Proteus models in many ways but it is also the least expensive model! It features 8 MB of sounds standard, and up to 512 patches. But what it doesn't have, is six polyphonic outputs. Just your basic stereo L/R(mono) output.

Lookup E-mu Proteus Prices

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45 Visitor comments
UltraProteus Info
December 18, 2010 @ 3:41 pm
UltraProteus Information here:

http://www.sequencer.de/syns/emu/UltraProteus.html

No info here on Vintage Synth yet :-(
Michael
December 18, 2010 @ 11:33 am
I have to agree with Miles 100%! I have owned all previous Proteus incarnations, and have since sold them... Except for the UltraProteus, of which I now own two of!

@Vintage Synth Explorer: Please include the UltraProteus rack for a complete E-MU line up here. And for those who need a fresh palette of sounds for your UltraProteus, you need look no further then here:

metasounds.metascapemedia.com
LammerGyer
October 11, 2010 @ 1:07 pm
These were the premier orchestral and 'real instrument' tone modules of the early 90s. No effects though and the audio output is kinda weak and needs gain. Knobs no membranes or tack switches. Very user friendly for tiny window. We used Proteus II for soundtrack work at Va Commonwealth Univ and after post-prod, the result was stunning. Cheap plastic case and battery life make them prone to damage. This is what happened. Not road worthy without the steel case.
Miles
August 24, 2010 @ 5:45 pm
This list is missing the best proteus of them all, the 'UltraProteus" which has all the 4MB sample blocks from the proteus 1, 2, and 3 so it can load all their presets, but it also has an excellent 4MB stereo piano for a total 16MB ROM. But the best reason to find one may be its Z-Plane filters, it has 100 more than the Morpheus!
Randy
April 22, 2010 @ 10:05 pm
I just acquired a Proteus FX on ebay for $75 - what a bargain! This unit has all the basics covered, sounds good in a mix and is built better than the Proteus 1, 2 or 3 - the case is metal and the controls seem more solid. This was the step between the Proteus 1,2&3 and the Proteus 1000/2000. I am using this unit along with some other synths on a recording project and it is stacking up favorably against some very respectable units! If you can find one for under $150, I'd recommend grabbing it!
 
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  • 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.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 32 Voices
  • Oscillators - 4 MB of ROM based 16-bit samples (expandable to 8 MB); 125 waveforms
  • LFO - Yes
  • Filter - None
  • Effects - None (FX Module has 2 digital effects processors: Reverbs, chorused and delays)
  • Keyboard - None
  • Memory - 192 patches (64 user programmable); up to 384 on XR modules; up to 512 on FX module
  • Control - MIDI (16-parts)
  • Date Produced - 1989 - 1995
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