Ensoniq ASR-10

Ensoniq ASR-10 Image

The ASR-10 stands for the Advanced Sampling Recorder - a completely digital music production studio. It's a 16-bit sampler that came in both keyboard and rack-mount versions. It shipped with 2 MB of sample memory which could be expanded to 16 MB for a few minutes of stereo cd-quality sampling time. It lets you choose from sample rates of 30 to 44.1 kHz and has all the professional sample editing functions you would expect to find from a pro sampler including autolooping, volume smoothing, normalize, crossfading, and time comp/exp. Even resampling through its effects, EQ, etc. is possible!

What's special about the ASR-10 is that it is a sampler using the synthesizer architecture of Ensoniq's classic line of synths from the SD-1 to the ESQ-1. Your samples are stored as part of its WaveSample memory. The ASR-10 can hold 127 WaveSamples, which can also consist of its two multimode digital filters, the LFO, one random noise generator, three envelope generators (hard-wired to the pitch, filter cutoff, and amplitude), and a modulation matrix with 15 routable modulation sources. Up to eight layers of WaveSamples can be combined to create your final sound. In this light, the ASR-10 basically looks like an advanced TranseWave (waveform modulation) synthesizer in which YOU create its WaveSamples!

The ASR-10 integrates a digital effects processor and MIDI sequencer on-board for a complete workstation. There are up to 62 effects (including vocoding) based on Ensoniq's DP/4 effects processor. A whole range of reverbs, chorus, flange, phaser, distortion, digital delay, speaker effects, etc. are available.

Ensoniq ASR-10 Rack Image

The ASR-10's sequencer has 16-tracks and with its 31 voices of polyphony you can create some pretty complete musical performances. The sequencer (reminiscent of the SD-1 and VFX-SD workstations) provides real time and looped recording modes, 96 PPQ clock resolution, an auto-locate function, punch in/out, and other useful features. And the ASR-10 can sample while the sequencer is playing. It can store up to 80 sequences or patterns which can be chained into a song (only one song can be in memory).

The ASR-10 also has a "Tape Recorder" mode in which you can record two tracks of audio for use along with the sequencer for an advanced all-in-one music making machine! Recording can be to its RAM or to external SCSI hard drives via the SP-3 SCSI interface (optional on keyboard version) for extended sampling/recording time and memory. It can support up to seven simultaneous hard disks and/or CD-ROM drives. You can even process external audio through the ASR, live or along with sequences.

As mentioned, the ASR-10 comes in a 61-note keyboard version and a rack-mount. But there's more. Over the years Ensoniq has continued to upgrade it adding an AES/EBU digital I/O upgrade, digital audio recording and importing of new sound formats, and more. The ASR-88 version is an ASR-10 with a fully-weighted 88-note keyboard and the SCSI interface comes standard. The ASR-10 is compatible with Akai (S-1000/1100) and Roland CD-ROM sound librarys. A high-density (HD) 3.5" disk drive comes standard on all models. The ASR-10 has been used by Atomic Babies, Autechre, Rammstein, Jimmy Edgar, Black Lung, Rabbit in the Moon, Timbaland, Pharell Williams (Neptunes), The Alchemist, Kanye West.

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85 Visitor comments
elektrogeist
December 27, 2011 @ 1:55 am
Have the keyboard, mostly it gets used as an effects processor (the inputs can run live through the onboard FX which sound FANTASTIC) and for warping samples into unrecognizable noise with the sample transwave, sample start, etc. Really frustrating to try and use for anything else, especially when software sampling is so easy. But the quality of audio from this machine is something special, has that great Ensoniq audio mojo!
Teeto
December 18, 2011 @ 10:18 am
Alguien puede decirme como puedo usar el asr 10 de teclado maestro? muchas gracias
Tom
December 7, 2011 @ 12:21 am
Following on from my comment below:
If you get one make sure it has the SCSI option or you will be forever messing with floppies which may seem old skool romantic but you will soon tire of saving samples to floppies (takes ages). Go for the keyboard version if you have the room (keys are good), Buying and using one of these takes an investment of time and effort. This is not Ableton Live. You have to do everything your self (as it should be anyway).Be good to the sampler and it will reward you. But be aware there are many samplers out there which are easier to get along with.
Tom
December 7, 2011 @ 12:12 am
A really great sampler for its time but it isnt any better or any worse than other samplers of the era. I used to have the 88 note keyboard. Excellent high quality keys you just dont see today. The FX board is also very good. Really does sound like an Ensoniq DP4 (brilliant unique fx box btw). Sound of the asr is punchy and solid. I liked using it on bass sounds the most. The sound has been over romanticised though. Its cool, but its no MPC60. The sampler was adopted by the Hip Hop community in the US. I think this may explain why its price is highly inflated today. Get the KBD version
jix
November 25, 2011 @ 3:40 am
anyone know if there is a download for the Asr-10 rack manual out there, or would
let me send them some $$ to take there's to a print shop?
i have only the keyboard version and would love the real..
 
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  • 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 - 31 voices
  • Sampler - Sigma-Delta 64 times oversampling, 16-bit, 30kHz or 44.1kHz variable sampling rates; 127 WaveSamples, up to 8 Layers per Program.
  • Filter - 2 digital filters in series, one low-pass, one high pass. Up to 4-pole filtering with 6, 12, 18, and 24 dB/oct slopes.
  • Envelopes - 3 envelopes: Env 1 to WaveSample Pitch; Env 2 to WaveSample Filter Cutoff; Env 3 to WaveSample Amplitude.
  • Sequencer - 16 tracks, 80 Patterns (999 measure limit each), 1 Song at a time
  • Effects - 1 effects unit with 50 to 62 effects including vocoder (reverbs, chorus, flange, phaser, distortion, digital delay, speaker effects)
  • Keyboard - 61 keys w/ velocity and aftertouch (88 weighted keys on ASR-88)
  • Memory - Sampler: 2 MB expandable to 16 MB;
    Patches: 8 Instruments
  • Control - MIDI (8-parts)
  • Date Produced - 1992 - 1998

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