Ensoniq EPS-16+

Ensoniq EPS-16+ Image

The EPS-16+ was an innovative early sampler workstation designed for the 90's. Its sampler specs are impressive: 16-bit, variable sampling rates from 11.2kHz to 44.6kHz. With a slim 1Mb of memory this gives just about 11.5 seconds of sampling time in mono at 44.6kHz. Editing functions are quite nice: normalizing, sample splicing, merging, phase switching, auto-looping, auto-truncating, sample rate conversion and more.

On the synthesizer side it has two great filters with switchable hi, low and band pass, 6dB to 24dB cutoffs. BUT, they aren't resonant. The keyboard is velocity and pressure sensitive and it has full MIDI implementation. There is also a sophisticated 8-track sequencer that can really be fun in a live performance situation. A wildly flexible and variable LFO with seven shapes always adds a new twist to your samples! Topping it off is a full suite of on-board effects like reverb, delay, chorus, flange, phaser, Leslie sim, distortion and wah-wah and these effects can be re-sampled to become a part of the sample! It can even be played while it is loading samples!

Ensoniq EPS-16+ Image

In its time, the EPS-16+ was a revolutionary machine. It brought a lot of power and musicality to sampling. These days, the EPS-16+ is still useful. It brings back the early crunchy sampler sound but with a lot of features that make it really fun to play with. Even with its non-resonant filters you can still find yourself filtering a 'garage-beat' drum loop for hours while muting and un-muting other loops on the 8-track sequencer!

Ensoniq EPS-16+ Rack Image

The EPS-16+ was also made available in a rack-mount version. All EPS-16+ synths can be upgraded via non-volatile flash ROM (available on-line from Chicken Systems, Inc.) to expand your EPS's memory, effects algorithms and creative potential! It has been used by Autechre, LFO, Massive Attack and Slam.

Lookup Ensoniq EPS-16+ Prices

The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings with more images, specs and information. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace. Our marketplace gets thousands of visits every week so make sure to check back often if you want to buy or sell a synth.

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Are you looking to buy or sell a Ensoniq EPS-16+? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

41 Visitor comments
danny bum cheeks!
December 28, 2008 @ 9:47 pm
I own eps16+ with scsi interface... I have all wave boy expanisons..

There is nothing the ep16+ cant do. First it can sample super easy. Then the sequencer in better then an mpc. Also key groups!

If you buy the wave boy fx's you have access to the resonant filter, and fm synth. Also transwave synth like the microwave...!

Basically. Eps16+ can do anything. you can get it to sound as fat as an access virus. Sound quality is very good.

Real shame software came along and killed machines like this..
December 20, 2008 @ 10:09 am
Update your lists man! RZA produced entire 36 chambers album using the 16+.
RObin Haggar
December 9, 2008 @ 12:38 pm
Still some of the best string sounds of any keyboard out there. Piano better than anything entry level. Anyone ever hooked theirs up to garage band with yamaha midi to usb cable - new macbook won't pick it up in garageband..???
Andrew Beddoes
November 15, 2008 @ 9:57 pm
Nice story below (Octopede). I packed my EPS 16+ on a bicycle home, which resulted in my first repair. The CAPITAL LETTERS ONLY in the display and the lack of filter resonance sealed its fate.
September 1, 2008 @ 9:58 pm
The EPS 16+ is still a good sampler. A major downfall is reliance on floppy discs. While there are SCSI drives available, the board requires the SCSI expansion port, and the proper drive, which may get daunting in terms of research/price, as EMU does not support Ensoniq products today (which may be a turn-off as it rises in age). The old factory discs have a few still relevant sounds, but the beauty is in creating samples. The effects are good, and programming isn't difficult, it just can get a bit uninteresting after a while. Perhaps it's display and lack of a rotary wheel contribute to this. It can get very hot over time (which is why there are fan kits) and has a bit of a hum while running. I never could find a manual, and the sequencer was difficult to figure out without prior knowledge. It is a large board and if it's not being used heavily, this may be a problem. All in all, as a controller and sampler, it serves a fine purpose.
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Rated 4 (428 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.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 7 to 20 voices
  • Sampler - 16-bit mono, 11.2kHz to 44.6kHz; (up to 11.5 seconds sample-time at 44.6kHz)
  • LFO - 7 shapes
  • Filter - 2 high, low, band pass 6dB to 24dB filters
  • Keyboard - 61 keys (velocity & pressure sensitive)
  • Memory - 1 MB (expandable to 2 MB)
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1990
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