Korg Radias

Korg Radias Image

The Korg Radias is a Virtual Analog synthesizer that was released by Korg in 2006. It takes advantage of the MMT (Multiple Modeling Technology) that their flagship OASYS synthesizer module employs. The synthesizer itself is similar in design to the MS2000, but offers many more capabilities. It is capable of emulating older digital synthesizers and classic analog synthesizers like the MS-series without any noise or aliasing. The Radias also allows for various external sounds to be fed through its filters and envelopes. It also has the Korg DWGS (Digital Waveform Generator System) that the Korg DW-8000 employs.

The Radias also takes advantage of the KKS (Korg Komponent System) which allows it to be used with the 49-key keyboard or used as a standalone rack module, and the Radias-R unit can be connected to the M3 Music Workstation/Sampler along with its various keyboard models.

Korg Radias Image

The Radias has two oscillators per timbre and a noise generator. Oscillator #1 has nine basic waveforms, with four types of modulation and PCM (64 synth sounds, 128 drum sounds) and Oscillator #2 has four basic waveforms with two types of modulation. The Radias has the ability to stack up to five types of waveforms in Oscillator #1, while using only one voice of polyphony. In Unison mode, you can stack five additional waveforms, while using more polyphony. With this function, you can create some awesome super waveforms-the overall result can contain up to 25 detuned waveforms. The Radias also has two Low-frequency Oscillators (LFO) that add more modulation to the two audio oscillators. These LFO's provide six waveforms and their speeds can be set manually or by tempo.

The Radias itself has four timbres per program. With a timbre, you can assign one drum program, another can have a lead, a bass, and a vocoder as well; all in one program! Each timbre can contain one synthesizer/drum kit, equalizer, and two multi-effects.

The Radias has two filters that can be used side-by-side, individually, or in a series. They offer Low Pass, High Pass, Band Pass, and Combination modes. Each filter offers 24 or 12 dB modes for the low pass filter. The effects on this unit are remarkable as well. The Radias comes loaded with 33 different effects: Delays, Chorus, Flangers, Compressors, talking modulator, and even the good old Polysix Ensemble effect. You can assign one master effect to the program, while each timbre gets its own two effects, creating a whole world of possibilities. The Radias also offers a 16-band vocoder with a nice Formant Motion recording function that allows you to record up to 7.5 seconds of external audio which can then be triggered via the keyboard.

The Radias has a built in arpeggiator as well, providing six different patterns to choose from. Patterns can be up to 32 steps long and the gate/velocity can be set for each step to get that sound you want! It also has two 32-step sequencers (they can be combined for a 64-step on a single timbre). They can easily be assigned to a drum kit, for example, to use the Radias as a programmable drum machine. The step sequencer supports 8-voice polyphony per step.

Korg Radias Image

Overall, this synthesizer is a nice addition to anybody's set-up. It's a good virtual analog that is also quite good for the beginner to learn subtractive synthesis on. Korg also has excellent customer service, and the owner's manual for the Radias is very comprehensive and clearly explains its many functions. The Radias also has a software-based sound editor that is compatible with the newest versions of Windows and OSX. It has been used by Jordan Ruddess and Tangerine Dream.

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127 Visitor comments
July 1, 2013 @ 12:43 am
emile strunz, thank you for your insightful post. I was waiting to hear from people like you who actually use it as the center piece of your performance. I happened to get Radias as a part of a promo "gift" when I bought M3, but still not utilizing is quite yet. Better dust this baby off now!
Emile Strunz
May 17, 2013 @ 8:30 am
I've released a number of singles on small independent labels, and performed live across Europe, and it's all down to this little baby. An absolute joy of a synth. It can be frustrating sometimes in that it takes a while to get the sound you want, and you have to use the on-board EQ and effects to get that, but I've played gigs with just this and an Electribe and it sounded incredible. You can get a passable 303 acid sound, and the drum kits (909, 808, Glitch, techy, traditional you name it) are fantastic. It was love at first sight with this, and it has allowed me to realize my dreams!!!!
Sian Howard
April 6, 2013 @ 5:59 pm
A stunning synth, simply stunning. An R3 with no limits. I was lucky enough to pick one up in perfect condition second-hand for £600. It's the best synth investment I ever made - and I have some fairly heavyweight hardware synths, workstations and sound modules (Prophet 08, Waldorf Q, Fantom, Motif, Triton, FS1R, P2500, MC-909, ESX-1). As regards the 'no bass' comments posted on this site, this is nonsense and I assume can only be posted by users who have run through the presets and have no inclination/ability to program it.
March 28, 2013 @ 5:20 pm
Actually, bass was something I thought the Radias did rather well... Here's an example in a song I made (bass comes in around 1:30 or so):

March 28, 2013 @ 9:43 am
For those who are saying the Radias can't deliver bass, either need their ears testing, or their programming skills refreshing. I've had no issues creating killer basses, you just need to approach V-analogue differently than real analogue (and yes I have real analogue synths too, they just work differently). It's all about layering with the right filter (two filters on this thing remember, so each voice can let different tones through... use that HP with resonance), and add just a sniff of sine-wave at the bottom (make use of the 24-voices). Learn to program before hating.
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Rated 4.21 (583 Votes)

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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 - 24 Voice
  • Multitimbral - 4 Parts
  • Oscillators - 2 Oscillators
  • Waveforms - Square, Sine, Triangle, Saw, PCM (Drum and Synths), Formant, Noise, Audio in
  • LFO - 2 LFO's, 6 Virtual Patches, 3 Modulation Sequencers (Waveform, Cross, Unison, VPM)
  • Filter - 2 Filters, -24db/-12db lowpass, high pass, band pass, comb
  • Envelope - 3 Envelope Generators
  • Effects - Delay, Flanger, Vocoder, Talk Modulation, Reverb, Compressor, Phaser
  • Sequencer - 2 32-Step Sequencers (combined for 64)
  • Arpeggiator - Up / Down / Random / Alt1 / Alt2 / Trigger
  • Keyboard - 49 Keys/Velocity Sensitive
  • Memory - 256 Programs, 128 Timbre Templates, 128 Insert Effect templates, 128 Master Effect Templates
  • Control - Midi In/Out/Thru, Keyboard In, USB
  • Date Produced - 2006

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