Korg Wavestation

Korg Wavestation Image

When Sequential Circuits finally went belly-up, their research and development into vector synthesis was picked up at Korg. This led to the hugely successful Wavestation Synthesizer which was based on Sequential's ProphetVS. The Wavestation incorporated the 2-dimensional vector joystick of the ProphetVS which allowed the user to alter and animate sounds.

Korg added to this a second break-through form of synthesis: wave sequencing, by which short segments of sampled audio waveforms could be played one after the other and cross-faded into each other for some complex and unusual tones, pads, textures and rhythms. The Wavestation had 2MB of ROM based samples at your disposal. Programming is not exactly easy but this great digital synth is capable of lush ambient sounds and strange effects. It has the obligatory lowpass filter, though it is non-resonant and digital sounding. Also on-board are some multi-effects which are pretty nice. This synth is easily upgraded and expandable with PCM cards too.

Korg Wavestation EX Image

In 1991 the Wavestation EX, also called EXK-WS, was released (pictured above). The EX added 150 more waveforms (4MB) including acoustic instruments and drums. The EX also adds 8 multi-effects including: Mod Pitch Shift-Delay, Stereo Compressor-Limiter/Gate, Vocoder, Overdrive and Distortion effects, transposable keyboard and added MIDI implementation and control. Wavestations are used by Orbital, The Future Sound of London, Genesis, Jan Hammer, Depeche Mode, Toto, Vangelis, Legendary Pink Dots, Biosphere and Sin.

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50 Visitor comments
Daniel Westin
October 12, 2008 @ 3:36 pm
The Korg Wavestation is used by Alan Clark of Dire Starits and Daniel Fletcher Of D a z z - S y n t h as well...

(D a z z is taken from the word häagen-dazs, a american icecream company)
Alessandro
September 21, 2008 @ 11:33 am
owned one, the EX version, hmmmmm.. sold it quickly could not move me at all
Korg Mad
September 18, 2008 @ 8:45 am
If you can live without the Hardware keyboard,Dump the synth and go for the Legacy collection,far more parameters and control and huge library of all the Patches ever commercially availible..I always found the Wavestation useful on its own,but sit it in a busy mix and it was a pain in the butt to fit,or the sounds were too limp once you removed the FX chain
Bigblueball
September 1, 2008 @ 9:18 pm
The Wavestation/EX is an excellent source of ambient drones, motions and movements. It provides deep and rich textures when programmed to its full potential and when expansion cards are used. The effects sound great, and may become more necessary to utilize when dealing with the grainy and aliasing sample ranges (the samples which I believe are 12 bit, but still useful). Despite its age, it is a well made, heavy duty board and controller, with features and a purpose that has its own niche even to this day.
Analogue Crazy
August 21, 2008 @ 7:17 am
Very atmospheric and interesting sound.
 
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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 - Up to 32 Voices
  • Oscillators - Digital synth with 2MB ROM samples, Vector Synthesis, Wave Sequencing
  • Multitimbral - 16 parts
  • Filter - 1 LowPass filter per voice
  • Memory - 150 patches
  • Keyboard - 61 keys (velocity / aftertouch)
  • Effects - 2 onboard effects
  • Control - MIDI (up to 8 channels at a time)
  • Date Produced - 1990-94
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