Yamaha SS30

Yamaha SS30 Image

This fully wood-cased beast is a classic String-Synth of the seventies from Yamaha. It is "multi-phonic" as it uses a divide-down, electric organ type of architechture for its tone generation. There are two tones for each note so it's probably fair to say it's dual-oscillator, and it can create some really lush timbres. It's richer sounding than the ARP Solina String Synth. It has an individual VCA envelope for each key. The four-octave keyboard is not velocity sensitive, and the synth offers just a few controls above the keyboard for choosing preset sounds, and modest tweaking (no filters, LFOs, etc). It has been used by Utravox & Midge Ure.

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15 Visitor comments
izera styephen
August 13, 2012 @ 9:43 pm
Years ago I came across something like this although it had a chorus/flange button and different controls. Sounded similar from memory.
Yamaha with the same suit case build and look.
Any clue what it may be called?
March 27, 2012 @ 9:13 am
I have an SS-30 + Crumar Performer, Roland RS-202 & RS-09, Elka Rhapsody 610, Yamaha SK-30, & have played the Solina. All I can say is this is by far and away the best.

It's also far more versatile than you might think, having de-tunable oscillators. Sounds you might think are "synths" off the mid-period Ultravox albums (Vienna, RiE), Foxx Metamatic, Visage, etc are actually SS-30. Check out the last low sustained note of "Western Promise" as it fades into "Vienna": SS-30 oscillator beating; no FX! It's an amazing machine, and I'd never part with it. If you ever see one: buy it!
Gerard O'Donnell
July 5, 2011 @ 2:19 am
Yes it's textures are richer, thicker and creamier due to detune facility over chorus. I note you have an estimated value of $400. I can't even get a bite at $100. I wonder as to the validity of your estimation.
Random dude
March 9, 2011 @ 7:29 am
Only two stars....why? MickroKorg five stars? C'mon! Gimme a break. This is the real thing. Buy it if you can.
June 3, 2010 @ 6:32 am
i have logan string and arp solina,would give them bouth for this . . . `nougt said . . .
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User Rating

Rated 3.24 (241 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 - Full 49 voices
  • Oscillators - 2 Osc. per voice
  • LFO - None
  • Filter - None
  • Effects - Chorus & Vibrato
  • Keyboard - 4-Octave (49 keys)
  • Memory - None
  • Control - None
  • Date Produced - 1977
  • Resources & Credits
  • Thanks to Don Thomson and Steven Norgate for submitting info.

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