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the world's cheapest synth?

 
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stewart
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Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 3:47 pm    Post subject: the world's cheapest synth? Reply with quote

made a rather good find in a charity shop today, a Casio SK-1 sampling synthesiser for £5! it's pretty quirky and mildly temperamental, and i managed to make it sound like a broken radio after about 5 minutes by getting it to sample itself. i suppose 'synthesiser' is a rather generous term, but it does have portamento and some envelope effects, and can be switched between mono and 4 note polyphony.

found some info on the vintage synth explorer site:

Quote:
Well, people call it the poor man's sampler. It is the cheapest sampler in the world. Followed by the SK-5, the second cheapest in the world. It's a polyphonic synthesizer (just four voices) with very cheap sounds and it can store one sample in its memory. The sampling is 8-bit PCM, 9.38kHz, giving about 1.4 seconds. It's so gritty... Samples can only be recorded through the awful mini-mic built-in to the upper-right corner or a 3.5mm line-input plug on the backside of the synth. Alas, its memory clears when turned off.

Obviously it's designed as a cheap toy for consumers. This is the sort of sampler-toy you end up belching into with your friends and play burp-songs for a laugh! There are 11 built-in accompaniment-style drum patterns (disco, rock, samba, etc.) which are all embarrassingly fun and totally unusable. The keyboard uses mini plastic keys. It lacks MIDI, lacks effects, edit-ability, memory, and filtering. However there are 13 envelope shapes that can affect your sample or synth sounds somewhat. There is also portamento, vibrato, and chord accompaniment with the chord selector system.

If you gotta make some lo-fi cheese samples then you might want to try the SK-1, after all it is very cheap! Of course, as cheap as they come and with the built-in sampling, the SK-1 is a great candidate for circuit-bending! It is used by Fatboy Slim, Beck, Autechre, Portishead, Bloodhound Gang, Nine Inch Nails, Incubus and Blur.



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robroe
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

you fucker. my friend matt has 2 of these things. one is stock one is bent.

they are so much fun. just hit the record button and yell FUCK TITTS NUTTS FUCK at it and then hit the keys and it says FUCK TITTS NUTTS FUCK back at you up and down the scale. i could keep my self entertained with that alone.

if you EVER want to get rid of it or sell it. EVER. i will buy it, pay for shipping, send you cookies, whatever i gotta do to get it
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dezb1
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice, donít Portishead use one of them?

Ps: these things are selling for £20 and up on EBay
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stewart
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

robroe wrote:
you fucker. my friend matt has 2 of these things. one is stock one is bent.

they are so much fun. just hit the record button and yell FUCK TITTS NUTTS FUCK at it and then hit the keys and it says FUCK TITTS NUTTS FUCK back at you up and down the scale. i could keep my self entertained with that alone.

if you EVER want to get rid of it or sell it. EVER. i will buy it, pay for shipping, send you cookies, whatever i gotta do to get it


i just looked on ebay UK, there's two with BINs for £49.99 and £59.99 respectively Shocked

if i ever sell it i'll give you first refusal.

dezb1 wrote:
Nice, donít Portishead use one of them?

Ps: these things are selling for £20 and up on EBay


yup!
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robroe
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

here's a recording with us using one at bachelor party cabin over the summer

http://bestnetworx.com/uploader/files/56/keyboard%20jam.mp3
http://bestnetworx.com/uploader/files/56/the%20navajo%20people%20are%20not%20navajo%20people.mp3
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robroe
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://bestnetworx.com/uploader/files/56/jameson%20jameson.mp3
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Doog
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got one, have had it since I was a nipper. The best part is making farty noises with your mouth, sampling it and playing it back reaaaaally low on the keyboard. I'd imagine this is what Portishead use them for too.
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bad video no work sad bad fruit snack
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dezb1
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 8:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Doog wrote:
Got one, have had it since I was a nipper. The best part is making farty noises with your mouth, sampling it and playing it back reaaaaally low on the keyboard. I'd imagine this is what Portishead use them for too.




yep, all the low farty noises on portishead albums were made with one of these.
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Sloan
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

THE JAMESON SAMPLER!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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ekwatts
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Doog wrote:
Got one, have had it since I was a nipper. The best part is making farty noises with your mouth, sampling it and playing it back reaaaaally low on the keyboard. I'd imagine this is what Portishead use them for too.


Fucking yes, your younger years appear to mirror my older brothers so much. He bought one when they first came out. I loved it so much. Like an idiot, he let Mark E. Smith play with it. And he stole it. The cheap fucking bastard. His wife/keyboard player started using it in the live shows.

My favourite sounds were the "lion" and the surf sound. I loved that thing.
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robroe
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


Link

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Reece
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 9:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

as far as i know alot of the homestar runner music is made on an sk-1.

it's awesome.
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less_cunning
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i have two that i paid zero dollars for. & a casiotone MT & a Casio SA-38. in addition--

i really don't use it much anymore but they are really are fun creative tools esp. for people that use like radios & stuff on stage b/w songs & akward tunings; plus, bands like Times New Viking (& the like...) would put them on plastic buckets and use them on stage.
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Last edited by less_cunning on Tue Dec 01, 2009 12:17 am; edited 1 time in total
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robroe
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hilary hates my hair in that video. i took a razor around the entire bottom of my head and left the top long
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less_cunning
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 12:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

IDK mang. i am not trying to be all gay or nuthin' but your haircut inthatvideo looks kind of sexxxy.
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stewart
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

less_cunning wrote:
i have two that i paid zero dollars for. & a casiotone MT & a Casio SA-38. in addition--

i really don't use it much anymore but they are really are fun creative tools esp. for people that use like radios & stuff on stage b/w songs & akward tunings; plus, bands like Times New Viking (& the like...) would put them on plastic buckets and use them on stage.


when i was playing about with it today i realised a band called cowtown use one on a song called 'kitty runs away from garlic' (not on their myspace anymore, but probably downloadable from their site). the drumbeat and organ-esque sound are totally the same as what you can get from the sk-1. loev that song.

edit: audible here: http://www.last.fm/music/Cowtown/_/Kitty+runs+away+from+garlic
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Justin J
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i bought this old casio at a swap meet for $20:


and i fully intend to build this for my next project.
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Gavin
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 1:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here we are. I thought mine was a Casio, but it's not. It's a Yamaha PS220.



In case you're interested. I know nothing about synths/ keyboards.
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stewart
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 1:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i've got a PSR-320. 'twas my first keyboard. it's fucking awful, and useless unless you want a MIDI controller that's also capable of making helicopter noises (it also has gunshots. i've used those on many a composition where i needed an authentic 'ghetto' vibe).

strangely enough, i covered it in adhesive tinfoil, obscuring all the functions and even some buttons, and when i lent it to a friend his mum sat and picked it all off and cleaned it up because she found it therapeutic. 0_o
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finboy
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 4:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gavin wrote:
Here we are. I thought mine was a Casio, but it's not. It's a Yamaha PS220.



In case you're interested. I know nothing about synths/ keyboards.


hahaha, my buddy has one of those, can not get a decent sound out of it
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