Korg MS-20 Mini Synth Review


Korg’S MS-20 Monophonic Synthesizer, first introduced in 1978, is reborn as the MS-20 Mini. Shrunk to 86 percent of the original’s size, it retains the two oscillators with ring modulation, envelope generators with delay/hold, and patch cord programming. The VCA (Voltage Controlled Amplifier) maintains the original’s basic design but produces less noise. The original filters’ characteristics, with both high-pass and low-pass and peak/resonance, are also included. The patching system uses 1/8-inch jacks and the clear, front panel signal chain flow chart is a great and fast way to learn synthesizing musical sounds. Patching enables the creation of complex sounds by allowing the rerouting of both modulation and audio (from both the internal oscillators and external audio sources). The ESP (External Signal Processor) functionality allows the utilization of either the pitch or volume of an external audio source to control the synthesizer—yes! There is a MIDI-In jack for receiv- ing note messages, and the USB-MIDI connector will transmit and receive note messages to your computer. With the original MS-20 owner’s manual and settings chart, the Korg MS-20 Mini will be available at MAP price of $599. See http://korg.com.

By Barry Rudolph

miniBIO: Barry Rudolph is a recording engineer/mixer with over 30 gold and platinum RIAA awards to his credit. He has recorded and/or mixed: Lynyrd Skynyrd, Hall & Oates, Pat Benatar, Rod Stewart, the Corrs and Robbie Nevil. Barry has his own futuristic music mixing facility and also teaches recording engineering at Musician’s Institute, Hollywood, CA.http://www.barryrudolph.com