MATRIXSYNTH: Korg MS20 Filter - KORG35

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Korg MS20 Filter - KORG35

A few links cropped up on AH today regarding the Korg MS20 filter:

MS20study.pdf (2.25M) by Tim Stinchcombe. Tim actually spent quite a bit of time studying the Korg MS10/MS20 filters and just made this 46 page pdf available on the list today.

RMC posted a link to his contribution - pdfs and gifs of the schematic and trace. I noticed that RMC referred to the filter as the KORG35. I never realized this is what it was called, so I did a quick search on KORG35 and found this site which has more info, links and a DIY clone with details and images.

My favorite Korg MS20 Clone? The Frostwave Resonator (pictured). I picked it up years ago and will never get rid of it. It just shreds for lack of a better description. It's the aural equivalent of finding that sweet spot in your ear with a good q-tip. It will shred paint off your walls. Super aggressive with a bit of resonance. Highly, highly recommended.

I should also mention the MOTM-420 and the Doepfer A-106 Xtreme Filter. I'm sure there are others. If you know them, feel free to post them.

Update: Make sure to check out the comments for others. The following was sent to me via email from Tim: "I compiled a list of known clones a while back, and this has been on it for some time. Mind you I only recently discovered that a discrete version of the Korg35 is to be seen in the Korg X-911 guitar synth (which I've not checked in any detail yet), and someone from synth DIY has just pointed out that it was probably originally developed for use in the 'PS' range of polysynths, so it looks like there is yet another avenue for me to tap into!"

Udpate via Noiseconformist in the comments:
"Hi, this is just to inform you that Tim got his new site up and running.
So the MS-20 document can be found here: HTH, Michael (a.k.a Noiseconformist)"


  1. Hey, I;ve got one of them thar Frostwaves, maybe I should drag it out on that recommendation, I;ve been using an electroharmonix Bi Filter, same idea but it also sends an envelope follower CV out for more fun in the mix

  2. Yeah definitely whip it out. Turn up the res and sweep that filter. Feels good when you do that.

  3. there is also "filtered coffee" from AS.

  4. aand.. the borg filter by wiard.. (well, that guy seems not to email back, but it is there).. maybe he only talks to americans.. I tried twice but no answer..

  5. The Analogue Soulutions SY02 is an exact copy of the later MS20 VCF, exept for maybe two components, it sound REAL MS20 = the best MS20 VCF clone !

  6. I love my Resonator.

  7. As a long time (22 years) owner of a Korg MS20, I can't see this excitement in its filter: it sounds really weak, and it's the weakest point of the whole synthesizer.

  8. the SY02 is excellent, i kinda regret selling mine when i got the doepfer 106, the doepfer is it's own thing and excellent, but the sy02 is a true clone. I have an both versions of the MS-20, and i usually prefer the later non- korg35 one better, it could be a calibration issue.

  9. Interesting. I wonder what the Frostwave is based on.

  10. >Interesting. I wonder what the >Frostwave is based on.

    All "MS20 type" filter clones are based on the same "principle" as the MS20 filter, but as someone said, only the SY02 copies the original MS20 schematic exactly (exept for one or two now obsolete components wich are replaced with modern equivalents)

  11. I heard back from Paul Perry, the creator of the Frostwave. He said it was based on the OTA.

  12. I had the X-911 too. It was did indeed sound like a MS-20 LPF, but alwyas very overdriven and distorted. What a fun box that was...

  13. I love my Resonator. It was the first piece of my modular.

  14. Moogulator: you should call Grant Richter. He doesn't responds to mails due spam problems etc. But he is very friendly always on the phone and a real nice guy.

    Dennis (non american aka dutchman)

  15. Hi,
    this is just to inform you that Tim got his new site up and running.
    So the MS-20 document can be found here:
    HTH, Michael (a.k.a Noiseconformist)


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