MATRIXSYNTH: TECHNICS SX-WSA1R Acoustic Modelling Synth

Friday, September 17, 2010

TECHNICS SX-WSA1R Acoustic Modelling Synth


via this auction

Curious how these sound compared to the Yamaha and KORG physical modeling synthesis.

Update via spunkytoofers in the comments: "technics had a large number of synth romplers and d-50 style keyboards.

the wsa is way more friendlier to program then any of the yamaha vl synths but probally due to the simpler nature of the wsa. sampled attack, body resonance was modelled by complex filters. the yamaha computed the attack as well which is taxing on processors. the trade off was polyphony. with exception to the vl1m it was monophonic with the yamahas. the vl1 can handle two but what you get is total expressive control and realistic physical reactions from instruments: reeds squeak. trumpets crack. penny whistles will break the octave by overblowing etc.

the vl's have better outputs then the wsa and the wsa always seemed a bit thin sounding to me, but it always could distinguish itself in a mix. the wsa was pretty bad for wind control. you'd think that they'd keep that in mind while designing the synth. the mono legato mode requires a keyboard to activate (slurring between two notes) so it could never sound smooth in realism for me.

i'd hate to program the vl from scratch. the editor is a bunch of text boxes. patchman has a good set of wind controller sounds he's made for professional use but if you want to tap into the exotic possiblities you'll need to edit it yourself. total mayhem.

my vote for the ultimate physical modelling would be the vl1m. still very expensive and even really rare. the vl70 is still available though.

perhaps you've heard a few of the stock demos presets by this guy? there's a few exotic sounds demonstrated: http://www.kbspace.com/vl1m/audio/index.html

patchman also has some vl1m demos on his site too. http://www.patchmanmusic.com/yamahaVL1.html

he also has some patches for the korg z1 and a few other physical modelling synths on his site as well if you were curious to compare the quality: http://www.patchmanmusic.com/korgZ1.html"

See the comments below for more.

7 comments:

  1. I remember reading about how these were not true physical modeling synthesizers. Isn't this Technics one and only synth?

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think it was their only one - you declared a sound source and then a resonator to pass it through - say a clarinet reed sound through a trombone path - it had a monster LCD screen and was somewhat not received well by the synth milieu - see a review from Sound on Sound at http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/1995_articles/may95/technicswsa.html

    I had one for a while and sold it for my cost ($650)which included a hard to find memory expansion - the current buy it now price of $391 USD is pretty fair - when it was new it was WAY pricey which contributed to its demise

    ReplyDelete
  3. technics had a large number of synth romplers and d-50 style keyboards.

    the wsa is way more friendlier to program then any of the yamaha vl synths but probally due to the simpler nature of the wsa. sampled attack, body resonance was modelled by complex filters. the yamaha computed the attack as well which is taxing on processors. the trade off was polyphony. with exception to the vl1m it was monophonic with the yamahas. the vl1 can handle two but what you get is total expressive control and realistic physical reactions from instruments: reeds squeak. trumpets crack. penny whistles will break the octave by overblowing etc.

    the vl's have better outputs then the wsa and the wsa always seemed a bit thin sounding to me, but it always could distinguish itself in a mix. the wsa was pretty bad for wind control. you'd think that they'd keep that in mind while designing the synth. the mono legato mode requires a keyboard to activate (slurring between two notes) so it could never sound smooth in realism for me.

    i'd hate to program the vl from scratch. the editor is a bunch of text boxes. patchman has a good set of wind controller sounds he's made for professional use but if you want to tap into the exotic possiblities you'll need to edit it yourself. total mayhem.

    my vote for the ultimate physical modelling would be the vl1m. still very expensive and even really rare. the vl70 is still available though.

    perhaps you've heard a few of the stock demos presets by this guy? there's a few exotic sounds demonstrated: http://www.kbspace.com/vl1m/audio/index.html

    patchman also has some vl1m demos on his site too. http://www.patchmanmusic.com/yamahaVL1.html

    he also has some patches for the korg z1 and a few other physical modelling synths on his site as well if you were curious to compare the quality: http://www.patchmanmusic.com/korgZ1.html

    ReplyDelete
  4. Please note that that Soundonsound review cited above was just of a performance demo at a trade show- to read Soundonsound's actual hands-on review, please see http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/1995_articles/dec95/technicswsa1.html , which is rather more positive.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I bought one nos back in 2001 from a Canadian reseller at the namm show. Was a great synth, don't pass it up if you can afford it. I payed $800 for mine(keyboard version) wish I still had it.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Can anyone help? I lost communication between my Technics keyboard and my WSA1R Acoustic Modeling Synthesizer Module. I do not have a owners manual for WSA1R, can anyone help?

    ReplyDelete

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