MATRIXSYNTH: E-MU Sound Engine Midi Synth Module

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

E-MU Sound Engine Midi Synth Module


via this auction

"This Is Another Odd Duck From The Depths Of Technology. Released In 1995, It Features 32-voice polyphony, 16-part multitimbrality, 384 programmable presets, two digital effects processors, and a Mac computer interface. Its Soundset Is Similar To A E-MU Proteus. Rear Connections Are Midi In, Out, and Thru. With RCA For Audio. Works Perfectly, Fully Tested With no Issues found. Power Supply Is 9v A/C, (Not Included) These Links Describe It Pretty Well, Sound On Sound Usually Has Pretty Good Info.... Surprisingly, List Price According To Them Was £565. Crazy Money For 1995 !

http://www.soundonsound.com...

http://www.hermannseib.com..."

Update via bachmaninoff in the comments: "Good sound, especially back in the day. Paid $100 from Guitar Center in '94, not sure why the SOS article has it from 1995. Maybe it was released in the UK later than the US?

Yeah, I was really pissed when I got it home, and the editing software was a cut-down version, though it was touted as full (you only had the ability to edit all parameters via a random generator). Still have it, and the manual. I'd still use it if I only used hardware. Midi Quest makes editing software for it for both Mac and PC..."


Update via Astralform in the comments: "This sound module came out in 1993. It did not sell well and Guitar Center blew them out a year later for $99. The onboard sound rom was unusual and had samples from the Proteus 1-2-3 plus other sounds in order to cover the GM soundset. The internal FX routing was vastly superior to the Proteus FX module and any E-mu hardware module made since! The last run of these came in black and looked way cooler than the one above."

7 comments:

  1. Good sound, especially back in the day. Paid $100 from Guitar Center in '94, not sure why the SOS article has it from 1995. Maybe it was released in the UK later than the US?

    Yeah, I was really pissed when I got it home, and the editing software was a cut-down version, though it was touted as full (you only had the ability to edit all parameters via a random generator). Still have it, and the manual. I'd still use it if I only used hardware. Midi Quest makes editing software for it for both Mac and PC...

    ReplyDelete
  2. This sound module came out in 1993. It did not sell well and Guitar Center blew them out a year later for $99. The onboard sound rom was unusual and had samples from the Proteus 1-2-3 plus other sounds in order to cover the GM soundset. The internal FX routing was vastly superior to the Proteus FX module and any E-mu hardware module made since! The last run of these came in black and looked way cooler than the one above.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I've had this unit forever and never knew what to do about getting sound out of it. I thought i could plug and play via midi but no luck. Do i need the software to be able to use it? I've been so curious to what it sounds like. Can someone help me out with this PLEASE. I almost got rid of it but i can't seem to let go of it. I would really love to use it someday.

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  4. Mauricio Lobos: I just found an E-MU Sound Engine in the trash (along with a Yamaha MU5 and Casio MT-220 keyboard!), just as pictured above. Apparently someone moving from my building abandoned most of their 80's and 90's synthesizer gear. I tried the Sound Engine module and although it powered up and was receiving MIDI data, like you, there was no sound. Just a constant low hum at the same level, unaffected even if I moved the volume knob. I opened it but couldn't find any faulty capacitors, but figured I'd have to repair it. Then I saw your post I thought it odd we both have the same issue.

    Well the good news is there's a very simple solution! You just need the CORRECT power adapter. It must be 9 volts *AC* output; using a DC adapter causes the audio output malfunction. Make sure the symbol on the adapter shows a "~" versus a "=". The "~" indicates AC output. I'm listening to my E-MU now, for the very first time. :)

    No special software is require, it is indeed MIDI plug and play. Just make sure the button next to the volume knob is pressed in ("ON") and then use the other button to select the second option from left. The LED should be under the only option *without* a Macintosh computer logo. Plug your MIDI cable into MIDI-IN, and then plug speakers in through either headphone or RCA jacks. That's it, you're done!

    The Sound Engine has a nice sounding piano, but doesn't compare to my Roland SC-55mkII or SC-50. I'm also disappointed it doesn't have a screen or buttons to change patches or effects, seems it's dependent on the host device. Looks like it has an RS-422c interface though, I'll have to try it with my Apple IIGS computer through its serial port. Well, hope you find this message and it helps you or someone else out.

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  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  6. To add to the above: I tried using a 9v power adapter (positive tip), rated at 800 mA, and while it works, I noticed after a few hours it was *burning* hot! Concerned, I searched for the E-MU Sound Engine manual and discovered it has a 25 watt power requirement. Translated, this means you need not only an AC adapter, +9V, but also roughly rated for a 3,000 mA current (or 3 Amps). I think you would probably be OK with a 2,500 mA (2.5 Amp) rated power adapter though. If I can't find one in my parts box, I'll likely try an electronics surplus store.

    Incidentally, I really like the piano in the Sound Engine, in some ways it's nicer than my Roland! I'm anxious to try out the second bank with Proteus instrument patches.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I had one of these back in the day and put together some tunes based on the instruments built into this, in particular the orchestral ones. Are those instruments available somewhere or is there a way to get those instruments into Garageband? I know there are better instruments available these days, I have the orchestral jam pack and a fair number of soundfonts but I'd like to get back to the original sound and work from there. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete

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