It looks like the collaboration between Pioneer and Dave Smith Instruments wasn’t just a fling. The Japanese company has just announced the TORAIZ AS-1, a new monophonic synthesizer, the second musical instrument in its TORAIZ series, following the launch of the TORAIZ SP-16 live sampler in August 2016.
What is it? According to Pioneer, the TORAIZ AS-1 is driven by a fully programmable, true analog synthesis engine based on the discrete analog circuitry in Dave Smith Instruments’ Prophet-6 synthesizer. We’re talking of 2 voltage-controlled oscillators, 2 voltage-controlled filters and 2 envelope generators, voltage-controlled amplifier and low-frequency oscillator. The synth comes with 495 presets, 495 user programs and a quick program feature. It also boast a 64 step sequencer, an arpeggiator and a scale mode, plus a helpful slider that can be used to control 7 different parameters.
You can use the (303-Volca inspired?) touchpad-style keyboard and slider to manipulate sounds during performances and it’s easy to control the seven on-board effects, which – with the addition of a brand-new digital distortion – come from the Prophet-6 synth.
No CV options, but you can connect the TORAIZ AS-1 synth to external MIDI devices and to the TORAIZ SP-16 live sampler via MIDI, and use the sampler’s sophisticated sequencer to create even more complex patterns with the sounds you’ve created in the synthesizer. If you’re a DJ and you happen to have also the TORAIZ SP-16 sampler, you can connect the AS-1 to your DJ setup via Pro DJ Link: The CDJs play the track, the TORAIZ SP-16 adds loops and one-shots, and the TORAIZ AS-1 generates analogue textures (via MIDI sync with the SP-16). So, to make it clearer: the AS-1 does NOT have a Pro DJ Link connection but can play in sync with other devices like the SP-16 using a good old MIDI cable.
Price and Availability
The TORAIZ AS-1 will be available from March 2017 at an SRP of $499/€549 including VAT. You can read more and order here.
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About The Author
Founder & main editor here at ANR, 'non-musician' and music-tinkerer. His first keyboard was a cheesy Yamaha PSS-270. He still loves it.
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