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Korg kick off NAMM launches with Wavestate

New 37-key synth massively updates the Wavestation concept with improved real-time control

The top panel of the new Wavestate.The top panel of the new Wavestate.

As is the case almost every year, Korg will be attending this year's NAMM show in Anaheim with a fascinating and eclectic selection of new products. The SOS team have been fortunate enough to learn something of these prior to their launch next week, and we'll be keeping you informed as the news is made public this week.

The first announcement, which was made in Japan today (and thus very early this morning UK time) is a part-revival, part-upgrade of the original Wavestation concept from the dawn of the 1990s. Designed by the same R&D team that produced the original Wavestation (Korg R&D in California), the 37-key Korg Wavestate synth (above) couples a much-expanded wave-sequencing synth engine to a front panel bristling with real-time control potential — something you could never say of the minimalist original Wavestation. And the polyphony is greater than the 32 notes of the original Wavestation, too — the Wavestate is 128-note polyphonic (well... technically 64 stereo notes).

There are rather more real-time control options than there were on the original Wavestation...!There are rather more real-time control options than there were on the original Wavestation...!

The Wavestate allows four wave sequences (the lengths of which may differ) to be played back simultaneously, and you can fade between them using the synth's assignable four-way joystick.

The spirit of vector synthesis is also alive and well: this is the Wavestate's four-way joystick.The spirit of vector synthesis is also alive and well: this is the Wavestate's four-way joystick.

There are plenty of built-in effects and also 12 filter types, some modelled on those from classic analogue synths like the MS20 or Polysix. You can even have the synth automatically generate its own sounds using what Korg call 'intelligent randomisation' via a control marked with a dice!
To add an aleatoric touch to your music, you can try the button marked with a dice, which randomly generates a Wavestate patch.To add an aleatoric touch to your music, you can try the button marked with a dice, which randomly generates a Wavestate patch.

The Wavestate is due to ship before spring, costing around £650-£699$799.99. SOS Features Editor Sam Inglis made a trip to the Korg HQ in the UK to find out more about it — as you can see from the video below.

http://www.korg.com/uk

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