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Korg AM8000R

Ambience Multi-effect Processor By Derek Johnson
Published February 1998

Korg AM8000R

This good‑looking unit hides more than just reverb beneath its shiny exterior. Derek Johnson appreciates the ambience...

Following last month's review of Korg's funky new multi‑tap digital delay, it would be easy to assume that its companion processor — the AM8000R ambience multi‑effects processor — would be dedicated to variations on a reverb theme. As it turns out, this is only part of the story. The AM is both more and less than a reverb processor: more because it offers a variety of non‑reverb effects (many of which can help in the creation of ambiences) and less because the actual reverb section is not as sophisticated as one might expect. But we're jumping ahead of ourselves.

Three Into One

Essentially, the AM8000R is a three way multi‑effects unit: it offers two effects blocks (FX1 and FX2) that can each access an identical selection of 29 effects, plus a dedicated delay/reverb effect block with a choice of 11 different treatments. The 29 effects available to FX1 and FX2 are listed in a separate box over the page, but I'll just mention here that alongside the straight ones — various types of delay, chorus, flange and so on — are some interesting processors I wasn't expecting to find. See the 'Sound' section later for details.

The signal path starts with a so‑called Pre‑EQ (high and low frequency with gain and a swept mid), which can be bypassed if you wish. Korg have provided a flexible routing matrix which offers plenty of control over how effects are routed and accessed, but one strange anomaly is that the individual effect blocks can't be removed from an effect chain, although their volume can be set to zero, and they can be muted over MIDI. A number of effects are provided in stereo or dual versions (the dual version provides independent control over parameters for left and right signal paths, while stereo effects have one set of parameters for both); there are also strictly mono and mono‑in/stereo‑out effects. Even the delay/reverb block effects have a similar range of options.

Physically and operationally the AM is virtually identical to the DL: it has the same...

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Published February 1998