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Doepfer MS-404 Monophonic Analog Synthesizer

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    MS-404 is a MIDI-controlled monophonic analog synthesizer. It takes account into the actual trend of analog sound synthesis combined with the immediate access to all sound parameters. The MS-404 is a serious alternative to the high-cost second hand vintage synthesizers.

    The sound generating section of the MS-404 is 100% analog (VCO, Noise, VCF, VCA, ADSR, 2 LFO's). Even the envelope and the LFO's are pure analog and not simulated by software. The immediate access to all sound parameters is realised by 15 knobs and 6 switches. The external audio input enables the subsequent sound modeling of other sound sources like samplers, digital synthesizers or expanders.

    On top of that the MS-404 works as a monophonic MIDI-to-CV interface to control another analog synthesizer. The MS-404 is capable of controlling VCF frequency and VCA envelope amount (accent) via MIDI.
    Type: Analog
    Synthesis: Subtractive
    Oscillators: 1
    Waveforms: Pulse, Pulse Variable, Saw Down, Saw Up, White Noise
    Osc Modulation: Continuous Controller, Envelope, Knob, LFO
    Envelopes: 1
    Evelope Paramerters: Attack, Decay, Sustain
    Filters: 1
    Types: 24dB Slope (4-pole), Low Pass, Resonance
    Filter Modulation: Knob, LFO
    LFO: 2
    LFO Parameters: Triangle
    Polyphony & Tuning
    Polyphony: 1
    Tuning: Standard
    Modes: Mono
    Patches RAM: 1
    Case: Rack
    Rack Size: 19", Full
    Controls: Knobs, Switches, Modulation 1/4" Jacks
    Display Type: LED
    Audio Output Connections: 1/4" Phone Jack, Mono Out
    Audio Output Count: 1
    Inputs: 1 x 1/4" input
    MIDI Ports: IN, OUT
    CV Ports: CV IN, CV OUT, Gate In, Gate Out, 1V Octave
    Year Released: 1994
    Year Discontinued: 2001
    Design Notes:

    In summer 1994 Dieter Doepfer's main intention was to create an analog synth for his personal pleasure and he created a simple clone of the Roland TB-303. The MS-404 launched in December 1994. It was a monophonic MIDI controlled analog synthesizer with a 24db resonant filter. At first, 50 to 100 items were planned for the market launch, but then they received almost 500 orders in the first two months in 1995. At the end of 1997 Doepfer had sold 3000 items. Also in 1997 approximately 100 limited edition synths (featuring a green faceplate) were sold as a 25th anniversary special for Music Store of Cologne, Germany. The last MS-404 was sold in March 2001, as the amount of inquiries was falling (from 100 items per month to hardly 10 items per month at the end of 2000). Doepfer still offers technical support for the unit.

    Manuals & Documents

    Product Links
    Company Product Sites:
    [+] www.doepfer.de
    Retail Street Price: £299 - convert
    Used Price: $299-$319 - convert
    YouTube Videos
    References & Sources

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