The Vintage Keys Keyboard is a digital synthesizer that emulates the sounds of classic vintage synths. For an early 1990’s ROMpler, this sound module was compact and actually sounded really good, loaded with good samples of vintage synth sounds. Just like the classics it has Portamento, a VCF (filter) and a Chorus effect. It has a lot of modulation capabilities which are all real-time and MIDI controllable. It does, however, have the typical brittle digital sound quality usually associated with digital sound modules, but it still makes nice pads, punchy bass and cool filter swept leads and works great for background synth sounds.
The five-octave, velocity sensitive keyboard with aftertouch allows you to perform live or record via MIDI into an external computer/sequencer. The keyboard action is extremely responsive, capturing all the subtle nuances of your performance.
Multi-function buttons allow you to trigger arpeggiators and notes internally or on any of your other MIDI devices. They can act as preset select buttons or Beats Mute or MIDI Trigger buttons (latched or unlatched). 2 E-MU Systems
Four real-time controller knobs are also multi-function controls. These knobs make it a snap to edit and modify internal preset parameters. The controllers are fully programmable and can control internal preset or other MIDI equipment. They can also be programmed to adjust multiple internal parameters at once, allowing complex levels of control. For example, a single knob can simultaneously turn up filter cutoff, while detuning one sample, and adjusting the release time of the volume envelope. Virtually every synth parameter in the Vintage Keys is controllable using the realtime knobs or by any internal or external control source.
Vintage Keys contains E-MU’s exclusive SuperBEATS Mode—a whole new way to create dynamic, original music. With SuperBEATS, you trigger, latch and unlatch synced loops and grooves from your keyboard. Simply select a “bts:” preset and you’re ready to groove! Then use Vintage Keys’s performance controls to alter and mutate the rhythm or the sound itself. Then there’s Vintage Keys’s Rhythmic Pattern Generator/Arpeggiator, which can play up to 16 synchronized arpeggiator patterns at once using a different sound for each! Patterns can be edited using pattern flow commands such as: delay for 2 bars, play for 4 bars, hold for 2 beats and repeat. You can program or download 100 user patterns in addition to the 200 factory patterns.
Of course the real power of Vintage Keys becomes apparent when you begin to synthesize your own sounds. The extremely flexible yet easy to use, 4-layer synthesizer voices make it easy to build sounds of any kind. Layers can be switched or crossfaded using key position, velocity, real-time controllers or any modulation source. Vintage Keys also contains 50 different types of 2nd to 6th order resonant & modeling filters which are used to shape and modify the raw waveforms.
The 64 modulation sources include three multistage envelopes and two LFOs per layer, as well as full MIDI control over virtually every parameter. The digital patch bay, with 24 cords per layer, (and 12 more cords per preset) lets you connect modulation sources to 64 destinations in any imaginable way. The patch bay contains a set of arithmetic modifiers, letting you create complex synthesis models.
Four front panel real-time controllers give you control over 12 userselectable parameters. The real-time knobs can adjust multiple synthesizer functions at once, allowing complex levels of control. For example, one knob can simultaneously turn up filter cutoff, while detuning one sample, and adjusting the release time of the volume envelope. Virtually every synth parameter in the Vintage Keys is controllable using the real-time knobs or by any internal or external control source.
Four analog outputs with integral effect sends let you process separate sounds externally. Returns allow the addition of external effects units without the need for a separate mixer.
Once you have created your preset, you can add richness to your sound using Vintage Keys’s 24-bit stereo effects. You can choose a different effects setup for each preset from over 60 algorithms. The effects section is actually two separate effects processors with control over each wet/dry mix level. Effects Processor “A” contains primarily ambiance algorithms like reverb and delays, while effects processor “B” contains primarily spectral algorithms such as chorus, flange, phase, distortion, and delay. Effects can be linked to each preset or used globally to further enhance your sound. The S/PDIF digital stereo output lets you connect to other digital equipment, such as digital mixers or external effects devices, keeping your signal entirely in the digital domain.
Other features include multiple solo, voice assignment and performance modes for expressive control, 12 user-definable alternate tunings, an extremely easy to use interface and, of course, an extensive MIDI implementation.