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Kawai SX-240
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Kawai SX-240

Analog Synth from Kawai

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laurent BERGMAN laurent BERGMAN

«  Basic but nice ... »

Published on 08/21/13 at 11:03
5 octave keyboard
8-voice polyphony.
Mode "SPLIT" - (down) and 2 octaves (high) 3 octaves.
Mode "DUAL" (two sounds).
MIDI transmits on channel 1 and receives on all 16 channels.
MIDI IN / OUT / THRU
2 x stereo output or mono.
Sequencer can sync via CLOCK IN or Midi.

UTILIZATION

The programming is a little easier on the machines on which you must enter a parameter number to be able to edit (like the Poly-61, Project-100, DK-700, etc ...). For editing, simply move the cursor with three buttons: Left, Right and Up / Down. The LED lights up and the parameter name selected and its value are displayed on the screen parameter, then the button is turned increment.
The Midi implementation is rudimentary: Note ON / OFF, Bender, Program Change and Release ON / OFF. But be careful as to the implementation of Release ON / OFF must have a model whose serial number is greater than or equal to K6897.
The backup is done, like on a lot of machines in this period, via a tape recorder (or an audio sequencer). Special mention for small backup system. Indeed, in KAWAI they pushed a little further. During the backup process can name the data file to be transferred. During the procedure of loading the data just before starting playback of the file, enter the file name to load the SX-240 and then play back the tape. When the data block which has been assigned the name is read, it is automatically loaded. It is true that today, this specificity is no longer in use, but it was a feature that deserves to be highlighted. It also can save some banks, depending also advanced for the time.
The assignment of polyphony and chord memory are little more substantial as well.
The sequencer can be synchronized with an external clock (drum machine or other via CLOCK IN) as well as a MIDI clock. Message priority external clock given to the MIDI clock.
Another feature: If the preset has an LFO effect, it can be disabled with the "DISABLE" button on the front panel and being active as the time when one is pressing the "START" button.

SOUNDS

The sound is warm enough. The choice of components associated with the parameter ranges give it a pretty nice sound. Due to the small number of parameters and sources / destinations is not a synth research, which does not stop to take very good FX's bleep's and others. It produces beautiful pads / strings, rather round and present bass. The Leads can be quite successful as well.
The effect "SET" is also quite effective, different chorus Juno-106 for example.
I stretch out me no more on the subject, the sound is quite subjective and a history of personal taste. Some demos on the net are more explicit than words.
The big advantage of the SX-240 is that it is bi-timbral, either "DUAL" mode or "Split" mode. Mode "DUAL" can sound much bigger (at the expense of polyphony, it is halved). Mode "SPLIT" allows for him to flatten quickly a bass line and a melody.

OVERALL OPINION

Personally I like his sound a little different from other machines in my setup. What it does, it does well.

The +:
The bi-timbralité
The faster than its competitors time edition
The effect "TOGETHER" deep enough.

The -
The Midi Omni, which requires a use case is a Midi filter or sacrifice Midi interface port.
The rudimentary implementation Midi (Midi but it is unlike the SX-210).

I said that the notes I assigned reflect its potential in terms of its year of manufacture. Today we did a lot better ergonomics issue, performance, excessively further modulation matrices, etc. ....
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