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Korg Radias-R Virtual Analog Synthesizer Rack

Korg brings together everything a synthesis needs with this 24-voice synthesizer. Customize your sounds more quickly with easy starting-point templates. (15) Read 5 reviews for this product | Rate and review this product
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Product Description

Past, present, and future come together in one thrilling instrument that is every synthesist's dream.

With a bold new approach that is at once both daring and familiar, Radias exceeds common analog expectations and rapidly takes off for uncharted territories.

Based on Korg's cutting-edge MMT engine, this 24-voice synthesizer offers a variety of synthesis algorithms together with multiple effects, new comb filter and wave shaping features, modulation sequencing, as well as new formant-motion vocoding.

Radias offers an innovative design that can be custom configured to suit your set-up. The control module can be used independently or teamed with the unique dedicated keyboard, creating a seamlessly integrated instrument that delivers the sounds of the future - today.

Innovative Synthesis Teamed with Remarkable Fidelity

The heart of Radias beats with Korg's cutting-edge MMT (Multi Modeling Technology) synth engine, and borrows much of its modeling techniques from Korg's flagship OASYS -- eliminating aliasing noise in even the highest frequencies and delivering clean, pure waveforms.

Radias provides 2 oscillators for each timbre. Between them, they deliver not only modeled analog waveforms, but also formant waveforms, noise, ring modulation, sync, plus both classic and up-to-date PCM waveforms. When using the analog modeled waveforms, a variety of oscillator modulation algorithms -- including pulse-width modulation, a massive Unison mode, Korg's proprietary VPM (Variable Phase Modulation) or cross modulation -- can be used to create complex sounds, even from a single oscillator.

Radias provides a dual-filter structure, allowing the 2 filters to be used individually, side by side, or in series for maximum versatility. Filter 1 is highlighted by a continuously variable multi-mode filter, embracing Low Pass, High Pass and Band Pass modes - and new treatments in between. This dual filter arrangement provides a vast range of sounds that would be unimaginable from just a single filter, and opens up new sonic possibilities including some fantastic comb filtering.

Three Envelope Generators (EG) are used to apply time-varying changes to the pitch, filter cutoff, and amp level, as well as many other parameters. The classic and intuitive 4-stage ADSR design has been enhanced with five different attack and release curves, allowing the EG contours to be crafted with new levels of precision and articulation.

Two LFOs are available to apply cyclic changes to a host of synth parameters. Six LFO waveforms are provided, including the popular -Sample & Hold stepped wave. Each waveform can be extensively modified via the Shape control, greatly expanding the versatility of the LFO section for creating highly complex types of modulation.

Adding Drive can produce the distinctive warmth of a true analog synthesizer and can also distort the sound intensely to generate new overtones. The amount of Drive is dependent on the level of each voice as it enters the mixer, so you can create nuances that cannot be achieved by an external effect unit.

Radias offers eleven innovative types of Wave shaping -- even recreating the tonal character of an electromagnetic pickup. The Drive/Waveshaping circuit can be placed in different locations in the signal chain, affecting the sound in very meaningful ways. An additional Punch Level setting emphasizes the attack portion of the sound, letting you create sounds with even more impact. Clearly, this is a radical new instrument that is not bound by conventions of the past!

Dynamic Modulation Station

Three Modulation Sequencers can change a parameter's value in discreet steps over time, similar to using sequencing control voltages (CV) on analog synthesizers of the past. The value of each step can be edited in real time using the front panel knobs. Each Mod Sequence can be up to 16 steps long, and each can play forwards, backwards, loop, etc., allowing you to create very detailed filter and panning changes or complex and evolving timbres that build over time.

The 6 virtual patches are modern versions of the patch cords found on Korg's classic PS and MS series of synthesizers, among other legends of the past. Going beyond the hardwired limits of a normal voice structure, a virtual patch provides a method for freely connecting any of 11 modulation sources to any of 15 destinations, accommodating even the most advanced modulation routings.

Two audio input jacks and an internal envelope follower allow external audio sources to be processed, to be used as a modulation source, and even trigger the Radias. A powerful internal bus structure allows Timbres to be routed to trigger effects, the built-in vocoder, or as modulation sources for the step-sequencers.

Formant Motion Vocoding Keeps Things Moving

Thanks to the included headset microphone, you can enjoy vocoding -- using your voice to modulate another sound -- the instant the idea strikes you, with the push of a single button. Radias provides a sixteen-band vocoder that allows the level and pan of each band to be individually adjusted to obtain a wide range of sounds, above and beyond the distinctive talking music and "robot voice" effects.

Korg's new Formant Motion function can record up to 7.5 seconds of incoming formant information (spoken words, scat singing, etc.) so that you can re-create vocoder effects even without a microphone present. Sixteen sets of recorded formant data can be stored in the internal memory.

Powerful Program Parameters

Radias effect section provides a 2-band EQ and 2 insert effects for each timbre, plus a master effect for the complete program, delivering a total of nine possible simultaneous effects. Thirty effect algorithms are provided, ranging from delay, chorus, and reverb to compressor and talking modulator. You can assign any effect parameter to the front panel knobs for instant control, providing even more versatility in sound design.

Arpeggiator settings can be made for each program individually, and the arpeggiator can be applied to any or all of the timbres in a program. Six types of arpeggiator patterns are provided. Patterns can be up to 32 steps long; the gate time, velocity, and on/off status can be set for each step individually to create the exact groove you want. Swing amount and octave range are also assignable for even more detailed control.

Two step sequencers can record and play back performance data, each with up to 32 steps. By applying a step sequencer to a drum kit, you can use Radias as a programmable drum machine. Each step supports up to eight notes of polyphony, allowing the creation of dense sequenced passages and patterns that can be played back with just one finger. With sequence editing, you can adjust settings such as swing and gate time. The 2 step sequencers can be set to transpose live from the keyboard, and can also be linked to create a single step sequencer of up to 64 steps.

The Best Sounds Around

Radias comes loaded with 256 programs, 32 drum kits, and 16 formant motion sets, all created by an international team of synth experts. A program can consist of up to 4 complete timbres, and each timbre can be assigned its own note range, output, MIDI channel and control parameters, allowing your Radias to perform as a multitimbral module - or 1 monster performance synth.

Each drum kit consists of 16 different drum or percussion instruments assigned to separate keys. In addition to calling up an individual PCM drum waveform, each drum instrument uses all of the parameters in the synth section, such as filter, EG, LFO and virtual patches to create incredibly detailed sounds.

To speed up the sound creation process, Radias includes templates that can be used as 'starting points;' and you can begin your own customization from there. Radias provides template data for 128 synth timbres, 128 insert effects, and 128 master effects so you can create new sounds faster than you ever thought possible.

And as easy as Radias is to use, you'll also appreciate the free Radias Sound Editor/Librarian software for editing, managing and archiving your Radias settings on your computer (Mac or PC). A single USB connection makes transferring data quick and easy.

New Shape, New Possibilities

You can choose the Radias model that's right for you; Radias consists of a sound module section plus a dedicated 49-note, velocity-sensing keyboard with traditional Pitch and Mod wheels. The panel layout features a lavish complement of knobs and buttons, letting you enjoy the same intuitive feel of creating sounds as on an analog synthesizer. The unique design allows the knob-laden control module to pivot up or down, and even move to the side to accommodate a laptop computer, ElecTribe, Kaoss Pad or other audio unit. Radias-R is the sound module by itself, which can be used both as a rackmount or tabletop synthesizer.

zZounds is an authorized dealer of Korg products.
Tone Generator
- MMT (Multiple Modeling Technology) synthesis
- Maximum Polyphony - 24 voices
- Varies depending on the parameters that make up the sound.

Structure
Synth:
- 2 oscillators + noise generator:
- Oscillator 1 - 9 basic waveforms, 4 types of modulation, PCM (64 synth sounds, 128 drum sounds)
- Oscillator 2 - 4 basic waveforms, 2 types of modulation
2 filters (w/serial, parallel, individual routings):
- Filter 1 (variable multi-mode) -24 dB Low Pass, -12 dB Low Pass, High Pass, Band Pass, Thru
- Filter 2 (switchable multi-mode) Low Pass, High Pass, Band Pass, Comb
- 1 driver or wave shaper (11 types)
- 3 EGs
- 2 LFOs
- 6 virtual patches
- 3 modulation sequences

Vocoder:
- 16-band vocoder
- Variable level/pan for each channel
- Formant motion function (sixteen 7.5 sec. formant motion data sets can be recorded)
- Formant shift function
- Formant hold function

Envelope Follower: A detected envelope can be used as a virtual patch source or effect control source, or to generate note-on/off (maximum 8-note polyphony)

Effect Section
- Number of Effects: 30 types
- Structure: 2-band EQ + 2 Insert effects per timbre (x4) + 1 Master effect

Arpeggiator
- Arpeggio Type: 6 types (Up/Down/Alt1/Alt2/Random/Trigger)
- Structure: Switchable on/off for each of 32 steps

Step Sequencer
- Simultaneous Polyphony: 8 notes
Structure:
- Two 32-step sequencers (both can be linked for playback)
- 3 playback modes (OneShot/Loop/Step)
- Step entry via keyboard or panel keys

Programs
- Number of Programs: 256 (16 x 16 banks, including program/user area)
- 128 Timbre Templates
- 128 Insert effect Templates
- 128 Master effect Templates

Structure:
- Program = 4 timbres + 1 vocoder + 1 master effect + arpeggiator + 2 step sequencers
- Timbre = 1 synth program or 1 drum kit + EQ + 2 insert effects

Drums
- Number of Programs: 32 kits

Structure:
- One Timbre = 1 drum kit, one drum kit = 16 synth programs
- A drum kit can be assigned to one of the four timbres in a program.

General
Connections:
Audio Inputs:
- Audio In 1: 1/4 in. phone jack
- Audio In 2: 1/4 in. phone jack and mini jack with Mic/Line SW

Audio Outputs:
- Main Output (Lch/MONO, Rch): 1/4 in. phone jacks
- Indiv. Output (Lch, Rch): 1/4 in. phone jacks
- Phones Out: 1/4 in. stereo phone jack

Control Inputs:
- Assignable Pedal
- Assignable Switch
- keyboard (FROM KYBD)

- MIDI: In, Out, Thru
- USB: TYPE B connector
- Display: 128 x 64 pixel full-graphic LCD with backlight
- Power Supply: DC 9 V

- Dimensions: 18.98 in. (W) x 7.28 in. (D) x 2.99 in. (H), 482 (W) x 185 (D) x 76 (H) mm
- Weight: 5.95 lbs. / 2.7 kg.

Included Items:
- Headset microphone (condenser microphone)
- AC adapter
- CD-ROM (PC editor software, etc.)
- 4 washers, 4 bushings, 4 screws (RADIAS-R only)
- Accessory shelf (RADIAS only)

Options:
- XVP-10 Exp/Vol Pedal
- EXP-2 Expression Pedal
- PS-1 Pedal Switch
- DS-1H Damper Pedal

*PCM sound processed with INFINITY.
If you have additional warranty questions, please contact the manufacturer at 631-390-6800
Customer Reviews
4.5 out of 5 (15 ratings) Rate and Review This Product
"So much of a good stuff."
Sound: The sound of Radias is generally excellent. The character is a little harder to specify, since it is has both clasical analogue modeling options and wave synthesis from samples options, but it is pretty much in your face, but not as warm as some Access or Moog synths. But if you need more warmth, you can achieve it easily nowadays (I use Nomad plugins in recording channel) Feature: I got the rack version simply because I already own a midi keyboard, and the propriatory one isn't anything special. This is probably as close as you can get to a software synth-sequencer, and with hardware buttons to work with. Two oscillators plus noise, wav synthesis and 25 customisable drum-kits. 4 timbres (instruments) can play in one program with up to 24 voices. 2*32 step sequencer plus arepeggiator also play at the same time. Vocoder with pre-recording formants into 16*7,5 second buffers. USB connection is really great, you can back up everything, or change it on PC in real-time, much easier to play with step sequencer or drum-kit design). Loads are pretty fast, you can upload the set of programs in a live situation with no real delay. Two sets of outputs, midi in, out, through, and a nice on-ear microphone for vocoding that works really well. Ease of Use: I am a long time computer music creator, started with a tracker on C64, but haven't used hardware that much. Radias has a nice logical work-flow, but with so many possibilities, it has a learning curve. Manual is quite good, so you can start quick enough. Quality: It looks and feels like an industry tool, metal plate, buttons are hard, only knobs are a little less robust. Backup? It is hard to have a back-up for this since it does so much... Value: Considering the features and the quality of the results, it fares with the synths twice the price. Manufacturer Support: No support necessery yet... The Wow Factor: Industry design with a lot of flashing pink(!) lights may look out of place on a rock-concert, but poeple know what it can do... Overall: This suites my needs perfectly, making me more creative and keeping me away from the computer in the creation phase, so that I don't get stuck in the usual sound polishing of a single phraze. I am not selling this, ever.
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Sound: The Korg Radias seduces you; she is alive. There is something very inviting about this instrument. Radias takes a lot of work to get to know. At first there is a bit of confusion as there are a dizzying number of qualities that both entice you and can induce some trepidation as well. But when you become familiar with her the rewards are simply amazing. Radias fits so well with mt current rig. At present in addition to Radias I am making music with Kronos, Fantom X8, XV-88, Kurzweil PC3, JP-8000, and SH-32. Radias fits in perfectly and it is a blast to experiment and MIDI it to the other instruments. I have found that the coolest combination is the PC3 and Radias combination. When you combine the insane depth of a Kurzweil with the semi-modular approach of Radias there really isn't any sound that you cannot create. But this review is about the Radias as it is and so I'll focus there. The Radias possesses character and can be as gentle as a kitten and as ferocious as a tiger. As with any synth I would offer that presets only serve as a jumping off point to more complex soundscapes and in this the Radias delivers a way to create a palette that is as varied as any serious musician would desire. Rockers take note that while the presets and the vocoder seem to make Radias more appealing to hip-hop, techno, trance, and other forms of dance, Radias is a GREAT synth for all sub-genres of rock from experimental stuff pioneered by the Beatles to the icy aggressiveness of Scandinavian metal and everything in between. Radias invites experimentation and believe me there is far more under the hood of this instrument than you would suspect. In fact, experimentation is far more rewarding than reading the manual; this synth really is made for people who want to think outside of the box and create soundscapes that have yet to be heard. People who play ROMplers such as Yamaha take note: Radias is a synthesizer so do not expect stunning Steinways or be able to produce a Stradivarius that would make Perlmnann green with envy. While there are some PCM samples onboard, the real strength in this instrument lies in its stunning ability to create extremely complex synthetic textures. Modulation possibilities abound as well, the filters are extremely flexible, and you really can approximate and in many cases completely capture those vintage Prophets, Oberheims, Moogs, and Arps in addition to creating your own living patches. This is simply a masterpiece by Korg and I would strongly urge anyone interested in experimenting with a very powerful means of sound creation to explore Radias. The price to power to ratio is simply among the best in the industry. Feature: I gave Radias a "9" because I do not believe that there IS a best or a "10" as far as musical instruments. In terms of accessories Radias comes with a nifty sweet gooseneck mic for vocoding purposes and the first thing you will want to do is experiment with this. In a sense, you should really think about vocoding as a way to move beyond just vocal creations. The vocal input really is a carrier that is modulated by the synth engine itself. I can only imagine what a guitarist or bassist could do with Radias in conjunction with the vocoder. Ease of Use: Like any high end VA, Radias has a crazy number of buttons and knobs and many of these buttons and knobs are multifunctional. The interface IS a bit cluittered but considering the amount of real time control you have over this instrument and the amount of parameters you have available for patch creation, I am thankful that Korg went this route as opposed to the ROMpler approach of menu driven screens. There IS a learning curve to this instrument but that learning curve constantly rewards you and many times you will find those wonderful serendipitous moments when you tweak just one knob and you have created a stunning patch that inspires you to compose! The manual is really a reference and is not much help. Note to the industry: you should consider paying your writers a little more so that manuals are more logically arranged and you should allow for some tutorials. Many people need a sort of guide at first to gently ease in to complex instruments and the addition of tutorials would actually increase sales. Quality: Radias is ROCK solid and I have no worries about taking this beast on the road and in any type of venue. The knobs have a tight feel which is a GOOD thing because precision is so very important in a synth. This is a reliable instrument and I have no worries about possible failure in the unit. I should qualify by stating that Kronos obviously does everything Radias does and more, but that is to be expected from an instrument made in 2012 - the Radias was released in 2006. But, I do not rely on Kronos to fill in for Radias. Road warriors need not worry about the durability of Radias. When turned off it DOES look like something that belongs in a NASA setting or a high tech medical office but turn it on and it comes alive and looks like a musical instrument in the Star Trek era. Value: As I have stated, the price to power ratio in Radias is simply amazing and in these tight economic times the adage "bang for the buck" applies in spades here. Manufacturer Support: I had to contact Korg about a question I had regarding Kronos so I can at least speak to my experience with their customer support. They are helpful and quite patient and will direct you quickly to the technician who specializes in specific areas of the instrument's architecture. However, if your cell phone drops a call you have to go through the queue; Korg does not allow you to give your phone number for an immediate call back. I think that this is not the best of practices and I would hope that Korg would adopt a more friendly attitude in this regard. The Wow Factor: Turned off, the Radias has an understated laboratory look to it. But there is a nice feel to its aesthetic with its silver front panel and black knobs. Turned on, Radias feels like a Pink Floyd light show! What drew me to Radias was its plethora of real time controls that seem to say, "come and play; let's see what vistas we can discover today!" Overall: I really see Radias as an instrument that I will never outgrow. I do not believe in obsolescence and as such I believe that Radias will always be an integral part of my music making experiences. If the Radias was stolen and I had to WALK to get another, no matter the distance, I would buy another immediately.
Style of Music: Rock, World, New Age
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