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The MS-20 Kit from Korg is a kit for self-assembling a real MS-20 synthesizer according to the directions given in the owner's manual. Assembly does not require knowledge of soldering or electronic circuitry, since most of the steps consist of simply tightening screws or fitting parts together. The MS-20 Kit is a full-size unit with a standard-sized keyboard, and full sized 1/4" phone plugs.
A development team led by the original engineers strove to painstakingly replicate the MS-20, both in sound and form. The sound comes from an architecture featuring two oscillators (one with ring modulation) and envelope generators with hold and delay. The VCA (Voltage Controlled Amplifier) maintains the basic design of the original.
The original MS-20 used different VCF circuits depending on the date of production, with earlier units featuring a filter noted for its distinctive distortion and self-oscillation, while the filters used in later units had a low-noise design with a mellower character. The kit includes both filters allowing you to switch between the two by moving a jumper on the circuit board.
The External Signal Processor (ESP) allows for using the pitch or volume of an external audio source to control the synthesizer. You can input an electric guitar and use the MS-20 kit as a guitar synthesizer, or connect a microphone for use as a vocal synthesizer. A flexible patching system is provided that allows for creating different modulation routing, and by following the front panel printed flow chart, even beginners can take advantage of these patching possibilities right away.
The synthesizer features a MIDI In jack for receiving note messages, and a USB-MIDI connector that can transmit and receive note messages (there is no velocity information). Connecting the unit to a computer allows it to be triggered from a sequencer.
Full-size MS-20 that you can easily assemble yourself
Both the early and late versions of the filter are provided
Overseen by the engineers of the original MS-20
Complete replication of the original analog circuitry including 2 x VCO, 2 x VCA, 2 x VCF, 2 x EG, 1 x LFO structure
External signal processor (ESP)
Extremely flexible patching system
MIDI In and USB connector
Powered by an AC adapter
Replicates every detail of the original, down to the package binding and the included manual
In the Box
Korg MS-20 Kit - Monophonic Analog Synthesizer Kit
External Power Supply
One (1) Year Limited Warranty on Components
Table of Contents
Control wheel (center click) Momentary switch -->GND
Voltage controlled analog
Voltage Controlled Oscillator 1 (VCO 1) Scale: 32, 16, 8, 4' (6 octaves, +cent, -cent) Waveform: Triangle, Sawtooth, PW-Square, White Noise, (x 4 modes) Pulse Width Adjust: 1:1 to 1:Infinity
VCO Master Control Master Tune: +/- 100 cents Portamento: Maximum 10 s Frequency Modulation Intensity by MG/T.EXT: -5V to +5V Frequency Modulation Intensity by EG1/EXT: -5V to 0V
VCO Mixer VCO 1 Level VCO 2 Level
Voltage Controlled High Pass Filter (VCF HPF) Cutoff Frequency: 50 Hz to 15 kHz Peak: Flat to self OSC Cutoff Frequency Modulation Intensity by MG/T.EXT: -5V to +5V Cutoff Frequency Modulation Intensity by EG2/EXT: -5V to +5V
Voltage Controlled Low Pass Filter (VCF LPF) Cutoff Frequency: 50 Hz to 15 kHz Peak: Flat to self OSC Cutoff Frequency Modulation Intensity by MG/T.EXT: -5V to +5V Cutoff Frequency Modulation Intensity by EG2/EXT: -5V to +5V
Envelope Generator 1 Delay Time: 10 s Attack Time: 10 s Release Time: 10 s
Envelope Generator 2 Hold Time: 20 s Attack Time: 10 s Decay Time: 10 s Sustain Time: 10 s Release Time: 10 s
Manual Controller Control Wheel (center click) Momentary Switch --> Ground
Power switch and Volume Volume
Indicators Keyboard Trigger LED Modulation Generator Rate LED Power On LED
External Signal Processor
Control Section Input Signal Level Low Cut Frequency: 50 Hz to 2.5 kHz High Cut Frequency: 100 Hz to 5 kHz CV Adjust Threshold Level
Input and Output Signal In Amplifier Out Band Pass Filter Out CV Out: 0 to +8.4V ENV Out: 0 to +5V Trig Out: +5V --> Ground
Indicators Peak Indicator LED Trigger Indicator LED
Keyboard Keyboard Control Voltage Output (Exponential): 0 to +8V Keyboard Trigger Output: +5V --> Ground VCO-1 + VCO-2 Control Voltage Input (Linear Response): 0 - +8V VCO-2 Control Voltage Input (Linear Response): 0 - +8V
VCO VCO-1 + VCO-2 External Frequency Control Input (Oct/V): -5V to +5V
VCF External Signal Input: 3Vp-p maximum External High Pass Filter Cutoff Frequency Control Input (2 Oct/V): -5V to +5V External Low Pass Filter Cutoff Frequency Control Input (2 Oct/V): -5V to +5V
VCO + VCF Total External Modulation Input (T.EX): -5V to +5V
VCA External Initial Gain Control Input: 0 to +5V
EG EG 1 Envelope Signal Normal Output: -5V to 0V EG 1 Envelope Signal Reverse Output: +5V to 0V EG 1 + EG 2 Trigger Input: --> Ground EG 1 Trigger Input: --> Ground EG 2 Envelope Signal Reverse Output: +5V to 0V
1 x 1/4" TS Signal Output (2Vp-p, output impedance 3.5kΩ) 1 x 1/4" TS External Signal Input 1 x 1/4" TRS Headphone (33Ω 48mW) 12V DC 1 x 5-pin DIN MIDI In* 1 x USB Type B** * Only note messages received (velocity not used) ** Only note messages transmitted and received (velocity not used)
12V DC via included external power supply 9W consumption
22.6 x 12.4 x 9.8" (573 x 316 x 248 mm)
13.9 lb (6.3 kg)
Korg MS-20 Kit - Monophonic Analog Synthesizer Kit Review