Behringer MS-1 BU Analog Synthesizer Blue
Modern Incarnation of a Classic Performance Monosynth
In the 1980s and ’90s, a new wave of musicians slung a simple monosynth over their shoulders and stole center stage from their guitar-brandishing bandmates. The Behringer MS-101 is a delightfully affordable homage to that iconic synthesizer, sporting all of its cool features — and then some. Behringer took great care in engineering the MS-101, staying true to the original analog circuitry and VCO, VCF, and VCA designs. This meticulous attention to detail is what gives the MS-101 its ultra-flexible sound-shaping abilities, which let you quickly whip up everything from insanely fat basses and scorching leads to dazzling effects. Equipped with a 32-step sequencer, arpeggiator, and attachable hand grip, the MS-101 is a fantastic performance synth. And with its 32 full-size semi-weighted keys, pure analog signal path, and authentic 3340 oscillator with four simultaneously mixable waveforms plus ultra-flexible VCF and VCA filters, the Behringer MS-101 may well become your favorite synth.
Authentic 3340 VCO, four simultaneous waveforms, FM, and more
The analog architecture of the Behringer MS-101 is built upon its authentic 3340 VCO (Voltage-controlled Oscillator) with four waveforms — all of which can be active simultaneously for seriously complex timbres. Waveforms include sawtooth, triangle, square (with PWM), and an octave-divided square sub oscillator. What's more, the VCO can be adjusted across a broad 4-octave range. This impressive flexibility gives you the tools you need for unfettered creativity. As a bonus, the MS-101 features the "Nova Mod" that many players made to their original synths in the '90s, adding VCF frequency modulation with six available FM sources. Between its multiple waveforms and FM, the MS-101 takes you far beyond the sonic capabilities of the original.
VCF: heart of the beast
The heart of any analog synth is its VCF (Voltage-controlled Filter), which is responsible for initial shaping of the signal generated by the oscillator. The MS-101’s VCF is highly flexible, with faders for cutoff Frequency (10Hz to 20kHz); Resonance (0 to self-oscillation); Envelope, Modulation depth, and Keyboard follow (0 to 100%) that let you dial in the perfect sound fast. The MS-101’s VCF can be modulated in real time via the Envelope, keyboard tracking, and the Bender controller. The Frequency Modulation (FM) Amount knob sets the depth, while the FM Source rotary selector lets you further modify the signal by choosing Sawtooth; Sub Oscillator 1 octave down; 2 octaves down; narrow 2 octaves down; or Noise.
The envelope generator
Another key sound shaper in vintage analog synthesis is the envelope generator, which shapes a note over time by generating a voltage envelope triggered by a gate signal from your keyboard or other source. The MS-101’s Envelope generator is of the classic ADSR (Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release) variety, with faders for each that help you craft incredible sounds on the fly. It also has a 3-position switch for Gate, Gate + Trigger, and LFO. When applied to the VCA, the ADSR envelope is used to control the level of the note being played over time. When applied to the filter, the ADSR envelope controls the cutoff frequency for the duration of each note you play. The MS-101’s envelope can also be used to affect the VCO pulse width modulation.
Modulation a go-go
In addition to the robust sound-sculpting features we've already mentioned, the MS-101 has even more in store. The noise generator can also be used as a modulation source to create distortion-like effects for face-melting leads that will make metal guitarists slink off the stage to rethink their FX chain. Glide (portamento) lets you morph seamlessly from one note to the next, creating creamy transitions that few other instruments can pull off. MS-101’s Bender is also assignable to the VCO, VCF, and pitch mod wheel on the attachable hand grip. For textures ranging from mild to wild, you can even modulate the pulse wave manually or via the LFO or envelope.
Synth blast from the past
The Behringer MS-101 is a blast to play. With it slung over your shoulder, you own the stage. After all, why should vocalists and guitarists get all the glory? When you’re ready to commandeer the spotlight, the MS-101 has you covered. Just attach the included guitar strap and hand grip with pitch bend wheel and pitch modulation trigger, and take your performance to the next level. At Sweetwater, we love the MS-101. Festooned with 57 knobs, sliders, and switches, it gives you the immediacy of real-time, hands-on tweakability. It delivers gorgeous, super-fat analog sounds. Add with its generous USB/MIDI/CV connectivity, versatile arpeggiator, included performance kit, and splendidly low price, and the MS-101 is simply irresistible!
Behringer MS-101 Analog Synthesizer Features:
- 32-key monophonic analog synthesizer based on a classic
- Pure analog signal path based on classic VCO, VCF, and VCA designs
- Authentic 3340 analog oscillator for insanely fat sounds
- 4 simultaneous waveforms (saw, triangle, square/PWM, square sub osc)
- Resonant VCF with modulation via ADSR, LFO, keytrack, or bender controller
- 6 FM NovaMod sources for creative VCF modulation and amazing filter effects
- ADSR envelope generator for creative wave shaping
- 32-step sequencer with 64 memory slots for your own custom sequences
- Guitar strap included for keytar-style performance
- Attachable hand grip included with pitch bend wheel and pitch modulation trigger
- Bender assignable to VCO, VCF, and pitch mod wheel on attachable hand grip
- Noise generator may be used as modulation source for distortion-type effects
- Portamento function for fantastic sound effects
- Pulse wave can be modulated by LFO, envelope, and manually
- Arpeggiator with a wide range of patterns
- 57 knobs, sliders, and switches for hands-on control
- External audio input allows you to process other synths, drum machines, and more
- Comprehensive USB/MIDI/CV implementation
- External audio input; phones output
- Performance kit with strap and attachable hand grip included
- Type: Monophonic Synthesizer
- Analog/Digital: Analog
- Number of Keys: 32
- Type of Keys: Semi-weighted, Full-size
- Other Controllers: Pitchbend Wheel, Pitch Modulation Trigger
- Polyphony: Monophonic
- Oscillators: 1 x 3340 VCO; Sawtooth, Triangle, Square/Pulse, Square Sub-oscillator (octave divided)
- Filter: 1 x VCF; Cutoff, Resonance, Envelope, Modulation depth, Keyboard follow
- Envelope Generator: 1 x ADSR
- Effects Types: Portamento, Filter Effects
- Arpeggiator: Yes
- Sequencer: 32-step, 64 sequence locations
- Audio Inputs: 1 x 1/4" (audio in)
- Audio Outputs: 1 x 1/4" (audio out)
- Headphones: 1 x 1/4"
- USB: 1 x Type B
- MIDI I/O: In/Out/Thru/USB
- Other I/O: CV in/out, Gate in/out, Velocity out, VCF CV in, External Clock in, Grip, Mod
- OS Requirements - Mac: OS X 10.8 or later
- OS Requirements - PC: Windows 7 SP1 or later
- Power Supply: 9V DC power supply (included)
- Height: 3.4"
- Width: 22.4"
- Depth: 10.5"
- Weight: 10.1 lbs.
- Manufacturer Part Number: MS-101-BU