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KORG M3 XPanded MUSIC WORKSTATION/SAMPLER
The M3 enters a new dimension
XPand your potential!!
The NEW M3 XPanded offers a staggering 640 Mbytes of PCM, delivering a huge number of sound variations. Powerful enhancements to the sequencer and interface make the M3 the go-to instrument for your music making.
Read more about this amazing FREE upgrade here.
The Next Coming of M
The M3 heralds the third generation of Korg Workstations. The M1 started it all, first appearing in 1988 to bring the world a new concept called the “music workstation.” It went on to become the best selling workstation in history, and was further expanded and enhanced through the T and O1/W series. Trinity defined a new level of innovations including touch screen technology and configurable effects, and was the forbearer of the successful TRITON range of products.
Now Korg Is Poised To Redefine The Workstation Category Once Again.
The M3 features a number of innovations distilled from the flagship OASYS including the new EDS (Enhanced Definition Synthesis) sound generator derived from the HD-1 engine design, the advanced second-generation KARMA functionality, and the multi-purpose control surface. Adding innovations such as the new concept of “virtualized hardware” that allows an even closer integration with DAW systems, Drum Tracks which provide a instant groove to play along with, and the new "Korg Komponent System" concept that facilitates more flexible system construction, the M3 music workstation/sampler opens a new and exciting page in music making - it’s the workstation that rightfully deserves to wear the “M” that started it all.
Enhanced Definition Synthesis – A new horizon of sound-making potential
The M3 features a newly developed “EDS” sound generating system based on a new chip design that was developed in parallel with the HD-1 engine found in the flagship OASYS. It takes full advantage of the M3's 256 Mbytes of PCM source material which is a veritable “best of” from the OASYS.
Program Main Page
Using Korg's advanced voicing technology, the 1,028 multisamples, 1,606 drum samples, four-level velocity switching/crossfading/layering, and stereo sampling allow for an enormous range of high-quality, detailed, and expressive sounds.
Oscillator Main Page
The filter section, a vital part of the sound-creation process, lets you simultaneously use two filters for each oscillator, and can be configured in series or parallel. Four filter types are provided: low-pass, high-pass, band-pass, and band-reject.
Filter Main Page
The amp section features a driver circuit that gives the sound a sense of edge and character. Detailed envelope generators, abundant modulation routings, plus the all-new AMS Mixers for advanced processing, all combine to provide a level of sound shaping far beyond previous possibilities.
AMS Mixer Page
The all-important effect section provides up to five insert effects, two master effects, and one total effect. In addition to great chorus/flanger/phasers, delays and reverbs, the 170 effect types include dynamics-type effects such as compressor and limiter, and amp modeling and speaker simulation effects using Korg's proprietary “REMS” modeling technology.
A drumkit in the M3 can be created from ROM or RAM samples, with up to four-way velocity switching and cross-fading for incredible realism.
The M3 provides a new Drum Track function in Program and Combi modes that adds a groove to each sound you play. Combined with KARMA it makes even a Program a complete sonic adventure that is sure to inspire. You can select patterns from over 500 in internal memory and start them from a desired region of the keyboard or by playing a velocity that's above a specified threshold.
Since the Drum Track uses MIDI data stored in a Pattern, it is easy for you to create your own in the Sequencer Mode, either recording them, importing them from SMF data or other users songs, or converting recorded KARMA data as MIDI events for further manipulation. Even sampled loops can be used! This is a powerful feature for uses ranging from creating music-production memos to realtime performance.
Expanded Combination Mode
Combination Mode is where multiple Programs can be freely assigned as splits and layers across the keyboard, including velocity switching and cross-fading for complex and expressive sounds. Sounds can be delayed either by time or by tempo, even when you release a key, allowing you to create sophisticated rhythmic soundscapes and performance effects. Monophonic sounds can be forced to be polyphonic, or vice-versa, and you can select only one of the oscillators if desired. For the more adventurous musician, each timbre can even use a different scale or tuning!
In the end it’s always about the sounds, and the M3 doesn’t disappoint. Korg’s acclaimed international voicing team delivers the goods once again: stunningly realistic imitative sounds, fat synth sounds, imaginative textures, evocative sound effects – it’s all here. The M3 comes loaded with 512 Programs, and room for a total of 1,664 user sounds (13 Banks plus GM). All sound locations are fully editable (except GM banks), so you are always free to tweak a sound if needed. Adding in the EXB-RADIAS option delivers 128 powerful MMT synthesis sounds. There are 32 drumkits provided, and room for a total of 144. As for the 16-part Combinations, 384 come preloaded, with room for a total of 1,792 (14 Banks).
Second Generation KARMA
The second generation KARMA functionality that first appeared on the OASYS and received wide acclaim from artists and users world-wide is fully implemented in the M3. KARMA is the inspiring, real-time music generation system that can help you play everything from natural instrument gestures like intricate finger-picking, strumming and harp glissandos, to complex cascades of notes, dance-riffs, gated and chopping effects and “improvising” drum grooves. KARMA continues to set the standard by which all other arpeggiators, phrase players, and musical effect generators are judged. The inspiration that KARMA offers, coupled with the unheard-of phrase variability is second to none.
In Combi and Sequencer modes, KARMA’s power increases exponentially, with four KARMA Modules available simultaneously.
The Control Surface can access and manipulate each module individually on its own “Module Layer”. In addition to the four individual Module Layers, there is a Master Layer that can be mapped to parameters from any of the modules, even grouping them together – so one slider can control the swing feel of all four modules at the same time, or the rhythmic activity of two or three modules at once, to name a few. Each Module Layer has 8 Scenes that store the settings of the sliders and switches in 8 different snapshots, instantly recalling completely different settings for that layer.
The Master Layer’s 8 Scenes, in addition to storing the settings of the 16 sliders and switches for its parameters, also control which scene is selected for each module. You can control each layer’s scenes directly from the control surface, or from the innovative Scene Matrix Page, which also controls whether the Drum Track will play along in a given scene. With 8 Scenes in each Module, and 8 Master Scenes storing which of those scenes are selected at which time (a total of 40 scenes), the possibilities are mind-boggling.
The M3 has incredible control over each KARMA element yet has been refined to be even easier to use, thanks to 13 “Real-Time Control Models” (RTC Models). An RTC Model standardizes which parameters of a KARMA GE are available for real time control, and how they are assigned to the Control Surface. With multiple GEs sharing the same exact setup, what you learn while controlling one GE is consistent and applicable to the thousands of other included GEs as well.
Ultimate expressive power
The M3 is remarkable not only for the freshness of its sounds, but also for its outstanding new control environment. The color LCD of the M3 music workstation/sampler not only provides a touch-view GUI that ensures intuitive and easy operation, but it also operates as an X-Y Pad, allowing sound and effect parameters to be controlled in real-time by sliding your finger across or tapping on the screen – much like the innovative Korg KAOSS Pad. Further control is provided by a Motion function that lets you capture and play back your finger moves to shape your sound and performance in unique ways. The screen even changes colors in response to the movement of your finger for cool visual feedback to your performance.
Each note in the chord retains the individual velocity so it can play back with all the nuance of your original performance, and can even be scaled across a full velocity range without "breaking" the dynamic relationship of each note.
The eight slider/eight switch control surface offers the same multi-functionality as on the OASYS: it can be used as a mixer, a set of expressive sound controls, an editing interface, a realtime KARMA performance interface, or to control external software and hardware synths and effects.
There’s also a joystick, assignable Value slider, two switches and a ribbon controller that give you convenient ways to express subtle nuances of sound. A newly designed proprietary keyboard with refined aftertouch delivers superb feel and expression that’s better than ever before.
You can add an internal RADIAS analog modeling synthesizer sound generator board (4 part multi-timbral; one timbre per Program, up to 4 Programs can be used simultaneously in Combi and Sequencer modes), with on-screen integration of all its parameters and full integration with the M3’s effects, control surface and KARMA functionality. An EXB- RADIAS Program is comprised of one timbre, with up to 4 RADIAS Programs able to be assigned to different timbres in Combi Mode or on separate tracks in Seq mode.
This powerful MMT-based (Multiple Modeling Technology) synth engine features dual oscillators which combine to offer analog-modeled waves, DWGS (PCM) waves, noise, ring mod and more. Waveform modulation, Variable Phase Modulation (VPM), Unison voice thickening, PWM and cross-mod expand the sonic palette.
Dual Filters can run in series, parallel, or side by side (individual for each oscillator). Filter1 features a resonant filter design covering 24 dB low pass, 12 dB low pass plus 12 dB high and band pass, with continuously variable “morphing” between these states. Filter2 offers 12dB versions of the low, high and band pass modes, plus a unique comb filter.
Two LFOs and three ADSR envelopes shape the sound and add cyclic motion to nearly any voice parameter. Three 16-step Modulation Sequencers provide discrete values to a modulation parameter that change over time, either in stepped or smooth motion, and can loop over and over.
Internal or external audio can be run through the EXB-RADIAS to be gated and filtered using the internal synthesis and effects. Drive adds analog warmth, Punch brings increased definition to the attack of a sound, and 12-types of Wave Shaping provides dramatic timbral shaping – even offering virtual “pick-up” response.
And of course, all of KARMA’s generative features can be used with the RADIAS to provide even more options, including RADIAS Wave-Sequencing.
The M3’s Open Sampling System lets you sample and resample in any mode to produce new remixed combinations of sounds and effects, or to capture full performances “In-Track” within the sequencer. Cutting-edge editing tools include Time Slice, Time Stretch, Crossfade Looping, Rate Change and Normalize.
An easy-to-use Auto-Setup function makes all the right sampling settings for you, with the press of a button. Stock sampling memory is 64 MB, and can be increased to 320 MB by adding the optional EXB-M256 memory expansion board. Samples in Korg native format, AIFF, WAV, Soundfont V2.0 and AKAI (S-1000/3000 with advanced Program parameter conversion) formats can be used, and internal samples can be exported as WAV or AIFF if needed.
New High-Resolution Sequencer
The sequencer that’s at the heart of the M3’s song production is an intuitively-understandable 16-track design that holds up to 128 songs and 210,000 notes.
The new high timing resolution of 480 PPQ captures every nuance and detail of your performance. Three-band EQ per track provides detailed sound-shaping, as does the Tone Adjust sound “tweaking” function.
The Cue List function that has been a popular feature ever since the now-classic TRITON series lets you create songs in sections, or play back completed songs as a medley.
All the now-classic Korg features are included, such as our one-touch “Auto Song Setup” feature, which takes you from playing a Program or Combination to “ready-to-record” status in one easy step, automatically arming tracks and routing voices behind the scenes. All KARMA settings are also set up, so you can record every note and controller as they’re generated, and even edit them later.
Advanced editing tools like variable quantization with selectable intensity and swing allow for nuanced adjustments to your recordings. Detailed event editing lets you work on your tracks with surgical precision, and a Compare function acts like an Undo for your last change to easily judge the effect of your edits.
Realtime Pattern Play and Record (RPPR) can be used to assign sequenced Patterns to individual keys on the keyboard for an interactive performance, or to quickly build up tracks. You can record controller data, Sys. Ex., or even KARMA phrases and trigger them as you like.
Time-tested features that have been proven to aid in inspiration and song creation combine to deliver an intuitive and enjoyable songwriting experience – the M3 has it all!
Virtualized hardware allows the M3 to operate like a plug-in instrument
In addition to being a highly-developed music workstation, the M3 is also able to closely integrate with your computer. By connecting the M3 to your computer via USB and using the included stand-alone (Vista & Intel/Mac compatible) “M3 Editor” software, you can edit sounds and settings from your computer.
A plug-in version of “M3 Editor” is also provided, so you can use it from within your DAW as a plug-in instrument. The editor runs as a VST, AU or RTAS plug-in for maximum compatibility. For even more complete integration, Korg’s new “Virtualized Hardware” concept comes into play. When the optional EXB-FW FireWire board is installed, a single FireWire cable will convey both the M3’s MIDI and audio signals to the tracks of your DAW in which the plug-in is running. This means that you can construct a highly integrated environment that adds the reliability of hardware to your software music production system, adding additional power to your virtual world.
Choose from a lineup of four types, with a newly designed keyboard for superbly expressive feel
The M3 music workstation/sampler is available as a lineup of four models: 61-key, 73-key, and weighted 88-key models, as well as the module-only M3-M. The 61-key and 73-key models use a proprietary new semi-weighted synth action keyboard developed by Korg for great playing feel and expressive aftertouch response. The 88-key model features the RH3 (Real Weighted Hammer Action 3) keyboard that reproduces the playing sensation of a grand piano, in which the low range has a heavier feel, with the touch becoming lighter as you play upward on the keyboard, allowing superb response to fine movements of your fingers.
Korg Komponent System gives you flexibility to construct your hardware system
The M3 music workstation/sampler introduces the new Korg Komponent System, featuring detachable keyboard and sound generator sections*. The 61-key model lets you mount a RADIAS-R analog modeling synthesizer instead of the M3-M sound generator, the 73-key model lets you mount the M3-M together with a RADIAS-R analog modeling synthesizer, and the 88-key model supports the combination of M3-M and RADIAS-R or even mounting two M3-M units simultaneously. Of course you can detach the M3-M sound generator and use it as a sound module, giving you great flexibility for constructing the system you need whenever you want.
A rich array of input/output jacks
The M3 provides two analog and two digital (S/P DIF) inputs as standard. In addition to the main two-channel output (L/MONO, R), there are four independent outputs as well as two-channel digital output (24-bit optical S/P DIF), meeting the needs of professionals.
Two USB connectors are provided: a type-B USB connector for connection to your computer as a MIDI interface, and dual type-A connectors for connecting external storage media. USB 2.0 is supported to ensure high-speed transfer of large amounts of data.
The optional EXB-FW adds two Firewire ports for conveying both audio and MIDI to your computer, and for daisy-chaining the M3 in your Firewire-based studio setup.
For a complete look at the connections and the rear panel, visit the M3 Zoom Tool and then click to toggle the view to show the rear panel.
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