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 EMS VCS3 Modular Synthesizer

  EMS
  VCS3
SPECS
EMS VCS3 synthesizer
VCS3
click image to enlarge - Bild klicken zum vergroessern
other EMS gear..
Built 1969
Type: analog
Hybrid: no
1 Voice / Stimmen
1x Multitimbral
no Memory / Speicher
Value / Wert in 2009 ca. 3990 (rare)
Synthesis: modular

OSC Features modular fm filterFM ring
Wave Shapes shape sym sine saw pulse triangle noise colour
3 OSCs
1 Filter lpf self reso 3 Pole
0 LFOs -
1 Envelope Generators 1x AHD+off loop

NO Control / Triggering
0 Keys with no

Arpeggiator no
Sequencer no
(ID 158)
  english
  deutsch - german
ABOUT A classic! looks like a russian power plant control. a matrix controls what is modulated by what source. there are not too many requests for keyboards or midi, quite "clinical" Sound, very british also. quite minimalistic (no lfo and only one ENV). anyway worth more than one ear. the CD David Voorhaus - white noise was made with 2 VCS3.
ABOUT Der Klassiker, sieht aus wie ein russisches Schiffeversenken. ‹ber eine Steckmatrix kann jedes Ziel moduliert werden. Er hat eigentlch eine eher spartanische Ausstattung, dennoch einen sehr speziellen "Klinik"-Sound. British ist das Instrument durch und durch. Anfragen nach etwas wie einem Keyboard oder Midi-Interface sind selten. Tipp: CD David Voorhaus - white noise wurde mit 2 VCS3 gemacht.
ABOUT
DETAILS this is the first "modulation matrix" irgendwie wie "schiffeversenken" ;-) its "LFO"=OSC3 ranges to 500Hz!! the OSCs 1 and to range to audio speed of course.. the OSCs frequency is tuned by only one knob.. (more like a frequency generator in a laboratory). build in reverb spring! (modable!) the filters are very british 18dB/Oct. (like the tb303, haha). the different colors are for different use! the EMS has a simplified Envelope Generator called trapezoid (thats the "shape"). you can mod something by just putting in one of those "resistor-pins". you can still order an EMS at Ludwig Rehberg in Ditzingen, germany. the sound is very "clinical"-cold (and thats meant as a good thing!) FM FX at audiospeed. and typical "british"-filtersound (like chris Huggetts inventions OSCar, EDP wasp) no one has ever done this, but the "user port" on the AKS can be used to patch the synth, so you may use a computer to do so! there have been modifications to the EMS VCS 3 and AKS. there are also very rare versions with keyboard or external keyboard of the VCS-3 around. the aks has a keyboard that fits also into the aks briefcase cover. this is a synth that you should not use with a "keyboard".. its sooooo useless! :) the sound is very special.. a newer system that comes close is the macbeth m3x. (uk: distributed by analogue solutions, the company that sells and makes the vostok, that also has a matrix like the EMS but has wavetables and a korg MS20 filter instead of the british-style EMS filters.) note: older models have different tracking of OSC1&2 and OSC 3:while the first oscs use 0.32V/Oct Osc 3 used 0.26V/Oct only! be aware when buying one! so the CV control by other synth is very difficult, so you need the info on the left (MIDI) the ENV: its only one and a bit strange: has just Attack and Decay and a hold after attack phase and a so called off (thats a retrigger after a certain time or not at all.. so imagine an lfo triggering the ENV.) ps: did you know, that the colors of thosed pins have different meanings? btw: EMS stands for electronic music studio. EMS Filters are made of Diodes instead of Transistors (remember: it was 1972) by David Cockerell, this David was one of the bosses in the EMS history, the first one was Peter Zinovieff. Till 72 he was EMS and thats where he met hugget. David Cockerell went to E-Harmonix and Ircam for a short time later. later Chris Huggett doing the EDP synth, akai's sampler line and the oscar. tim orr , who did the power tran synths (transcendent 2000) was EMS till 77. the EMS is the one on which Dr.Who was played and recorded. the "putney" is just because of the town that the EMS was produced in (part of London). this synth is quite the opposite of a minimoog - philosophically. so it works great with a minimoog side by side. "the klinik" used this synth quite often. brian eno and david voorhaus and jarre of course are also well known users. (jarre had 6 of it in a "rack") MIDI/CV control by other synths: thats not easy (WARNING: no guarantee or something for those who do it!) you can do it at rehberg! because of that 0.32V/Oct. (standard is 1V/Oct): 1) you can use one of 2 CV ins, so you can patch ,what you want to control by CV 2) the CV for OSCs is different.. so you need a converter analogue trigger EMS: gate pulse in/outs 4V GROUND to positive. Has a Joystick a spring reverb (!)
DETAILS die ersten beiden VCOs haben eine andere Steuercharakteristik OSC1&2 and OSC 3:while the first oscs use 0.32V/Oct Osc 3 used 0.26V/Oct only - als VCO3, der idR auch als LFO fungiert. er reicht bis 500 Hz. hatt eine Hallspirale, ringmodulator und einen Joystick.
DETAILS
SOUND effects, wonderful noise machine
SOUND effekte, wunderbare Krachmaschine
SOUND
VERSION mk2: slightly changed schematics. Synthi A: like VCS3 but in a suitcase.
VERSION mk2: etwas gešnderte Schaltung. Synthi A: wie VCS3 aber in einem Koffer eingebaut.
VERSION
The Putney

EMS VCS3 The Putney synthesizer

by: Aliens Project (link)
EMS VCS3
EMS VCS3 The Putney synthesizer IMAGE
EMS VCS-3

EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer

EMS VCS-3
VCS3
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer IMAGE
EMS VCS-3
THE "PROGRAMING PORT" .
THE PINS AND IT'S USE OF THE "PUTNEY" EMS SYNTHI A - AUX SLOT
KEYBOARD Jones Socket
This is intended for use with EMS devices. and these are supplied with a plug to fit this socket. Do not attempt to use this facility unless the suitability of the proposed equipment has been thoroughly checked.
Socket Connections:
1. Low Level DC Input
2. Ė 9 V, 50 mA, Stabilised Supply
3. Ground
4. + 12 V, 50 mA, Stabilised Supply
5. Attack. A pulse of + 4 V here will trigger the envelope shaper
6. Low Level DC Input 2
7. Spare
8. Spare
WARNING: Great care must be taken not to short circuit supply rails to themselves or to Ground (Pins 2, 3 and 4). Damage to the VCS3 will almost certainly result unless the fault is only momentary.
SCOPE Jack Socket
This socket is connected to Row A, and therefore sees any output connected to the Meter. In conjunction with the Control Output sockets, there are three possible ways of gaining access to the Matrix Board.
Although this socket is marked SCOPE (for Oscilloscope), it can be used for a variety of purposes, including feeding back a signal into the studio via one of the Input Amplifiers (see Section V) .
General Notes on Connecting External Equipment
1) Always make sure that the specification of the device agrees with the figures given in the foregoing pages before connecting it.
2) Watch out for "earth loops" - see Section VI
3) Don't forget that all jacks are 2-way (body and tip) except the Headphones jack, which is 3-way (body, ring and tip) .
4) Make sure that any extra jack plugs you buy are a proper fit - tight but not too tight - and that the live connection (tip) is firm I y gripped by the socket spring. Forcing in the wrong jack plug may damage the socket.
5) Always use screened leads, and pre-tin both the jack plug lugs and the lead and screen, so that the final joint can be made in the minimum time. Tao much heat will cause the insulation to melt back and possibly short circuit the lead.
6) Use whatever form of cable grip is provided on the jack plug, so that mechanical strain does not fall on the inner lead or soldered joints.
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer

EMS VCS-3
VCS3 "die dicke Leiste beim Steckfeld", das sind die Steckfeldpunktduplikate ...
Die 8-fach Buchse aber ...
VCS3 The Putney
User Manual
1970
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer IMAGE
EMS VCS-3
VCS3 Matrix
this is the first "modulation matrix"

its "LFO"=OSC3 ranges to 500Hz!! the OSCs 1 and to range to audio speed of course.. the OSCs frequency is tuned by only one knob.. (more like a frequency generator in a laboratory). build in reverb spring! (modable!) the filters are very british 18dB/Oct. (like the tb303, haha).

the different colors are for different use! the EMS has a simplified Envelope Generator (2x) called trapezoid (thats the "shape"). you can mod something by just putting in one of those "resistor-pins". you can still order an EMS at Ludwig Rehberg in Ditzingen, germany. the sound is very "clinical"-cold (and thats meant as a good thing!) FM FX at audiospeed. and typical "british"-filtersound (like chris Huggetts inventions OSCar, EDP wasp)

no one has ever done this, but the "user port" on the AKS can be used to patch the synth, so you may use a computer to do so! there have been modifications to the EMS VCS 3 and AKS.
there are also very rare versions with keyboard or external keyboard of the VCS-3 around. the aks has a keyboard that fits also into the aks briefcase cover.

this is a synth that you should not use with a "keyboard".. its sooooo useless! :)
the sound is very special.. a newer system that comes close is the macbeth m3x from scotland. (uk: distributed by analogue solutions, the company that sells and makes the vostok, that also has a matrix like the EMS but has wavetables and a korg MS20 filter instead of the british-style EMS filters.)

note: older models have different tracking of OSC1&2 and OSC 3:while the first oscs use 0.32V/Oct Osc 3 used 0.26V/Oct only! be aware when buying one! so the CV control by other synth is very difficult, so you need the info on the left (MIDI)

the ENV: its only one and a bit strange: has just Attack and Decay and a hold after attack phase and a so called off (thats a retrigger after a certain time or not at all.. so imagine an lfo triggering the ENV.)

ps: did you know, that the colors of thosed pins have different meanings?
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer

EMS VCS-3
VCS3 Matrix - irgendwie wie "schiffeversenken" ;-)
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer IMAGE
EMS VCS-3
the Matrix!

mportant: you can still buy at the URL on the left or here: www.ems-rehberg.de
at rehberg you get midi kits and mod to have all waveforms on all OSCs! also a nice list of the current ems products (images included)

modifications (sync for the OSCs): here

pins: white: 2,7k at 5% tolerance
red only 2% tolerance

the synthi 100 uses 10kohm! so they are NOT the same!
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer

EMS VCS-3
VCS3 Schiffeversenken? nein! die Modulations Matrix
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer IMAGE
EMS VCS-3
EMS Filters are made of Diodes instead of Transistors (remember: it was 1972) by David Cockerell,
this David was one of the bosses in the EMS history, the first one was Peter Zinovieff. Till 72 he was EMS and thats where he met hugget. Cockerell went to E-Harmonix and Ircam for a short time later.

later Chris Huggett doing the EDP synth, akai's sampler line and the oscar.

tim orr , who did the power tran synths (transcendent 2000) was EMS till 77.

there are also:

the Hifly, some sort of "pink floyd"-guitar synth (with a strange look).. and the synthi E, tht has BPF and HPF also, but most of it is reduced and only patchable by special patchcords. E stands for educational, bit it had that filter option and those patchcords were easier to use when dealing with external modules, so this may be a good synth module for modular freaks! (rare and yellow).

the EMS Polysynthi was a flop. only 50 were made and it had some sort of switch matrix for easy routings, but nothing special on that machine. aaah, yes.. it was red!

the "putney" is just because of the town that the EMS was produced in (part of London). this synth is quite the opposite of a minimoog - philosophically. so it works great with a minimoog side by side. "the klinik" used this synth quite often. brian eno and david voorhaus and jarre of course are also well known users. (jarre had 6 of it in a "rack")

MIDI/CV control by other synths: thats not easy (WARNING: no guarantee or something for those who do it!) you can do it at rehberg! because of that 0.32V/Oct. (standard is 1V/Oct):

1) you can use one of 2 CV ins, so you can patch ,what you want to control by CV

2) the CV for OSCs is different.. so you need a converter:

follow this :
www.synthfool.com/emsmod.html
or this
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer

EMS VCS-3
VCS3
EMS VCS-3 EMS VCS-3 synthesizer IMAGE
EMS VCS3
2 VCS3
EMS VCS3 EMS VCS3 synthesizer

by: thx bakis parallel worlds (link)
EMS VCS3
VCS3
EMS VCS3 EMS VCS3 synthesizer IMAGE
AUDIO FILE (download)
Aliens Project - Toy of the Month Audio
EMS VCS 3
Aliens Project - Toy of the Month Audio
EMS VCS 3 VCS 3 Audio synthesizer audio AUDIO

EMS known or written as Electronic Music Studio formerly Electronic Music Studios

Peter Zinovieff founded the EMS which first started as an early studio for electronic music, the VCS4 was part of it and later the Putney (VCS3) was the first product to sell, designed by David Cockerell in 1969 (!). it revolutionized the music and was used as a noise machine quite often.

Official Intl. Site : http://www.ems-synthi.demon.co.uk/emsprods.html
DER HERSTELLER
THE MANUFACTURER

Offizielle Site (D)
: http://www.emsrehberg.de/
EMS


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