Korg continues their re-issue vibe by bringing back a full-sized replica of their classic MS-20 monophonic synthesizer. The MS-20 FS is faithful to the original in every way except that they will come in 4 powder-coated colours of khaki, white, metallic blue and black.
Previously Korg has released a mini version, a plug-in and a full-sized MS-20 in the form of kit but this production run is going to be fully built, just like the original and ready to go.
There’s no additional fancy stuff other than MIDI/USB implimentation and that they’ve included both filter types from the early and late models. You get all the original structure of 2 VCOs, 2VCAs, 2 filters, 2 envelopes and an LFO. There’s that External Signal Processor and a patching system. And this is the original patching system so it’s on 1/4″ jacks and isn’t tailored for Eurorack.
It’s a chunky box with its own eco-system of patching and a huge and fierce sound. They’ve even replicated the original packaging and manual.
Comparisons will of course be drawn with the Behringer K-2 but this feels like a very different instrument, at least in intention. For me synthesizers are always about more than the sound. It’s also about the feel, the shape, the way your hands interact with it and for those reasons I believe Korg is on to a winner by producing an instrument that can be played as something of itself. Not sure that makes any sense but I believe that both the K-2 and the MS-20 FS have good reasons to exist. The price, which is yet to be announced, will be a factor in all that.
The Korg MS-20 FS should be available in April.