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Kawai K4R 1989 -1990

The rackversion of the K4 16 bit digital synthesizer is another great synthesizer from Kawai, its kind of like the K1 using 250  or so rom waves but added to this is a pretty slique weird sounding digital filter (with resonance) and the waves are 16 bit instead of 8 or whatever they are on the K1. I got this for free from a friend who had it lying in his attic and I am really happy it, its really easy to program from the front (like the K1 you just select the oscillator waves, envelopes and pitch etc.). I didn't have to read the manual at all its a very logical friendly user interface with easy to follow buttons and an LCD screen (well maybe I was a step ahead with my K1 experience). Its kind of like the Roland D550 (which is underneath the K4r on the picture) but with a more exotic sound and easier to program (even considering the PG1000 on the D550!).

As i said before the filter is pretty weird and if you set the resonance at maximum and the cut off at a certain point you get a beautifull tape hiss kind of noise in the sound. A nice digital artifact or something, it has some more of those like little clicks if you set the attack very short. A great warm sounding inspiritional synthesizer!

Here are some mp3 snippets:

Filter synth  - here you can hear the characteristic filter noise and changes in the cut off.

Choir - Music for Airport like choirs

Ambient stuff
- It is also a great synthesizer for dark and complex soundscapes

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