Shut Up & Play: Sounds Of The Korg MS-20 FS Synthesizer

Enough with the blah-blah-blah – this video, via Bonedo Synthesizers, gets straight to demoing the sonic possibilities of the Korg MS-20 FS.

The MS-20 FS is a full-size reissue of the classic Korg MS-20, a patchable analog monophonic synthesizer, originally introduced in 1978. The FS is designed to be a recreate the original in every way, including the original packaging and manual.

The MS-20 FS adds MIDI In via DIN & USB, and is available in Blue, Green & White, in addition to the original black.

Check it out and share your thoughts on the Korg MS-20 FS in the comments!


14 thoughts on “Shut Up & Play: Sounds Of The Korg MS-20 FS Synthesizer

    1. It’s true, John. I replaced my Mini with an FS and was like “Whoomp there it is!”. Something else goin on in there.

  1. I shared one with a friend before we knew much about what we were doing. Two things are for sure: Its a superior mono synth, but it also has enough modularity to be a great effects processor. Running it through a delay made it sound near-Moog-y. Inputting it with a Minimoog made the dog run to the back room.

    Korg offers a software MS-20 made in-house. Give that a listen. I had a real MonoPoly and their model has the sound right, plus things like dual FX. I can understand if you have a hardware jones, though.

  2. I’m sorry, but I’m not a believer of the MS20 and after hearing the demo my faith hasn’t changed. I had one for more than 10 years in my youth, where I had the fortune also to be able to play other synths of that time, like the jup8, juno6, polysix, system100, ob8, dx7, cs15, minimoog. The MS20 never did it for me. It didn’t trigger my creativity nor my curiosity. Too few sweet spots, so the sound palette is limited, and despite the patch panel, the modulation options also. It is one of the rare cases where I rather enjoy Korg’s VST counter partner using the MS20C controller. The only reason I regret selling, is that it is now 20 times worth what I got for it.
    On the sunny side: the filter of course is one of a kind, but you can also enjoy that filter through Korg’s VA synth Kingkorg.
    But that is just me. I’m glad to see others thoroughly enjoy it.

    1. This is fair. I go back and forth between being amazed at new things i get out of it and also unclear if I actually enjoy, in a repeatable sense, what uniqueness it offers because its palette has that signature.

    2. I totally agree with your opinion, I will never get what this was so valued, when it’s not distorting it sounds wimpy and thin.

    3. “Believer”? You don’t have to believe or have faith in an instrument. Substitute “violin” for “MS20”. Is the concept still equivalent? If you don’t go digging for the sound, you aren’t going get the results. AFAIC, the MS20 is like my modded CS-15, and it has some other goodies thrown in as well.

      When somebody gets better results out of a synth, I look at what they are doing and take notes. Either that, or my hat’s off to them. But I won’t blame the tool or the instrument.

  3. the filter is very gnarly and very well suited to aggressive music, but not so well suited for anything else because of its nastiness

    also the I/O section allows tons of versatility

    1. a skilled player/sound designer can almost make anything on anything, but it doesnt naturally *excel* at it with a simple twist of the knob, unlike the more aggressive analog textures, which are also unique in themselves

      for example a roland MKS series excels at sweet sounds with any twist of a “knob”, but is very difficult to make it sound aggressive at all on its own

  4. I got one mostly for sentimental reasons because Robert Görl used it on many DAF tracks. So far I’m happy with it, fun synth!

  5. A classic synth,many sound possibilities and sweet spots,the look is great,it has musical history written all over it,the FS sounds like the original one did/does,2 filtertypes aboard.

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