Behringer MS-5 Design Finalized & Beta Testers Wanted

Behringer today announced that they’ve finalized the design for the MS-5, their Roland Sh-5 knockoff, and it is ready for beta testing:

“MS-5 is coming. We’re super excited having finalized another blast from the past.

This beautiful synth is now going to the beta testers for final review and then straight into manufacturing.”

The MS-5 is a copy of the SH-5, but in Behringer’s Poly D form factor. The Behringer MS-5 replaces the modulation panel and the top panel of the Poly D with panels based on the SH-5.

The smaller form factor means that the synth loses 2/3rd of an octave on the keyboard, and that controls are packed together more tightly. But adapting the SH-5 to Behringer’s existing format presumably will make the keyboard much less expensive to manufacture.

Details on pricing and availability are still to be announced. Behringer says that they are looking for Roland SH-5 owners to beta test their copy. If you’re an SH-5 owner and have interest, you can contact them via their Facebook page.

SH-5 image credit: Erik’s Gear Garage

18 thoughts on “Behringer MS-5 Design Finalized & Beta Testers Wanted

  1. Bold move to clone, what i think is, the strangest of the classic roland “SH” series.
    Cool to have another vintage unit avialable.

    It might not be for me tho – DiD wait for the MS-1 MK2 and will very likely get one.

  2. What’s with the separate bandpass filter under the mixer section? Can someone who is familar with the original SH-5 explain how this relates to the LPF, BPF, and HPF options in rhe VCF section?

    1. This ties into one of the instrument’s unique features (it has a few). Per Theo Bloderer’s review at greatsynthesizers dotcom, “the SH-5 offers a switch-matrix to run each source – either through the VCF, VCF and BPF, through the BPF alone, or directly via the VCA.” This along with the two LFOs, strong/weak sync options, and the S&H “with a little extra”, make this one to watch for me. I hope Behringer improves upon the VCA envelope and the keyboard quality, I found those to be weak points in the one I had, and others have commented on this.

  3. wish it didn’t have 1/8 inch jacks. i like this platform, single board straightforward design. no issues. you can stuff an H9 pedal behind the flip-top, and store cables. great platform for polyd, monopoly, and kobol some day. whats with the auto-tune thing though?

  4. I wonder if there are gate/CV jacks on the back? That would seem useful with just 3 octaves. I once owned the original, which was limited but not half bad run through a pedal or two. Getting it beyond the Depeche Mode tribute band level might need more than two, but hey, no one was going to buy it for piano duty. I’m spoiled by bigger synths now, so teeny analogs feel like 3-legged horses.

    1. There is a photo of the rear over on There are CV/Gate in & out as well as MIDI in/out/thru, external input with trigger and stereo outs. I have forgone all my hardware save the Moog Sub37 to work in the box but this does look pretty interesting…..

  5. Roland went after those other companies for copyright infringement for like 6 million or something. I do wonder if they’ll take Behringer to court as well.

  6. I have an SH5 – I think it’s one of Roland’s (or anyone’s) best-sounding monosynths. It has many really interesting features that make it unique and distinguish it from the other synths that were around at the time, such as sync, ring mod, multimode filter and that extra bandpass filter. I do wish the designers of this knockoff had the insight to make the BPF cv-able – something the original lacked. I’m having my SH5 modded for this, and a lot of other owners did this too, as it really opens up the possibilities

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