Can you 'hear' the ER-301?

I mean to say, can anyone discern a coloration of the sound coming from the ER-301?

It’s quite a common thing for folks to be able to identify certain pieces of gear, but I can’t with the ER-301.

Yesterday I was chatting with @DivKid and he suggested that it might be nice to have some kind of hardware emulation units, i.e. make the ER-301 sound like an SP1200, or whatever.

Is this possible? Would folks be interested in this kind of thing?


Sure it’s possible. Just a software thing.

Edit: Let me expound a bit more. The only characteristics that you are referring to have to do with the way electricity moved through those circuits. As an analog instruments the components they used all contributed to the character one might recognize on devices. In a digital synth with no analog portion other than the DAC, the characteristic would only come from the algorithms used to mold the sound, or from any hardware characteristic of the DAC, which is to say you wouldn’t get any, because a DAC that colors its output would be a broken DAC by design. (At least I would assume.) So coloration or a characteristic to identify the 301 would all be self inflicted. (Think of jeans that are made to look worn and old, but are in fact new.) You could do it in anyway by inserting any blip or blurb in the digital signal path.

Personally I think the design and purpose of the 301 goes completely against this sort of characterization, but at the same time, making it do so, is also right in line with its capabilities.



Someone posted a comment on one of the videos I made, and basically asked why no one made videos showing “what the ER-301 sounds like.”

After typing out a lengthy explanation that the 301 is essentially a collection of configurable DSP algorithms under voltage control, and that it sounds like whatever you decide you want it to sound like, I deleted it and simply referred him over to the ER-301 music thread here.

In a way this kind of makes me think about guitar amp modelers. Starting back in the 80s/90s when the technology became good enough to attempt it, manufacturers (Line 6, Roland, Digitech, etc.) started trying to have their hardware multi-fx (or software plugin) digitally recreate the tone of classic tube amps (Marshalls, Fenders, Boogies, Vox, etc.) through a studio monitor or PA speaker.

Of course they are still doing that today and each release is just another step toward perfection. One thing I have noticed after following this for the last 20-30 years is that I think I’m starting to see kind of a new trend as the models of the “classics” approach being indistinguishable from the “real thing”. And that is that there seems to be a shift toward creating new “models” that aren’t a clone of a “classic”, but are unique, and maybe weren’t even possible with the 1950s tube technology that guitar players so dearly love. In a way, I kind of enjoy these new creations more.

That was really long winded. I’m not saying I’m not interested in this, but on the other hand I might be more interested in aural signatures that can only be created with the ER-301. :slight_smile:


I found it refreshing that the 301 doesn’t have a signature beyond what you add yourself. It’s a clean beast… finally* … as most modules in euro that have digital recording/playback features tend to have the “lofi-classic-piece-of-crap” aesthetic. So maybe that clean sound is the 301’s signature.

I’m all for any unit that adds character… but I’d be worried of the juice it would take to run modelled tone emulations. The CPU resources of the IR unit is an example… or is this why I need to order a 2nd 301?:slight_smile:

Maybe this is something best left to the 3rd party SDK?


It’s a very good point - if you want your ER-301 to sound like an SP1200 - use an SP1200 sample pack that already has that sound quality baked in :heart_eyes_cat:

The possibility question was definitely along the lines of processing power requirements rather than is it possible to do, apologies for not being clear.

I am intrigued, as I have iOS apps that emulate hardware, iSEM is a great example, so it’s seemingly not that far out of reach!?

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yep, what a love about it. It’s doesn’t have a sound.

unlike say MI’s Clouds

In some cases I think the exact convolution unit could also be used to emulate the sound of a particular piece of hardware, provided the components that need to be emulated don’t involve distortion, etc. E.g. some characteristic of a filter.

At least in theory it’s possible. I haven’t had much luck with creating device IRs myself.

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It sounds great, does that count?


not more than you can hear an mpc 1000 in the mix or some other high quality digital device.
(and by digital i don’t mean an op1 sound)

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it sounds just like Max/MSP :slight_smile:


I made a few device IR’s when I first explored convolution and was playing with tritone digital colourtone. I’m not sure they sounded like the device I was creating but they definitely added fantastic colouring to the sound. I’m pretty sure from memory you could dig up some of the irs from the library.
Give it a go and let me know!