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KORG NTS-2 Oscilloscope Kit Pairs a Multifunction Audio Tool with ‘Patch and Tweak’ Book

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KORG’s Nu-Tekt line of DIY audio gadgets remains amongst the company’s more intriguing ventures. The compact and hackable NTS-1 synth in particular has developed a sizable following, due at least in part to its affordability and expandability, the latter being either via hardware mods, or software downloads courtesy of the versatile multi-engine oscillator.  

The limited edition NTS-2 Oscilloscope kit is bundled with the Patch & Tweak book, and comes with a set of translucent NTS-2 side panels and stickers.

NTS-2 maintains this same spirit but takes a slightly different approach, being aimed more at existing synth owners. Whilst NTS-1 is a completely self-contained synthesizer, NTS-2 is more of a multifunction audio toolkit, sporting a 4-channel oscilloscope, FFT/spectrum analyzer, dual waveform generator, and tuner. Whilst the waveform generator provides basic synthesis functionality, NTS-2 will ideally complement an existing synthesizer environment, whether that be a single NTS-1, or a full-blown modular rig.

KORG describe NTS-2 as ‘The modern musician’s Swiss Army Knife’. It shares the same form-factor as NTS-1, although the front panel is dominated by a 240 x 320 pixel 2.8” colour LCD. It sports two stereo 3.5mm audio inputs with dedicated pass-through outputs to feed the various analysis modes, and two extra 3.5mm audio outputs to transmit a pair of waveforms (choice of sine, saw, triangle, pulse or noise), whereby NTS-2 can act as a supplementary oscillator or LFO.  

NTS-2 is also available only as a kit which includes the ‘Patch and Tweak with KORG’ book described as ‘a comprehensive guide to semi-modular synthesis’ whose inclusion makes perfect sense given the Nu-Tekt customer base. These are tools for the musically/technically curious, and this book looks to be an inspiring resource of tips, tricks and interviews (including a section dedicated to film sound design, so I won’t be passing this one up).

Perhaps at some point down the line, NTS-2 will be available individually and not bundled with this Patch & Tweak book, but there is currently nothing to indicate this. 

Of course, NTS-2 does require assembly, but this is part of the charm and appeal. KORG stress that the process (probably) takes less than 20 minutes, with no soldering needed. 

Here’s the description from KORG: 

Patch, Tweak, Build, Explore.
A powerful package to help your synth exploration! 

KORG, in collaboration with noted publisher Bjooks, (“PUSH TURN MOVE”, “PATCH & TWEAK” series…) is proud to present a fascinating KORG and ARP synth exploration experience in the form of this special, limited edition Bundle. 

This bundle combines the NTS-2, a powerful new tool optimized for a variety of studio tasks, and the “PATCH & TWEAK with KORG” book, a comprehensive look at semi-modular synthesis through the lens of KORG and ARP’s iconic synthesizers. Along with a multitude of artist interviews, patch tips, tutorials, historical explorations, and more, this book will teach you how to put the NTS-2’s power to work in your studio as a companion to your synthesizers and audio gear.  

Synth beginners and seasoned musicians alike will find the journey not just educational, but also inspirational and full of new discoveries. 

NTS-2 Features: 

4 CHANNEL OSCILLOSCOPE  

With its dual stereo inputs, you can study up to four signals at once, comparing and overlapping them with ease. A variety of display modes let you see your data in color, a huge advantage over the old oscilloscopes you’ve seen in science fiction movies! Its user interface is clear and quick, thanks to its dedicated menu buttons and clickable encoder knob, and its 240 x 320 pixel 2.8” color LCD is a joy to watch. 

FFT / SPECTRUM ANALYZER: 

To further dive into analyzing any signal, the NTS-2 also comes with a dedicated FFT (Fast Fourier Transform) mode with a real-time Spectrum Analyzer. These handy tools have always been out of reach for the synth musician because they either required expensive hardware or a nearby computer. Now you can carry them in your pocket! 

DUAL WAVEFORM GENERATOR: 

But the NTS-2 is much more than just an oscilloscope. The flexible Wave Generator mode has 2 oscillators with dedicated outputs, so you can test your synth rig or just get creative! Each oscillator can create a variety of waveforms –sine, square, triangle, sawtooth, pulse, and noise –whose shape and phase can be adjusted to suit many applications. These sounds can be used in the audio range or as control voltage sources, and they can be set to cycle continuously or act as one-shot impulses; that means you can turn them into LFOs, envelopes, triggers, and control voltage generators, as well as sound sources. Attaching the NTS-2 to any patchable synthesizer instantly expands its power in useful ways, making it an analog synth player’s dream tool. 

TUNER: 

And of course, coming from KORG, this multi-functional utility kit wouldn’t be complete without a precise and easy-to-use Tuner with multiple display modes! Being able to receive and monitor up to 4 input signals at the same time, the NTS-2 is an analog synth player’s dream tool. 

Patch and Tweak Book Covers: 

  • Analog and semi-modular synthesis basics 
  • The three Korg semi-modulars, with plenty of tips and techniques 
  • Extending the power of your rig with external gear 
  • Techniques and tricks for the Korg sequencers 
  • The powerful NTS-2 and all of its studio tools 
  • Interviews, favorite tricks, and patches from artists and producers 
  • Insider interviews with KORG engineers 
  • The history and synthesizers of ARP Instruments 
  • A photo tour of KORG synthesizers through the years 

25+ EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS:

Unlock the creativity and techniques of artists including Pete Townshend, Jean-Michel Jarre, Richard Devine, Andrew Huang, Panic Girl, Legowelt, Red Means Recording, Maude Vôs, Kabuki, Moe Shop, Kristin Hsiao, TALsounds, Robby Stambler, ALOO, ChrisLody, Olga Prudey, On High Mountains, and Loopop. Meet the creative minds of KORG’s great history, from Fumio Mieda and Junichi Ikeuchi to Tatsuya Takahashi and the new generation of KORG engineers, as well as the keepers of the ARP legacy: Dina Pearlman, David Friend, and David Mash. 

The NTS-2 Oscilloscope Kit is expected to arrive in Australia in June/July, and you can expect to pay $349 AUD. 

 Visit KORG’s website for full details. https://www.korg.com/products/dj/nts_2_pt 

 

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Noisegate is an Australian based collective of working musicians, producers, DJ’s, and live audio professionals.

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