The Toraiz SP-16 combines vintage and modern technology.
The Toraiz SP-16 is the first time Pioneer DJ has released a piece of production gear, and combines modern technology including touch screen and ability to load samples via USB with analog filters based on those in Smith’s Prophet-6 synthesizer.
Pioneer DJ’s new device looks a lot like the Native Instruments Machine and Ableton’s Push controller, but doesn’t require connection to a computer to operate, and syncs to Pioneer DJ’s CDJ models to automatically keep everything in time during DJ sets.
As well as drum pads and Roland-inspired buttons for controlling the 16-step sequencer, the SP-16 features knobs and a touch strip for controlling the sampler’s processing engine, which allows for the manipulation of variables like time stretch, pitch bend and amp envelope.
The sampler includes 8GB of memory, and is able to play 16 samples at once. The device also connects to MIDI over USB, and Pioneer DJ promises that support for other synths and DAWs like Live will be added at a later date.
Dave Smith’s collaboration with Pioneer DJ is unusual, but not unprecedented. While the engineer independently created one of the first polyphonic synthesizers, the Prophet-5, Smith went on to work with Yamaha and Korg following his role in the development of MIDI technology in the early ’80s.
According to Pioneer DJ, the Toraiz SP-16 will be released in summer 2016 at a price of £1279/€1599.
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