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Ensoniq DP Pro

Ensoniq DP Pro Effects Processor

The Ensoniq DP Pro released in 1997, was the final effects processor to come out of Ensoniq. It came after the success of the DP/4, DP/4+ and DP/2 processors. Unlike the DP/4 & DP/4+, the Ensoniq DP Pro was a stereo effects processor. Sadly two channels of processing was not all it lost, it also lost the more intuitive interface of the DP/4 series of processors.

Details

The Ensoniq DP Pro uses two of Ensoniq’s second generation 24 bit ESP (Ensoniq Signal Processing) VLSI chips to create the many effects it is capable of producing. The two ESP chips allow you to run two separate effects simultaneously, such as delay and Chorus etc.

The Ensoniq DP Pro also used different algorithms to the DP/4 processors that came before it. The clue is in the name, PRO and this effects processor was targeting a higher end market and the Ensoniq engineers set out to give it a better sound than all that came before it. In addition to space and time effects (Reverb and Delay based effects) the Ensoniq DP Pro included some mastering effects such as compression and stereo imaging tools. A full list of available effects appear below:

  • Mastering Limiter: This effect is designed to increase the perceived loudness of the input signal without introducing distortion or clipping. It can be used to enhance the final mix or individual tracks.
  • Compressor/Limiter: This effect reduces the dynamic range of the input signal by applying gain reduction to the peaks that exceed a certain threshold. It can be used to smooth out the volume fluctuations and make the sound more consistent and punchy.
  • Compressor: This effect is similar to the Compressor/Limiter, but it does not have a hard limit on the output level. It can be used to control the dynamics of the input signal and add warmth and character.
  • Servo Limiter: This effect is a special type of limiter that uses a feedback circuit to adjust the gain reduction based on the input and output levels. It can be used to achieve transparent limiting and prevent overloading.
  • 3 Band Compressor/Limiter: This effect splits the input signal into three frequency bands (low, mid, high) and applies compression or limiting to each band separately. It can be used to balance the frequency spectrum and enhance the clarity and definition of the sound.
  • Expander: This effect increases the dynamic range of the input signal by applying gain boost to the peaks that exceed a certain threshold. It can be used to restore the natural dynamics of the sound and reduce unwanted noise or hiss.
  • Stereo Gate: This effect silences the input signal when it falls below a certain threshold. It can be used to eliminate background noise or create rhythmic effects by synchronizing the gate with a tempo or an external trigger.
  • Dual Mono Gate: This effect is similar to the Stereo Gate, but it processes the left and right channels independently. It can be used to create stereo effects or apply different gating settings to each channel.
  • De-Esser: This effect reduces the level of sibilant sounds (such as “s” or “sh”) in the input signal by applying frequency-selective compression. It can be used to smooth out harsh vocals or instruments and improve intelligibility.
  • Stereo Synthesizer: This effect creates a stereo image from a mono input signal by adding phase-shifted copies of the original sound. It can be used to widen or enhance the stereo field and create spatial effects.
  • Stereo Re-Imager: This effect modifies the stereo image of a stereo input signal by adjusting the width, balance, phase, and delay of each channel. It can be used to correct or improve the stereo placement and depth of the sound.
  • Variable Tap Delay: This effect creates multiple echoes from the input signal by using up to 16 delay taps with variable delay time, feedback, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create complex delay patterns and rhythmic effects.
  • Spatial Delays: This effect creates a three-dimensional sound field from the input signal by using up to 8 delay taps with variable delay time, feedback, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create realistic or surrealistic spatial effects and ambience.
  • Ping Pong Delay: This effect creates a bouncing echo from the input signal by alternating between left and right channels with variable delay time, feedback, level, and modulation. It can be used to create stereo movement and width.
  • Stereo Delay: This effect creates a simple echo from the input signal by using two delay taps with variable delay time, feedback, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create basic delay effects and add depth and dimension to the sound.
  • Loop Recorder: This effect records and plays back a loop of audio from the input signal with variable loop length, speed, direction, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create looping effects and overdubbing layers of sound.
  • Expert Reverb: This effect creates a realistic reverberation from the input signal by using a high-quality algorithm with variable room size, decay time, diffusion, damping, pre-delay, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to simulate different acoustic environments and add natural ambience to the sound.
  • Reflection Modeler: This effect creates a synthetic reverberation from the input signal by using a network of up to 16 delay taps with variable delay time, feedback, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create artificial ambience and spatial effects that are not possible with conventional reverbs.
  • Small Ambience: This effect creates a short reverberation from the input signal by using a simple algorithm with variable decay time, diffusion, damping, pre-delay, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to add subtle ambience and presence to the sound without affecting the clarity and definition.
  • Non-Linear Reverb: This effect creates a non-linear reverberation from the input signal by using a special algorithm that produces abrupt changes in the decay time and level. It can be used to create gated or reverse reverb effects and add drama and excitement to the sound.
  • Multi-Pitch Shift: This effect creates multiple copies of the input signal with variable pitch, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create harmonies, choruses, detuning, or special effects.
  • Multi-Chorus: This effect creates multiple copies of the input signal with variable delay, pitch, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create thickening, doubling, or flanging effects and add richness and movement to the sound.
  • Flanger: This effect creates a sweeping comb filter from the input signal by mixing it with a delayed copy that has variable delay time, feedback, level, and modulation. It can be used to create jet-like or metallic sounds and add color and character to the sound.
  • Phaser: This effect creates a sweeping notch filter from the input signal by mixing it with a phase-shifted copy that has variable phase shift, feedback, level, and modulation. It can be used to create swirling or underwater sounds and add warmth and motion to the sound.
  • Tremelo: This effect creates a periodic change in the volume of the input signal by applying variable amplitude modulation. It can be used to create pulsating or rhythmic effects and add dynamics and expression to the sound.
  • Panner: This effect creates a periodic change in the stereo position of the input signal by applying variable pan modulation. It can be used to create stereo movement and width and add interest and variety to the sound.
  • Chatter Box: This effect creates a vocoder-like effect from the input signal by using a noise generator as a carrier and applying variable frequency-selective modulation. It can be used to create robotic or alien voices and add distortion and noise to the sound.
  • Rotary Speaker: This effect simulates a rotating speaker cabinet from the input signal by using two filters with variable speed, acceleration, depth, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create classic organ or guitar sounds and add vibrato and tremolo effects.
  • Tunable Speaker: This effect simulates a speaker cabinet with variable resonance from the input signal by using a band-pass filter with variable frequency, bandwidth, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to create speaker emulation or wah-wah effects and add tone control and character to the sound.
  • Parametric EQ: This effect modifies the frequency spectrum of the input signal by using up to 4 bands of equalization with variable frequency, gain, bandwidth, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to adjust the tonal balance and enhance or attenuate specific frequencies.
  • Octave EQ: This effect modifies the frequency spectrum of the input signal by using up to 8 bands of equalization with fixed octave frequencies and variable gain, level, pan, and modulation. It can be used to adjust the tonal balance and enhance or attenuate specific octaves.

 

The Ensoniq DP Pro also offers other effects such as Distortion, Overdrive, Fuzz, Bit Crusher, Ring Modulator, Noise Generator, Sample & Hold, Envelope Follower, Envelope Generator, LFO Generator, MIDI Generator, Mixer, Crossfader, Inverter, Mute/Solo Switcher, Bypass Switcher, etc. These effects can be used to create various sound transformations and modulations. The Ensoniq DP Pro allows users to combine up to 6 effects in parallel or serial configurations and create custom presets with up to 100 parameters each. The Ensoniq DP Pro is a versatile and powerful digital effects processor that can handle any audio processing task.

The Ensoniq DP/4 series of processors although inferior in terms of pure DA conversion and signal quality, remain more popular because their grainier sound quality gives the effects more character. Similarly the Eventide H3000 is more sought after than later models for the same reason.

The Ensoniq DP Pro was a very capable and very complex beast to use, and that is perhaps it’s downfall. Eventide processors suffer a similar fate for the novice user, but take time to learn the way the DP Pro works and you have a vary capable device on your hands.

Specifications

Released

Quantization: 24 bit
Sampling Frequency: 32, 44.1, 48kHz
Frequency Response: > 2Hz – 22kHz
Dynamic Range: > 94 dB
THD: Unknown

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