Emulator II V is a multitimbral sampling machine that brings E-Mu Systems’ seminal digital workhorse back to life in all its nostalgic glory - with a slick modern edge.
Its unique combination of high-fidelity 8-bit sound, warm analog filter, and instantly-recognizable sample library is sure to spark instant creativity, just as the original once did. When you want lo-fi grain, ‘80s sheen, or a sampling flow that stands out from the crowd, look no further.
Digital goes lo-fi
Part sampler, part synth, Emulator II V combines 8-bit digital crunchiness with warm analog filters for a distinctly lo-fi sound that’ll add instant character to any mix.
The sound of the ‘80s
If you’ve heard Depeche Mode, New Order, Genesis, John Carpenter, or pretty much anyone from the ‘80s & ‘90s, you’ve heard the Emulator sound - now it’s in your hands.
No ordinary emulation
Using our exclusive TAE® technology, every circuit and every function of this classic instrument has been remade in detail to sound & behave just like the original.
The sounds you know
Some of popular music’s most iconic sounds came from the original Emulator libraries; Emulator II V combines them with a fresh & dynamic selection of samples for your mixes.
the sampling game
An instrument that graced every ‘80s line-up. An icon from the early days of sampling. A unique character that helped define the sound of a decade and beyond. The Emulator II’s digital charm and tactile layout made it the musical weapon of choice for everyone from Depeche Mode to Trent Reznor.
The Emulator series was the work of E-mu Systems in the 1980s. Upon release, the Emulator II was met with critical acclaim, combining the novel versatility of sampling with the familiar layout of a classic synthesizer.
At the helm of E-mu systems was the legendary Dave Rossum. A California native, Rossum is now a veteran of the industry, and considered among the most influential figures in electronic instrument design.
His pioneering work combining analog richness and digital precision in modular systems made the synth world sit up and listen, and the company went on to collaborate with the likes of Sequential and Oberheim. It was when the ‘80s hit, however, that Rossum struck gold.Discover the history of Emulator
The instrument’s relative affordability, 27.7 kHz sample rate, and reasonably compact synth-style keyboard layout made it a go-to for some of the biggest names in pop, rock, and everything in between. When you heard glossy pianos, lush string pads, and one-hit FX stabs, there was often an Emulator II involved.
At the time, the sampler concept was an up-and-comer; trendy technology reserved for elite hitmaker producers and A-list artists. Dave and his E-mu partner Scott Wedge saw an opportunity to bring sampling to a wider audience.
By drawing more inspiration from the response of acoustic instruments than his experience with electronic ones, the Emulator series was born, and in 1984, the upgraded Emulator II hit the market - and it made waves. Much like Rossum’s pioneering modular designs, the Emulator II combined digital precision with the organic nature of analog circuitry. The result was a higher-fidelity sound that remained warm and full of character - a true project of passion.
on the Emulator II
“I've spent so much time around it - I'm attached to it. It's a part of me.”
Is it modern?
Is it vintage?
It’s both. Emulator II V comes loaded with a curated sample library that mixes iconic Emulator & Synclavier samples with a diverse modern selection.
Better still, you can import your own samples to give them that diamond retro treatment, or dive deeper into its sampling architecture with enhanced editing tools.
Timeless Iconic Sounds
4 iconic sounds from the original factory library.
Choral vocal sections, the slam of gated ‘80s drums, symphonic brass, the peaceful flow of a shallow stream - back then, you’d collect your samples on floppy disks. Now, Emulator II V brings a fully immersive vintage sampling experience to your DAW, overflowing with sentimental sonic value.
A drum loop played first in Modern mode, then with the “Vintage” DAC.
And if you want the samples in your mix to bring a vibe of their own, what better way than to use a sampler straight from the old school? Choose between a modern DAC or a faithful emulation of the original hardware’s DAC and let the lo-fi vibes roll...
Instrument first, sampler second. Part of what made the Emulator hardware so popular was the fact that it behaved like a synthesizer, but with the flexibility of using samples - its multitimbrality meant up to 8 samples could be played at once on your keyboard.
Analog Modelled Filter
Hear the filter in action, applied to the Marcato Strings preset.
Emulator II V follows the same recipe to offer you the same charm that put this instrument on the musical map. Tame that 8-bit character with an ultra-smooth VCF, dial in some LFO for classic synth-style movement, or instantly change your sample playback with familiar ADSR control.
Emulator II V goes beyond glorious ‘80s sound - this expansive virtual sampling workhorse will complement your creativity to no end.
6-mode arpeggiator to set your ideas free so you can focus on dynamics and expression.
2 assignable expression wheels give this sampler an expressive edge.
03. Master Control
Assign and cross-fade up to 8 separate samples across your keyboard range.
Each sample is polyphonic within its keyboard zone, with its own filter, VCA, and LFO.
Add effects per sample to really customize your Emulator palette in sonic detail.
Create entire drum kits to play on different keys.
Effects per voice
Assign whatever effects you want to any of your multiple samples, to craft your own specifically-colored sound.
Ben Van Vlissingen
Composer / ProducerIt behaves like the original, and can add the same dust and crunch to your samples if that’s what you’re looking for. I’ve been surfing through the presets and haven’t been able to find one that isn’t instantly useable.
Drummer/Nine Inch NailsThere's a broad scope of the sounds this thing makes, I love a lot of the bass sounds, I love a lot of the percussive stuff that you would program the sequence with or use with the arpeggiator and there's a lot of delicate airy pads, some fun voices.
Keyboardist / ProducerThe Emulator II V is very inspiring and tons of fun. It’s packed with unique and wonderful sounds.
Singer / ProducerAll these synths are blowing my mind — Emulator II V especially is opening creative doors I didn’t know existed. Wonderful to have this wide a range of sounds at the ready.
Radiophonic WorkshopThe Emulator always seemed to me to be the sampler that sounded most like analogue tape. I wish Delia Derbyshire had been given an Emulator to play with. And the low end is remarkable.
Emulator II V’s interface is designed to be authentic and immersive - but there’s more than meets the eye.
Zoom in on the built-in display to access in-depth sampling editing, expressive modulation, and a suite of FX that go beyond the original - and that’ll cement Emulator II V as your favorite outside-the-box sampler.
01. Play Direction
Adjust the behavior of each of your 8 ‘voices’ (samples), including transpose, sample looping, play direction, trig delay, and much more.
02. Trig Delay
Gain more control over your LFO settings, with parameters including rate sync, delay, variation and more.
Tap into the deeper functions of the warm analog filter and VCA to further shape the playback and tone of your samples.
Choose specific FX per sample (‘voice’) to craft a palette to suit your style, from new wave to industrial techno.
Switch to a DAC that suits your taste - choose from modern clean or an emulation of the original crispy digital charm.
Control every aspect of how your keyboard/note range interacts with each of your samples, from zone assignment to aftertouch.
Harness the keyboard/note input as a modulation tool - velocity, keyboard tracking, and aftertouch can be configured to manipulate the same 16 destinations.
01. Velocity Switching
Easily assign samples to different note ranges on your keyboard by easily dragging across the visual interface.
Set up the left and right expression wheels to affect 1 of 16 modulation destinations, from LFO rate to pitch transpose.
The simple addition of 11 FX algorithms is the final trick up Emulator II V’s sleeve. Whether you want to add isolated reverb to your snare sample, or just whack a swirling phaser on the master output, Emulator II V is on your level.
Apply an effect to any sample independently, apply up to 3 FX to the output, and opt for series or parallel depending on your tonal preference - get ready to send this sampler into sonic orbit.
Immerse yourself in Emulator II V’s nostalgic sampled tones. In the hands of sound designers, composers, and musicians of all styles, it comes into its own - experience the awesome retro charm of this classic keyboard.
From the very first note, you’ll be hooked on Emulator II V. It comes loaded with expertly-designed presets, from sampled classic instruments to edgy synthesized percussion - you’ll find a sound that suits you in no time.
Shadow Beast Bass
A grimey bass straight from the underground, with a fast attack, and dark analog-filtered character.
With pumping low-end resonance and an unmistakable digital edge, this preset has serious old-school games console vibes.
Trap Hell Kit
A quick-access trap percussion ensemble, complete with stereo-panning hats, a dynamite clap, and rumbling kick.
With echoing ambience and metallic resonance, this industrial percussion kit brings post-apocalyptic dust and rust.
Translations from another world, vocal echoes from the darkest depths, processed into a pad sound that’s eerily beautiful.
An evolving pad teeming with harmonic layers and gritty detail, soaked in luscious ambience.
A pleasant harp-like sound, weighted with a soft lower-octave, and expanded with bright reverb and delay.
Sharp, snappy percussive samples pitched and panned into a bouncing rhythmic pattern, with classic action-sequence character.
Use of trig delays and soft ping-pong delay on these glassy samples results in a pleasant musical tapestry.
Crunchy strings, plucked with confidence, ringing with bathroom-tile echoes, and bringing a curious Eastern vibe.
A powerful, echoing presence, ringing with dusty overtones and cavernous reverb, pulsing left and right, up and down.
Bouncing rhythms racing against the clock, breaking the time barrier and fracturing sound itself for a crushed inside-out sound.
Legendary Keyboards Reinvented
This instrument is also part of the V Collection -your complete dream line-up of the legendary synths, organs, pianos and more that made keyboard history. They’re modeled with the most advanced technologies for authentic realism, and enhanced with new creative options. Whether you use it as DAW plugins in the studio or standalone at gigs, V Collection puts the greatest keys of all time at your fingertips for instant inspiration.Learn More
Integrated in-app tutorials guide you through every aspect of the instrument, from individual parameters to tips from our sound designers, so you can focus on the creative stuff. It shouldn't be this easy, but it is!
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Instantly find the sound that’s in your head with intelligent & streamlined preset browsing. Search with keywords, explore by instrument type, musical style, and more - you can even save your favorites to quickly recall later.
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The exclusive analog modeling technology that makes our emulations indistinguishable from the originals.
By accurately mimicking the characteristics of analog oscillators, filters, and soft clipping, we can provide astonishing component-accurate detail and authentic analog charm in equal measure.Learn more
Original E-mu Emulator II feature set:
- 8 voices multitimbral sample engine
- Each layer (voice) has its own VCF (+ADSR), LFO, VCA (+ADSR)
- Original 8 bit companding technology and 27.7 kHz sample rate
- Analog filter
Multiple voices can be controlled from the hardware view for simple editing
Includes factory sample bank from the original hardware
Per layer (voice) insert FX
Each layer (voice) can use original 8 bit companding or a cleaner conversion
11 master effect types (Reverb Phaser, Flanger, Chorus, Overdrive, Delay, …)
Advanced Brightness, Timbre, Time and Movement macro controls
+250 factory presets
MTS-ESP ODDSOUND microtuning compatibility
- Win 10+ (64bit)
- 4 GB RAM
- 4 cores CPU, 3.4 GHz (4.0 GHz Turbo-boost)
- 3GB free hard disk space
- OpenGL 2.0 compatible GPU
- ARM processors not supported on Windows
- Works in Standalone, VST, AAX, Audio Unit, NKS (64-bit DAWs only).
- Mac OS 11+
- 4 GB RAM
- 4 cores CPU, 3.4 GHz (4.0 GHz Turbo-boost) or M1 CPU
- 3GB free hard disk space
- OpenGL 2.0 compatible GPU
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