The Ensoniq ESQ-1 The forgotten hybrid synth
When people talk about the digital revolution in synthesizers in the 80s, they obviously mention the Yamaha DX-7, the Korg M1 and the Roland D-50. The Ensoniq ESQ-1 is often times forgotten.
Ensoniq was a company founded by Robert “Bob” Yannes, who developed the SID chips for the Commodore 64 computer. The ESQ-1 was Ensoniq’s answer to its Japanese competition’s powerful digital hybrid synths.
The 8-voice synth had 32 digital waveforms installed and its polyphonic 8-track sequencer plus the four envelopes and three LFO’s were definitely remarkable! Even tho the synth was popular at it’s time, it never became quite the legend as its competitors.