Chamberlin M1 by Jamie Lidell [Decent Sampler, Kontakt]

(1 customer review)


Legendary and extremely rare, the Chamberlin M1 may have been the first sampler ever. Now you can own all eight gorgeous sounds of this iconic instrument–captured dry via telefunken V72 preamps, dirtily though a silvertone, and Roland RE201 and via 2 mono Nagra tape machines with ADT phasing techniques which are the true star of this pack.


An image of the Chamberlin M1 sample library user interface.

This is a marvelous, wild, brutal beast of an instrument and it’s been captured for your sonic adventures here in a series of 8 instruments which are found on this particular unit.

Some say only 80 or so M1s were ever made and there are hardy any left in working condition so this is most certainty a rarity and I took the task of sampling it very seriously.

This unit belongs to the excellent Rob Burger (keyboard master that’s played with John Zorn, Laurie Anderson and many more) and was sampled in a painstaking manner yielding a set of captures that showcase the sounds on the tapes in a way that’s never been heard before.

The reason it’s so unique is the use of 3 recording methods which can be blended to taste alongside an ADSR and built in reverb to allow instant control to fit your use case. Here are the 3 recording types:

  • The DRY is a direct output from the instrument running into a Telefunken V72 preamp
  • The DIRT is the direct signal processed though a silvertone amp head and into a Roland RE-201 space echo in spring reverb mode
  • 3+4 are the DUAL MONO ADT NAGRA recordings and they are the star of the show and the motivation behind the instrument. They yield a sound that you’ll not have heard from an M1 before!

All the instruments of the M1 have been captured. You can load them seperately or into a handy “ALL” mode which allows pulldown access to all the individual sounds which are:

  3. CELLO
  5. FLUTE
  7. OBOE

A little more about the ADT

The output of the Chamberlin was sent to 2 mono nagra tape machines at the same time. I played with the varispeed of one unit and not the other so when the NAGRA channel on the sampler instrument is put in mono you hear unique ADT style phasing very clearly.
In stereo it adds a lot of wide imaging and movement. I recorded round robins of all the styles so there are multiple, hand played and unique varispeed passes per key, per instrument. There’s 3168 samples that make up the 8 instruments with a total of 4.62Gb of audio.

It was a huge amount of work and would not have been possible without scripting from Owen Bolig and GUI design from Tobias James.


Sonic Demos

I sent the finished pack to some amazing musicians and they all came back with beautiful music to demo the sounds.


1 review for Chamberlin M1 by Jamie Lidell [Decent Sampler, Kontakt]

  1. Anonymous (verified owner)

    Pros: great, high-quality samples for less than half the price of similar products. A lot of care clearly went into the sampling process.

    Cons: this stays close to the source material. If you prefer something with extras or frills baked in, you may want to look at other options priced accordingly.

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