Discontinued Model
Downloads and support materials maintained here as a courtesy to owners.

Turn On, Tune In, Tweak Out

The Best…

From the creators of the finest synthesizers in the world comes the world’s most powerful effects processor, winner of the 2003 Electronic Musician Editors Choice Award for Best Effects Processor Over $1000.

The Kurzweil KSP8 multi-bus signal processor is an 8-channel effects system designed for the professional engineer, producer, or musician who requires high-performance effects, excellent sound quality, and unparalleled real-time control. It has over twice the processing power of KDFX, the world-class effects system found in Kurzweil’s award-winning K2600 synthesizer. The KSP8 extends the arsenal of effect algorithms from KDFX, adding newly developed surround reverbs and many more stereo and mono algorithms. The architecture has enough flexibility and power to process up to 8 channels of audio simultaneously, in mono, stereo, and surround combinations. Unlike other high-end effects systems whose DSP resources are fixed to a small number of processing engines, the 16 available processing units in the KSP8 may be freely shared among up to 8 effect buses. The sonic quality of the KSP8 is stunning; it has the best analog audio specifications in the industry, featuring unique output circuitry (patent-pending). The power, flexibility, and sound of the KSP8 truly make it a must-have for professional and semi-pro studios, as well as for sound designers in search of exciting new timbres.

The Architecture

The KSP8 architecture is elegant, offering a simple, easy to understand structure. On the lowest level is the effect algorithm. The KSP8 offers the highest quality algorithms designed for mono, stereo, and surround applications, with plenty of parameters for tweaking. From these algorithms, Kurzweil engineers have crafted exquisite effect presets ranging from spacious and gorgeous, to shocking and in your face rude. Effect presets are easily linked together to form effect chains on up to 8 buses. Users can fully customize effect presets and chains, giving users all the control they want. Manipulation and automation are a snap using MIDI or a host of local modulation sources including up to 36 LFOs and 36 envelope generators, with 72 functions available for combining control sources. The highest level of the KSP8 architecture is called the studio. The studio is a kind of “snapshot” of the total state of the KSP8 at one time. Studios contain all the physical connection settings, signal routing (analog and digital I/O selections), analog and digital signal levels, as well as the assigned effect presets, effect chains, effect bus assignments (including all MIDI channel and controller settings) and all multi-band equalizer settings. A studio allows you to save and recall your entire project, quickly and easily. The KSP8 offers up to 999 locations for user-created objects. SmartMedia cards are used to store your work.

Factory Programming

The extensive list of 249 DSP algorithms are used to create over 600 effect presets including lush reverbs, realistic rooms, throaty flangers, dreamy choruses, delays, ruthless distortions, aliasing and chaos generators, rotary speaker and cabinet simulators, Laserverb effects, enhancers, equalizers, a full complement of dynamics processors including multi-band and side-chain compressors, and much more. Tempo-based effects such as flangers, panners, filter sweeps and delays can be synced to an internal or external MIDI clock; internal system tempo can be set with the Tap Tempo button.

5.1 Surround Audio

Today’s audio and video markets must be ready to meet the DVD demands of music and sound in a variety of surround formats. The KSP8 includes new algorithms designed specifically for surround processing, including 5.1 surround ambience and reverb, and multi-channel compression. Whether you’re using a large-format 5.1 console or a modest line mixer, the KSP8’s multi-channel panners and effects make it the perfect tool for creating or enhancing a 5.1 channel surround mix.

I/O and Synchronization

The KSP8 base unit comes with 4 balanced analog inputs and outputs and AES/EBU in and out, for a total of 6 possible channels. An I/O option slot provides a choice of expansion. The KSP8 provides a 48kHz or 44.1 kHz selectable internal master clock, or can slave to an external digital clock. 24-bit precision is maintained on all channels.

Intelligent Interface Design

The KSP8 has a handsome new design that offers an easy-to-use interface. It includes a 240 x 64 CCFL backlit display, scroll knob, data entry keypad, and dedicated buttons for navigation and actions. It’s fast and easy to get to important features and functions such as configuration controls, bus selection, level metering, effect bypassing, and more. The intelligent and intuitive design offers features like Quick Pages, allowing instant access to the most commonly needed effect parameters.

Options and Upgrades

Housed in a 2-space rack-mountable chassis, the KSP8 offers an expandable design with user installable I/O option cards. The KSP8 can accommodate one of several I/O options: 4 additional channels of analog I/O, or 8 channels of digital I/O, in Alesis Lightpipe, Tascam TDIF, mLAN (Firewire/IEEE-1394), or AES/EBU formats. The Alesis Lightpipe and Tascam TDIF provide word clock sync. The mLAN option provides a direct FireWire connection, allowing the KSP8 to function as complete solution for Digital I/O, a MIDI interface as well an effects processor for computer based recording applications. When fully expanded, the KSP8 can process 8 separate input signals, selected from up to 14 sources. An additional hardware option slot is provided for future growth.
As new technology and capabilities become available, the user can update the KSP8’s operating system and ROM objects. New OS and object releases may be loaded into Flash ROM from the SmartMedia card or via MIDI. Advanced users may fully customize the ROM objects to suit their specific needs.

Remote Control

The optional RSP8 offers totally remote operation over all KSP8 functions. The remote offers the same display, navigation and data entry controls as the KSP8. In addition, the RSP8 adds a joystick and 8 knobs to control the KSP8 more efficiently. The RSP8’s compact and attractive design will be at home in any studio environment. One RSP8 can control up to 7 KSP8s when used with HUB7, our optional multi-port hub.


All specifications subject to change without notice.

KSP8 Features

Analog Inputs

Connectors: Four 1/4″ TRS balanced jacks standard, eight optional
Input Impedance: 20K ohms balanced, 10K or 20K ohms unbalanced
Maximum Input Level: +22dBu
Minimum Input Level(for 0dBFS): +4dBu
CMRR: > 60dB @<= 1kHz, > 40dB @ 1kHz – 20kHz
A/D Converter: 24-bit, 128x oversampling
Frequency Response: 20Hz – 20kHz +/- 0.15dB
Dynamic Range: > 110dB unweighted @ 1kHz
THD+N: < 0.0015% @ 1kHz, +19dBu
Crosstalk: < -100dB @ 1kHz

Analog Outputs

Connectors: Four 1/4″ TRS balanced jacks standard, eight optional
Output Impedance: 100 ohms balanced, 50 ohms unbalanced
Maximum Output Level: +22dBu
Minimum Output Level(for 0dBFS): +4dBu
D/A Converter: 24-bit, 128x oversampling
Frequency Response: 20Hz – 20kHz +/- 0.15dB
Dynamic Range: > 110dB unweighted @ 1kHz
THD+N: < 0.002% @ 1kHz, +19dBu
Crosstalk: < -100dB @ 1kHz

Digital Audio I/O

Connectors: One female and one male XLR, standard
Impedance: 110 ohms (AES) or 75 ohms (SPDIF)
Formats: AES/EBU (AES3-1992) or SPDIF (IEC 60958-3)
Sample Rates / Sync: 48 or 44.1 kHz internal crystal (selectable)

syncs to AES/EBU, SPDIF, ADAT*, TDIF*, mLan*, BNC word clock*

(* requires optional I/O card)

Input Word Length: Up to 24 bits
Output Word Length: 16, 20, or 24 bits (selectable)
Dither: None, Flat, and 2 types of Shaped dither (selectable)

Factory ROM

Effect Algorithms: 249 (expandable)
Effect Presets: 636 (up to 999 user presets)
Effect Chains: 138 (up to 999 user chains)
Studios: 14 (up to 999 user studios)
Effects Algorithms: Reverbs (booths, rooms, chambers, halls, plates, stages and more), Delays, Choruses, Flangers, Phasers, Shapers, Enhancers, triggered Filters, Distortions, Tube Simulators, Compressors, Limiters, Expanders, Gates, Bit Resolution Degenerators, Aliasing, Ring Modulators, Cabinet Simulators, Spatializers, Rotary Speaker Emulations, Tremolo, Resonant Lowpass, Highpass Filters, Bandpass, Notch, Parametric, Graphic and Multi-band equalizers, Kurzweil’s unique Laserverb, Pitcher and Chaos, plus others

External Data Storage

SmartMedia Drive: built in / support for cards up to 64Mb
MIDI Sys-Ex Dumps: Yes

Display and Metering

Display: 240 x 64 CCFL backlit LCD with front panel contrast
Meters: 4 point multi-stage, 8 channel metering (both graphical and numeric display options)


Ports: In/Out/Thru
Real-Time Control: Extensive realtime control/automation over nearly every effects & routing parameter
MIDI Clock Sync: Yes
Tap Tempo: Yes
Sys-Ex Dumps: Yes
Sys-Ex Control: Yes

Free OS Upgrades

via SmartMedia: Yes
via MIDI Sys-Ex Dump: Yes, via SMF

KSP8 Specifications

Height: (3.62 “) (9.20 cm)
Depth: (15.12″) (38.40 cm)
Length: (17.12″) (43.50 cm)
Weight: (13.23 lbs.) (6.00 kg)
Power: Universal switching, internal AC power supply


KSP8 Demos



How can I restore my KSP8 to its factory defaults? (hard reset)


Caution: Hard resetting will erase all user memory! Need be, save any custom programming to disk before proceeding.

There are two methods for performing a hard reset on a KSP8:

    • Master Menu Method:
      1. press MASTER
      2. press [Reset]
      3. press [ Hard ]
      4. press [Yes] twice


  • Boot Loader Method: (useful if your screen is blank and cannot perform the Master menu method)
    1. turn unit on
    2. when you see “Please Wait” in the display, press and release the Exit button. (this takes you to the boot loader)
    3. select [Reset]
    4. press [Yes] twice

Via either method, the unit will “initialize” itself for about 10 sec. or so and then reboot to factory specs.


User Manuals

KSP8_UG  KSP8 Users Guide – 2.7 MB
Primary Owner’s Manual

KSP8_ALG  KSP8 Algorithm Reference – 1.3 MB
Supplemental Reference

RSP8MAN  RSP8/HUB7 User’s Guide – 883 KB
Owner’s Manual for Remote and Hub

KSP8_IO_Install  IO Option Installation Guide – 1.4 MB
Owner’s Manual & Installation Guide for the Analog, ADAT–TDIF, & AES I/O Option Boards

MLAN  mLAN Option – 311 KB
Owner’s Manual & Installation Guide

OS Updates

KSP8V190_CARD – 388 KB
File to use if updating via Smart Media card
Installation instructions and a complete revision history are included.

KSP8V190_MID – 585 KB
File to use if updating via MIDI
Installation instructions and a complete revision history are included.

Object Files

File to use if updating via Smart Media card
Installation instructions are included.

File to use if updating via MIDI
Installation instructions are included.

Software Editors

Contains objects which support the KADT8 ADAT/TDIF option.

Contains objects which support the AES/EBU option.

MLAN01 mLAN – 9.8 KB
Contains objects which support the mLAN option.

MLANInstaller.sit.bin mLANInstaller – 1.5 MB
This is the mLAN Installer for Mac OS 9.

OMS238.sit.bin mLAN-OMS238 – 2.5 MB
This is version 2.3.8 of OMS.

mLAN2Updater(ksp8) mLAN2Updater(ksp8) – 756 KB
If you are running Mac OS X 10.3.3 or higher, this is the file you will need to update your mLAN option to support mLAN 2.0. Installation instructions are included.
To download the mLAN Tools software package please visit www.mLANcentral.com.


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