The Korg Mini-Pops 3 was an analogue drum machine from the 1970s. It was also branded as the Univox SR-55 and Aria Diamond. It had less sounds than its famous sibling, the Mini-Pops 7, and a different approach to the rhythm selection. There were 2 knobs that controlled the bass/snare and cymbal patterns respectively, these were assigned to the foxtrot/swing button. This combination provided 36 patterns for this button alone plus the 18 other rhythms provided.
The 9 sounds of the Mini-Pops 3 have been isolated and sampled 8 times to provide the sound source of the FK-13 Kontakt instrument. Care was taken to get the best sound quality from the machine and a Mytek Stereo96 ADC was used for the initial recordings. The sounds are in 24-bit 44.1KHz wav format.
The rhythm patterns of the Mini-Pops 3 were scrutinised and re-created using the Kontakt scripting engine. The rhythms trigger the individual sound samples to produce the rhythm patterns. Doing things this way rather than sampling all the rhythms as loops at some arbitrary tempo allows for manipulation of individual sounds within the rhythm, artefact-free playback at any tempo and easy combining of rhythms without volume and phasing problems.
The interface of the FK13 is an accurate layout of the original. This is not often possible in Kontakt due to the size and shape constraints, but the FK13 is based on a scan taken of the front panel so all controls are in the right place.
The Setup tab offers greater control over how the FK13 sounds and operates. There are volume, pan, tune and mute controls for each sound. Incoming MIDI notes can be mapped to any rhythm or sound and outgoing sounds can be assigned to any available Kontakt output. Random tune and volume controls add a little human element to the sounds.