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 Solton SM100

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My Solton SM100

Beware! Heavy Graphics!

SOLTON by Ketron Labs SM100

Italian company Solton - probably more well known in electronic home keyboard, auto-accompaniment / accompany rhythm or add-on modules for home organ. Their digital / PCM / GM stuff are still widely available today.

Synthesizer wise, the SM100 (and the keyboard version, Project 100) are believed to be the only analogue synths they have ever made. In fact both are not very common, i.e. they're fairly rare, but it's not ultra difficult to find one because, due to the poor presets, limited controls and usually the lack of a user manual, most people tend to resell them.
The SM100 is not that unknown because it's one of those synths that uses Curtis SSM synth chips.
In fact, the SM100 is actually a big monster - 6 voice poly, with 12 DCOs!

The size of the SM100 is also pretty huge - it's supposed to be a desktop module - but it's a lot longer than a standard 19'' rackmount, higher than 2u, and quite deep too.



SM100 and Me

I picked one up a couple of years ago, fairly cheap.

I haven't actually done any mods to it, but I'd like to put this page up, just for information sake, since, I googled on SM100 and there really aren't many images of it on the net. Usually just basic info, or relating to the SSM chips, or asking for a User Manual.  Well, like many other people, I haven't got a manual.



bullet12 DCO's, 6 voice poly - that's kinda a monster on its own.
bullet18 CEM Curtis SSM synth chips... just like some other big monster synths.
bullet100 Preset locations - 40 ROM Presets and 60 User
bulletIEC Mains socket (NO Flying Leads!)
bulletTape Interface BackUp/Restore - for 1985 synths, it was a popular must have at the time!
bulletFull MIDI In/Out/Thru - in fact, despite the lack of control knobs, the parameters are all Midi CC controllable - just that no one has a proper manual to understand what's what.
bulletToo big!
bulletOnly 3 knobs - Tune, Volume and a Brilliance control. Most people got put off because it seems the Brilliance knob is the only way to alter the sounds (without going into editing)
bulletThe 40 Presets are really kinda bad - they offer like string 1, string 2, brass 1, El Piano, organ and so on, like cheap fake analogue trying hard to do real instruments but failing drastically - the stuff that really ruined the names 80's ''poly synths'' or "DCO synth" sounds. ("Oh, that's so 80s 'poly' synth sounding...").
(I have mp3 demos on the next page).

Presets listed on top of the SM100


Well, as I said, there's not a lot of info or photos on the web, so I took some pictures of the SM100 and put together this page, for anyone who wants to know or take a further look at it.



THE SM100 in Details

SOLTON by Ketron Lab. Logo and the 3 (Numbers) LEDs indicating Program Number, Parameter and Value.


In the middle, Presets/Numerical buttons, Edit, +/- and Write buttons.

On the middle-right: Load/Save for the Tape Backup/Restore, Chorus and Memory buttons.



On the right: Tune knob, Brilliance knob and the Volume knob.




On the left, RED/ORANGE Neon Rocker Power Switch and IEC Mains Inlet Socket

On the right are all the sockets - from Stereo Jack outputs, Pedal, Tape Interface and the MIDI In/Out/Thru.



The SM100 is huge. but the case is really heavy duty, and it can be flipped up, showing the PCB and all the circuits inside.

6 voice cards, I suppose?

The Main Board

The voice card...




> NEXT:  The SM100 Parameters & MIDI
(Plus Sound Demos and Stuff)



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