Yamaha DX1
Digital programmable algorithm synthesizer

Yamaha DX1


The retail version the earlier CSDX prototype, the DX1 was a digital synthesizer aimed at the large studios. With only 140 models made, a retail price of 13,900$ / 7,000£, and its huge size only few professionals could afford it.

As a top of the line machine for 1983, it features not only a dual DX7 setup (double sounds, double memory) but most importantly a 16bit DAC and much more control over the DX synthesis. The input philosophy is the same, one data entry point and rows of buttons to access the settings, but the big addition is an expanded interface that allows for a quick overview on the sound being created.

The DX1, even if it features wooden sides, doesn't take inspiration from the analog machines of 1 setting = 1 knob. It simply avoid cramming all the information in a small non-backlit LCD like the DX7.

And yet techonlogy run so fast that it took just 4 years for Yamaha to slowly give all these once expensive features to the consumer public, with the DX5 in 1985 and the DX7 mark 2 later in 1987. However, this synthesizer remains the only one in the DX line with full size weighted keys and studio-ready XLR outputs on the back.

Technical specs


73 wooden weighted keys
Touch control: key velocity, after touch

Sound source

FM tone generator (6 operator x A-B, 32 algorithms)

Simultaneous note output

Polyphonic: single 32 / dual 16 / split 16+16
Monophonic: single 1 / dual 1 / split 1+1

Memory capacity

Voice memory: 4 bank x 8 voice x A-B
Performance memory: 8 bank x 8 performance

Connection terminals and interfaces

Output A, Output B, Output P (phone jack, XLR type balanced)
Output Phones (stereo phone jack)
Control jack: modulation, volume, sustain on/off, portamento on/off
Cartridge insert A, Cartridge insert B

Dimensions and weight

1255w x 225h x 640d (mm) / 55” x 9” x 25”
51Kg / 12.2lbs.


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