Akai AX60

Akai AX60 Image

The AX60 is among some of the last true analog polysynths of the mid-eighties. It was Akai's answer to the hugely successful Roland Juno series and Yamaha's new digital DX-series. The AX60 is a programmable six-voice synth with a nice LFO, lowpass (VCF) filter, envelope sections, and more. An eight-voice version, the AX80, was already available.

Akai AX60 Image

Programming this synth is easy using dedicated sliders, knobs and/or buttons for its parameters. It also has a useful noise generator and some other cool functions that include auto-tuning, chorus, a multi-mode arpeggiator and a keyboard that can be split into two key-zones, making it somewhat bi-timbral. All six voices can be stacked in unison mode for a powerful and thick lead sound. Its features and sound make the AX60 a worthy alternative to Roland's Juno 106. The AX60 may have been used by Bjork.

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57 Visitor comments
Niklas R
September 9, 2008 @ 5:33 am
I love this synth. I still have mine that I bought new in 1987.

It should be added that there is also a highpass filter, and the filter section has a VCO mod function that can produce some nice growling sounds. There are also 8 additional split keyboard programs. The two key-zones send and recieve MIDI on separate channels and the split can be set to 0-6, 2-4, 4-2, or 6-0 voices, making it possible to use the AX-60 as a rudimentary MIDI master keyboard when set to a 0-6 or 6-0 split.

The only thing missing from this keyboard is a portamento function, and perhaps a velocity sensitive keyboard.
September 2, 2008 @ 9:11 pm
The article fails to mention that the same sampler hookup present in the AX-73 is also present in this model.

That, and don't underestimate this machine. It's durable, it's got real sliders, and sonically it blows most everything else in my studio away.
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  • The link above will take you to a search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 6 Voices
  • Oscillators - 6 VCOs
  • Memory - 64 Patches
  • Filter - Lowpass analog filter
  • VCA - Standard ADSR
  • Keyboard - 61 keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - Arpeggiator
  • Control - MIDI (2 parts)
  • Date Produced - 1986

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