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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56 Visitor comments
jordan
April 21, 2009 @ 5:26 pm
i picked up an AX 60 a few weeks ago. mine has different diagram that shows the internal signal path, not an envelope (or whatever that graph is in the picture up there).

anybody know what the story is behind the two diagrams? different years? different features?
Bleurgh
February 20, 2009 @ 11:50 pm
The Junos were more popular for good reason: their sounds fit much more easily into a wide variety of styles. That's not to say I don't like this synth - I do, but it definitely has a harsher, colder, thinner sound than the Junos. Thankfully, it has a lot more features than the Junos, and so these kind of sound qualities can be put to better use than might otherwise be the case.
max
February 12, 2009 @ 1:29 am
Having owned both the Juno-106 and the AX60, this synth definitely has a beastier sound to it.
Some weird features that I didn't see mentioned are the RND waveshape on the filter LFO, giving you that "sample and hold" kind of flavor. Also, you can add pulse width to a sawtooth? Strange.
Great brass, filter sweep, unison lead and funky bass sounds make this board stand out from the Roland easily. Plus the split mode is very useful.
The only gripe is the auto-tune. It will drift out of tune and the auto tune may not kick it back in on the first go, but that's what you get for having VCAs on a synth like this.
If I had the cash and found one in good condition I would probably pick it up. Been years since I sold the one I had, and after listening to older tracks recorded with it I really kick myself for getting rid of this board.
Jim
January 1, 2009 @ 8:22 pm
I just picked up one of these recently. You can get some nice bass sounds from it but I'm still trying to get a good string lead. The envelopes generally work well although sometimes they don't seem to affect the sound as much. It's definitely sick to work with though.
Bob
December 25, 2008 @ 9:56 am
This synth can make some really rude and evil sounds.
I have mine hooked up to the S-612 sampler and often double the tone with the sampler and also arppegiate and loop other samples thru the filters, blending them with the presets.
I've had it for 3 years and still havent scratched the surface on its capabilities!
 
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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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