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
Daniel A. McCullough
September 17, 2009 @ 1:56 pm
There were two different models with slightly different layouts. I have one that does not look like the one pictured above. I believe that the US model was different. The one above is the Japan model, which is extremely rare!
August 26, 2009 @ 1:09 am
I have seen the akai ax60 with 2 very different layouts with varying amount of sliders and buttons? I.E. Look at the image above and look at this image from an old ad http://www.Sonicamigos.Com/etejkowski/images/midres-ax60.jpg and you will see they have 2 different layouts, will someone please explain this?
A. Hubert
August 3, 2009 @ 4:44 pm
This synth uses the same Curtis CEM3394 (synth-on-a-chip) as the Sequential Circuit SixTrak and Max synths. There are 6 of them for 6 voices polyphony. This is the very last VCO chip created by Curtis. The next chip was the CEM3396 which introduced DCO concept, (still an analog oscillator, but digitally controlled so drifting was eliminated).
June 9, 2009 @ 1:12 am
AX60 will kick a nord lead across the street any day of the week. moves a lot of air! unison mode is off the chain.
May 4, 2009 @ 1:05 pm
Yet another underrated synth. The Akai AX-60 is an amazing synth with tons of maneuverability. At first, I was skeptical, because I hadn't heard much about it, but now I see what a truly incredible synth this is and how rare it is to own one. This synth was not created for the Japanese domestic market, so they were produced for North America and that means that there weren't that many produced. It pretty much has a ring modulator and can make insane effects that the Juno 106 only dreams of producing. The bass is the real key; with the right tweaking, you can get huge bass lines that sounds really good when tweaked properly. Plus, there is the ability to spit the keyboard, an arpeggio, sampler in, etc. what more could you want on a 100% analog poly synth? Just wait, these will be discovered soon.
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  • 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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