Korg Delta

Korg Delta Image

Korg's Delta is an analog semi-poly synth/string machine, basically a slimmed down version of the Korg Trident. Though limited in the range of sounds compared with other synths of the same genre, the sheer quality of the sound from this little beastie really does make it something of a marvel. It can be found used for cheap and is worth it for the retro synth strings and fat bass synth tones.

The synth is split into two sections, Strings and Synth, for which there are separate audio outputs along with a combined output for headphones or mixing. Each section has its own controls. The String section has two pitch sliders (16' and 8') along with two tone controls (Bass and Treble) and variable Attack and Release controls to modify the sound. The Synth section has four pitch sliders (16', 8', 4' and 2'). There is also a white noise generator along with a very effective 24dB/oct low pass filter (high pass and band pass options are included too) and full ADSR controls. The synth has no memory storage or MIDI, however it does has voltage control and gate ins and outs.

The string sounds are very basic but with its separate outputs and when mixed together with the polysynth you do get that classic 'layered' sound which is useful enough on this synth; and it's fully polyphonic, so you wont be running out of notes! There is a handy joystick to the left of the 49-note keyboard for pitch bending and modulation capabilities. The construction is solid and heavy partly due to the implementation of a wooden base but also because it was designed for heavy usage on the road. Added bonuses: noise modulation, stereo out (strings/synth split), and the ability to combine synth and strings or turn off oscillators in the mixer section. It has been used by the Human League, Bitch Cassidy, Flock of Seagulls, Ladytron, Zensor and Broadcast.

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41 Visitor comments
July 27, 2010 @ 3:09 pm
I do find the negative comments on here strange. To say the delta is only good for strigns!? The synth is definitely a performance oriented synth, and is great for synth bass, and other interesting realtime tweaking effects. It may be limited, but it is amazing at what it can do! The left right slider for cut off, is an amazing feature, and its filter really really screams! I use it for many different things, and like to trigger it rhythmically with my TR-606.
I do think it is a mistake saying it has an MS-20 fitler. I do not believe that to be true.
June 25, 2010 @ 12:56 pm
Had one of these for years in my teens. Shocked to see what they go for now. Wasn't a bad string instrument, but was a horrid synth. Not much you could do with it. Nice string sounds though. The coolest thing about it was how it looked. Massive considering what it did.
Peter Kadar
April 4, 2010 @ 2:32 am
I used to own one of these. A very simple instrument with a rather limited palette. Nonetheless, I liked the string sounds, and the rest of it was OK. It's not worth more than a few hundred bucks at the most, but they're fun.
February 14, 2010 @ 9:59 pm
Perhaps only in comparison to a Korg MS-20 or Trident would one begin to notice any sort of shortcomings with the Delta, and these in my opinion would be at best rather minimal. The fact that the Delta is only getting a one star rating from VSE is also rather baffling!?!? You will have at your hands with this synthesizer unimaginable and unique sonic possibilities that take on a life all their own! Sure, it's not an ARP 2600 or a Jupiter 8 but many contemporary artists such as BJM and Ladytron are really bringing these gems to life! I've seen them usually go in the $400 - $500 range on ebay over the last year, but they are becoming rarer and rarer to find as the years pass. ='s Get one while you still can!
February 12, 2010 @ 12:15 am
here is link for sounds from Korg delta I love it
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VSE Rating

It’s Good

User Rating

Rated 3.92 (516 Votes)

  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay 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 - Full polyphony (49 notes)
  • Oscillators - 1 VCO with white noise generator
  • LFO - 1 LFO: fixed sine waveform
  • Filter - 1 VCF: 24dB/oct LPF, HPF and BPF (with Cut off, resonance and env mod amount controls)
  • VCA - 1x AR for Strings section, 1x ADSR for Synth section
  • Keyboard - 49 keys
  • Memory - None
  • Control - CV and trigger (In/Out)
  • Date Produced - 1979 - 1984
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from Korg Product Brochure.

    Thanks to Ian Johnson for providing some commentary.

    Additional information provided by Carl Saff and Lee Matthews.

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