Korg DS-8

Korg DS-8 Image

The DS-8 is Korg's contender among synths like the Roland D-50 and Yamaha DX7. It is a digital FM synthesizer with 4-operators per voice, 8 voices of polyphony and 8 parts multitimbrality. It's good for percussive, strange effect noises and such because its sound (similar to the DX7) is so unique. It has some digital effects such as chorus, flange, delay and analog-like controls for modulators, envelopes and the LFO. A joystick provides control of modulation and pitch bending. It also has a performance section for quick edits on the fly using (3) real-time sliders to control timbre, EG1 and EG2. A nice alternative to the common DX-7.

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Are you looking to buy or sell a Korg DS-8? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

66 Visitor comments
November 25, 2010 @ 5:19 pm
I bought one of these practically new from a non-musician not knowing it was FM like DX7. The sounds/patches were so/so and very 'digital' but 'ok'. However, Like the DX7 and Roland D-50, these 61 key keyboards are solidly built, roadworthy, have an excellent feel/action and end up being great controllers for modules. It feels really good to play. Get a case for it. Don't sell it.
Colin Macdonald
October 24, 2010 @ 10:19 pm
I purchsed one of these years ago and never really learned how to play, I decided to start from scratch and install the factory patches. This is where I had a real problem as I was using a newer faster computer and the DS-8 just couldn't handle the speed of the transfer. How did I do it? Well I dug out and old Pentium II 333 runing Win 98 and hooked up the midi cables to the midi port on the soudblaster Awe 64 soundcard and downloaded the midiox program (the old win 95 version and lowered the output low level buffer to 16 and switched on the midi exclusive on the korg then turned off the memory protect both internal and external and turned local and laded the sysex file that way. this took quite a bit of time to sort out. I hope I can save you some time with these instructions. If you can't get it right if you're local to Toronto I can do it for ya.
Dark Knight
August 10, 2010 @ 2:35 am
Quite why this absolute sonic masterpeice goes so cheaply on the second hand market is beyond me, sounds better than a dx7 to me although its only 4 op, but the key to this synth is korg genius idea to implement subtractive synthesis to its programming parameters, bascially means you can actually program the thing.
Absolutely fantastic, right up there with some of the best synths ive owned, its worth about £500 to £600 in my opinion not the prices they have been going for.
May 9, 2010 @ 5:40 pm
Bought this synth at the local pawn shop for $69.99. It has been a blast. Best $69.99 i have ever spent. This is my 3rd Korg. I love them. Next to get a Juno 106.
November 28, 2009 @ 4:35 pm
My first new synth, bought 86, and still have him. W´d never sale.
VSE Rating

It’s Good

User Rating

Rated 3.94 (451 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 - 8 voices (4 FM-operators per voice)
  • Oscillators - 2 oscillators
  • LFO - 1 LFO: saw / triangle / square / sample & hold
  • Filter - None
  • VCA - 4 DCA (1 per operator)
  • Keyboard - 61 keys w/ velocity & aftertouch
  • Memory - 100 user, 10 multi patches, external card slot
  • Effects - 1 unit effect (delay, chorus, flanger, double)
  • Arpeg/Seq - None
  • Control - MIDI (8-parts)
  • Date Produced - 1987

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