Korg DW-8000

Korg DW-8000 Image


Take Korg's first digitally controlled analog synth hybrid (DW-6000) two steps higher and you get the more popular DW-8000. Sound is digitally generated from the DWGS (Digital Waveform Generator System) and has been doubled from 8 sampled digital waveforms to 16 simple analog to complex digital waveforms. The DW-8000 has 8 voice polyphony in two modes, or one monophonic mode with all eight voices stacked. The analog VCF resonant filter and VCA both have independent ADBSSR envelopes. Parameters can be altered in real time via a single programmable slider. There are 64 presets that can be reprogrammed by the user.

Korg EX-8000 Image


In comparison to the DW-6000, the DW-8000 expanded to 8 notes polyphony, 16 sampled waveforms, a velocity sensitive keyboard with programmable aftertouch, auto-bend, a simple arpeggiator and a digital delay unit. The Digital Delay was an astonishing goody for the time, offering up to 512ms delay, phasing, flanging, chorusing and other time effects. Both the Arpeggiator, Auto-Bend and Digital Delay make this synth an inspiring and great sounding machine to use for great 303 basslines, techno and house bass and synth sounds and more! The EX-8000 (pictured above) is a rackmount version of the DW-8000. Several 3rd-party developers offered expansion boards for the DW-8000 providing up to 1024 presets, layered sounds, keyboard splits and Sample+Hold for the LFO. Though later overshadowed by the M1, the DW-8000 has been used by Divine Masquerade, Juno Reactor, Depeche Mode, Dream Theater, Joe Zawinul, and Keith Emerson.

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Are you looking to buy or sell a Korg DW-8000? 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.

131 Visitor comments
March 14, 2012 @ 11:44 am
The DW-8000 is a great bargain Analog synth for under $200 definetly not junk but not classic. The sampled waves can be brittle and thin but with the correct programming it can excel. This synth is great for pads, soundcapes and textures with its fat filter. The delay on this synth comes in handy for dubstep, reggae and dance music. But if your looking for shimmering leads and fat basslines you should probably find another synth.
Kevin R. Marshall
March 3, 2012 @ 5:12 am
I have a DW-8000 i bought off Yahoo Japan listed as junk. Physically, it is in excellent condition, but none of the front panel buttons seem to work and when i switch the unit to tape mode (to input the default patches) there is not "7APE" shown on the LEDs. I've opened it up a few times and the boards that hold the front panel buttons are receiving their required 5 volts (thought maybe it was a power issue).

No ideas at this point. Anyone have any similar issues? Thx, /KRM
Don Ayers
January 18, 2012 @ 7:25 pm
Help. Trying to find power adapter (or the specs for one) for my old MEX-8000 memory expander module. Manual only says 9 volt (no specs for milliamper/etc. output. If anyone has the expander, I would GREATLY appreciate getting an email of the exact specs taken from the adapter itself. I see "beastrichards" in the may 18 2010 post indicated he/she had one. Thanks much for any help! My email is dayersd@comcast.net.
January 9, 2012 @ 1:15 am
My first hardware polysynth and man do I love it. At first it was a little daunting to program. May not be the best choice if you're new to programming. But once you're used to working with synths I think you'll find the DW-8000 to be quite a gem. I appreciate these one-paramater-at-a-tiime synths because it forces you to be direct and purposeful in your work instead of just twisting knobs to see what happens. You gotta know what you want.

And yeah, the filter sounds amazing! I'll never sell it.
Thomas Faurby
January 8, 2012 @ 9:59 am
A demo of this great synth

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Rated 4.52 (1410 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
  • Oscillators - 2 DWGSs per voice; 16 sampled digital waveforms (including saw, sqr and sin)
  • LFO - YES
  • Filter - Analog Low-pass resonant filter with ADBSSR 6-parameter envelope generator
  • VCA - ADBSSR 6-parameter envelope generator
  • Keyboard - 61 keys (with velocity and aftertouch)
  • Arpeg/Seq - 64 note arpeggiator
  • Effects - Digital Delay
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1985-87

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