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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131 Visitor comments
October 2, 2013 @ 7:14 pm
Always wanted one but military got in way. Picked one up recently and the rare MEX-8000 in almost mint shape, battery was changed to non-soldered, easier to replace in future. This thing can make some serious ballsy bass and would say the discrete filter Korg used is *as* unique as MS20 but different, more in a rounder way. Mixing waves, can get some far out stuff hard to do other than a PPG.
Single Cycle Waves onboard. Prophet VS and DSI Evolver also uses *real* waveforms and know it's a bit apples to oranges, but do not consider that classifiable as a ROMpler, A keeper!
September 15, 2013 @ 2:10 pm
2 months ago i bought an ex8000 and i am amazed of the sound that comes out from this little beast. No comparison with korg ex800 ,better than the juno 106 in my taste.
Editing a little more tricky .
I use it intensively!
September 13, 2013 @ 8:53 am
@cj: I hear you, functionally and sonically it's more high-end DCO polysynth than say a PPG or VS. Either way you slice it, the DWs still sound great - and I've been playing them for four decades now.
September 12, 2013 @ 5:20 pm
my bad, no edit button on the posts, should read 128KB not 8KB.
September 12, 2013 @ 2:19 pm
@max: Technically, yeah, though I'm less inclined to label something with only single-cycle waveforms as a "ROMpler" in the conventional sense no matter how it generates them.

Also, I'm curious about the "8KB wave ROM?" According to the manual it has four 256Kbit ROM chips, which would total 128KB...
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User Rating

Rated 4.52 (1415 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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