Korg Poly-61

Korg Poly-61M Image

The Korg Poly-61 was released in 1982 as the successor to the Polysix. It was somewhat of a step up from the Polysix, as it has 2 DCOs for better reliability. It also retained the arpeggiator of the Polysix. The Poly-61 can provide cool gritty basses or trippy analog sounds and fx.

Korg Poly-61M Image

Also added is the familiar Korg joystick, which can be used to modulate the VCO or the VCF. However, its filter only has 7 steps of resonance and is not as fat as the Polysix's filter. It also uses the same method of programming the Poly-800 and Yamaha DX-7 use, so it's not a very useful synth for real-time-tweaking junkies. The first Poly-61s didn't have MIDI, but the Poly-61M released in 1984 corrects this. Overall, the Poly-61 is still a decent synth, and it can be acquired for practically nothing! It has been used by FM Static and The Faint.

Lookup Korg Poly-61 Prices

The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings with more images, specs and information. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace. Our marketplace gets thousands of visits every week so make sure to check back often if you want to buy or sell a synth.

Related forum topics


Are you looking to buy or sell a Korg Poly-61? 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.

90 Visitor comments
April 12, 2011 @ 11:22 am
Ok people, just because someone re-caped and pimped out a 61M with wood sides and then some idiot bought it for $500 doesn't mean they're all worth $500. I've had this synth for years and it's not [i]that[/i] good. It does sound fat and gritty and analog and has a nice variety of sounds, but it is very limited compared to other synths you can get for the same price. If it's more than $300 just wait for another.
March 13, 2011 @ 8:30 pm
For its price, if found in good condition it is a GREAT synth. The polyphony really cuts it for those 80s pads and lead sounds. DCO2 is somewhat crappy if set to triangle, but can be useful at times, especially with the detune parameter, who needs chorus? This guy is FAT! The filter is pretty dirty in a good way, and the envelope is classic ssm2056-sounding ;) Programming is not that hard, but since I already removed the battery, I'd prefer to get rid of the preset system and go with the analog-controls-mod, seems easy enough. Could use an oscillator level control, though... oh well.
February 5, 2011 @ 4:30 pm
Love my Poly61, so much that I pimped it out with a custom UV paint job and screenprint. I take it only us Poly 61 owners know how bad [beep] this machine really is. Programming is actually very stright forward and not complicated at all, plus the joystick rocks. You can take your Poly 61 to the next level with parameter knob and switch mods, like that one guy has it on youtube. Interestingly, this beut is trading at rock bottom prices (even less then the Poly800) at times on Ebay.
January 31, 2011 @ 4:28 am
Just picked up a poly 61 at auction in Sydney for $15 Australian. Most keys weren't working but after pulling the keyboard apart and cleaning up the rubber pads most keys are now working. I see some comments about a kit for rejuvinating the rubber pads, how effective is this and any ideas where to pick a kit up in Australia?
Simon Davidson
January 21, 2011 @ 11:41 am
the first synth I ever bought back in 1990, loved it
Post Comment!
VSE Rating

It’s Good

User Rating

Rated 4.37 (1080 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 - 6 Voices
  • Oscillators - DCO1:sawtooth, pulse, and square; DCO-2: sawtooth, square
  • LFO - 1 LFO can modulate the DCOs or the Filter
  • Filter - 1 lowpass filter w/ ADSR
  • Memory - 64 patches
  • VCA - ADSR
  • Keyboard - 61 keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - Arpeggiator with external sync
  • Effects - Chorus
  • Control - MIDI (on later Poly-61M models)
  • Date Produced - 1982 - 1986
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from

Errors or Corrections? Send them here.