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. It has a very dirty sharp sound much like the Yamaha DX7. This is good if you are into the lo-fi sound of electronica. 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.

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89 Visitor comments
STEVO
December 21, 2009 @ 1:24 pm
Great synth, would never sell mine! Its limited in some ways but thats the beauty of it, easy programming and some clever feastures makes this stand up amonst the great analogue synths! seriously underated but if you look its got a massive following!
Pete synth
December 20, 2009 @ 9:53 am
Recently bought a poly 61, cant currently justifya poly six which go for £300+ (better than poly 61) but the poly 61 is great, better than the poly 800 by far, I have made some of my own patches, as you do, and I made one wicked pad/string sound which sound very close to the synth master himself (numan) on are friends electric! if you want the parameters for it send me a note. This poly is pre midi, but for what I need it for it plugs straight into my soundcard on my pc and links in nicely, even if its played live, as a lead or what have you.. Buy one! I would pay £200 for this. One for maikel yeremy, if you sold me something dodgy I would come to your house and knock you out. You cant hide behind your numerous ebay accounts forever. The world will find a way to get you back for your disgraceful dishonesty one day youll be a victim of someone like you.
Pepe
December 17, 2009 @ 4:06 pm
500$ is too much, even for a MINT Poly-61! I doubt that someone would pay so much for a broken one. I sold a perfect working P61 a few weeks ago and it went up to 235 EUR and that was a HIGH price for that thing! I have a second one, equipped with MIDI. Here in Germany, home of a lot of synth freaks, I would approximately get 350 EUR for it, but not a cent more.

But if your story is true... I don't like people that rip-off others like that! Shame on you! >:-[
Pepe
December 14, 2009 @ 5:51 am
to Maikel Yeremy:

No poly chords in the chord Memory function? This can easily be generated! Just activate the Hold-Function, take for example a three-note chord, play it twice and then select Chord Memory. Voilà! Every chord should sound doubled now!

I think that the chord memory function is just great. A detuning function for the unison mode would be great (I don't use the unison mode, because I really don't like this stacked sound). Mainly I use the chord memory function for fat octave or 5th sounds and more complex 7th chord clusters.

I really like this machine! Great for solos!
Maikel Yeremy
December 9, 2009 @ 12:52 am
Solid, cheap polysynth. Don't get it for over $300 - you'll be sorely ripped.

Pros: easy quick editing, pitch-stable, has pulse width modulation, has an additional vibrato LFO aside from the assignable LFO, has a do-able arpeggiator.

Cons: no portamento, stepped settings of no more than 8 ~ 16 settings per parameter, DCO's are a little sterile and the waveshapes get crunchy above 2khz, reliability is in question because of age. The 'CHORD MEMORY' mode is just not that great...would've been better if it was a poly chord memory and reduce the polyphony as more voices are used, or at least include a unison detune setting.

Suggestion to replace this synth: Oberheim Matrix 6.
 
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  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a 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

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