Sequential Circuits Max

Sequential Circuits Max Image

The Max's strength lies in multitimbrality: 6 voices, 6 oscillators and even 6 VCF's! However this synth has too many limitations on basic needs: cheap construction and parts; editing requires an external software editor and a Commodore 64 (or Macintosh, see Patch Files below); there are no real-time performance controls - not even pitch bend or modulation wheels; too many presets (80) but far too few user patches (20). The preset sounds consist of basic organ, string and brass type sounds, but exploring this analog synth can lead to some cool sounds. The VCF, VCA and VCO sections all have separate ADSR envelope generators. The LFO can control the VCO, VCF or VCA. A nice touch are the two separate on-board sequencers - sort of a Sequential tradition.

Sequential Circuits Max Image

For those of you who want to edit the sounds on the Max, you will need Sequential's Model 920 software and an ancient Commodore 64 computer or you can use Mark of the Unicorn's Unisyn software editor for Mac/PC (You can even use modern MIDI controllers like the Oxygen-8). This is the only means of editing sounds, without which you are stuck with the 80 presets and whatever may be in the 20 user patches. The sequencing specs are dramatically enhanced by the Model 920 software as well, boosting the note capacity from 500 notes to 3400. Strongly consider the Multi-Track or even the Six-Track before diving into the Max because it simply does not compare with the programmability and ease of use as even its closest relatives. It is used by Cirrus and Richard Barbieri.

Lookup Sequential Circuits Max 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 Sequential Circuits Max? 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.

19 Visitor comments
Nate Goulet
March 14, 2013 @ 10:32 am
A friend of mine had a Max in the mid 80s. I recall the factory presets were
terrible, especially for the lead synth type patches I was interested in. My
Casio CZ-101 at the time blew it away.

I'm not sure what it's capabilities are with a computer, or vs a Prophet V.
I've been using a software version of the Prophet V for years now, and it's
j hsiung
November 29, 2012 @ 12:39 pm
any one would know how I can obtain the power plug on this unit? please help
March 19, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

I cut my EP using almost exclusively the SC MAX. I programmed it with the PC editor as well as a Novation Remote Zero SL. It's a quirky synth. The workflow on it is strange. Can't store patches inside the MAX. Can't edit in monophonic mode. Getting to monophonic mode requires you to record 5 tracks of the six track sequencer. Interesting results from a very musical synth. The output chip on it is VERY noisey also. All in all it got the job done and has a sonic flavour that is unique. Beautiful synth.
August 9, 2011 @ 8:36 pm
Yah, fully editable over MIDI CC, any editor for the Sixtrak should work just as well with the MAX.
senor v
June 5, 2011 @ 5:31 am
To me below:

Yep! So, basically it's a Six Trak minus the editing control panel and the pitch/modulation wheels. Pfft... With an idea like that, no wonder SCI started to lose money heavily during the mid 80s. Pretty strange though, as I see it to be the eyesore of the SCI line. If the Six Trak were meant to be a beginner's synth, or the lowest of the product line, then where would the MAX place?
Post Comment!
VSE Rating


User Rating

Rated 3.1 (129 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 - 6 VCO's (saw, triangle, pulse waveforms)
  • Memory - 20 User patches, 80 presets
  • Filter - 6 24dB/oct lowpass VCF's (one per voice)
  • LFO - 1 LFO with Triangle & square waveforms. Controls VCO pitch, VCF, or VCA envelope
  • Keyboard - 49 Keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - Two 6-track real-time sequencers (records up to 500 notes total and 2 songs)
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1984
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from

Errors or Corrections? Send them here.