Yamaha DX11

Yamaha DX11 Image

The DX11 was released in 1988, four years after the DX7 hit the market. The DX11's synthesis and sound quality is classic DX-style FM synthesis using 4-operators per voice. The DX11 has one major advantage over the DX7 and other older DX-synths, however. The DX11 offered 8-part multitimbrality, whereas older DX synths were monotimbral. The DX11 is essentially a keyboard version of Yamaha's first true multitimbral FM synthesizer, the TX81Z rack module.

The DX11's multitimbral features allowed you to spread various sound patches across different areas or "zones" of the keyboard. It also allowed for complex ensemble performances using external sequencers or while playing live using "Performance" patches. Also added were some Quick Edit functions so you don't have to delve into the complexity of FM synthesis to make a few simple tweaks. These quick edits affect the tone, envelope attack and release times. Unfortunately there are no on-board arpeggiators or sequencers.

The DX11 is only 8-voice polyphonic. A standard DX7 has 16-voices and though it is monotimbral, superior polyphony makes the DX7 an often more popular choice. Also, with just 8-voices, the DX11's multitimbral performances can wind up sounding pretty thin. Other 8-voice DX-type synths include the DX21, DX100, and TX81Z. And unlike most previous DX synths which all used sine waves for synthesis, the DX11 offers up to eight different waveforms to work with! And all the classic DX sounds can be found in the DX11. Brass, piano, strings, bell sounds, percussion, effects, and much more. Other features include chord-stacking, digital delay, and panning effects, however there is no chorus effect as on earlier DX-synths. At its current low second-hand price, the DX11 is an inexpensive way to get useable DX sounds! It has been used by Astral Projection and Autechre.

Lookup Yamaha DX11 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 Yamaha DX11? 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.

37 Visitor comments
September 14, 2009 @ 4:37 pm
hi guys well i;m 36 years old but a couple of days i've benn learning how to play a keyboard and even i wasn't know how to play keyboard i was planning to buy this modern keyboard like casio or yamaha that have keyboard lesson o tu buy ththis top of the line keyboards like roland yamaha korg with all this digital sounds i own a yamaha dx11 well if my dad's keyboard but he is almost passing it to me because he sees the desire in me to learn to play even is from 1988 i want to tell you that i love it this keyboard and when i play music because i learn fast i'm planning to use the midi and with some good midi programs like midi quest or cubase sx i'm planning to make better sounds well i read alot this forum and i see that alot of you prefer the old synth than the more modern ones well if i make tell you something this dx11 sound good even the sounds are from the 80's i see that i has nothing to envy from the keyboards of today
September 4, 2009 @ 7:43 pm
I am looking to buy a new keyboard and am wondering if you guys could give me some advice. I am joining an 80s band and have the option of buying a DX-7 for $300. However, some people have told me to not buy such an old piece. To just get a newer keyboard w/ a keyboard controller to reproduce any sounds i can imagine. Any thoughts?
July 21, 2009 @ 1:59 am
EIther get a proper DX7 (mk2 pref) 6op - or an SY77 if you want more 'waveforms' like this has... SY77 is the easy choice to make if you like what you can do with the 11 but feel limited by it's 4-ops and sub-pro feel.
Station Lightyears
July 6, 2009 @ 9:47 am
Had mine since 1990 and love it, what the 4-op side lacks, the multitimbral side makes up for IMO, layering 8 sounds in perofrmance mode creates some amazing almost analogue blasting sounds. Great for creating powerful lead sounds fairly quickly. Combine this with a fairly small form factor, it's a handy (and fun) synth to have around, especially with a touch of reverb and chorus!
April 19, 2009 @ 12:48 pm
I'm really impressed with my DX11! Had one in 1988 and sold it for a Roland D050(bad idea on retrospective:-)) Took me 20 yeras to find a replacement.....not going down that road again.
It's extremely easy to program(if you're familiar with FM) and is any day as good as a DX7 IMHO.
I sample all my favourite sounds on my Fantom workstation and with added MFX it KILLS!!
I'll NEVER let mine go!
VSE Rating

It’s Good

User Rating

Rated 3.48 (395 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 - 4-Operator Digital FM synthesizer
  • LFO - Yes
  • Filter - None
  • Effects - reverb, DDL delay, pan and tremolo (no chorus effect)
  • Keyboard - 61 Keys (velocity and aftertouch sensitivity)
  • Memory - 128 preset patches, 32 performance patches, External cartridge memory holds 64 patches, cassette interface
  • Control - MIDI IN/OUT/THRU (8-part multitimbral)
  • Date Produced - 1988
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from Source unknown.

Errors or Corrections? Send them here.