Yamaha DX21

Yamaha DX21 Image

A consumer level DX synth that sounds just like the DX100 - thin and brittle. Following the DX model this synth also uses FM synthesis which is difficult to master. You will need to program this synth to get better sounds because the presets are only moderately useful. It's capable of a good string, bass and droney-pad sound as well as industrial sound-effects and metallic like sounds.

Still it makes a better option than a DX27 or DX100 because it has the capability of layers and splitting the keyboard and there is a chorus effect. Portamento and a Unison Mono-Mode are also nice features for screaming lead synth performances. For a cheaper source of DX sounds with moderate programmability, check out the DX21. It's been used by Hardfloor, Level 42, Brother Beyond, Astral Projection, Technotronic, Vangelis, and Norman Cook (Fat Boy Slim).

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67 Visitor comments
April 9, 2013 @ 3:33 pm
Hi my name is Steven and I have a Yamaha DX21 that is in perfect working condition. This is a reply to Brandon.
February 25, 2013 @ 11:24 am
Does anyone know where I can purchase a DX21 or 100.. They're both discontinued by Yamaha to my knowledge and I cant seem to find any individual owners selling it. Please email me if you know anything, thanks in advance.. brandon@watiamusic.com
February 15, 2013 @ 11:26 am
I bought this last year because I remember borrowing one for some time in 1987 and was curious and nostalgic about it. Presets are a no go, but I found that it was surprisingly easy to make interesting sustained noises on it. Add reverb, and it's suddenly a quite usable and inspiring machine, and the stereo chorus sounds really good too. The sound bank system is clumsy though.
February 14, 2013 @ 3:50 am
Good question. I believe the DX-100 sounds identical to both the DX-27 and DX-21. The only difference being the DX-21 has an onboard chorus effect.
December 8, 2012 @ 7:29 pm
hey does any one know how the dx21 sounds compared to the dx100 in the sense of the converters. i have a dx100 and a tx81z and they sound totally different in the sense of the convertors. the tx is less noisy and a bit more punchy and more present. i'm not saying one is good and one is bad i like some sounds on the dx better and some on the tx, just wondering where the dx21 falls in line. thanx.
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  • 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.
  • Demos & Media
  • YouTube Thumbnail
    Yamaha dx21
    by alphacode909

    Manual - Download the original owner's manual here.

  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 8 notes
  • Oscillators - 4-Operator Digital FM synthesizer
  • #Instruments - (1) Monotimbral
  • Filter - None
  • Effects - Chorus
  • Keyboard - 61 Keys (no velocity/aftertouch sensitivity)
  • Memory - 128 patches and 16 performances
  • Control - MIDI (w / Velocity and Aftertouch)
  • Date Produced - 1985

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