The M1 is world's top selling with even more units sold than Roland D50 or Yamaha DX7 and represents most of the nineties music from world to dance.
OK its' legendary but... M1 still worth a buy?
KEYBOARD (approx. 13 Kg) is mainly made out of sturdy steel frame and pretty heavy with 61 keys with Velocity and Aftertouch assignable to Cutoff / EG AMP / LFO pitch/ or LFO filter. The frontal panel features a 16 * 40 display with retro-backlight and contrast adjustment, 1 data slider for value editing, a slot for DATA card and 33 push buttons.
On the left side a single joystick for Pitchbending (12 semi tones range ) and Sweep Filter modulation control. Back panel has the following connections: PCM card slot, Contrast potentiometer, Headphones out , Midi interface, Main stereo Outputs plus another AUX pair (Stereo or Mono + Mono) and three pedal inputs one for DAMPER and two freely assignable to Program change Up-Down, Sequencer Start-Stop, Effect ON-OFF, Filter Cutoff, Data entry or Effect parameter controls.
Power supply is internal with standard VDE connector.
VOICES up to 16 digital oscillators based on 16 bit AI System subtractive synthesis.
basic patch is composed by 1 (the Single mode) or 2 (the Double Mode) detunable digital oscillators OSC1+ OSC2 with variable Octave range and Coarse. Each Oscillator has a PCM waveform assigned from the wavetable and this waveform can be read ad variable memory offset or start-delayed.
WAVETABLE internal ROM 4 Mb size counts 149 different waveforms split in two main sounds groups:
-Acoustic sampled traditional instruments strings, violins, sax, piano + 50 PCM percussions and drums.
-DWGS mathematically generated PCM pre-calculated waves such as additive harmonic, Vocal Formants, plus digital basic derived from standard analogs synthesizers such as traditional analog Sine, Saw or Pulses.
PERFORMANCE these are the COMBINATION manages 8 patches with individual Midi channels, Volume mix, Transpose, Detune, Zone Split, Velocity Split and Damper on filter.
ENVELOPE there are 6 EG in total:
- 2 AMPLITUDE VDA for OSC1 and OSC2 4 segments + 2 times.
- 2 FILTER VDF for OSC1 and OSC2 4 segments + 4 times.
- 2 PITCH EG for OSC1 and OSC2 4 segments + 2 times.
FILTER the VDF - Variable Digital Filter is a digital non-resonant LowPass Filter with Keytrack function.
LFO section offeres two digital modulators MG.
The first MG modulates OSC1-OSC2 Pitch while MG2 takes care of filter VDF. Both
LFO have 4 waveforms (Triangle Sawup Sawdown Square with variable Depth intensity) and some modulation functions like Key-Sync retrig function and Delay Start time set.
EFFECT section includes two digital DSP sound processor at 16 bits resolution with two standard routing modes: Parallel and Serial that features editable presets Reverb / Delay / Overdrive / EQ / Chorus /Rotary Speaker (Leslie) / Phase Shifter / Frequency Exciter / Flanger.
MIDI limited Midi Control changes implementation, but the exclusive systems are complete.
SEQUENCER features 8 tracks sequencer up to 10 songs, 100 patterns 4400 notes (7700 reducing memory balancing between patch / combi).
The sequencer works with Real time or Step notes mode (quantisizing at 1/48 resolution).
MEMORY holds 100 patches + 100 Combi in RAM, NO ROM recall. Internal voice backup on lithium Cr-2032 or backup to a RAM card model MCR-03 must be a 256 Kb capacity as it is NOT compatible with previous 128 Kb MCR-02.
UPGRADE Standard M1 model has 4 Mb of ROM that can be updated to EX status with an optional board, that means another 4 Mb for a total of 8 Mb. More waveforms can be added using external Korg M1/T1 PCM cards compatible with other 16 bits AI system like Wavestation but a loop
corrections are needed for some minor bytes differences in the header offset.
EX upgrade is factory native in successive T series.
M1 R battery replacement is such so easy! (click picture to zoom IN)
Related M1 models:
KORG M1r: rack mount version
KORG T1 (EX) (88-note weighted piano keyboard)
KORG T2 (EX) (76-note keyboard)
KORG T3 (EX) (61-note keyboard)