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Korg M1



Korg m1



audio demo trend price : 200-250€
manual schematic.zip factory patch demo video comments

KORG M1 music workstation (1988)


The M1 is world's top selling with even more units sold than Roland D-50 or Yamaha DX-7

M1 represents most of the nineties music from world to dance.


music workstation

m1 edit

info KEYBOARD (weight: 13 Kg) 61 velocity keys with aftertouch.
The frontal panel features a 16 X 40 display, 33 push buttons and 1 data slider.
On the left side a single joystick for pitchbending and Sweep Filter modulation control.

Back panel terminal connectors:
- PCM card slot
- headphones out
- Midi interface
- Main out
- AUX out
- 1 damper pedal input
- 2 pedal inputs assignable to program change, start-stop, bypass or cutoff

cpu is a NEC-V50 manages 16 voices based on 16 bit AI System subtractive synthesis.
A basic patch is composed by 1 or 2 PCM samples with individual settings:
- detune
- pan
- volume
- variable start offset

diagram diagram spec

waves WAVETABLE is 4 Mb ROM and holds 149 waveforms organized in 3 categories:
- 75 PCM acoustic: acoustic instruments including strings, violins, sax and piano
- 44 PCM drum: percussions and chromatic
- 30 PCM DWGS: pre-calculated mathematically generated waves like additive harmonic, vocal formants and traditional basic waves like sine, saw or pulse.
TECH: DWGS were originally developed on previous model DW-8000.


waves EX UPGRADE standard wavetable can be expanded to EX with further 4 Mb PCM.
Even more waveforms can be added using Korg M1 PCM cards or others AI2 systems like Wavestation.
INFO: EX upgrade is factory native in successive T series.

performance PERFORMANCE
the COMBI mode manages up to 8 patches in the same time with individual parameter settings:
- Aftertouch assignable to Cutoff / EG AMP / LFO pitch/ or LFO filter
- Midi channel
- volume mix
- transpose
- detune
- zone split
- velocity split
- damper on filter

filter FILTER
section is the VDF Variable Digital Filter is a non-resonant lowpass filter with Keytrack function.

adsr ENVELOPE there are 6 EG in total:
- VDA amplitude : OSC1 and OSC2 4 segments + 2 times
- VDF filter: OSC1 and OSC2 4 segments + 4 times
- Pitch EG: :OSC1 and OSC2 4 segments + 2 times

lfo LFO
there are 2 modulators MG:
- MG1: modulates OSC1-OSC2 pitch
- MG2: modulates filter VDF
Both LFO features 4 waveforms: triangle, saw up, saw down and square.
Some extra modulations parameters include delay-start, modulation synch and variable depth.


the M1 DSP manages 2 different 16-bits sound processors combined in parallel or serial mode. There are mainly 9 effect categories:
- reverb
- delay
- overdrive
- equalizer
- chorus
- rotary speaker
- phase shifter
- frequency exciter
- flanger

memroy MIDI
limited CC# implementation but the exclusive systems are complete.
TIP: the MINDSCOPE function is a neat too for incoming events monitoring.

works in both real-time or step notes mode (quantizing up to 1/48 resolution) and manages 8 tracks.

scales SCALES
one microtonal user-free slot + 4 ROM presets:
- equal temp 1-2
- pure major-minor

memroyMEMORY holds :
RAM: 100 patches
RAM: 100 combi
RAM: 10 songs + 100 patterns 4400 notes (7700 reducing memory balancing between patch- combi).
Sounds can be saved using special MCR03 card.

TIP: internal battery is a CR2032 with holder, it is quite common and easy to replace.

korg m1 battery

internal m1r

family EDIT:
there are several editors for m1 like Soundiver, Midiquest or older Caged m1 for Atari St.

internal m1r

family Related M1R models:

related family

KORG M1R: expander version
KORG T1 (EX) (88-note weighted piano keyboard)
KORG T2 (EX) (76-note keyboard)
KORG T3 (EX) (61-note keyboard)

demo VST M1 PLUGIN the M1/M1r has been released has a virtual plugin the in the KORG LEGACY collection along with MS20 - Polisyx - Monopoly - Wavestation

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Demo presets Workstation

korg m1 workstation




original scan



original scan



original scan


original scan



buy m1 memorry cards





m1 display m1 motherboard Korg m1 close up


- Classic
- today bargain price


- filter
- some PCm
-fx unit


"M1 today maybe a bit outdated sounds but still fascinating and a very programmable machine with character and dynamics in the mix. "

all snapshots*, sounds, texts copyright Polynominal.com / Eric Pochesci


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korg m1 4 out of 5 based on 33 ratings. price €150