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Yamaha DX7

 

 

dx7 e! grey matter
audio demo trend price : 250 / 400€ with E!
manual schematics factory patch demo video comments

YAMAHA DX7 E! grey matter Response (1983)


The Dx7 was the first affordable synthesizer implementing FM synthesis, designed by John Chowning.

The FM revolution changed the sound forever.

 display

synth detail

info KEYBOARD (weight: 15 Kg) 61 keys with velocity and aftertouch.
The main panel features a 16*2 lines, 42 buttons, 2 sliders for volume and data entry.
On the left side there are 2 wheels for pitch and modulation and right below a headphones out with a breath controller input.
Rear panel terminal connectors: mono out, Midi interface, two footswitch inputs for sustain and portamento and finally 2 pedal inputs for volume and modulation.

ac Power supply is internal.

edit VOICES main core 8-bit CPU Hitachi HD63A03X manages 16 FM digital voices.
The YM2128 generates 6 syncable sinewave oscillators or "Operator" each with individual volume settings and detune.
Operators can be chained into 32 different combinations Algorithms with frequency ratio or fixed frequency: the output is fed back to its input with 7 different levels feedback.
As general rule, high values feedback results in rich harmonic contents.

Fm key  Scaling

edit SYNTHESIS there are 6 sinewave operators organized as algorithms, assigned as carrier or modulator and linked between them on different pathways interacting on their harmonic contents depending on the feedback strength.
- carrier: defines the amplitude and the spectral frequency
- modulator: sets the sound timbre and the relative harmonic contents.

edit DX7 MK2
the second DX7 version offers some update and sounds a bit different, mainly for the different DAC with higher resolution.
I made a little comparison test: DX7 Vs DX7II

DX algorithms

lfo LFO there are 2 digital modulators with adjustable start delay and sync retrigger:
1- PMD
modulates pitch
2- AMD
processes the amplitude
Both LFO offers 6 waveforms : sine, triangle, saw up/down, square and sample & hold.

adsr ENVELOPE the YM2819 generates 7 envelopes:
- 1 EG pitch: 4-segments structure + 4 time levels.
- 1 EG for each operators: 4-segments structure + 4 time levels.
The Scaling Level is a very precise key follower with 4 linear / exponential curves.

editEFFECTS none: in later 4-OP FM lines Yamaha implemented some pseudo reverbs by Midi tricks like TX81z.
Fm key  Scaling

memory MEMORY holds 32 patch backup, doubled if a cartridge RAM1 is present.
The backup memory works with a CR-2032 lithium battery soldered to the board, just be aware that there is no ROM factory recall so it is necessary to use Midi exclusives data for this job.

repairGREY MATTER E! BOARD EXPANSION This special board can be fitted to upgrade to machine to new functions and features:

- multitimbral
- ten times RAM slots,
- monophonic with 8 voices stack
- adjustable random detune (variable range set)
- a user-friendly TX programmability
- controller remap
much more on the Dx7 E grey matter PDF manual.


dx7 grey matter picture installation boardyamaha dx7 upgradevarious e!eprom set
motherboard closeuppic eflat remove

INSTALL board requires a Dx7 with latest OS (only upgradable by EPROM) and requires some advanced skills for soldering and cutting circuit tracks.

lfo EDIT the Dx7 is not famous for easy and real-time edit functions! if you are lucky enough, you can try the mega-rare Jellinghaus DX Programmer (worth 2000€).
A cheaper way are the computer programmers, some of the first were available for Atari ST like Dx-android, Dx expert or caged ST, then PC-based programs like Soundiver, Midiquest, DX-manager, Synlib and others.

atari st editor

Jellinghaus DX Programmer


family OP6 DX FAMILY After one year Yamaha released the super deluxe version Dx1 that later became the cheaper DX5. There' s also an expander module Tx7, then the huge TX816 a pretty impressive rack modular version.

dx7 family tree
LINKS :

TX802 - Tx816 - Tx7 - Sy99

 

demoAUDIO DEMO

GREY MATTER E!


effet Soundcloud DX7

ax80demos 3 tracks


video VIDEO CLIP SELECTION

Yamaha DX7 Frequency Modulation YAMAHA DX7 DEMO 1 Yamaha DX7 E.Piano
Frequency Modulation DEMO 1 E.Piano

 





TEST

test DX7 Vs DX7II sonic test differences

 


DX7 PLUGIN VERSION

fm8 native instruments Year 2002: Native instruments released FM7 a virtual VST emulation of DX synthesis with new features.
HERE to hear a quick demo.

 


DX7 ZAK DEMO

Zak McKracken
The original demo tape from the classic video game Zak McKracken by Matthew Kane has been composed with Roland Juno106 and Dx7.
HEAR IT!

 

original scan

 

yamaha dx7 milestones

 

performance on dx7 fm synthesizer

 

dx7 classic flyer

 

custom models
custom models

original scan



original scan
dx7 tatoo

 

 

 


manual

- raw
- FM concept
-history

manual

- keys dynamic
- weight
- edit

comment



"We are here in front of the history! Massive sound, raw-powerful, hard to master!"




 

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all snapshots*, sounds, texts copyright Polynominal.com / Eric Pochesci
*John Chowning found on wikipedia
*tatoo picture unknown author.

Yamaha dx7 4 out of 5 based on 16 ratings. price €400