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Korg Poly-800

Polyphonic Synthesizer (1983)

Affordable paraphonic synthesizer based on DCO oscillators with internal step sequencer.

Overview

OVERVIEW all plastic from 80. It features 49 keys with no velocity.  Main panel features a segment display, 3 sliders, 19 button and 1 data slider. Very nice STRAP PINS for keytar fashion players.

RELATED MODELS:
-Ex800 is the module version with sysex for edit and chorus effect
-Reverse Poly800 is a limited edition with different outfit, same specs
-Poly800 Mk2 is an enhanced version with battery, sysex and digital effect instead of chorus
-Moogslayer is a common modification with cutoff pot and much more

Terminal connectors:
- Midi Interface (no Thru port)
- main signal out
- headphones out
- tape Interface
- switch tab memory protection
- pedalswitch input for program up. 
- Power supply is external PSU with 9V AC/DC -)+ polarity.

Sound

OSCILLATORS Main unit 8 bits controller CPU Intel 8050 family. Oscillator DCO is based on MSM5232 chip, well-known for some '80 arcade games. The IC MSM5232 generates 8 digitally controlled oscillators,  which features 2 summable waveforms saw and square plus 4 additive harmonic octaves heights at 16' 8' 4' 2' + 1 white noise generator.
The MSM is assignable in 2 different manners:
- double mode: 2 x 4 voices for a thicker richer sound
- whole mode: 1 x 8 voices for full polyphony.

ENVELOPE there are 3 EGs with ADBSSR structure, which stands for: Attack, Decay, Break point, Slope, Sustain and Release. 
- 1X DCO1 amplitude: 6-stages ADBSSR
- 1X DCO2 amplitude: 6-stages ADBSSR
- 1X VCF: 6-stages ADBSSR

LFO there are 2 triangle-shapped modulators:
- MG1 modulates FILTER VCF
- MG2 modulates DCO pitch.
The modulator is triggered by joystick control with possible delay start function.

FILTER a limited paraphonic filter based on a single NJM2069.
The chip is a resonant (but not up to self-resonance) analog 4 poles lowpass with cutoff, contour and possible polarity reverse.

Effect 

EFFECTS analog stereo chorus board based on BBD 3209 + driver 3102.

SEQUENCER features a very basic 256 steps sequencer, but syncable to external Midi clock.

MEMORY Memory is non-volatile if 6 x 1.5 V batteries are fitted- there is a custom modification to implement an internal lithium 3V like Cr-2032; internal memory holds 64 RAM patches in 8x8 banks, no ROM so you need to load by tape (it's provided on this page).It is NOT possible to edit the Poly-800 using a computer as there is no Midi Sysex implementation, later corrected on desktop EX800 and revision model Poly800 Mk2.

Special Poly800 with battery modification

Korg Poly800 Specifications

Model: Poly800
Brand: Korg
Year: 1983
Country: Japan
Display: segment
Original Price: $795
Actual Price: 300€ (growing)
Keyboard: 49 keys with no velocity C/C
JOYSTICK pitch bend/DCO and VCF mod
Polyphony: 8 voices
WAVEFORMS square/ramp/16, 8, 4, 2 harmonics
Synthesis: Analog Subtractive
Timbrality: 1
LFO: 2 delayed modulator triangle
Filter: 1 resonant low-pass cutoff/resonance/kbd track/intensity/polarity/single-multi trigger
Envelope: 3 X EGs ADBSSR
Memory: 64 patches
Effects: analog chorus
Midi: yes
Sequencer: yes
Weight: 4,5 Kg
Dimensions: 78 × 28,6 × 8,8 cm

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Korg Poly800 Korg
Vintage polysynthesizer from 1983. 123456789 1234567890123
75 out of 100 based on 11 user ratings
200 to 300 from 1 sellers Sellers:
Product description: Classic analog for budget: some nice pads and sweeps. Sound is sometimes unusual with many sonic artefacts resulting pretty harsh.... but that could looks interesting. Customer reviews:
And Old Friend! - by , May 1, 2011
3/ 5stars