Yamaha PSS-680 in 1989(?). It’s stuffed away in the attic I think.
Whoever did this should be shot!
These circuit benders have gone TOO FAR!
My first synth was a DIY modular, a 22 module Digisound-80, which I built in 1981 while I was a student (and supposed to be studying, not soldering…). More details and photos on that modular synth forum. Its refurbishment has been delayed by a sudden fascination with MI stuff - I’ll get back to it and replace the remaining scratchy pots in the next few months. Remarkably, all the modules now work perfectly, and I have been able to calibrate them perfectly (just +/-5 cents per octave error in the oscillator tracking) , 30-odd years after it was built. Shan’t be selling it.
“went halves” with my Dad on one of these after a birthday when I was about 10 i.e. he helped me buy it while letting me feel grown-up . Seem to remember it made some pretty cool sounds when it broke, though I’m sure I was upset. Till then the preset rhythms drove my Mum bonkers I’m sure though she never said. next relevant purchase was a strobe from Maplin Electronics at about age 15…
My first synth was a Moog Prodigy back in 1981 … since I could not afford to buy a Pro One and I did not like the MS-20.
The list of people in your exact situation included Trent Reznor and Liam Howlett of the Prodigy. Worked out for all
I started on VSTs with Native Instruments Massive but my first synth was a pico-paso that drove everyone nuts. Can’t wait to rig it up to me modular. Shruthi followed shortly, and I was in heaven. I really got the synth bug after that
MiniMoog Model D (Serial # mid-6000’s, purchased new). Was made to sell it to help pay for college. Stupid. I would kill to have it back.
My first synth is a meeblip…
Actually, I’ve got a dozen of synths, all of which are diy (mostly mutable and just 2 sammisches and a lxr and the meeblip), except my recently acquired ms-20 mini, and a Jen sx2000 offered by a friend as non working and that I managed to fix a few days ago.
Another Casio here, a CZ-1000 in 1987.
Got it as a swap for a delay unit with a mate. (Roland RE-501… Doh!)
Was a very good deal at the time, honest.
I didn’t think I had much use for a synth, but wanted to try some different textures for my noise.
I loved the thing and ended up making some experimental synth pop noise. Listened back to a couple of tracks a while back and the synth sounds bloody great.
I ended up getting rid of it a few years later and went full on with guitars, bass etc. Was a long time later I got my second synth, an SH-101. Since then have been slowly amassing a small arsenal of analog synths whenever I can afford something.
Haven’t gone down the digital route again, but have been thinking for a while about getting another CZ-1000 or maybe a 5000 or CZ-1, they’re really easy to get some killer sounds out of them.
My father bought Kawai K4 by the end of 80ies. I was a kid and didn’t really care about synthesis at that time but it was helluva fun messin’ around with it. Then I used it as a MIDI master keyboard in 90ies with early virtual software instruments and apps. Last year I’ve rescued it from the parents cellar and now I can finally appreciate it’s synth engine after all the years of learning and experiencing SW and HW synthesizers.
4 sources (256 16-bit PCM samples, mix of one cycles, noises, hits and real instruments), DCA, DCF (can be linked in series or parallel for 2 pairs of sources, often sounds harsh and gritty but cool), optional AM, LFO, 16 FX, 32 FX/mix patches, 9 part multi-timbrality (including drums), 16 voice polyphony.
Factory banks are cheesy and boring by today’s standards but I’ve found some really cool custom made patches on the internet. K4 has nice sound character and sound design options are quite cool. It’s surprisingly easy to edit even with just one value fader - matrix of buttons and menus makes it easy to grasp to it’s architecture.
My first one was a Casino SK10 Sampling keyboard I got when I was 10. I still have it. The second came 8 years later when I bought a Siel SK70 from a pawn shop for about 40 euro’s. I didn’t know what it was but the words VCF and VCA on the front got me really excited.
Yamaha PSR something or other…the demo song was “Just the way you are” by Billy Joel, but it would cycle through all the sounds while playing it.
Made a bunch of noise in my teens on a friends Korg M1
Bought an MC-303 in 1998 which probably started where I’m at now.
My first was a Juno 106, bought it second hand in the techno-craze of the mid 90’s. All I knew was that I wanted “something analog with MIDI”, because a friend of mine had an Atari 1040, a DX7 and a Korg DDD1. I thought “something analog” would be a nice addition to that - and it was. I still kinda like “that Juno sound” …
I bought a used Yamaha SHS-10 Keytar at a garage sale for @$20 in the late 80’s. I used it as a midi controller when I started exploring computers in the early 90’s.
Got my first in the late 80’s. My cousin gave me a Roland SH-1000, still have it. Used it with an Amiga 500 running Sonix and dynamic drums at the time… Got a Kawai K1 after that, I bought that one (still use that as my main controller).
I wanted a Alesis ION due to all its buttons, its better display, and the sexy metal chasis, but I ended up buying a Akai Miniak, and convinced myself that since it had the same synth engine, and could play ION and Micron sounds, it would be just as good.
Boy was I wrong, my happyness with it lasted for all of a week, right around the time I found out that a decent(but fugly) software editor costs 49€…
I still haven’t come close to unlocking its potential, and it is in fact gathering dust on a laptop holder on top of my soundcard. It is connected, but I never really use it.
Second synth was a Shruthi-1 SMR MK1, after it I bought either a E-MU Proteus/1 or a Novation Supernova II keyboard, and while I like the ultra retro sounds of the E-MU(And the cool little display animation when I turn it on, telling me that it is three years my senior), the Supernova is my pride and joy
Hmm, I really should get my hands on an ION someday…