Yamaha DX100 synth/keyboard 1987-1993

The DX100 was actually quite useful, and I ended up going through two of them in the band’s history. It was compact, and though limited in sound flexibility compared to the DX7, which was the industry standard for fm synths, I came up with some pretty interesting sounds.

Yamaha DX100 synth/keyboard 1987-1993 Yamaha DX100 synth/keyboard The Moog that sold at Radio Shack. Realistic / Moog MG1

Prior to using the DX-100, my only major hands-on experience with a synth was with a Radio Shack Concertmate MG-1, back in the early 80s, which was designed by Moog, and was sort of a scaled down Minimoog in terms of the interface. I recall spending hours in Radio Shack with the manual, trying to figure out how to get it to sound like the synth line from Eurythmics “Sweet Dreams”, or some early 80s hair band. Usually the result was a shitty-sounding horn, flute, or motorboat sound. Still, once in a while, I’d come up with something I liked. The clerk would eventually get sick of me, and kick me out.

Though the DX100 was not the same type of synthesis as the Concertmate, a lot of the basic parameters were similar, and a good chunk of my free time was devoted to creating sounds and backing the data up onto a laughably unforgiving cassette tape storage interface. The idea of saving to floppy disk, or to an editor/librarian program on an Atari or a Mac via MIDI was well out of my price range. Ironically, in 1987, the idea of using a computer to make electronic music struck me as weird.

I sort of blew up my first DX100 back in 1987, but my second one was used right up until about 1993, when it finally got gutted to be used as a drum trigger.