THE most successful synthesizer and the best selling synthesizer of all time.  During the 6 year production of the M1 Korg sold over 250,000 units!  Classic Synth, Bread & Butter Sounds.  It’s got that ‘early 90s production/pop’ sound written all over it.  Distinguished and mystical. The sounds are pure nostalgia.  Favorites could be “Lore” or any patch that has the term “Magic” in it.  🙂

The M1’s synth engine consisted of one or two digital oscillators per patch with sampled waveforms stored in memory. A total of 16 oscillators were offered, leading to a maximum 16-note polyphony. The two oscillator voices are then processed by a digital low pass filter, and then fed into the digital amplifier. Envelopes and LFOs, along with keyboard tracking, were the main controllers for programming.

Tips & Tricks

    On your M1…

  • Make M1 MIDI ready: GLOBAL, 5, +, UP, D, UP, F, UP, H, UP.
  • Remove memory protects: GLOBAL, 6, DOWN, +, B, DOWN, +, B, DOWN.
  • Put M1 in 100/100 memory: GLOBAL, 6, +, +, +, DOWN, G.
  • Check M1 is working: PROG, 00. Check volume.  Play keyboard with headphones.
  • Data dump from M1 to computer…

  • From the software sysex utility or librarian’s File menu look for “New…” or “New Bank…” to open a blank sound bank file.
  • Click a “Receive” or “Capture” button to receive the M1’s sound bank through your MIDI interface into the computer.
  • The program will wait while you manually send the data dump from M1 to computer: GLOBAL, 7, UP, UP, UP, UP (for “All”), G.
  • Send data from computer to M1…

  • From the software sysex utility or librarian’s File menu look for “Open…” or “Open Other…” or “Open Any…” to open an existing sysex sound bank file.
  • Click a “Send” or “Transmit” button to send the sound bank through your MIDI interface into the M1.
  • Click the M1’s “UP” button, then the “DOWN” button. The first 00 sound of the new bank should be visible in the display.

Korg M1 Resources and Links

M1 patches, old sys-ex utilities. Related links, and Dr Evil.
Doctor Evil and the M1 Universe

Indy Korg User Forums, resource links, and downloads.
Korg User Forums

Good resource for instructions on battery replacement, and other tutorials.
Korg M1 Source


Product: Korg M1
Developer: Korg


Keyboard Rack Edition (M1R)

Synthesis Types:
Synthesis (Digital Waveforms) Samples (PCM)

Single Mode Double Mode Drum Kit Mode

1 – LowPass Filter
3 – Envelopes
61 Key, Aftertouch, Velocity
Mod Wheel & Pitch Bend
(Spring return Joystick)

Supported Formats:

(Korg M1 Keyboard Edition)

(Close up of the Korg M1R – Rack Edition)

Korg M1 Downloads, Patches, & Presets

Download Description Sound Designer Hits
24 Banks of M1 Presets!!!24 Banks of M1 sounds from various sources over the internet. Check out the modified dates for their creation or last edit times.Korg Forums21281
Francois Rossi's M1 CollectionA massive collection of user created M1 sounds many of which you will not find elsewhere on the Web ... as many of the files in Francois' collection pre-date the web itself 😉 See enclosed notes for details.Francois Rossi8800
Collection of 8 COMBI M1 banks!!!Collection of 8 different COMBI banks for the Korg M1Korg Forums8128
7 Custom M1 Patch Banks!7 Patch banks for the M1 from Dr Evil's M1 page: http://www.webcoast.com/drevil/ LUNE.SYX ORIGCOMB.SYX ORIGGLOB.SYX ORIGPROG.SYX ORIGSEQS.SYX SYNTHPRG.SYX TECHNOM1.SYXDrEvilM1Page6743
M1 Web Patches!dozens of M1 soundbanksM1 all669
5 banks and Factory for M1This collection includes 5 custom M1 banks as well as the factory bank. See enclosed PDF.geocities 5 custom banks548
Factory Bank M1EX -A copy of the factory sounds for the M1EX. Submitted by Timbo HeffTimbo Heff489
M1 - Factory BankAs the title suggests, this is a complete copy of the Factory Default sounds for your M1.Factory Preload464
Patches from old magazine issuesA collection of M1 patches have also been published in diverse old late 80's specialized issues. programmed several of them manually and compiled it in this sysex soundbank (Progrs only, no Combis): 1/ The complete collection (37 patches/Progrs 00-36) published in the "Keyboards Magazine" french version issue during the 1989-99 years. They are all readers' creations. 2/ Some additional patches (Progrs 40-46) that I found in diverse international issues (Claviers Magazine, Keyboards US,...).M180445
M1R - PDF - User ManualM1R (rack edition) PDF manual. SCAN.xangis438
M1 User Manual PDFPDF Manual for the Korg M1DrEvilM1356

Korg M1 Featured Videos

10 Responses to Korg M1 Workstation

  • Russell

    Your link to Doctor Evil and the M1 Universe is dead

    • admin

      That’s a shame.  Seems like a 403 error page.  I’ll see if I can find a good internet archive page for it.

  • Michael

    I have a question. I just got a used M1 and I’m trying to
    load patches using a MacBook and SysEx Librarian … I can load
    small things (individual patches, for example) but the large files
    come out garbled. What buffer settings should I use?

  • […] Even more M1 Downloads here: http://patcharena.com/synths/korg-m1/ […]

  • Eric N

    Hi, if I want to load other/ more patches then the factory default sounds, for instance Rossi’s or other soundbanks, do i have to dump the original data to free memory or is there enough memory and wil appear an extra menu in de M1 with the new imported sounds?

    another question: if I hold “INT,” “CARD,” and “COMBI” button & restart, will this set all the sounds back to the original factory settings?
    I’ve tried this on my M1 and I suspect that some of the sounds arent the same as the M1R I bought in ’88.



  • marco

    is it possible to load t3 patches onto the korg m1?

  • Chule

    Segun leo,se pueden enviar prog y combi desde t3 aM1ex

  • Bill

    Just wanted to say thanks for keeping this site up. One tip for folks having trouble loading patches with various librarians. Use the shortest MIDI cable possible. I was having problems loading the factory patches back after changing the internal battery and it turned out to be the cable. The old cable worked fine for sending midi sequences between my DAW and the M1, but I could not get the patches to load properly. Used a new 3 foot cable and it worked like a charm. Re-connected the old cable and sequences still worked. By old cable, I mean it was purchased in the early to mid 90s. The 3 footer was purchased a year ago and never used until now.

  • jf


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