This is the original DX7 version and was launched in 1983.  It was produced up to the end of 1986.

It looks like this...

Yamaha DX7 Table 4 Small.jpg (60064 bytes)

The casing is generally 'dark chocolate' brown all over.  It's largely metal (sheet steel?) and this makes it the heaviest of the DX7's, at around 32lbs (15 kg). - Perhaps only the very rare 'Centennial' model is more back-breaking.

The bluey-green buttons you see are printed on a flat plastic panel (there are little microswitches underneath them, which do give a positive 'click', despite what some people say!)  I actually prefer these to the 'proper' switches of the DX7II - mainly because the dust cannot get into the contacts so easier, which has happened to nearly every DX7II I come across these days!

The LCD though is a tiny 2 x 16 char dot matrix type, not back - lit, unless modified.

Being the original, the mk1 has the most basic specification within the DX7 family. The II version inc. the DX7'S' all boast additional features and contain more advanced circuitry.   Generally though, ALL DX7's 'sound' the same and certainly sounds intended for this version are compatible with the other DX7 versions.  Often, it works the other way, too as long as the II's advanced features are not part of a sound.

According to the Yamaha TX7 manual ( yep, TX7 ), any Yamaha DX7's with serial number 1001~24880 and 25125~26005 will have problems with the Aftertouch option, over MIDI.  This is because their operating system ROM's were programmed before MIDI was standardised across all manufacturers.   It is worth asking a potential seller for the serial number, bearing this in mind.    One of my DX7's has an early serial number, and it also struggles to send SYSEX information which can be easily interpreted by patch librarians etc.



The manual can be downloaded free of charge from Yamaha, so there's no excuse not to get programming!!  You will also find a complete DX7 spec here too.



If your DX7 is broken, don't throw it away - even broken DX7's fetch some bucks on ebay auctions.  There are still many thousands of DX users who want to keep theirs going, so sell your duff one for spares!!


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