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Synth (Sample Based) Plugin by Korg

M1 has an average user rating of 5.00 from 5 reviews

Rate & Review M1

User Reviews by KVR Members for M1


Reviewed By Trader One [all]
January 9th, 2022
Version reviewed: 2.2 on Windows

M1 is godly. It's digital synth that ruled 90s music the same way like DX7 ruled 80s. Other synths were used just because they were cheaper.

You will get M1 and all its cards and T1 disks. T1-3 and M1 (EX/R) are using the same legendary AI sounding engine.

Synth is very Punchy and it will get noticed very well in the mix. Next KORG generation 01/W has the same style of sounds, but Korg Trinity and later are on the soft synth side, Trinity sounds similar to today Yamaha synths and Triton is even softer, especially its Extreme edition. If you want Triton buy Triton studio (or VST). Triton Extreme has more sounds and most people buy it because of this but I prefer quality over quantity. Why bother with soft extreme edition while you can get Kronos.

From leaked information KORG works on 01/W VST. we will get more pad sounds which is known for, another batch of sharp M1 like sounds and first introduced wave shaping feature in its AI2 engine and more realistic but still very Punchy new detailed (4MB) piano set. Sadly from Trinity to nowadays Pianos are kinda soft. You can buy Key scape from Omnisphere and Ivory 2. While these Pianos might be realistic, they simply too soft. No developer has courage to make Pianos like used in first two KORG generations anymore.

M1 Sounds are good for pop, dance, house and few are good for Trance, there is an expansion card for it. Korg Triton has Trance expansion card as well but if you compare them M1 sounds much more aggressive. Why everybody likes soft sounds? I like the way M1 sounds - this is way how synth should sound, you can always make sound softer using compression and filters. KORG Triton and its following models like M3 and Kronos needs exciter insert on each sound to wake them somewhat. Yamaha took different approach - their sounds have more highs to sound bright but they are pretty careful with strong attack. Roland sounds are good for soft background playing in mix, don't worry nobody notices your bad playing, they don't hear you anyway.

There are lot of famous sounds. Most famous is the M1 piano, followed by Organ 2. From pads it's universe, choir and Lore.

Because you have all sound cards you have alternative M1EX Piano 2 samples, sometimes called T1 piano because it is also in second bank on T1-3. There are several presets utilizing Piano 1 multi sample, most used is Piano 16 because it's very hard metalic. T1 added new multi sample Piano 3, which is harder then kinda soft Piano 2 but it's not much used because there is no default preset for it. I never used Piano 2 multi sample in track. There is also 4th piano sound from M1 expansion card MSC 05. This one is fat and its called Piano 2 but it's not M1EX Piano 2. This one never appeared again in M1 T1 product lanes. I have not noticed it in the 90s songs either.

So you will get 4 famous piano multi samples from 90s and about 15 presets using these samples. Because M1 VST can do multi combo, you can split keys range in 3 parts and fine tune filter cut and amp envelope for each part and get 4 very well finished Pianos and then make second version with chorus on.

There are several synth and real Hammond organs samples, most loved in house music are versions with clicking. There are several pipe organs sounds, some are made from digital waves - these ones are uninteresting. Then we have few soft pipes for use in combination and last and best ones are pretty sharp pipe sets. These style of sampling pipe organs sets is not used since Trinity. Triton has pretty soft pipe organs but M1 pipe organs pipe sets cuts through mix amazingly well. do not overuse them in track, in intro or bridge they are good.

M1 is simply must buy for any producer because sounds like this are unique, hard sounding, legendary, magical not made anymore. M1 is not the best selling synth in the history for no reason.

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Reviewed By Streck0 [all]
September 8th, 2017
Version reviewed: 1.7.0 on Windows

If you're a fan of early 90s house and old school jungle/hardcore, this is an absolute must have. I've spent a shit load of money on VSTs and sample libraries over the last two years, and the $50 I paid for the M1 are easily among the most well spent. I'm just having so much fun with it. I don't necessarily use it for final productions, but it's quickly become my go to synths for sketching ideas. Sure, the sounds are absolutely cheesy and overused, but I find them very inspirational. Everything sounds familiar and all you need is right there in one place. You've got you're cheesy string and synth pads, cheesy bass and lead synths, all kinds of other cheese, and, of course, the famous cheesy pianos. Just add some drums, mess around a bit, and you've got yourself a track.

I'm not a big synth nerd, so I can't really tell you much about how the M1 stands up to modern synth technology. But I openly admit that I only got the M1 for the presets and the nostalgic feel. And for that purpose it's just perfect. So I'm giving 10/10 for the fun factor, the ease of use, and the very affordable price.

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Reviewed By muLperi [all]
March 15th, 2011
Version reviewed: 1 on Mac

I'm lovin' it!
I think it's underrated. It's good value for money, It has lots and lots of usabe patches, especially if you like retro sounds. This is definately one of my favourite synths.

I haven't really used a real M1 but I guess they use the exact same waveforms so it should sound exactly the same.
It sounds so good and nostalgic, it comes with all the original presets and the extra soundbanks as well.

It's stable. Never crash on me.
If you love the sounds of the past. Buy it.
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Reviewed By jobromedia [all]
June 20th, 2009
Version reviewed: 1.6.1 on Windows

Korg M1 is an old synthesizer, but due to the age one can still hear this synthesizer in many tracks nowadays tho. When this synth came out it was equipped with 100 sampled waveforms, 100 presets, 100 combination's and a sequencer of 4200 notes split up on 10 songs. You could reconfigure it to have 50 presets & combination's to get an additional 3500 notes in the sequencer.

The M1 VST has vastly expanded beyond these boundaries. First of all you have all the cartridges for the M1 built in from the start. Lots of these cartridges has extra waveforms beside the presets and combination's they hold. That's not enough. All the diskettes released for the Korg T1, T2 and T3 synthesizers are also built in. Some of these disks has extra waveforms beside the presets and combination's they hold expanding the sound database even further.

The VST has a special multi mode that lets you use one instance to play 8 presets at once. This replaces the sequencer mode in the original M1. There is the same problem of voices suddenly being silenced due to the fact that you played too many notes at once. Luckily the Korg M1 VST can compensate with up to 256 voices polyphony.

Selecting a preset is simple. You can either do it through the categories available, or you can do it on a cart / disk basis. So if you want a fat electro bass you just click on the bass category, then the fat and synthesized sub categories and you got a list to choose from. A similar process is utilized when you select waveforms.

If you are after a "bread & butter" synth then there is enough marmalade here for you to enjoy it. Although a tad bit oldskool presets there is still enough variation available for you to actually get some decent sounds out of it. Adjust the waveforms and you're ready to go. The price is a theft if you ask me. €199 for all these presets and combination's a definitive bargain with all the benefits this plugin has. If you are after a good hiphop synth then this is the way to go. Looking for a trance / dance synth with all the basic building blocks then this is your best bet.

Over and out.
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Reviewed By Fhangor [all]
August 6th, 2006
Version reviewed: 1.5.1 on Windows

The M1 comes as a part of the Korg Legacy Digital Collection. After long comparisions and trials I have decided to buy it and trust me, it is really one of the best VST instruments I ever had the pleasure to play with.

Korg has really inserted all their experience in building Hardwaresynths into M1. The sound is clearly, the effects well defined (M-EX) and it is really easy to get into work with it. I never read the manual and I have found my way deep into it.

It comes with a huge collection of presets (Combis, Multis and Programs). And I was impressed how well they all sound! From wonderful pads, great basses to real sounding instruments like saxophone or accordeon: you can find all you need in one synth.

It isn't a soundgem only: the design is really wonderful. You need no guide to find everything you need. The included browser for sounds let you pre-listen how a preset will do and you can filter by instrument category's or by character of the preset. To manipulate a sound you will be confronted with it through an easy section first. If you want to get deeper you can change to the other sections beneath.

The price for the collection is around 220€ now. And I think it is underprized. Never found a better collection of instruments and effects. I love it!
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Latest 5 reviews from a total of 5

Comments & Discussion for Korg M1

Discussion: Active
18 September 2019 at 12:37am

Your M1 expansion preset files are .fxp files only, and do not load into the standalone and VST versions of the M1, not even in FL Studio 20.

23 October 2019 at 9:56am

That is odd, I tested it on my friend's pc and it worked fine on the standalone and VST version. How are you loading in the .fxps?

2 January 2020 at 6:31pm

Not in Ableton live 10 either.


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