Korg DSS-1 -1986 DSM-1 -1987    Weight = 39.5 Lbs. Number mfg.= ? MRP=$2600


User Manual: DSS-1 or DSM-1
Reset Proceedures: N/A
Operating System code: N/A
MIDI or other control protocol:See manuals
Software related Links:Rescue Disk, is a CD from Larry Hendry with everything for the DSM-1 plus all DSS-1 Disk images** sample vision is included but this site has a lot of details on it.
Patches or knob settings: factorylib+
Circuit Overview: below
Scematics/Service Manual: Manual Manor DSS-1
Service images:Hendry
Common Service Issues/Tips: below
Parts Sources: Keys Disk Drives semiconductors misc
Uncommon chips/modules used: NJM2069 Filter chips common to Poly800 and the DW series, NJU7304 8ch mux w/ s+H
Modifications: Tom Virostek's SCSI/Mem. upgrade! or Floppy Emulator!! (It's in French) A SCSI kit was available at one time but no more. Here is some info though.
General Info Links: Vintage Synth Explorer or Glen StegnerK for a LOT of really useful info including sound demos and much of the info above!

**Sadly Larry Hendry was killed in an auto accident in Oct. 2005, and therefore I don't know if any products are still available.





     The DSS-1 machines have a large number of chips since the things being done were still fairly new. But basically you have a computer running a sampling interface, 256Kwords of RAM for data and filters when the signal reaches the analog domain and a digital delay of course. Very challenging machines to low level troubleshoot in the digital domain. And really attainable at too low of a cost to spend much time going beyond this I think. :-) The DSM-1 is also inexpensive now but uses a better HD diskette drive but lacks the digital delay and no resonance control on filters, though they put 16 of them. However you cannot mix two sources/voice as you could on DSS-1. Thus to truly get the same sound it can be difficult to impossible if delay is used or resonance.
     The upgrade linked above is in my machine now. It allows portamento, mono mode and a adds a 16M memory board so you can assemble a lot more sounds though the sample length is still limited to the 256Kword space each. The storeage is fantastic as a combo floppy can be used now that reads original disks but also allows SDcards and other formats to be inserted. I keep a jump drive on the USB1 port inside and hook USB2 to the ports. It takes 5 seconds to load the directories when I do '1', then arrow over and up/down to the USB1 selection then 'enter'. Then I can data slider to the approximate location and up/down to the precise directory I want, then right arrow into it and 'enter' to load the selected bank of sounds. I have the factory set all organized now and can send that if people want it named as the factory disks are coded (KSDU-xxx). It's a fabulous upgrade anyway. Just having all the sounds there rather than rifling through diskettes and waiting a minute for each load. There are many great sounds to be found but who has time to find them?!

     Floppy drives commonly fail in DSS-1, see link above. Mine came with a Teac FD-235HF - A529 and the jumpers are set with first column (that only has two pins on F and G) open. Second column has one between C-D and F-G. Next column has no pins. Next one has one between D-E. And G had one strapping it to the final column. The last column on right looking from the top rear has one on A-B besides that. NOTE these are double sided double density drives. If you don't use the right kinds of disk, they won't work also. Attain software above to create disk images on unformatted DSDD diskettes. I tried to troubleshoot one with some bad signal distortion from the digital domain. Gave up and got one to swap boards out of with a bad floppy on ebay for 50 bucks or so. Amazing bang/buck machines these days! ALSO check Retrosound.de for lots of good pointers and links including backlight and floppy replacement tips!
Doing the upgrade linked above was a bit of a pain because the through holes are very thin. I tried to heat gun the memory chips out and a few got messed up and I didn't catch it testing somehow. Tom found the issue and returned it working fine. I figured he probably knows the points to check so why waste my time rediscovering all that.


     Re: Sample vision: I tried to use it today...the zip on one of my links there is corrupted maybe. Or an old zip archive that requires something I don't have here on linux. Anyway I found another googling and got it loaded on my win2000 machine fine. However it says to make sure the driver for dss-1 is enabled. Oh it's over in the pull down on the right.. Then I realized wait you can just load .wav files with the visotrek upgrade. what am I doing? haha. Parts:
I have a scrap unit and odds are any of the parts are probably good. Let me know if you need anything! Whatever went bad did so in digital realm so all analog parts are fairly certainly good! contact me