Synth DB

The Ultimate Synthesizer Database


Total list currently 2405 items in 330 Brands

Fairlight CMI | Fairlight IIx


In 1982 Fairlight introduced the Series II CMI (Computer Musical Instrument) with needed improvements over the CMI Series I such as a variable sampling rate up to 35 kHz over the Series I's 25 kHz limit. The software for the instrument was also improved but it still has the 8 bit audio limitation of the previous model.

Inside the Fairlight case are 8 Smart Audio cards with 16 kb of RAM however all samples are of the same length once loaded. A Low Pass Filter is used to cover the "scratchy" artifact noise that early sampling presented.

In 1983 Fairlight introduced a MIDI upgrade to the system and called System IIx. Other than the MIDI feature the unit remained the same with the added benefit of MIDI.

BrandFairlight CMI
ModelFairlight IIx
Engine TypeDigital
Voices (max)8
Engine DetailedFast Fourier Transforming, Waveform Editing, Graphics Tablet Waveform Drawing
Sampler8-bit at 2100 Hz to 30.2 kHz (mono)
Memory16 KB per voice, System: 256 KB,
RecordingPage R, Basic keyboard sequencer, Musical Composition Language (MCL)
Key typeKeys (Option 2x)
Extra infoTwo 8-inch floppy drives
Produced:1983 - 1985
Legend: Obvious Y: Yes, N: No, N/A: Not Applicable
VCO Voltage Controlled Oscillator DCO Digital Controlled Oscillator
LFO Low Frequency Oscillator Sub Sub Oscillator
VCF Voltage Controlled Filter VCA Voltage Controlled Amplifier
Velocity As with a piano, the harder you hit a key, the louder the sound, unlike most organs which always produce the same loudness no matter how hard you hit a key. Aftertouch Pressing a key after you activated it. Channel Aftertouch, no matter which key, it will send a Channel message. Poly Aftertouch, sends the pressure per key instead of the whole channel.
Values for OSC, LFO, Filter, Envelope are per voice unless stated otherwise.


If you like to discuss or talk about synths in all forms (including VST and modular), you are welcome to join the Facebook group "The Hard, The Soft and The Modular".

My music

Interested in music from "Synthisfactory" or "SX Instrumentals"?

Visit our website.

Contact Us

Did you find an error in the info or do you have an item to list? Go to the Contribution page, fill out the form and I'll see what I can do.