Sequential Circuits Six-Trak Vintage Synth Review

Jorb takes a look at the Sequential Six-Trak synthesizer, from 1984, a keyboard that offers a basic analog synth voice, but that also offers one of the first multi-timbral synth architectures, a powerful unison mode, deep CC-control and multi-track sequencer.

Topics covered:

Intro 0:00
He Speaks 1:00
What Makes it Special? 2:30
Patch Demonstrations 7:34
Parameter Walkthrough 11:09
Parameters Continue Via Midi CC 16:14
Multi-Track Recorder 23:42
Stack Modes 27:46
Arpeggiator 29:00
Voices on Separate Midi Tracks 29:56
Conclusions & Used Market 33:14

Check it out and share your thoughts on the Six-Trak in the comments!

16 thoughts on “Sequential Circuits Six-Trak Vintage Synth Review

  1. its a piece of shit
    I had the multitrack (the upgraded version of this)
    only one DCO (u need to use layers to get a second osc)
    Parameters are like resonance 0 to 15 and so on
    chorus unusable because it makes to much noise
    creating sounds on it makes 0 fun because its one edit dial

    1. Like the Roland Alpha Juno, the Six-Trak is a great synth in the right hands.

      The Six-Trak has VCOs, don’t know about the Multi-Trak.

      Single oscillator synth voices are basic, but basic can sound fantastic. How many mono synths let you stack 6-different patches in one voice? To get the flexibility of the Six-Trak sequencer on an analog synth, you have to look at much more modern synths, like the Analog Four.

      The main thing I miss with the Six-Trak is individual analog outs.

      1. if you use layers to get a 2nd osc – polyphony is down to 3 voices.
        and parameter resolution isn’t fine enough
        attack from zero to 15
        cutoff from zero to 60
        ect.

        not sexy in the year 2021

          1. Of course it matters if I can’t dial in that frequency that I want. It’s not going to make the sound that I want. Parameter resolution is big deal 😉

            So it’s a very simple synth and it can’t even do what previous generation of synth were able to do, no steps 😉

            It’s the first generation of polyphonic synths, nothing to get excited about today.

  2. This was my first synth (I now have some 40 synths). I still use it and love the architecture. My only concern is the hardwired battery. I have owned this synth since 1985 and the battery still works. What happens when it goes? How to save presets? I have the replacement battery but would probably convert to a drop in type battery. Do not want to lose the 99 presets though.

  3. I ordered a Six-Trak when it first came out but then they released the Multi-Trak and I got that instead. I got a lot out of it especially since it had an output for each voice. These are a lot better than many give them credit for. Editing sounds is no big deal since parameters are all right in front of you. Check out demos on YouTube.

  4. I love mine, it can produce some truly wonderful sounds. Setting up an external programmer is a piece of cake. it gets used on just about everything I do. Is it the best synth I own? Of course not, but it’s great.

    1. Honestly, I never use the multi timbral on my Six-Trak and almost never on any of my other synths that can do it. With unlimited tracks in any DAW it is usually more trouble than it is worth for me and I never gig my hardware. Unless a unit has separate outs being multitimbral is an over rated feature. And even with it, I personally have just enough interface inputs for my hardware as it is. Other people’s mileage might vary, but I never worry about it.

  5. curious if the experts here think a cool audio SMT clone of CEM3394 would be awesome or a waste of time? seems to me like it would be a useful chip to have back on the market.

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