Sam Sam, Yamaha TX802 and TX81Z

We don’t get a lot of “CatSynth pics” of Sam Sam. But she does like this cozy little corner of the studio, especially after the recent reorganization of the studio. The rack next to her has our vintage Yamaha FM modules, the TX81Z and TX802 (with the latter turned on), along with a cassette deck that comes in handy every once in a while.

Scout, Yamaha SY-35, and Modular

Persian cat sitting behind a keyboard synthesizer "Yamaha SY35" and next to a small modular synthesizer

Scout sits behind a Yamaha SY35 synthesizer. We also see a small modular system – we’ll leave the identification of the individual modules as an exercise for the reader.

Submitted by Carl Peczynski via our Facebook page.

The SY35 is an interesting synth among Yamaha’s SY series in that it allows one to move between FM synthesis and AWM (sampling) synthesis via the joystick, a bit like the “vector synthesis” found in the Prophet VS.

Lilly and Yamaha DX21

Black cat sitting on top of a synthesizer (Yamaha DX21)

Beautiful Lilly sits atop a Yamaha DX21 synthesizer. Behind her, we espy a Teenage Engineering Pocket Operator. (The reel-to-reel tape recorder is nice as well.)

Submitted by N3ncehead on Reddit.

Cat on my first synth, the Yamaha DX21

The DX21 was a 4-operator FM synth in Yamaha’s DX line. Not quite as powerful as the 6-operator instruments like the DX7, or the later 4-operator synths like the TX81Z, but nonetheless fully capable of complex FM synthesis. It also featured multiple layers and keyboard splits, which separated it from the other 4-operator instruments at the time like the DX27 and DX100. (Yes, there were a lot of DXs in the 1980s.)

Mistie and Yamaha DX7

Mistie poses proudly atop a vintage Yamaha DX7 synthesizer. From Rob Puricelli (Pro Synth Network) via Facebook.

I think I also espy a Yamaha QX3 sequencer just to the left of Mistie.

These 1980s DX-era instruments loom large in my personal synth history, often as aspirational. We do have a couple of TX modules still in use along with our RX5 drum machine here at CatSynth HQ.