Fairlight CMI IIx


In 1983, a major CMI update appeared: the Fairlight CMI IIx.
Several internal cards were modified. The two 6800 processors were replaced by 6809 processors, the random access memory changed from 64Ko to 256Ko, the control panel of the central unit was modified, a MIDI/SMPTE interface was proposed as an option, as well as a hard disk drive (one or two CMI, including Queen’s, featured the latter).

  • Dual 8-bit 1 Mhz Motorola 6809 processors
  • 8 channel cards with 16kb waveform RAM = 8 voices of polyphony
  • 256Kb system RAM (QDOS)
  • Two 8″ floppy disks: double sides, simple/double density (512Kb)
  • Non-weighted 6 octave keyboard, featuring key velocity sensitivity, with 3 sliders and 2 switch buttons that can be alloted to various parameters (vibrato, volume, sustain… ). A second keyboard is proposed as an option (without the control buttons)
  • Monochrome monitor which was used to visualise waveforms and to edit parameters: resolution was 512 x 256 pixels
  • Alphanumeric keyboard
  • Lightpen
  • Additive synthesis with FFT (Fast Fourier Transform)
  • 32Khz 8-bit sampling
  • Sequencer (page C) and graphic sequencer (page R)
  • MCL: Musical Composition Language
  • MIDI/SMPTE interface card (optional)

All the cards are arranged on the CMI-25 motherboard as follows:

CMI-02Master card: control of 8 channel cards, ADC sampling, timerfunctions for sequencer and MCL1
CMI-28General interface card: MIDI/SMPTE2
CMI-01-AChannel card with 16Kb waveform RAM
CEM3320 (Rev 1 & 2) ou SSM2045 (Rev 3 & 4) Filter
3 to 10
CMI-07Analog interface card (optional): 16 inputs/outputs to control analog synthesizers11
Q256256Kb system RAM
By default, the RAM card is located in slot 14.
A second can be installed in slot 13.
13 to 14
Q0144 port ACIA module (optional)15
Q133Processor control card16
Q209Dual 6809 processors17
Q219Lightpen/Graphics interface card – 16Kb Video RAM18
QFC9Floppy disk controller19
Q077Hard disk controller (optional)20