The Yamaha DX7 was the first commercially available FM synthesizer that users could program themselves. Released in 1983, the synthesizer immediately became a go-to for electronic and experimental artists like Depeche Mode or Brian Eno, but it was also very present in pop music with artists like Whitney Houston, Phil Collins or Kenny Loggins. It opened up a new realm of sound creation with patches that could not be produced with conventional analog synthesis.
The keyboard spans five octaves with 16-note polyphony, velocity sensitivity and aftertouch. It features 32 sound generating algorithms, each with a different arrangement of the six sine wave generators. The DX7 became especially iconic for its pad and e-piano sounds. In 1986, preset 11 (E-Piano 1) was used in 40% of the number one singles on the US Billboard Hot 100 and 60% of the number one RnB singles. (Mainly also due to the complex sub-menus which let a lot of artists to use the presets)
This synth was one of Yamahas best selling instruments with over 200.000 units sold after three years - in compression Moog sold 12.000 Minimoogs in eleven years.