A patch pre-loaded into the memory of a synthesizer by the manufacturer. The patch may be loaded into RAM, where it can be edited or overwritten by the user (this method was often used in the ‘80s), or into ROM where it is always present and can’t be edited without copying it to a RAM location first. The purpose of factory patches is two-fold. First, they provide a starting point for new users, and a set of templates containing useful default settings for given types of patches. Second, they provide a “wow” factor for the user playing the synth at the music store, and help to market the synth towards keyboard players who do not do their own programming. (As an extreme example, the Yamaha DX-7 powered up to a default electric-piano patch, and many people who purchased the synth used it solely for that purpose — never selecting any other patches, much less doing any editing.) Factory patches can be useful starting points, but they can also be crutches for lazy performers, and so they get a certain amount of disdain from the hard-core synth community.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.