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  CS-80 At a Glance
Click for larger view arrowReleased: 1976  Specifications
arrowUser rating: 4.8/5 |  Read reviews (29)
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Ruud Heij writes:
This is the synth that can surpass Moog`s original Taurus bass pedal, with its prodigious bass end. And its polyphonic as well, with the same electronics as two complete CS-60`s, coupled to a weighted 61 note keyboard with polyphonic aftertouch, and separate velocity plus aftertouch settings for each of its two channels.

It has a Ring modulator which is really an Amplitude modulator, because it`s equipt with an lfo and a depth control, so that you can also create tremolo effects. The ring modulator has the unique possibility that an EG can vary the LFO speed.

A stereo chorus/tremolo is also included, but sounds quite noisy. It adds however to the very distinctive sound of the CS-80, which is unique, also because each of its two channels, has seperate High pass and Low pass filters, and a sine wave from the VCO`s that go directly to the VCA`s, because there is nothing to filter on a sine wave, and so preserving the bass end, when using the High pass filters.

Smart boy`s those Yamaha people you might think, were it not that the CS-80`s inside look like a telephone exchange, so that fault-finding can be a nightmare if you are not an expert on music electronics. Also when you know that the service manual consists of 67 pages. Nevertheless it`s a wonderfull machine (if you can keep it running) that has found its way into many profesional musicians studio, and some of them still using it today.

I will surely keep mine as long as it holds up, and still can be repared if needed. When you want to buy one, know that it can cost you a fortune, if you have troubles with it. But when it keeps working, it can be one of the most wonderfull synthesizers that you will ever have.

Comments About the Sounds:
Can sound just as massive as it weights (100 KG). But also very thin like most of its presets are.
Sonic - Really the flagship of Yamaha's analog range - famously used by a number of 'top' synthesists -
Peter Gabriel, Vangelis (think blade runner) and Bill Nelson - you're really limitied only by imagination. Personally, I would love if it wasn't for it's nightmare reliability problems.

(Thanks to Ruud Heij for this info.)
and Richard Clews for the pic

Links for the Yamaha CS-80
 More Synth Gear  Best US prices on many current models
CS80 MIDI retrofit update Powered by KENTON electronics
YAMAHA CS80 Real Audio Site Also Mailing List available.
Maintaining the Yamaha CS-80 Detailed, illustrated information on Yamaha CS-series synthesizer maintenance.
Cs80 in action
Nico Demonte's CS80V Patches Nico's Patches for use with Arturia's CS80V ; excellent sounds for this legendary synth emulation
Yamaha Av articles and resources about Yamaha

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