For the tiny-fingered, space-challenged mono-synth lover, the vintage Yamaha CS-01 might need to be in your collection.
It was obviously marketed to the young, first synth buyer, market. However, dispite it’s mini-sized keys, it has been since adopted by many professionals for it’s simple design, active sliders, and great sound.
Vintage Synth Explorer says:
The CS-01 may look simple or toy-like but it is still able to create cool little analog bass blips, bass lines and bass bubbles that are just perfect for today’s electronic musicians.
It was the last full-analog monosynth that Yamaha made before going digital.
They came in two colour combinations – grey with light grey lettering (pictured) or red (yes, even then) with grey lettering.
Probably its most notable feature was its breath (well, spit) controller input, as Yamaha tried to branch into ‘alternative controllers’. I’m not sure how elegant it looks to be spitting into your keyboard, controlling its VCA and VCF, and you certainly can’t sing at the same time (do synthesists sing?) -still, an interesting if underused feature.
According to Synth Heaven and Vintage Synth Explorer, this synth was played by: Barry Blue, Andy Cheetham, Chick Corea, Steve Gray, Michael Law, Adrian Lee, John Medeski, Icelandic 80’s jazzfunk band Mezzoforte, OMD, Dust Brothers, Underworld, Tim Simenon, Patrick Swayze.
Errr, hang on… Patrick Swayze?
Synthesis type: Analog subtractive
Oscillators per voice: 1
Waveforms: sine, square, triangle, PWM, narrow square, noise
Controllers: breath control jack, pitch/mod wheels, LFO
Keyboard: 32 mini-keys
Audio: 1 out