MATRIXSYNTH: YAMAHA CS-40M - Review, Sounds & Demo | Analog Synthesizer

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

YAMAHA CS-40M - Review, Sounds & Demo | Analog Synthesizer


"Yamaha CS-40M analog synthesizer review, sounds and demo. This Yamaha CS-40M review provides an overview of the synth, the CS40M's features and functions, and an extensive sound demo of CS-40M patches, presets and live improvisation.

00:00 - Intro
00:49 - Overview
02:03 - VCO/EG/LFO
06:04 - Ring Mod/Noise
07:15 - VCF/VCA/EG
12:23 - Performance Controls
15:29 - Conclusion
16:45 - Sound Demo

Introduced in 1979, the Yamaha CS-40M is a 2-voice duophonic monosynth with extensive modulation and sound shaping capabilities. It has a 44 note keyboard, 36 knobs, 12 sliders and lots of buttons for hands-on control and editing. There are also 20 patches of memory to store patches and presets.

The Yamaha CS40m has 2 VCOs per voice with triangle, sawtooth, and square (pulse/PWM) per oscillator. It also has 1 LFO (sine, up-ramp, down-ramp, square, and sample-and-hold) with speed and depth control, an AR (attack/release) envelope generator for each VCO/LFO/Ring Mod, and Ring Modulator with speed and depth control.

Also on-board the Yamaha CS0-40M is a simple mixer for both VCOs and noise, as well as a multimode VCF (LP/BP/HP) with cutoff, resonance and ASDR envelope controls which can be modulated via LFO (sine, saw, inverted saw, square, sample & hold). VCO AR and VCF ADSR envelopes can also be inverted.

The CS-40M's VCA features 2 sinewaves for deep bass, as well as modulation via multiple waveshapes (sine, saw, inverted saw, square) plus ADSR envelope control. The VCO, VCF and VCA envelopes also have x5 switches to extend their effect. The Yamaha CS-40M also has CV/Trigger outputs for each voice and CV inputs as well as hands-on performance controls for portamento, sustain, brilliance, volume and filter/pitch.

Although the Yamaha CS 40M only has a single LFO, it can modulate the 2 VCOs, VCF and VCA using different waveforms at each destination. This allows for more complex modulations to be achieved. The Yamaha CS-40M's tone can be described as dusty, earthy, mellow, but also more aggressive at times depending on how it is programmed. It is also a fun synth for analog textures, noise and fx.

The Yamaha CS-40M is quite a large and heavy synth, still somewhat obscure, and not as readily available on the second hand market compared to other more popular synths. As a vintage duophonic analog monosynth, it is capable of interesting sounds and timbres that some may find unique for their music or sound design. As such I do recommend keeping an eye out for the Yamaha CS-40M if you like its overall sound and features."

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