Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

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Yoozer
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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by Yoozer » Mon Jul 07, 2014 7:03 pm

Voice boards - I expect the least amount of miniaturization from those. Even SMT will have people complaining about how it just won't sound the same, with thru-hole you can at least claim a degree of authenticity - plus, it's fixable for mere mortals ;)

The first target would of course be the keyboard - voice assignment and CV generation etc. The whole preset system should also be pretty doable. Anything with regard to control signals that doesn't run at audio rates - while the whole issue of slow CPUs is already long solved, actual circuitry for audio rate would again be one of those things you could win converts with.

The question is - would that cut the bulk? As said, the keys aren't light-weight either. Chopping the unit in two could at least make that part more manageable for carrying - without much loss, I think. It's not hammer action anyway.
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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by Bitexion » Mon Jul 07, 2014 7:15 pm

The thing is, that 99% of those decrying it for not sounding "original" has never played or even SEEN a CS-80 in real life.

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by ppg_wavecomputer » Mon Jul 07, 2014 10:05 pm

I can´t see any point in recreating the same type of cabinet, made from tolex-covered plywood. That could be made from a solid sheet-metal/plastic compound quite as well (think Kurzweil K2500 or Yamaha VL-1). No need for the presets in hardware -- if the unit comes with memory, you can just include the presets as factory patches.

The keyboard with polyphonic aftertouch and velocity sensing, the way the controls are laid out, feel and respond, the ribbon controller, the ring modulator, and the two voice sections are what makes the 80 stand out. I for one could do with a vaguely CS70-ish design, as long as the user interface is 95% the same. I could even do with only 90% of the sound...

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by haj » Tue Jul 08, 2014 8:16 am

hfinn wrote:Here are some sounds the CS-80 are capable of. I recorded this all testing the functions of a CS-80 that I had just finished restoring a few years ago.

Sounds SO great, thanks for sharing. Is it overdubbed? I hear the 'dirtiness' which covers over the entire sound vintage, same feel from my old MS20, and like it, but wonder if that dirtiness comes from the aged components and the sound was clear when the synth was new.

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by madtheory » Tue Jul 08, 2014 1:34 pm

Ring mod always sounds dirty. MS20 ring mod especially so, and the Korg filter just sounds like that anyway. Attributing it to aged components is an error of causation.

Would be great to have hfinn back around here! :)

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by Bitexion » Tue Jul 08, 2014 2:40 pm

Or Mr Rich, who I still believe was Rick Wakeman in disguise. He had a whole warehouse full of vintage gear. Not many ppl have that who weren't active touring musicians for 3 decades..

He was a very active poster, but would constantly refuse to tell ppl who he was or what he was doing in the industry.

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by madtheory » Tue Jul 08, 2014 4:23 pm

O ya, he was a great poster. If only because he actually used all of the synths we lust after, for a living.

I could tell you who he is, but then I'd have to eat you :) But I can guarantee he is not Wakeman. Anyway a look at the gear would tell you that- Wakeman wouldn't have a clue what to do with all that outboard, and famously hates rakcmounted synths :)

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by Bitexion » Tue Jul 08, 2014 4:46 pm

Oh well, there goes that guess down the drain. Could be some producer for all I know of course. I never got to know him enough.

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by ajkandy » Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:09 am

I was thinking about what an updated CS80 would be like. Maybe it goes without saying, but I would want it to be lighter, smaller, more reliable, updated with modern connectivity, and much more affordable - Maybe $2500-$3000 depending on keybed type / size.

As a UI designer, one of the trickiest things about updating a beloved all-analog design is how to balance making it approachable and intuitive for new musicians, keeping the hardware costs reasonable re: control design, and still maintaining the CS80's signature expressivity.

And even then, I would ask, what controls are innate to its "CS80-ness" and what could be replaced or updated? What controls really need to be on the front panel?

For instance, if we were to try to go to digital controls/displays and keep a 1:1 recreation of the original, we start going down the road of the Alesis Andromeda or the John Bowen Solaris, or the recently announced Modulus 002; then we're making a boutique synth priced out of the range of gigging musicians.

From a manufacturing perspective I'd want to reduce parts, make things more (small-m) modular for the sake of testing and servicing; get rid of the cable spaghetti; and lower the power use overall.

How do you balance this with keeping the CS80 sound? Does a filter really need all-discrete components, or will surface-mount do? Or could you reduce that all to custom analog IC? I don't have an easy answer for that, but I think a company with patents and resources could solve it if they set their minds to it.

If we're not going to be purist about it... I wouldn't be opposed to a virtual analog or hybrid version if it could get 95% of the way there. Leaving aside the CS80V, recent synths like the Elektron Analog Keys, Studiologic Sledge and the Roland GAIA show that you can get a big sound at a reasonable price, and still have good live-performance / quick-edit responsiveness.

Looking at the GAIA specifically, I think it balances the knobbiness vs "mode buttons" question very well. Would you really need two sets of physical controls for each voice if you had something like the GAIA's 3 voices?

Yamaha seem more focused on the "performance keyboards" segment of the market these days. They've steadily but surely moved away from "knobbiness" - whereas Korg and Roland have enthusiastically picked up the torch.

I don't know if it's in the cards, but imagine a team-up where Roland were to produce a VA CS-8000 under license from Yamaha... one that could be battery-powered and easily carried under one arm? :) Imagine some of the better Roland design choices and proprietary features like the D-beam alongside the ribbon controller and modulation levers... or replacing levers for digital ribbons, etc.
Last edited by ajkandy on Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by sneakthief » Fri Jul 18, 2014 8:32 am

ajkandy - I already mentioned CS(R)80 twice in this thread. Even on the previous page.
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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by ajkandy » Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:40 pm

Doh! Sorry. Edited.

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by pflosi » Sat Jul 19, 2014 12:22 am

Nevertheless a nice first post! :welcome:

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Re: Would you buy a CS80 if re-released?

Post by ajkandy » Sat Jul 19, 2014 4:17 am

pflosi wrote:Nevertheless a nice first post! :welcome:
who, me? :) awww, thanks.

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