Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

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Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by monolith » Mon Sep 14, 2015 5:11 am

TL,DR: Sub 37 on the way, Might swap Minimoog for CS-60 - Thoughts/opinion on these synths?

I've been offered a Minty CS-60 in a trade for my Minimoog and am really tempted to do it. Without playing one I was really into the sound from extensive listening to demos and youtube vids. Last week I tried out my friend's CS-80 and in person the CS sound was amazing. I spent the majority of the time only using one layer, essentially limiting it to CS-60 functionality and I was still super impressed with what I heard. To me it seems like the CS poly's are in another class from my current poly's (Juno-6 and Juno-1) The Juno's to me are like pressing the keys to trigger a sound but the CS was more like an instrument in it's own right. I didnt really use the polyphonic aftertouch so I wont miss that.

I've always been indifferent to the CS-80 so i'm certainly not hoping to fulfil some CS80 lust as I know the Cs-60 isnt one. The Minimoog is a cool synth as we all know but I just dont enjoy it that much. In fact, I prefer my Micromoog. I'm actually strongly considering Sub37 after spending a few hours with one too so between that, my SH-2 and Micromoog i'm thinking the Minimoog would be not be too sorely missed.

Anyway, I know its entirely up to me but I'd love to hear your guys thoughts on the CS-60, the Sub 37 and if i'm crazy for even considering this!
Last edited by monolith on Mon Sep 14, 2015 11:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by Alex E » Mon Sep 14, 2015 8:44 am

For the love of God, don't do it. The Mini D is a treasure. I don't have the slightest clue as to why CS prices skyrocketed the way they did.
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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by ppg_wavecomputer » Mon Sep 14, 2015 10:04 am

The CS60 is a lovely Instrument but honestly, I wouldn't let go of a Mini Moog for one.

The 60 is fairly limited in scope, it can sound amazing since it sounds like nothing else but whether or not this type of sound is exactly what you want I don't know.

To me, this looks more like "rid me of that heavy beast and give me some more playable instrument instead".

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by monolith » Mon Sep 14, 2015 10:30 am

ppg_wavecomputer wrote:
To me, this looks more like "rid me of that heavy beast and give me some more playable instrument instead".
Except the CS-60 is even heavier! I like the Minimoog a lot but all it really gets used for is weird feedback style Osc>filter fm leads, any other synth sounds I have covered.
ppg_wavecomputer wrote:.

The 60 is fairly limited in scope, it can sound amazing since it sounds like nothing else but whether or not this type of sound is exactly what you want I don't know.
Therein lies the charm I think, it seems to me that its not like most poly's - it doesn't really do big '80's Prophet/Jupiter pads (yuck!) - It seems more like some strange '70's space organ , not an archetypal Polysynth. In terms of sound I'm certainly not looking for the Jupiter 8 end of the spectrum.

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by Hybrid88 » Mon Sep 14, 2015 11:16 am

hmm the CS60 is a tempting synth for sure but the mini is only going to get more valuable, it is *the* vintage synth, not sure I'd trade mine for anything, and lets face it the 60 cool though it may be just isn't a classic like the Mini or CS80 is.

Just get a cheap D85 Electone if you want that weird 70's Yamaha vibe. ;)

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by smith toppleton » Mon Sep 14, 2015 1:31 pm

Don't do it.

Both are wonderful, unique, and (these days) rare synthesizers, but the Minimoog is in a different class. I can understand if it was for something like an OB-8 or a Prophet 5, but until just a few years ago the CS 50/60 synths were selling for less than half what they're going now, while Minimoogs have hovered around the same price as far back as I've been buying synths (15 years). In my mind, the Mini is worth its asking price in terms of flexibility and raw power while the CS is mostly inflated now due to a lack of working units and high demand for any vintage gear.

Don't get me wrong, I like the CS synths so much that I recently bought a CS-50 for around $1800, so I know how great they play and sound, but if you're not a die-hard fan of the sound then it's not worth losing your Mini over, not to mention having to lug the thing around and redesign your studio set-up to accommodate its size.

Also, don't laugh, but playing a Mini lead through a lush, long reverb actually captures one of the signature CS sounds pretty well, especially if you're good with the vibrato.

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by ppg_wavecomputer » Mon Sep 14, 2015 1:43 pm

monolith wrote:
ppg_wavecomputer wrote:
To me, this looks more like "rid me of that heavy beast and give me some more playable instrument instead".
Except the CS-60 is even heavier! [...] .
I was talking about the CS its current owner wants to get rid of or replace with something smaller (and lighter) like a Mini Mog.

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by monolith » Mon Sep 14, 2015 1:51 pm

smith toppleton wrote:Don't do it.

Both are wonderful, unique, and (these days) rare synthesizers, but the Minimoog is in a different class. I can understand if it was for something like an OB-8 or a Prophet 5
Yeah, see thing is i'm indifferent to the OB-8 and Prophet 5, the kind of sounds I like are NOT big warm pads and *cringe* 'phatness', I usually dial in weird flute-y sounds or maybe what a rhodes would sound like in a parallel universe.

To lay it down I love synths, but HATE big '80's polysynth sounds. The CS seems like a top notch poly that is left of centre and better for it, but maybe i'm just hearing what I want to hear.. :lol:

smith toppleton wrote:Also, don't laugh, but playing a Mini lead through a lush, long reverb actually captures one of the signature CS sounds pretty well, especially if you're good with the vibrato.
Agreed, but even the signature CS sounds aren't the reason I want one!

Maybe I should look to just buy the CS-60 if possible and if I can scrape the $$$ together.


Any more general opinions on the CS-60 as a synth? (Ignoring its value relative to a Minimoog)

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by mmp » Mon Sep 14, 2015 3:41 pm

Many of the early Yamaha's are very expressive instruments. The optical aftertouch on the SY1 & 2 makes them very expressive & musical and the aftertouch on the CS 50 & 60 works almost like velocity control when set up properly. The CS synths can make some very unique sounds with the ring mod and extra aftertouch controlled filter. I will be keeping my CS-60 for a long time.

MiniMoogs are great, too. Of course, the best solution is to find a way to have both.
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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by ppg_wavecomputer » Mon Sep 14, 2015 7:14 pm

monolith wrote: [...] Any more general opinions on the CS-60 as a synth? (Ignoring its value relative to a Minimoog)[/b]
It's a player's instrument that allows you to interact with the sound and the instrument in very musical ways. Everything is well laid-out and the overall feel is of highest quality. There are some weird things about the user Interface and the way Yamaha engineers approached synthesis but this adds to the instrument's character IMO.

The sound of the 60 is nowhere near as massive as its weight and looks suggest, and its character might be perceived as a bit limiting, i. e. limiting it to some kind of one-trick pony. You can make a Prophet 5 sound like an Oberheim or the other way round, a CS will always sound like a CS. It might also take a while until you have found its sweet spot, both in the mix and on the instrument itself.

Maintenance and regular attention are required to keep this instrument alive and playable. That's a lot of responsibility.

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by Allthesound » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:02 am

Getting something like a CS60 is always tempting but at the end of the day its still a 1 VCO synth, I'd be more tempted if it was a CS-70M. But if i had a Model D about the only thing i would trade it for is a Steiner-Parker Synthacon and thats only because it would be easier to find another Model D.
Give me ambiguity or give me something else.

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by Sir Ruff » Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:36 am

The current value of the minimoog is greater than that of the CS-60, which is something to consider. But ignoring that, I don't see why so many are against this. The mini and CS-60 are literally at opposite ends of the synth spectrum in terms of sound/functions, so just because the minimoog is "classic" doesn't mean it can do it all.

CS-60s are definitely not your standard strings 'n' brass type deals. They are organic and weird and quirky--definitely "instruments" and really best used by players--certain things like an incredibly fast attack time (1 sec. max) mean that the only way you're going to get slow attack type sounds are with a pedal or with aftertouch (and even then it will be monophonic). Great for drony interesting pads/efx, funky filter sweeps, etc.

I think if you're not committed to the mini and like the idea of a leftfield poly, then the trade sounds good, but I would ask for some cash on top.
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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by smith toppleton » Tue Sep 15, 2015 2:21 pm

Sir Ruff wrote: I think if you're not committed to the mini and like the idea of a leftfield poly, then the trade sounds good, but I would ask for some cash on top.
Yeah, that's what I was getting at. Both are fantastic synths, it's just the trade itself that I would discourage.

Best option is to keep the Mini and save up for the CS-60. And as Sir Ruff said, they are at opposite ends of the spectrum, so losing one will leave a hole in your set-up that would be hard to replace.

Edit* Sorry, I reread your original post and saw that you have lots of other monos. Still, I got a Voyager and thought I wouldn't need the SE-1X anymore and sold it off, but that's one of the synths I regret selling the most these days. Even mono synths that are similar in spec behave very differently, right? But yeah, if you're not into the Mini then no amount of talk will change that.

Maybe consider selling the Mini for a good price and using some of that money to get the CS-60 and use the rest to replace the Mini with something more unique like a Studio Electronics Boomstar.

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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by mmp » Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:22 pm

It may be a 1osc synth, but that hardly disqualifies it from being a very powerful & musical instrument worth consideration. There are many 2osc polys that I would rid the studio of before the CS60. For me the realtime playability of an instrument has so much more utility than the number of included sub modules, including oscs. I find the aftertouch on the CS50 & 60 to be unlike any other I have played, and the routing and scaling give you a lot of expressivity under your hands. In these days of unlimited tracks, it hard to see much of an issue with 1osc synths, especially those likely destined to full time studio residency.

Allthesound wrote:Getting something like a CS60 is always tempting but at the end of the day its still a 1 VCO synth
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Re: Sub 37, CS-60, Minimoog

Post by smith toppleton » Tue Sep 15, 2015 7:00 pm

Couldn't resist recording a bit of CS-50 through a delay to get that space organ CS sound.
Just some clips of live key mashing jammed together in Ableton.


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