Synth DB

The Ultimate Synthesizer Database


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Yamaha | CS30


It features two voltage controlled oscillators (VCOs), two voltage controlled filters (VCFs - both featuring low-pass, band-pass and high-pass options), two voltage controlled amplifiers (VCAs) and three envelope generators. It also sports a ring modulator and a voltage controlled low-frequency oscillator (LFO).

It is fairly unusual for a hard-wired synthesizer in that it features a variety of switches which allow the user to re-route the signal flow from the usual VCO-VCF-VCA convention. For example, VCO 1 can output a square wave through VCF 1 whilst also outputting a high-pass filtered sawtooth wave through VCO 2. Another example is that the envelope generators can be assigned to any of the VCO, VCF and VCA modules and can also be inverted. Because the LFO is voltage controlled, the oscillating speed can be governed by an envelope generator and different waveforms can be applied to the other modules all at the same time. The CS30/CS30L also features an external signal input for filtering other musical instruments and audio sources, which can also be used as a modulation source.

The major difference between the CS30 and the CS30L is that the former includes an onboard eight step analogue sequencer. The latter came with chrome legs and was built into a tolex case for easier transportation.

Because of its signal routing flexibility, the CS30/CS30L is generally considered to be an excellent source of bizarre electronic sounds.
Engine TypeAnalog
Voices (max)1
Engine Detailed2 VCO, Pulse, Saw Down, Sine, Square
Filter (VCF)2 12dB Slope (2-pole), Band Pass, High Pass, Low Pass, Resonance
Envelope (VCA)2 amplifiers and 3 envelopes
FXRing mod.
Sequencer8 notes, 1 pattern
Key typeKeys
CV-gateCV/Gate, Trigger in
Produced:1977 - 1980
Legend: Obvious Y: Yes, N: No, N/A: Not Applicable
VCO Voltage Controlled Oscillator DCO Digital Controlled Oscillator
LFO Low Frequency Oscillator Sub Sub Oscillator
VCF Voltage Controlled Filter VCA Voltage Controlled Amplifier
Velocity As with a piano, the harder you hit a key, the louder the sound, unlike most organs which always produce the same loudness no matter how hard you hit a key. Aftertouch Pressing a key after you activated it. Channel Aftertouch, no matter which key, it will send a Channel message. Poly Aftertouch, sends the pressure per key instead of the whole channel.
Values for OSC, LFO, Filter, Envelope are per voice unless stated otherwise.

Manuals, patches etc.


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