Casio CZ-1000

Casio CZ-1000 Image

Coming from Casio you might assume entry-level and that just about sums up the CZ-1000. Fortunately it's become known for having a surprisingly good 8-stage envelope. It also uses Phase Distortion (PD) synthesis so it is quite capable of some cool digital/analog sounds! PD is Casio's own take on digital synthesis from the mid-eighties and is found in all of their CZ series. You basically modify digital waveforms (sine waves) to create various sounds. It can create wild new sounds, notably percussive sounds. But it's not too easy to program if you don't know much about waveform theory and design.

Three sets of 8-stage envelope sections are used to modulate your sounds extensively. The first is used to modify the DCO pitches over time. Another 8-stage envelope section in the DCW is used to modify the Phase Angle over time (like filtering). Finally the DCA amplifier also has an 8-stage envelope to modify the volume of sounds over time. For further tweaking the CZ-1000 employs some surprisingly analog effects. Four types of Vibrato make up a simple LFO-type section with triangle, square, ramp up or down waveforms as well as rate, depth and delay settings. Portamento adds that classic glide effect from one note to the next. Double up on the oscillators with 4-note polyphony. Built-in noise and ring modulation. It's also MIDI equipped with 4 monophonic multitimbral parts. However, with only 32 patches (16 preset, 16 user) storage is a bit slim.

The CZ-1000 is a CZ-101 with full sized keys. It is succeeded by the CZ-3000 and CZ-5000 which really fatten up the synth and provide more professional features and looks. However the CZ-1000 is without a doubt the best low-cost means of truly useable sounds for pads and lead synth sounds. It was used by Vince Clarke and Eat Static.

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39 Visitor comments
October 11, 2009 @ 1:47 pm
I bought a CASIO CZ-1000 from a friend that is changing everything to Virtual Synth's/VST, etc., Actually I got a Roland JX-10, a KORG POLY-800,and a KORG DSS-1 at a time.
The bad thing is that the CZ-1000 has 3 keys very damaged and I would like to change the complete keyboard assembly. Does anyone know where can I found this part??
June 14, 2009 @ 8:29 am
Also used by Blancmange on the album "Believe You Me" (1985).
April 7, 2009 @ 5:03 am
Also used by The Mourning After (EMB-Pop/ Schweden)
December 26, 2008 @ 4:55 pm
The CZ1000 is awesome!

Do NOT be put off by the presets as they are really not great and it takes literally a second to make a better sound.

It is easy to create awesome sweeps, pads and basses, and the detune button fattens up any sound in no time.

Apart from the 4 note polyphony which is neccesary most of the time, this is really a great machine.

As someone said on youtube: "its like a Yamaha DX7 and a Minimoog had a child, genetically cross-bred with the Roland Jupiter 8."

They were right!
October 28, 2008 @ 9:05 pm
I`ve actually found a brand new LCD display for this synth.It took me about 15minutes to install it and it works like new.I can now program it and see what i`m doing! With a bit of detuning and modulating it doesn`t sound half bad.Great what you can pick up cheap thse days!!!

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  • The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 8 notes (8 oscillators)
  • Oscillators - Digital Phase Distortion Synthesis (sine, saw, square, pulse, resonance, double-sine, saw-pulse)
  • #Instruments - 4 part multitimbral
  • DCW - 8-stage envelope generators with level and rate controls with Key Follow (Adjusts Phase Angle)
  • DCA - 8-stage envelope generators with level and rate controls with Key Follow (Adjusts Volume)
  • Keyboard - 49 keys
  • Memory - 16 preset, 16 internal and 16 cartridge patches
  • Control - YES
  • Date Produced - 1985

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