Casio FZ-1

Casio FZ-1 Image

The Casio FZ-1 is an impressive sampler/synthesizer keyboard from 1987. Its offerings at the time were very professional features. In an 8-voice polyphonic full 61-note keyboard synthesizer you get a 16-bit digital sampler with variable 9kHz to 36kHz sampling rates. 1MB of memory expandable to 2MB could provide a maximum time of almost 2 minutes sample time at 9kHz. Up to 64 samples can be held in memory and placed across the keyboard. Graphic editing on the big LCD screen provides intuitive and easier editing of your samples with tuning, truncating, looping and much more. It also has eight outputs and analog-like 8-stage filters (DCF) and envelopes (DCA).

Casio FZ-10M Image


Surprisingly the FZ-1 also has a built-in synthesizer section. It uses digital synthesis employing both harmonic additive synthesis and waveform drawing. Basic waveforms available include sawtooth, square, pulse, double sine, saw/pulse, random waves and 48 harmonics. The FZ-10M (pictured above) is the rack-module version of the FZ-1 with 2MB internal memory and XLR inputs and outputs. Dated by today's standards, the FZ-1 is a neat piece of Casio history to own but could never replace your current sampler. With the look and features you'd expect from a vintage pro-sampler, this Casio has been used by Underworld, Kronos Quartet, Dee Lite, 2 Live Crew, and Kitaro.

Hohner HS-1 Image

The Hohner HS-1 is a German version of the Casio FZ-1. Only its case is light in color. This version has been used by Coldcut.

Lookup Casio FZ-1 Prices

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Are you looking to buy or sell a Casio FZ-1? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

45 Visitor comments
April 7, 2009 @ 4:56 am
It was used by Vince CLARKE (Erasure)
March 27, 2009 @ 2:24 am
...the demo tune is really nice ;)
i'm hip hop, but its really nice
Nick Esposito
March 14, 2009 @ 10:46 am
Did the FZ-1 use Phase Distortion synthesis like the CZ series?
February 21, 2009 @ 11:10 pm
I got an FZ-1 in 1990 as I had figured out a sampler was essential to making hip-hop records. I found it a pain to navigate from sampling to editing to assigning keyboard range and outputs (that's all I ever really did), but I got fast, memorizing the number of "up arrow, left arrow, down arrow" etc. to get where I needed fast. I ended up doing about 7 rap and dance records with it, an Alesis MMT-8 sequencer and a Fostex R-8 reel-to-reel and a few other synths and drum machines before moving on. The good old days!
Ben Anderson
February 13, 2009 @ 2:48 pm
I bought this sampler as I'm a huge fan of the Casio pro-line from the 80s. The Casio line fails to disapoint once again! It's a great sampler with great sound clarity even by todays standards. Very easy to use with a very gritty sound character. The filter is a beast! The resonance is so strong it distorts the audio! In short: highly versitile, powerful and charming sampler, I'd buy it again if it was stolen or damaged beyond repair.
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  • Check Price
  • 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.
  • Demos & Media
  • Audio Clip 1 - Here's a demo from the Honer HS-1 version. It has a resonant bass-line with filter sweeps, electro-drums and a few lead synth blips and bleeps.

  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 8 voices
  • Sampler - 16-bit, 9kHz - 36kHz variable sample rate; Sample-time: 58 seconds max. at 9kHz, 14.5 seconds at 36kHz
  • Effects - None
  • Filter - DCF 8-stage Filter
  • Keyboard - 61 keys with velocity and aftertouch
  • Memory - 1MB internal, 3.5"HD
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1987

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