The other waveforms gave access
to other sounds and the various 'Resonance' waveforms allowed something
resembling a resonant filter sweep to be created.
You could control the amount of phase distortion using
LFOs and envelope generators that allowed you to go some way to
mimicking many typical analogue sounds. However....
The CZ101 was an all-digital synth and sounded like one!
it could create some interesting 'digital' synth sounds but as an
analogue synth emulator, it sounded rather thin and weedy! However,
it was possible to split the eight voices to set layers which could
be detuned for a fatter sound and so, used as a 4-voice synth, it
was possible to create some decent sounds.
It had an impressive spec too - three 8-stage envelopes
per voice (one for pitch, one for PD waveshaping and one for amplitude)
and several LFOs, it also had a ring modulator and noise generator
and, amazingly for the time, it was also four-part multi-timbral
with a respectable MIDI spec. In all, despite its toy-like appearance,
it was quite a good little synth. It was probably not suitable as
your only synth but as a cheap expander, it was (and still
is) a useful musical tool.
Casio followed the CZ101 with larger models with full
size keyboards and more sound shaping facilities culminating in
the VZ series of keyboards and modules. However, whilst there was
a large user-base out there, the product line wasn't a huge success
(it was, after all, yet another product battling it out with the
DX7!) and the CZ/VZ-series were eventually disbanded.
The Nostalgia Casio CZ101 sounds come from Simon Metson
who has given us a selection of brass and percussion sounds and
also from Gareth Lucking who has given us a multi-sampled CZ cheezy
organ sound. I'm extremely grateful to both donors.