Resources

Soundslice is Awesome

Anyone who has ever tried searching online for guitar or bass tabulature will surely agree what they find is simply crap. Difficult to read ASCII diagrams of tab on sites littered with advertising and a layout that’s ugly as hell.

This is where Soundslice.com comes in and blows everyone out of the water.

Soundslice is an online community where that tabulature is sourced by the musicians with and absolutely incredible layout. Tabulature and chord patterns for multiple instruments is provided at the bottom of the screen while video of the actual song, or musician performing the song, synched with the tabulature found at the bottom.

The old…

ascii_tab

The new…

soundslice_example_1

Electric Guitar Solo, Crazy Sweep Picking Arpeggios, Praxis Etude No. 2 | Soundslice.

Here’s a great talk from Adrian Holovaty at 37Signals: http://37signals.com/talks/soundslice

Marchand Electronics

Marchand Electronics manufactures and sells hand built and custom designed audio equipment. Phil Marchand produces active, passive, solid state and tube crossovers, power amps for audio or laboratory usage, tube and solid state pre-amps, bass eq, discrete op amps, and many more items.
It’s worth noting he has three free

software tools for the audio enthusiast.   The coolest is simple component calculator for capacitor and resistor values for a variety of crossover models with crossover frequency and slope variables. I know this can probably be accomplished easily in excel these days but I’m personally a fan of dedicated tools that do one thing well.

Marchand-Frequency-Module-Calculator_600

Marchand-RTA_600

 

 

I Dream of Wires: Made in Canada – Modcan & Intellijel on Vimeo

i_dream_of_wires_600_1

i_dream_of_wires_600_2

I Dream of Wires: Made in Canada – Modcan & Intellijel from MUTEK on Vimeo

via I Dream of Wires: Made in Canada – Modcan & Intellijel on Vimeo.

YM2149 MIDI Synthesizer on ZPUino Soft Processor

The YM2149 MIDI Synthesizer on ZPUino Soft Processor

YM2149-MIDI-Synthesizer

Quoting the author of this post on gadgetfactory.net

By using the Open Source VHDL files for popular audio chips from places like FPGAArcade.com and Opencores.com we could eliminate all the wires, soldering, and wasted GPIO pins. Integrating popular audio chips like the C64 SIDAtari POKEY, and YM2149 into the ZPUino would put them under control of Arduino sketches. Effectively opening up all the Arduino libraries to control the audio chips.

In layman’s terms… awesome.  Use Arduino to easily control vintage audio chips.

Muffwiggler DIY Forums

There’s absolutely too many great posts, pictures, and threads relating to DIY synthesis (and other topics) on Muffwiggler.  I’ve highlighted a couple posts below but if you want to kill a few hours or need inspiration while setting up your own work-space the Picture thread under Music Tech DIY kills it.

Take a look at two of my favorites

User Magman shows off his insane magazine and manual collection.  According to his post:

You are looking at complete or virtually complete collections of Elektor, ETI, Practical Electronics, Maplin Electronics, E&MM, Sound on Sound, Future Music, The Mix, Computer Music, 45 years worth of Wireless World and a large collection of Everyday Electronics, amongst others. By the way, this is less than half of my collection, which currently stands at over 9000 magazines and counting.

muffwiggler_magman_600

 

And Slaughterhousesam has a series of great pics of his rig and setup. this is just one of them and you can find the rest here. This one is fun for testing your gear-spotting skills.muffwiggler_slaughterhousesam_600

Books Thomas Henry – Magic Smoke Electronics

There are very few dedicated DIY electronic music/synth cookbooks/reference books available out there so when ever I come across some I try to snatch them up. you can get all six of these spiral bound books from Thomas Henry for under $90 which cover some very specific topics for DIY synthesis and electronic music.

  • An Analog Synthesizer for the 21st Century  – $20.00
  • The Electronic Drum Cookbook  – $15.00
  • Making Music with the 3080 OTA  – $13.00
  • Making Music with the 566  – $13.00
  • Making Music with the NE570 Compander  – $13.00
  • The Noise Generator Cookbook  – $13.00

Synthesizer design books by Thomas Henry – Magic Smoke Electronics.

The Boom Case Store

I’m warming up to these hand made, custom order ‘stereos’ dubbed “Boom Cases”.  Get it?  Suitcase + Bass = ‘Boom Case’.  I’ve posted a couple of my favorites along with a couple of the more preposterous vanity shots.  Seriously though I can’t figure out if I love these or hate them.  As long as I never see these in the hands of roaming gangs of suburban youth in malls across america I think I love them.  From the website:

The BoomCase is a Self Powered, Portable Suitcase Stereo system that works with your iPod/iPhone or any device with a headphone jack. The BoomCase will last 10+ hours on a single charge (Charger Included). In addition to running on batteries, The BoomCase can also be plugged in when the party goes inside. To save on weight, you can opt for a plug-in only version.

Mighty Mini Gator

In the WTF category…
Spruce Goose

The Ripper

Reverse Engineering the Korg Monotribe Firmware Upgrade

An excellent post (and useful comments) on the reverse engineering of the Korg Monotribe firmware update which apparently is provided as an audio file.  I’ll definitely be checking back on this regularly to watch Gravitronic’s progress.

GRAVITRONIC: Decoding the Korg Monotribe Firmware Upgrade.

Workshop Osc Machine (W.O.M.)

An excellent thread detailing a build of the ‘Workshop Oscillator Machine’ (WOM) via Bugbrand. The WOM is a tone generator/oscillator designed around an NXP Hex Inverter and an NXP Hex Schmitt Trigger. What i particularly like about this kit is that it’s designed with the intent of usage in workshop and educational events and includes all required parts. Although i have not personally built this kit, I suspect by looking at it that it’s a nice balance between ease of build and functionality. And if you were so inclined Bugbrand includes the schematic on their site so you could always wire one up on your own, sans pcb, and see what happens.

WOM - Bugbrand

ATXMega32D4 microcontroller and the BassBoy


This is the first time I’m posting on a product. But a monophonic bass synth based on the Atmel ATXMega32D4 microcontroller a for only $29 bucks is a pretty good deal if you ask me. What I really like though is the inclusion of a full schematic, something of a rarity these days in consumer electronic products. Available via MikroElektonika.

From the manual:

BassBoy is a monophonic digital MIDI controlled bass synthesizer. Device receives all information via MIDI input (connector).Sampling frequency is 31.25KHz which generates audio range up to 15.625Khz. Although it’s based on 8-bit processor, the signal processing inside the unit is 16-bit. The unit consists of oscillator which generates SAW & SQUARE WAVE using 16-bit band-limited wavetables, thus making the number of harmonics limited. After that, the signal itself goes through a simple implementation of MOOG filter, whose frequency range is chosen by MIDI commands and which is affected by the level of the envelope. The filtered signal then comes to the controlled amplifier, which creates the signal shape, and in the end through DAC (WM8762) and pre-amp circuit goes to the audio jack 6.35mm. The unit is mono, and 6.35mm jack is also used as carrier for the circuit board itself.