Illuminated Sounds took a trip down to Portland to go check out their synth meet up. Here are the pictures we got.
I got this toy for Christmas to mod from a fellow musician/producer Jarad an accompanying artist in Dub Amor.
I really enjoy this toy. I found a lot of mods for it. I decided to reuse some of the existing buttons on the device, so as it stands I have 10 different mods on it that fall in to 4 categories.
1. Augmentation glitch: causes a glitching of the phrasing while held on. Makes words incomprehensible or sound more interesting.
2. Catalyst: An action that causes a spontaneous, sometimes random noise occurrence.
3. Tone bend: increasing or decreasing voltage somewhere on the toy creates a pitching up and down in the speed of the sound being produced.
4. Word length modifier: differs from a tone bend because modifies the length of her syllables so that they loop or stretch out. instead of slowing down the entire waveform
By popular request I have included some more Musini samples! Enjoy
A couple of months I took my MAX/MSP code for Random7 and rewrote so I could embed it into a hardware version. Random7 Hardware Version 1 (R7H) is a very basic version of the Random7 software. The core element of R7H is still the same, the program randomly picks from 7 different midi notes. As of now the key R7H is preset to the key of A Major, and the only control is a potentiometer that controls the speed of R7H. Output for R7H is a midi port, an on/off switch, and there is also a red led the flashes everytime a note is sent. The some of the next additions I plan to the hardware are a midi input to provide midi sync options, a small lcd to provide useful information such as tempo and key, and allow user to pick from any diatonic major key. The microcontroller I am using for this is the arduino built into a d.i. box housing. Here are some pictures.
Here is the latest project I just did for one of my DJ friends. He uses Native Instruments Traktor Pro and controls it with the Vestax VCI-100. A while back he asked me to mod his controller with arcade buttons, and I final got around to doing it for him. Here are some pictures of the progression of the mod. This is not a difficult modification, the toughest part was cutting the holes fir the buttons which I did with a hand drill.
Original VCI-100 Layout
VCI-100 taken out of casing with old buttons still attached.
VCI-100 reassembled with new buttons
So Mike and I found some cheap $2 touch screens from a used computer parts store. They are 4-wire resistive touch screens from various manufacturers. Now everybody knows about the Arduino, and if you don’t it’s basically a Quick-n-Easy prototyping board equipped with 14 digital pins (6 of which can provide PWM output), and 6 analog pins. the chip is an ATmega168 with limited functionality. It reads a modified version of C++ so writing code for it is fairly straight forward, without much variance from that of C++.
I used two analog pins and one digital pin for this project. I wired the touch screen to the 3v pin, the Gnd pin and the analog pins 0 and 1 set to input. In the code (digital) Pin 3 is set to PWM out. I wired the output jack to Gnd and Pin 3. The code generates a sine wave that has it’s frequency and volume variables mapped to the touch screens X and Y. So for example I have my finger at 0 X, 0 Y then my frequency will be 30 and my volume will be around 1 db. As I move up the X the frequency changes and as I move up the Y so does the volume. The frequencies jump up the pentatonic scale and if you put multiple fingers on it then it adds the values together and you get into the way higher frequencies.
I added leds underneath for looks and for functionality so I could remember the location of particular sounds. Altogether its pretty basic but kinda fun. here are some recordings of it that I just made while sitting here making this post.
The ODD (optical distortion device)
I made a device that simply sends audio through an infrared LED and on the other side you hear the results. There is an RGB LED inside to cause different levels of different colors of light on inside the box. Its kind of an odd thing to do and it causes pleasing distortion of the audio effects being sent though when you lower the threshold of light. There is also a nice thing that happens when you send audio as a beam of light flashing on another led underneath the IR control, you get a splicing effect that I cant explain, here are some of the results.
This is a sample of a pure beat that I will show you for demonstration
Click here to play Clean.wav
This is a sample of me turning down the RGB light on the inside of the box bringing the brightness of the light inside the box from full to min. you can hear the high frequencies start to roll off then the crunchyness start to come though. I have automated this control with the beat in previous recordings and you can make some great effects like bringing in one drum hit nice and clear and making the rest of the beat all squashed and crunchy.. I do this and make layers of beats that sound nice and complex.
Click here to play dirty.wav
Here is the same beat with misc voices talking that I recorded off the radio and have played into my “led speaker” wheres it can effect the audio being sent through the infrared LED.
Click here to play Format.wav
This is a LED speaker like the one is inside the odd
This is a clip of the beat I used in a song called “Tooth Fairy” using the Odd that you can check out for the project I call Dub Amor at http://myspace.com/noisedub or http://dubamor.fuzz.com
Click here to play tooth fairy beat
So a couple of months ago, James and I were playing with manipulating music and sound using light. While doing this we stumbled on what seems to be the simplest light thermin. The circuit has a total of 4 components; 150 Ohm resistor, 9 volt battery, a speaker, and is mainly driven by the TSL230R Light to Frequency Converter made by Parallax Inc.
We got the circuit to work with speakers and various audio jacks. All components were bought at our local Radio Shack for around 10 dollars. This is a real simple project for people new or just interested in sound and light manipulation, and it only takes five to ten minutes to build.
Charles Martin made an awesome patch in Pure Data last year that analyzes an audio input and then uses pitch and amplitude information to output a midi control value. This works great with the Light to Sound converter, and turns it into a cheap easy to build midi controller. Check out the link below.