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December 28, 2010

My circuit bent keyboard playing “Jingle Bells”

This little beast of a keyboard is so lofi it’s ridiculous.. it’s a rompler which must have like 4 bit audio samples stored on it, and the notes are transposed so the C key plays an A note. It’s so bad, it’s good! Kinda like the paint job lol.. bright ass pink with yellow and teal buttons :eek: … but it actually makes some pretty dirty sounds, especially the drum samples.

Mods include
2 distortion buttons
4 “glitch” switches/buttons
fine and coarse pitch knobs
IR sensor (not demonstrated in this video, but when enabled, pitch responds to IR sources like light bulbs or TV remote controls.. remotes actually make cool LFOs )
3 body contacts
1/4″ mono output

For the holidays i made a video of the keyboard playing one of the built in songs, Jingle Bells (aka “song 3″). Enjoy :D

December 18, 2010

My First (Homemade) Analog Synth

I’ve been noodling around with circuit bending recently. It’s pretty fun turning toys into noise-making monstrosities, but you don’t always have the fine control you want, and sometimes it’s just fun to make things from scratch.

I started reading about 555 timers which can be used to generate tones, LFOs, or really run anything that needs a clock. I’m planning on building some step sequencers to add to some of my music toys, but for now, here is my first analog synth. It’s made from just a few parts which cost only dollar or two. It generates a nasty squarewave, but it’s fun lol. I need to figure out how to get other waveforms. Right now I can only modify the duty cycle, and it seems in some “modes” the duty cycle changes with the frequency. I think I can rewire it to be stable, but I’m just learning.

Anyways, here’s a few pics and some audio.
Audio: trikomes-1st-synth.mp3


December 1, 2010

Creating Custom Delays and Pre-fader Sends in FLStudio with ‘Senderella’ (Free VST)

Two things you can’t do with the FLS mixer are

1. You cannot route a mixer track to itself or any mixer track that is routed to it. This means you can’t create custom delays and other kinds of feedback loops

2. You cannot send audio before the fader to another mixer track besides the sends

I used to use Senderella a long time ago before FLS had any kind of bussing, but kind of forgot about it once FLS was improved. Recently though I wanted to create my own custom delays since you can create unique effects by adding distortion, eq, automation, etc and realized Senderella could help

Senderella is a free VST plugin available from KVR

Custom delays
The basic concept behind a custom delay is you create a feedback loop with a single tap delay in the middle. Each time the delayed audio goes through the loop, it is processed with eq, filters, distortion, etc, so that each delay is shaped how you like.

You put a Senderella that is set to ‘Return’ at the top of the mixer, and a Senderella set to ‘Send’ at the bottom of the mixer channel. Adjust the send volume to taste to prevent feedback. (During experimentation I recommend putting a Limiter below the lower Senderella to prevent runaway feedback)

You can create a single tap delay using the delay 2 and turning the feedback all the way down, as well as turing the dry signal all the way down.

Add some processing effects and away you go. I’ve attached an example

Pre-fader sends

Pre-fader sends are sends which are not affected by the mixer track fader. To create one, simply place the send on the last mixer track, and the return on the first mixer track that you want to receive the audio. (The same concept as the feedback loop only you’re sending to a different mixer track.

One thing to be aware of is that there is some latency introduced when using Senderella. It’s ok for delays and other time based effects, but when doing parallel processing you will need to compensate for the latency. I haven’t investigated what the latency value is and/or how to determine it. Also not sure of the internal bitrate of the audio.. i’m guessing 16bit perhaps.. so watch your levels

There’s an example FLP file available on Image-Line’s forum: http://forum.image-line.com/viewtopic.php?t=63666

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