I was intending to get this done for Robert Moog’s birthday but didn’t quite get it finished in time. I took the basic MiniMoog layout and tried to pare it down as much as possible to get cute/miniature but still useable and recognizably Moog styled synth. This is the first time I have tried modelling a full 3D interface and I didn’t quite nail the look I was after. It’s not quite finished yet as I had to overhaul all my previous GUI code to handle the 3D interface.
I was experimenting with using a mic as a breath controler so decided to try a CS01 emulation. Using the mic as breath controller didn’t really work out so I ditched it, but the synth itself is ok. The breath control responds to both midi expression and breath messages. Click to play:
I haven’t tried much in the way of FM so decided to have a play with a basic 4 operator DX100esq synth. The GUI is a bit more polished than my previous synths (finally put shadows on the keyboard) but the sound not so much. I have also started a new gaming project at last so haven’t had time to come up with many proper demo patches.
Checking out the videos from Musikmesse I came across the pretty awesome looking Korg Monotron. I decided to knock up a quick version as I am currently working on MS-20 style filters and thought this would be a nice test platform.
I had to guess pretty much how it works as I don’t have much to go on, not even the vco shape (sounds like a saw to me). Obviously won’t sound nearly as good as the real thing but might give some idea of the kinds of sounds it could produce.
I was totally amazed today to get an email from none-other than the designer of the Monotron himself. He congratulated me on the implementation and gave me a few hints:
– filter doesn’t sound nearly as aggressive at maximum peak.
– LFO is slower at minimum (about 15s period) and faster at maximum (>1kHz).
– monotron resets the LFO at the moment the ribbon is touched, so it
works like a simple cycling EG at slow LFO rates.
– monotron has fixed intensity keytrack. cutoff tracks ribbon position
by factor of two. only tracks ribbon not pitch knob.
I made the adjustments above and also added keyboard control for the ribbon.
It doesn’t sound particularly good at extreme modulation, something that is very hard to do digitally and where analogs really shine. I’ll have to come back to this one when I get my hands on a real Monotron and try getting a bit closer to that beautiful analog squelching.
Special thanks to Tatsuya Takahashi and Korg, can’t wait for the real thing!
I tend to have great difficulty finishing anything as I loose interest after about a week and also underestimate the complexity of my undertakings. I thought I would go for a basic single oscillator mono synth and I could finish it in a week (prior to loosing interest). As always it turned out to be much more complicated than I imagined and so it’s not particularly polished but here it is:
Decided to go with a basic (single oscillator) synth to try and get blep synthesis sorted. I am quite impressed by the array of sounds the Korg PolySix / Roland Juno6 can produce so decided to model it around those.
Every one of these I do is getting better, both graphically and audibly. Obviously still a long way to go before I get to the level of some of the commercial synths out there but I’m on my way.
After recovering from my initial failure to do a decent Nord Lead I decided I should probably go for smaller synths and my own designs rather than spending hours trying to correctly recreate synthesizers that were limited by a completely different set of constraints. I did quite a few of these and here is a selection:
An MS-20 / StarWars inspired semi-modular synthesizer. It sounds ok, but still not great. It is really quite hard to get something that is simple and sounds fantastic. I was quite happy with the look and spent quite a while agonizing over a minimalistic set of controls.
I was quite happy with the idea but the implementation felt a bit unfinished so I spent a bit of time polishing. The sound is now effects laden and half decent. I actually hooked this up to my Wii Guitar Hero controller and had a great time. 5 buttons = 32 combinations (chords) so as long as you are just strumming away you can play a bunch of songs without having to re-assign chords.