DSM01_Curtis_Filter

Dave Smith Goes Modular, with a $179 Curtis Filter Module

Eurorack fever continues to spread. The ease of making musical electronics fit the standard, pioneered by Germany’s Dieter Doepfer, and the growing appetite from a small but passionate audience, seems to make producing new modules irresistible. The entire design equation is different: a single task or handful of tasks can become a product. Dave Smith Instruments is the latest entry. And the product is the perfect choice for DSI. It’s a module built around on the Curtis filter, the signature filter found on everything from the 1980s Prophets (back when Dave’s company was Sequential Circuits) to the latest Mopho and …

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A DIY iPad Audio Dock, with Instructions, from Father of Circuit Bending Reed Ghazala

What are those alien, otherworldly sounds coming out of the iPad? That’s not GarageBand. It’s what happens when Reed Ghazala, the father of circuit bending some decades ago, meets the iPad. Not that it’s his first encounter with products from Apple – he’s been approaching that company’s hardware as he does everything else, prying unexpected life with modifications and experimentation. But just as “circuit bending” need not be seen as “breaking,” here, too, Ghazala’s modifications make the device more humane, more musical, and – for all the shouting about how the design is perfect – far, far more usable. A …

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Sounds by Richard Devine, Granulation on iOS, and Footsteps of a Wasp

Exploring granular sound on the iPad in the application Curtis. Image courtesy the developers. Named for Curtis Roads, Curtis is an iPad and iPhone/iPod touch application that implements granular sound processing – a technique, imagined early on by the composer Xenakis, which divides sound into tiny granules, allowing more liquid modification of the audio. Roads brought this idea to digital synthesis, and the results can transform recorded samples in pitch and time. Composer, producer, and sound designer Richard Devine has long made use of granular techniques in his own work, so it’s little surprise Richard is turning his sonic compositional …

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