This Week In Synths: ARP 2500, Wiard 300 Series, SCI’s “The Patch”, EMS VCS1, and Roxy Music

The ARP 2500 This one actually just popped up for auction with a buy it now of $13,800. The 2500 was ARP’s first modular flagship and consisted of the 2003 synthesizer and 3003 keyboard controller. As mentioned in last week’s post, the ARP 2500 was also the synth played by ARP engineer Philip Dodds in Close Encounters of the Third Kind. You can actually see him play it in the film. You can find a demo of the 2500 in last week’s post as well. Some details from the auction: “This is a very rare and early version of the …

READ MORE →

This Week In Synths: The First Buchla 500, Buchla 200e Rock, ARP 2500 Demo and Repair

The Buchla 500 at CalArts A little bit of Buchla synth history via Peter Grenader of Plan b. That giant modular in the background is the Buchla 500, the rarest of the rare in the modular synth world. It is possible there were only three ever in existence. “The following flckr stream [link] was from CalArts studio B-304 taken in the fall of 1976 featuring Barry Schrader, Morton Subotnick and John Payne and a whole lotta Buchla 500. John as you may remember came up a couple of months ago on Matrixsynth in the posting regarding Mort’s use of the …

READ MORE →

This Week In Synths: AHNE 2007, Custom Synth Madness, The Lyricon, and C64 Action

AHNE 2007 – Happy Syntho De Mayo Every year synth die-hards migrate East for AHNE. It is an amazing gathering filled with vintage gear as you will see in the links that follow. This year’s event looks like it did not disappoint. Unfortunately I was not able to make it due to having to make a trip out East just before the event due to unforeseen circumstances, but one year I will make it! The following are links to photo sets and some video of the event.

READ MORE →

This Week In Synths: Iraq, Birthdays, Kawai SX-240, Howard Jones Goes Retro, Dr. Who

A Casio in Iraq Ok, not technically a synth, but check this out. It’s a Casio AT-40 with Arabic labels spotted in Iraq of all places. Via Daniel: “A casio AT-40 with arabic lettering that I spotted in Hewler/Arbil in northern Iraq in december last year. I should have bought it!” Yeah he should have. : ) Click here for the full sized shot. It does make me wonder how much, if any, electronic music is being made in Iraq. I seem to vaguely remember there being an online music site from the country. If you know of any, please …

READ MORE →

This Week In Synths: Mexican Wrestling, Flourescent Displays, EMS, and Donny

This week I thought I’d start of with something a little different. An artist that goes by the name Latinsizer of Mil Records (Latinsizer on MySpace). I first discovered Latinsizer via a number of great synth videos on YouTube posted by pepemogt. I personally like nearly all synth videos I see because regardless of the music being played, it gives me a chance to hear what the synth sounds like as well as a peak at its interface, however these videos stood out. They not only showcased a particular aspect of each piece of gear extremely well, but musically they …

READ MORE →

This Week In Synths: Max Mathews, Synths in Second Life, Synths by Perry, Barbie Synthi, and the Polivoks

Max Mathews and 50 Years of Computer Music “Fifty years ago, in 1957, at Bell Telephone Laboratories, Max Mathews demonstrated that the digital computer can be used as a fantastic new musical instrument. He created a revolutionary software platform destined to form the basis of all contemporary digital musical systems. His audacious ideas were driven by the belief that any sound that the human ear can hear can be produced by a computer. Mathews’ mastery of this new instrument revealed new musical horizons and sparked a burgeoning curiosity into the very nature of sound. His comprehension and elaboration made five …

READ MORE →

This Week In Synths: The First Synths to…, Star Trek Wii, Yamaha’s First Synth, Access Goldfilter, and Sequence Madness

The First Synth to… In case you missed it, Sonic State is running a video series on The Top 20 Greatest Synths of all time. About once a month they put up a video featuring three synths from the countdown. As you can imagine a few controversial pieces came up including the E-Mu Proteus, and the Roland JV-1080 which happened to beat the mighty Jupiter-8. The Jupiter-8 didn’t even make the top 10! That aside, it is an awesomely entertaining series even if you are new to synths (be sure to read the description on their site before watching the …

READ MORE →

This Week In Synths: The Woman That Started it All, A New Kind of Sequencer, Circuit Bending Synced, PPG MiniROM and… Charles

This week I thought I’d shake things up a bit and post a few of the videos that came in over the last few days. It’s Friday folks! I hope everyone has an awesome weekend. That said, I hope you enjoy at least one of these. Do make sure to check out the last video. It’s a great way to start the weekend. Wendy Carlos Today Wendy Carlos has been credited with starting the synth revolution. Before her album, Switched on Bach (1968), synths were mainly perceived as educational tools and not part of mainstream music. Wendy painstakingly performed Bach …

READ MORE →

This Week in Synths: Musicmesse, Rarities for Sale, Donimoog Modular, Buchla Vids

The Rest of the Messe As you know, the Frankfurt Musicmesse opened on Wednesday the 28th. There were quite a few exciting announcements including the Nord Wave, Arturia Origen Keyboard, the Dexter and of course the biggest announcement in my opinion, the Solaris hardware synth by John Bowen Synth Designs. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the interview by James here. Aside from the major announcements there was quite a bit more worth checking out in the synth world including this gorgeous MacBeth M5N, a white version of the M5 with a few updates including snappier envelopes, …

READ MORE →

This Week in Synths: The Stearns Collection Moog, Mike Oldfield’s OB-Xa, MOOG IIIp

The First Commercial MOOG You are looking at the Moog Synthesizer, Stearns 2035. It currently resides as part of the Stearns Collection at the University of Michigan. According to the university it was the first commercially produced MOOG Synthesizer. “This particular instrument has the distinction of being the first commercially produced Moog synthesizer. It was commissioned by the Alwin Nikolai Dance Theater of New York in 1964 after being demonstrated at the Audio Engineering Society convention in New York in October of that year. Nikolai used the synthesizer to compose recorded musical accompaniments for his dancers. Later, the instrument was …

READ MORE →