[sdiy] 1v /oct with ADC question

Terry Shultz thx1138 at earthlink.net
Sat Dec 3 18:42:58 CET 2016

On 12/2/16 8:39 PM, MTG wrote:
> Emu had the patent on the scanned keyboard. SCI was paying license on 
> that patent for a very long time. When they stopped paying there was a 
> bit of animosity. It's all covered in the SCI biography.
> On 12/2/2016 4:28 PM, rsdio at audiobanshee.com wrote:
>> I also wonder whether Sequential Circuits and/or E-mu had a patent on 
>> keyboard scanning at the time. They certainly invented it. What we 
>> take for granted now was not always standard.
>> Brian
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Hi All,

The Early Oberheim 4voice/6/8 voice SEM1-A system keyboard design was 
also an early E-Mu design. Most people don't know it but Tom O. and Dave R.
had many design collaborations. The Matrix scanned Z-80 keyboard design 
was patented in 1976, I believe an 8080 prototype was built but the Z-80
based design was the final product. The Prophet 5 was designed at E-Mu 
for Dave Smith / Barb Fairhurst (Sequential Circuits) and many new
functions were invented along the way i.e. AutoTune, SSM series of 
devices and so forth. The Audity had autotune before the Prophet 5.

The reference that SCI was paying a royalty is correct, and the amount 
for the ProOne was the same as the Prophet 5, which led to a bitter feud 
on Royalites in general.

This should have been discussed much earlier to avoid a legal battle but 
sometimes the sequence of events are out of order.

My opinion, are royalties are difficult when the competition start to 
eat into your market. Yamaha, Korg and Roland ended up with the business 
as musicians chose cheaper paths. Having been an  Oberheim, E-mu, and 
PPG employee, I have seen a myriad of mistakes that small companies can 
make that eventually kill the host.

BTW, the Pratt-Reed keyboard design was part of that argument as well. 
Now they are gone and we are left with Fatar or Panasonic for keyboard 

I learned a great deal about business, design and relationships from 
this that served me for many years.

Sorry if this is long winded, but I like to make sure the facts are 
presented as it happened.

Happy Holidays,


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