[sdiy] History of SDIY?

Dave dlmanley at sonic.net
Wed Jun 6 03:06:40 CEST 2018


I found an archive via the wikipedia article on Synapse Magazine:

https://monoskop.org/log/?p=5720

My PAiA story: After reading the Radio Electronics articles on PAiA 2700 in the high school library i scraped up the coins and ordered the one with the button keyboard - couldn't afford the real keyboard.   The instructions were fine, included theory of op, and all modules worked first time. I was probly 14 or 15.  I'd previously built a dual trace Heathkit scope (still have it, still works) so these little modules were no challenge.

I remember calling PAiA once. Had to get permission for the long distance call.  The woman that answered seemed to be speaking a foreign language and the nerd kid i was hung up, thinking I'd dialed wrong.   Only later did i realize she'd  answered "PIE-Yaah" in a super thick Oklahoma accent.

I subscribed to Polyphony and devoured every issue cover to cover.  RIP John Simonton.

-Dave

P.S. much later in life I had the pleasure of working at the same telecom company with Marvin Jones.  Old timers may recall the PAiA catalog pic of a cool dude in a tree playing a Gnome through a Pygmy amp. IIRC, Marvin confirmed that was him - it was a small company, he did whatever needed to get done including posing with a synth in a tree.  :-)


On June 5, 2018 11:43:24 AM PDT, Pete Hartman <pete.hartman at gmail.com> wrote:
>Perhaps not as easy as all that to find.  Links into the archive get
>404's
>
>http://www.cyndustries.com/synapse/synapse.cfm?pc=51&folder=summer78&pic=2
>
>and there doesn't appear to be anything going *into* the archive from
>the
>intro page at cyndustries.com either:
>
>http://www.cyndustries.com/synapse/intro.cfm
>
>Though it does look like the wayback machine has it handy:
>
>https://web.archive.org/web/20120125110605/http://www.cyndustries.com/synapse/intro.cfm
>
>Pete
>
>
>
>
>
>On Tue, Jun 5, 2018 at 1:15 PM, Dave <dlmanley at sonic.net> wrote:
>
>> Since he hasn't spoken up, I'll add: John Blacet. I remember seeing
>his
>> articles and ads in Synapse magazine back in ~1977. You owe it to
>yourself
>> to find the Synapse magazine archive.
>>
>> -Dave
>>
>> On June 5, 2018 1:57:52 AM PDT, Rob Kam <robkam at gmx.com> wrote:
>>
>>> So the early pioneers of synth DIY were John Simonton, Marvin Jones,
>Craig
>>> Anderton, Thomas Henry ... who else?
>>>
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: Synth-diy [mailto:synth-diy-bounces at synth-diy.org] On Behalf
>Of Rob
>>> Kam
>>> Sent: 02 June 2018 11:40
>>> To: 'Donald Tillman' <don at till.com>
>>> Cc: 'SYNTH DIY' <synth-diy at synth-diy.org>
>>> Subject: Re: [sdiy] History of SDIY?
>>>
>>> The American Radio History magazine archive is a great resource. It
>will
>>> take some time to make good use of what's there.
>>>
>>> I guess that initially the publications cater to radio amateurs,
>then to
>>> general electronic hobbyists, then in the 1970s to aspiring synth
>DIYers,
>>> with overlap. The name that stands out is John Simonton, author and
>founder
>>> of PAiA. In a few places he's referred to as the father or godfather
>of
>>> synth DIY.
>>>
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: Donald Tillman [mailto:don at till.com]
>>> Sent: 02 June 2018 00:49
>>> To: Rob Kam <robkam at gmx.com>
>>> Cc: SYNTH DIY <synth-diy at synth-diy.org>
>>> Subject: Re: [sdiy] History of SDIY?
>>>
>>>
>>>  On May 29, 2018, at 8:42 AM, Donald Tillman <don at till.com> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>  On May 29, 2018, at 4:36 AM, Rob Kam <robkam at gmx.com> wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>  Unlike for the history of electronic music http://120years.net/,
>>>>>
>>>> apparently
>>>
>>>>  there's not much documentation specifically for the history of DIY
>>>>>  electronic music equipment.
>>>>>
>>>>
>>>>  Sure there is!  It's in the form of hobbyist electronics
>magazines.
>>>>
>>> Especially "Popular Electronics" and "Radio Electronics".  And
>they're
>>> archived here:
>>>
>>>>
>>>>  http://www.americanradiohistory.com/Popular-Electronics-Guide.htm
>>>> 
>http://www.americanradiohistory.com/Radio_Electronics%20_Master_Page.htm
>>>>
>>>
>>> Here's an example, Popular Electronics Magazine:
>>>
>>> Mar 69, Preamp, mixer, frequency counter
>>> May 69, Preamp, guitar sustain
>>> Jul 69, Square wave gen
>>> Sep 69, Color organ display
>>> Oct 69, Sine wave generator
>>> Dec 69, Treble Boost
>>> Jan 70, Wah-wah pedal
>>> Feb 70, Drum Machine
>>> Mar 70, Speech scrambler (ring modulator)
>>> May 70, Sine to Square wave converter
>>> Jun 70, Guitar envelope generator
>>> Jul 70, Multicoupler, Nyle Steiner Wire Music
>>> Aug 70, Preamp, lighting controller
>>> Oct 70, Power amp, equalizer
>>> Dec 70, Pink Noise Generator
>>> Mar 71, Leslie Simulator
>>> Apr 71, Timbre Gate (envelope generator)
>>> May 71, Fil-Oscillator, Power amp
>>> Jun 71, Vox gain rider
>>> Jul 71, Drum machine
>>> Sep 71, Electronic bird calls
>>> Dec 71, Compressor
>>> Feb 72, How synthesizers work, Surf Synthesizer
>>>
>>> And Radio-Electronics Magazine started their PAIA Synthesizer
>articles in
>>> May 73.
>>>
>>> The archive issues describe the synth DIY scene pretty well.
>>>
>>>   -- Don
>>> --
>>> Donald Tillman, Palo Alto, California
>>> http://www.till.com
>>>
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>>>
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