[sdiy] History of SDIY?

Rob Kam robkam at gmx.com
Wed May 30 01:52:06 CEST 2018


“digital or analogue electronics” should have been in third line

 

From: Synth-diy [mailto:synth-diy-bounces at synth-diy.org] On Behalf Of Rob Kam
Sent: 30 May 2018 00:44
To: 'Quincas Moreira' <quincas at gmail.com>; music.maker at gte.net
Cc: 'synth-diy mailing list' <synth-diy at synth-diy.org>
Subject: Re: [sdiy] History of SDIY?

 

My mistake asking for a definition, it is a distraction/topic in itself. Everyone has their own interests and slightly different idea of SDIY. 

A definition would be very useful to make the project manageable. Not a book but eventually a sketched outline on the wiki.

Okay to include seems to be: e.g. synthesizers (MIDI and CV/Gate), samplers, sequencers, digital or analogue, DSP, microcontrollers, circuit bending, video synthesis, etc. 
Related but only superficially included: s <http://www.freestompboxes.org/viewforum.php?f=22&sid=c87a9517696570156891427278fd3faa> tompboxes, tonewheel organs, theremins, audio electronics, etc.
Peripheral but not included: Purely software like SynthEdit or Max, metalworking, carpentry, etc.

Here’s my proto-definition: SDIY requires craft-skills or artistry and soldering, towards making something tactile and musical.


From: Synth-diy [mailto:synth-diy-bounces at synth-diy.org] On Behalf Of Quincas Moreira
Sent: 29 May 2018 21:43
To: music.maker at gte.net <mailto:music.maker at gte.net> 
Cc: synth-diy mailing list <synth-diy at synth-diy.org <mailto:synth-diy at synth-diy.org> >
Subject: Re: [sdiy] History of SDIY?

 

Well, I apologize if my musings have offended or excluded anyone. I'm mostly airing thoughts to see how they fare, in the interest of collectively arriving at a definition that would be useful for the OP, to narrow his focus making the project less overwhelming.

 

On Tue, May 29, 2018 at 3:37 PM, Scott Gravenhorst <music.maker at gte.net <mailto:music.maker at gte.net> > wrote:


Quincas Moreira <quincas at gmail.com <mailto:quincas at gmail.com> > wrote:
>--===============4210419811675696385==
>
>Paula, it's not elitism because I'm not saying software is any worse or
>less valuable than hardware. My intention is just to be realistic as to
>what people think about when they hear the term SDIY. 
>You are the first
>person I ever heard say a home made VST is SDIY.

If it needs another voice, I'll say it too.  Code written to make a synth, regardless of
what runs it, is no less SDIY than someone's soldered module from downloaded schematics.

>I understand your
>argument, but I'm a practical person, and I think language is meant to
>communicate, not confuse. If we make a definition that's too broad it loses
>all purpose, IMO. But sure, we can agree to disagree. I have sounds to make
>now with my SDIY machines :)

I think that an all encompassing definition is not "too broad" for a topic as broad as
SDIY.  Many terms are of this nature - politics for example.  I'm an old timer and I've
seen some amazing things.  I've a friend who made a MIDI controlled bagpipe.  SDIY? - you
bet.  I've written synth code which contains very few if any "traditional parts such as
ADSR" and yet, it makes music, it is a synthesizer and I did it myself - again SDIY.  And
I think as we move into the future, we'll see more and more unusual new ideas that make
music by people who do it themselves.

I also think this discussion is veering into territory that the OP might not have intended
- discussing the definition of SDIY?  He was asking about the history of it, but maybe
more clarification from the OP can help pull it into more of an answer to his own question.



>On Tue, May 29, 2018 at 3:13 PM, <paula at synth.net <mailto:paula at synth.net> > wrote:
>
>> well, I think that's somewhat discriminatory against a lot of people doing
>> a lot of cool stuff with software. consider the mutable instruments stuff,
>> it sounds amazing, it's software in a box.. to say "it's only SDIY when
>> it's hardware" is, I believe fundamentally wrong and bad for the community
>> as it smells of elitism.
>>
>> S we'll have to disagree.
>>
>>
>>
>> On 2018-05-29 21:05, Quincas Moreira wrote:
>>
>> Paula, if you water down the definition too much it becomes meaningless.
>>> 99% of people I know, when they think SDIY they think of hardware synths
>>> and modules, whether they are analog or digital. To me at least it makes
>>> sense to keep ITB and dedicated hardware somewhat separate. Call it Soft
>>> Synth DIY if you will :)
>>> Just my 2 c
>>>
>>> On Tue, May 29, 2018 at 2:57 PM, <paula at synth.net <mailto:paula at synth.net> > wrote:
>>>
>>> why?
>>>
>>> if I write a softsynth, and put it in a VST that's not synth DIY? But if
>>> I write a softsynth and put it in a chip in a box that is synth DIY?
>>>
>>> Paula
>>>
>>> On 2018-05-29 16:11, Quincas Moreira wrote:
>>> Oh, I would leave soft synths out of it for clarity's sake...
>>>
>>> Software running in a dedicated module or hardware synth, sure :)
>>>
>>> On Tue, May 29, 2018 at 10:05 AM, <paula at synth.net <mailto:paula at synth.net> > wrote:
>>> Fair points Tom.
>>>
>>> Though I'd disagree with the electronotes comment, it only covers
>>> analogue synthesis techniques.
>>>
>>> for me SDIY encompasses analogue, digital, hybrid and soft synths, as
>>> long as you made it yourself :)
>>>
>>> Paula
>>>
>>> On 2018-05-29 15:43, Tom Wiltshire wrote:
>>> No need to pigeon hole, but if you were (say) writing a book on the
>>> topic, you'd have to decide what you put in and what you leave out.
>>>
>>> I think the magazines and books give a pretty good idea of what was
>>> going on through the decades. The Brabani books and R.A. Penfold and
>>> R.M.Marston have quite a lot to answer for in my case.
>>> In many ways, Bernie's Electronotes *is* the history of Synth-DIY
>>> already! Ok, it's only a single source and a single editor, but it
>>> follows the progress of the field over a long period of time and
>>> covers pretty much everything sooner or later. I doubt there's a more
>>> comprehensive overview.
>>>
>>> Tom
>>>
>>> ==================
>>> Electric Druid
>>> Synth & Stompbox DIY
>>> ==================
>>>
>>> On 29 May 2018, at 13:18, paula at synth.net <mailto:paula at synth.net>  wrote:
>>>
>>> Why classify/pigeon hole "what" SDIY is?
>>> The world seems obsessed with putting things in boxes, let's not do the
>>> same here please
>>>
>>> On 2018-05-29 12:36, Rob Kam 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. I have some questions, if I may.
>>> How to define SDIY - it's not just exclusively synths, amateurs making
>>> electronic music circuits as opposed to plugging together ready-made
>>> parts?
>>> When did SDIY begin and how has it developed over the years? Especially
>>> since the invention of semiconductors but before then should also be
>>> included. What were the significant moments and who were the pioneers
>>> along
>>> the way?
>>> Bob Moog sold Theremin kits in the 1950s. Guitar pedals began development
>>> in
>>> the 1960s. Before this there were guitar amplifiers with effects built in,
>>> and earlier still people used magnetic tape. The PAiA FAQ states that the
>>> 1970s were busy, the 1980s were quieter, (with the hobbyists being
>>> distracted by PCs) and that interest picked up again in the 1990s. PAiA
>>> has
>>> been producing synthesizer kits since 1972. Electronotes started in 1972.
>>> Various magazine articles by authors such as Tim Orr, John Simonton, Don
>>> Lancaster, Craig Anderton, etc. give some sort of indication. The earliest
>>> DIY electronic music instrument books seem to be from the early to
>>> mid-1970s.
>>> How to distinguish what's SDIY from R&D? Obviously the pioneers and
>>> inventors like Harald Bode and Kraftwerk had to DIY; does this get
>>> ignored?
>>> Does it begin with the electro-magnetic Helmholtz resonator?
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>>
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>>   --
>> Quincas Moreira
>> Test Pilot at VBrazil Modular
>>
>>   --
>> Quincas Moreira
>> Test Pilot at VBrazil Modular
>>
>
>
>
>-- 
>Quincas Moreira
>Test Pilot at VBrazil Modular
>

-- ScottG
________________________________________________________________________
-- Scott Gravenhorst
-- http://scott.joviansynth.com/
-- When the going gets tough, the tough use the command line.
-- Matt 21:22

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-- 

Quincas Moreira
Test Pilot at VBrazil Modular

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