[sdiy] "failed instruments"

Adam Inglis 21pointy at tpg.com.au
Tue Aug 13 15:36:17 CEST 2019

I was fascinated to read this engineers account of the development of the TR-808, et al, circuits and the philosophy that was “in the air” at that time. He later refers to these as “failed instruments”! (when compared to the Linn machines of the time).

https://vector808.jimdofree.com/home/episodes-of-the-mid-o-series/ <https://vector808.jimdofree.com/home/episodes-of-the-mid-o-series/>

"To meet the low target price, I employed oscillation technique of pulse wave modulating the simple T-network bandpass filter. By short circuiting the resistors in the T-type network for the certain initial duration with transistors, it was possible to raise the frequency. This allowed us to enforce the attack sound compared with conventional rhythm boxes. 
But the initial reputation of the 808 was nothing but crippled as it was compared with the Linn products. Furthermore, the sound had insufficient impact or punch at the beginning, which resulted to have pronounced fundamental frequency 60 Hz. But then again, it was this prominent fundamental which attracted the attention of later time hip-hop and EDM artists, and they gave a name to it as “Deep Decay”. This led to the rediscovery of Mid-O Series. The long decay sound was made possible by decay parameter that I added to show at least as a sign or as an evidence of the 808 being a synthesizer. Even inside the company this was regarded as going too far, but later it became one of vital identities of the 808. “

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