[sdiy] "failed instruments"

Tom Wiltshire tom at electricdruid.net
Sat Aug 17 01:01:23 CEST 2019


+1 agree, a very interesting read.

I can see why they would have been seen as failures at the time. The analog tech didn’t manage to compete with the new digital stuff, despite the best efforts of some undoubtably clever chaps, and they weren’t a commercial success at all.

But then history came along, and they changed the course of it! Funny how things turn out!

> On 13 Aug 2019, at 22:33, Richie Burnett <rburnett at richieburnett.co.uk> wrote:
> 
> Well, I don't think of them as failures. Just too far ahead of their time ;-)
> 
> An interesting read though for sure. 
> 
> -Richie,
> 
> 
> ---- Adam Inglis wrote ----
> 
> 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/
> 
> "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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