• About MIDI

    Pierre-Loup M.04/13/2020 at 18:52 4 comments

    Although not present on the original minimoog, midi is something so omnipresent and usefull I couldn't not implement it.
    It happens it is quite easy to do with the Arduino environment, thanks to this library from FortySevenEffects. It's even easier with Teensy, has the library is automatically implemented when you choose MIDI as the kind of USB output.

    There are two "kinds" of midi on the synth. One is what is expected from a modern music instrument, i.e. the ability to interact with other instruments.

    Read more »

  • About pitchbend and modulation wheel

    Pierre-Loup M.03/31/2020 at 22:23 0 comments

    The two wheels are importants components of this project. And it took time to figure out how to make them.

    The first and most obvious idea was to 3D-print them. Or at least the bracket. For the wheel itself I wanted something else, as the final aspect of 3D-printed part is not so good, unless you spend a lot of time with abrasive paper and primer, and paint, and...

    So, 3D-printing. If my printer were perfectly tuned, it would have been a two-hours story, designing the part, slicing it and printing it. But its not. The first part broke when I remove it from the printer bed, the second exploded when I tried to put screws in it, so after a few missed attempts I came back to what I know : acrylic and laser cutter.

    Read more »

  • Making a nice body for an iconic synth

    Pierre-Loup M.03/31/2020 at 20:04 0 comments

    There were Initially no plans made for the body. I simply cut a sheet of 10mm plywood, and placed the keybed on it. Then try to figure out the placement of all components. Taking a measure, cut a part, put it on the synth, and so on.

    The wood is wallnut, from an old dining table found on the roadside... For two years I really believed I would repair and use it ! :D

    The parts have been cut to length, placed on the plywood bottom, then adjusted following the keybed shape and size.

    Read more »

  • Panels.

    Pierre-Loup M.03/30/2020 at 17:56 0 comments

    All panels of the synth are made out of acrylic sheet. I believe other materials would be nicer, but it happens I use 4, 6mm cast acrylic, and 2mm extruded acrylic sheets for work, thus having plenty at hand.
    And as I'm lucky enough to also have a laser cutter, it became an obvious choice to use acrylic, that I can both cut and engrave in one go.

    The front panel, despite its simple appearance, took time to design. It had to be decided all the function wanted, were to place them, take attention to the room around switches and potentiometers (for moving them AND regarding their own size).
    Then space them evenly, and check... to move them once again, because something was missing... A game of try and error. :)
    I also used a scrap piece of acrylic to place buttons on it to have a real idea of how it would be, and check distances.

    There is some dust here...

    Read more »

  • Starting to build a synth !

    Pierre-Loup M.03/29/2020 at 22:19 1 comment

    The most obvious part for a synth with a keyboard is... a keyboard. Or a keybed, since it's the name the key assembly is called (thank to Tim Trzepacz for mentioning it on his inspiring NanoEgg project ! Funny how having the right word can save so much time when looking for something around Internet !).

    The one that was used comes from an electric all-pastic organ made by Bontempi somewhere around the mid 80's. I found it at a secondhand market, not working, for almost nothing.

    The construction is quite basic, with a plastic rack with mounting holes underneath (one less thing to think about !) each key being mounted on a pole and held by a circular spring. This rack has brackets holding a pcb the size of he keybed, on which were something looking like a resistor array. I wondered for a time if i was going to try and understand how it worked, but eventually just kept the PCB to route my own wiring.

    Each key has a smooth spring attached on it, which is soldered to the pcb. These springs come to touch a metal rod when the key is pressed. (note : the keybed was one third grey with these C-shape contacts, and two thirds white with a unique rod going all the length. The synth uses the white keys with the rod.)

    Read more »

  • First record !

    Pierre-Loup M.03/23/2020 at 02:15 0 comments

    First project using Teensymoog !

    Everything made with the synth, except the drums.

    popcorn on soundcloud