“2 1/2” First Steps

A Video dating back to december 2010.

I was experimenting with the first components that arrived for my synth-diy-destruction project.

Most of the knowledge necessary  for this simple hardware composition I gained by reading the excellent book “Handmade Electronic Music – the art of hardware hacking” by D.I.Y.-pioneer Nicolas Collins.



The “Heart” of what you see and hear in the video on top of the post is a small and cheap IC-chip called CD74C14. It is home to 6 independent Hex Schmitt Triggers…
… which can be quite simply (mis-)used as square-wave-oscillators. In a simple feedback loop involving a capacitor and a potentiometer you are able to change the frequency of the output oscillating between zero and one.

The next component is a CD4093, a Quad NAND Gate having 4 Circuits basically same as the Schmitt trigger, but with an extra pin giving the option to gate the oscillation.

Last chip appearing in the video is a  CD4040, 12 Stage Binary Divider and its used to half or quater frequencies.

Basically the whole circuit is oscillating… some parts at really slow speed to gate other oscillators, others at higher frequencies in the audible spectrum identifiable as notes. Quite simple – but when you just started with electronics, like mit at that point, a bit hard to grasp.
Anyway. More to come soon. Maybe also including some information about the concept of this whole “thing”…

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