Make - Analog Synthesizers (Anglais) Broché – 4 juin 2013
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Un seul circuit imprimé simple même s'il est en double-face, les branchements sont d'une remarquable clarté et tout est merveilleusement expliqué !
En plus, le livre fait réviser son anglais, ce qui n'est pas toujours un luxe !
Bon produit chez un bon vendeur, les deux à recommander donc !
Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
If you still smile with admiration at Vangelis in Blade Runner, you're going to love this book! Wilson one ups the old art of producing wonderful synth on a budget (taking apart and putting old toys back together with SFX or musically bent circuits, for example!) by "legitimizing" DIY synth with everything you need to understand the real circuitry behind both digital and analog synth, all the way up to CMOS chips.
As part of the acclaimed MAKE series, this book of course is project oriented, giving ALL the steps for a middle function, and quite complex, MFOS synth. But way beyond that, Ray shows all the components for much simpler sound, PLUS the modules you can use to build a truly professional $10,000 synth SYSTEM-- or even a whole synth studio-- on a tight / DIY budget. The building blocks are here; he challenges us to take them as far as we want!
For point of view, I'm a music and circuit lady at payroy dot com and evaluate new scores of synth for patentability. That's right, when Wilson says you can not only create pro synth DIY but also profit, he's not kidding. The combination of circuits and music is literally being reborn, with some of the "old" music circuit books selling for hundreds as folks jump into the new wave of patent opportunities. Beds alone are making significant royalties for DIY synth basement composers today, from movies to commercials, due to web propagation of your reputation and talent, regardless of where you are or where you got your synth.
The three biggest plusses of this wonderful text are: 1. Wilson goes far beyond the usual sound effects and sci fi capacitor changes to show the circuits that exactly mimic orchestral level compositions 2. The whole text is hands on with decades of practical advice packed into each comprehensive page, including time and money saving tips on how to avoid ruining a project with too high voltage on a low voltage chip, as just one example 3. There is an ideal blend of theory, circuits and components, beginning as if you're new to the field, but going all the way to complete, modular, professional level synths and composition-- an amazing feat for $20 in a 160 page book.
Perhaps most importantly, Ray was careful to generalize all the information-- from components to circuits to technique-- so you get the skill to advance quickly to much bigger and more robust units if you wish. On the other hand, the book's main project (the MFOS Noise Toaster) is FAR from simple. Wilson even says that although it's rudimentary to advanced engineers, they still love building it due to the memories it brings back AND the principles it reinforces about how variations change sounds, as well as the subtle contributions of individual components, designs and circuits.
In fact, I just read a new patent by an "amateur" who invented a cricket chirp synth that acually brings crickets out from hiding-- he's negotiating selling it to a pest company for over $12 million US right now!! Yes, the toaster works with white noise loops too, so we're talking SFX here as well, not only music, and Wilson shows how to adjust the circuits (and WHY) to change that white noise to a bomb blast effect, for example. Take your new blast SFX, combine it with a blastcode animation (a Maya plugin), and earn extra income from your hobby!
Finally, us benders will now also understand WHY changing that capacitance completely morphed our virtual woodpecker into a virtual intruder alarm or canary! Personal tip: I often buy electronics for a buck at the dollar store and bust them up for their components. I priced one calculator/timer reverse engineering project at $9 in current part costs vs. a buck at the dollar store (probably silver prices alone). With Wilson's help here and on his MFOS website, I can use Mouser online to get what I need at about the same savings, with no wasted parts!
And yes, I DID build the toaster and yes, it DOES work-- Make's proofing worked and of course Ray, via his many magazine and blog articles, knows better than to recommend or teach untested designs!!! Highly recommended for teens forward, but recommend a basic electronics book first if you're new to electronics, including Make's own version: Make: Electronics (Learning by Discovery). I don't support or recommend publishers, but O'Reilly IS consistenly high quality in editing/ proofing first editions, and this shows in both of these titles.
EMAILERS: In answer to all the frequent questions (thanks for asking!) about digital and "professional" texts in this field, the best by far in your humble reviewer's opinion is Cipriani: Electronic Music and Sound Design - Theory and Practice with Max/MSP - volume 1. It covers many aspects of Digital Signal Processing AND programming as well.
Library Picks reviews only for the benefit of Amazon shoppers and has nothing to do with Amazon, the authors, manufacturers or publishers of the items we review. We always buy the items we review for the sake of objectivity, and although we search for gems, are not shy about trashing an item if it's a waste of time or money for Amazon shoppers. If the reviewer identifies herself, her job or her field, it is only as a point of reference to help you gauge the background and any biases.
Ray is thrifty with your money, and does not romanticize expensive approaches. If you want to spend more money for sealed pots, you can but he leaves that up to you. However he will spare you the heartbreak of trying to build using a Hobby Lobby craft soldering wand. Ray will tell you flat out that it is futile to proceed without an oscilloscope. One of the other reviewers complained that much of this information is published elsewhere. I would counter that nowhere is so much of it relevant to a jump starter assembled in one place.
In the back of the book is a little cookbook showing some building block circuits, using in-production, inexpensive components. These turn out to be handy when analyzing schematics, and making choices. When you start building, you will be confronted with many decision points, many forks in the road. Be not afraid, you won't start a fire or get baked potatoes on the ends of your arms, and the worst you will deal with is no output. If you fry a chip [hasn't happened to me yet], they are like 79 cents to replace.
The Soundlab Ultimate is not a simple, newbie type of project. It, arguably, approaches a Minimoog in capability. Here is where the book helped me. As with any complex build, you can expect there to be multiple issues to work out once you start testing it, and this was the case with my Ultimate. In the DIY synth world, you may feel somewhat on your own with these problems. Ray's book was something I could return to as I worked through each issue. It does not give you the answers, it gives you a foundation, and confidence to know you will find the answers. And found them I did. You start to look around at all the old broken gear you have, it seems fixable now. Taking such a large leap like the Ultimate is perhaps not the best choice for every new builder. But this book helped me succeed with it, and start fulfilling a lifelong fetish for analog.
Your speakers will not thank you.
The first chapters are really basic. Analog synth 101. Then it skips from that to a long chapter on assembly and parts specifically for the Author's kit the MFOS Noise Toaster.
After building this, you can then read the section on how each circuit functions. But you had better basically have already built similar circuits or finished a practice kit completely as the book jumps right into the deep end. This could have been the most useful section of the book, but frankly, I think that between Forrest M. Mims (Timers and Op Amps boook) and Thomas Henry, you can get a better sense of how to build simple circuits. I especially recommend the Thomas Henry book on Electronic Drums which takes a much more modular approach and shows how to build complex drum sounds from a series of simple and basic circuits. I think this area of the book should be expanded significantly in the future, assuming less basic knowledge from the reader.
There are also two chapters on Op Amps and various useful IC Chips. This is great. A real asset for the future when I get to actually putting together multiple more complicated circuits. Again, though, I think the Thomas Henry books are better as standalone objects.
Also notably missing are anything about logic, sequencers, or clocking. Maybe this book is really written for people who are good at electronics but don't know anything about synthesizers. I don't know. As a result, there is still a considerable gap in the market for people who are good at synthesizers and have a good understanding of the basics of electronics, but might need to better understand how an AD Envelope Generator circuit actually functions.
It starts with a comprehensive list of tools that are required but, unlike some volumes I have read, there are recommendations on the minimum needed to get started in audio electronics as well as more advanced items that can be purchased as skills improve.
The next Chapter details the most common components of a synthesizer: VCOs, VCFs filters, etc. describing what each module does and how it works. Again, written in such a way that a novice in electronics can follow it without getting bogged down in complex mathematics.
Chapters four and six take the reader through the process of actually building a basic synthesizer. In this, Ray shamelessly plugs one of his own products; the Music From Outer Space Noise Toaster. And why not? It is a great little synth, quite easy to build, makes great sounds and is a good introduction to the world of analog. It also means that parts such as the printed circuit board and front panel can be obtained easily from Music From Outer Space. The build process in comprehensively described in words, diagrams and photos and includes sections on testing and troubleshooting the project.
Chapter five goes into more detail on OP Amps and chapter seven introduces the electronic music studio with sections on hardware software and recording techniques. These are very well illustrated giving the perfect introduction to music recording.
Finally the appendices go into even greater detail about Op Amps and CMOS. Block diagrams and circuit diagrams are provided in abundance to start the reader on the road to creating their own circuits.
Over many years involved in the world of synthesis I have read many books on the subjects of DIY electronics. This one is by far the most clear, comprehensive and useable book I have seen. It will be equally at home in the hands of the novice or in the library of the advanced practitioner. Most of all it makes the whole process enjoyable and fun.
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