Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Discussing some incredible modules that don't quite fit into the other forum categories.

Moderators: Joe., lisa, luketeaford, Kent

Sonic boom
Common Wiggler
Posts: 116
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2015 10:15 pm
Location: here & now , mostly ....

Post by Sonic boom » Tue Jan 26, 2016 3:01 am

gddfp nailed it for me .

Thing is , is not impossible you wouldnt know if theres dimmers nearby ....
....if you live in apmnt blocks etc .

In my house , the dimmer lights were UNDER my studio .
Turning them off fixed it for me - i had ALL the same issues as gddfp .
I'm a little worried though about playing live , as from experience , certain countries have more problematic p/s than others . ( France , go to you room ... )

The lighting phase on lighting boards is often a big issue .
I'm also aware we dont do power the same globally ....

Eg : The British system (ring main) and plugs (always with earth pins ) are VERY differant from the American ( Spur main i believe ) & often no grounding on many items - and those ubiquitous shitty plugs etc )

The Balaerics and other small islands often use weird voltage that'll bring digital gear to its knees ....
France - i dunno wtf goes on ..... But some equipment cant be used without horrendous noise . It's also the only place that i ever had my gear turned off and on remotely thru simply being connected to a mixing desk ....

User avatar
Minimoog56
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2361
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2009 4:06 pm
Location: Northwest of the District

Post by Minimoog56 » Wed Jan 27, 2016 8:22 pm

Stick with incandescent for lighting to keep the hum out. Fluorescents and LED's are a scam and terrorize studios with 60 cycle hum. Like Fender, Moog and Buchla, Edison got it right with the first take.
Beatniks and Bongos/Bagels and Bongos/Buchlas and Bongos...

de gustibus....

User avatar
Edenmononym
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 350
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:15 am
Location: ...
Contact:

Post by Edenmononym » Wed Jan 27, 2016 10:35 pm

Minimoog56
Fluorescent and LED's are a scam and terrorize studios with 60 cycle hum.
I believe in that. Once I changed my lighting, not only did my easel work better. My brain did too. I only seem to think 'Ace' when working in natural light environments.

But certain restaurants - Once I noticed the difference, it was horrible. :eek:
Whenever I leave a room with fluorescent lighting, I get what seem like 'white flashes'? mixed with a brain-fog - :ripbanana:
Until I re-adjust to the Sun again.

I do not smoke pot if anyone is curious.
(I am not against it - Just sayin')
qstate : "The Aleph is an investment in learning, programming, and money. If you want instant gratification for $1400, a dedicated 11" macbook air and expert sleepers might be a better choice. "

I am having fun and learning :)

Sonic boom
Common Wiggler
Posts: 116
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2015 10:15 pm
Location: here & now , mostly ....

Post by Sonic boom » Thu Jan 28, 2016 7:36 am

Minimoog56 wrote:Stick with incandescent for lighting to keep the hum out. Fluorescents and LED's are a scam and terrorize studios with 60 cycle hum. Like Fender, Moog and Buchla, Edison got it right with the first take.

?que?

I think you're mistaken ....

....I think you mean Westinghouse ?

....... Or in both cases , Nikola Tesla

Edison's system didn't work in the way we have electricity today .....the system was DC and doomed over ANY distance we might measure today ..

Dont believe the Edison hype ....he did'nt invent much if you research ...
.....just raced to register patents ......old school ruthless businessman
(= new world douche )
Tesla will be remembered LONG after EDISON - truth got easier to find ....

Sonic boom
Common Wiggler
Posts: 116
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2015 10:15 pm
Location: here & now , mostly ....

Post by Sonic boom » Thu Jan 28, 2016 7:41 am

That thing that Edison did murdering animals for publicity stunts was a real sweetie too ......no buck too low to stoop for ...

Nothing personal : edison makes my blood boil

User avatar
Edenmononym
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 350
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:15 am
Location: ...
Contact:

Post by Edenmononym » Thu Jan 28, 2016 11:49 am

:doh:

Charlatans! Both sides say!

I don't agree with animal abuse, but we must admit Edison researched and resourced. Some refer to this a lazy. Some say it's "Working smarter, not Harder"

The only thing I learned from the hate filled blogs and critics is that people see things differently.

EDIT: (All arguing blogs made a lot of $$$)

Edison wanted to make the Incandescent long lived. Not necessarily invent some grand new thing. Tesla wanted to learn and discover all the details and mysteries.

In this antiquity, there are - from my certainly unqualified perception...
Qualities + Flaws inside every single human. Yet, chaotically we are all amazing and very capable of anything.

Either perceiving through a fed lens,

By prying / digging / grasping for so called truths,

Perhaps even to simply be - and not even rip apart the Heaven's and the Earth, never to make a certain distinction - like the Zen Masters. (Faith-Mind Sutra)

At the end of the day, all I can really narrow down is be careful of "antique replicas" that stuff LEDs in pretty bulbs :cloud:
qstate : "The Aleph is an investment in learning, programming, and money. If you want instant gratification for $1400, a dedicated 11" macbook air and expert sleepers might be a better choice. "

I am having fun and learning :)

Sonic boom
Common Wiggler
Posts: 116
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2015 10:15 pm
Location: here & now , mostly ....

Post by Sonic boom » Sat Jan 30, 2016 8:10 am

Nice ....
MW resident shaman .....

User avatar
Edenmononym
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 350
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:15 am
Location: ...
Contact:

Post by Edenmononym » Sat Jan 30, 2016 11:17 pm

Let me heal you...

[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/244664147" params="auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true" width="100%" height="450" iframe="true" /]
qstate : "The Aleph is an investment in learning, programming, and money. If you want instant gratification for $1400, a dedicated 11" macbook air and expert sleepers might be a better choice. "

I am having fun and learning :)

User avatar
wsy
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 2719
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:20 pm
Location: near Boston Massachusetts USA

Post by wsy » Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:53 am

Sonic boom wrote: [....]
Edison's system didn't work in the way we have electricity today .....the system was DC and doomed over ANY distance we might measure today ..

Dont believe the Edison hype ....he did'nt invent much if you research ...
.....just raced to register patents ......old school ruthless businessman
(= new world douche )
Tesla will be remembered LONG after EDISON - truth got easier to find ....
Not quite. What we have now in reality is Tesla (AC) for local (100 miles or less) and we're converting back to Edison' (DC)for longer distance.

In truth, Edison's DC system is the only system that actually _can_ work over long distances (for our example, say a grid
going all the way from San Francisco to Hoover Dam to Los Angeles, plus a direct San Francisco/ LA link).

Work out the phase delay of a fully loaded transmission line two thousand kilometers long. Now work out the phase error of the
triangle (the simplest possible redundant grid, so you can take one leg out of service for maintenance).

Turns out that "You Can't Do It." The self-inductance and ground capacitance of the AC line gives you enough phase shift that the
wire going direct from Hoover to LA is like 40 degrees out of phase with the phase of the same 60 Hz line going northwest to SFO
and then back down to LA. If you turn on all three links, the breakers will blow instantly.

So, the workaround for the last century was to have lots of circuits, and when you bring a generator (or more than one) on line,
you dedicate a trunk of one or more conductors from the customer's area to your generating station. You then synch
the generator with the frequency and phase at the far end, not with the local-grid phase. AND YOU AVOID LOOPS (getting
it wrong can drop the power grid over all of Ohio and Illinois, for example, which happened a few years ago)

That's why Hoover (among other large generating systems) has so many wires outbound - that's so each output can be
phase synchronized with a particular city's grid (in fact, generators N8 and N9 (I think; in any case the last two on the Nevada side) at
Hoover were _designated_ to be locally synched to drive the city of Boulder's grid; that's why N8 and N9 are smaller than
N1 through N7; it's because synching a larger generator to Boulder's phase would mean throttling that generator down, which
means a lower-than-designed power level and lost efficiency.

The solution to the phase problem is DC; you upconvert the AC out of the generators (typically only a thousand or two volts
_anyway_) not just to high voltage but to HV DC. DC has no phase, so there's no synch or phase-shift issues. Then, wherever
you want power, you downconvert to AC at the local grid phase.

Problem solved. That's why many of the new / upgraded long lines are HVDC (High Voltage Direct Current), especially where
the infrastructure is totally new, not upgrades to existing plant (i.e. China). You need high voltage semiconductors to do it
efficiently but we (as in $DAYJOB) sell those; it's off the shelf product. :-)

- Bill
"Life is short. But we can always buy longer patch cords" - Savage

joby
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 44
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 10:06 pm

Post by joby » Thu Mar 10, 2016 2:56 pm

I'm having the same exact issues with my 218. Has anyone figured out the best way to ground using the banana ground plug on the side? (sorry i'm a total noob an know nothing of electronics)

I know how to get my easel to work at home every time, but tried using it at a show with a friend and ZERO outlets worked..... big bummer....

User avatar
musicalfungus
Common Wiggler
Posts: 115
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 7:31 pm
Contact:

Post by musicalfungus » Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:52 pm

joby

Joby, I know this post is now a year old. But in the event that you have not resolved your 218 issues. I have two suggestions that helped me in my journey with the 218e.

I just recently resolved all of my 218e problems a few days ago. (fingers crossed) As far as grounding goes my houses power sucks. I have certain outlets that I most definitely cannot plug my Buchla into as I know I will get the classic issues of random keys not working or single key presses causing a burst of notes and pulses (like the arpeggiator has a mind of its own) However I found that by using a Surge Protector...NOT A POWER STRIP, but a real surge protector with power filtering fixes those issues. also per a conversation with Alex Sifre he suggests a small ground adapter that can be found online for just a few bucks. However I decided to go for a $30 surge protector with protection up to 1080 Joules. It also helps filter dirty and inconsistent power sources. This so far has been a great investment and I have had no further grounding issues with the 218 since.

However I did have a completely different issue that I thought was being caused by a bad ground but was much more inconsistent. in the end it turned out to be caused by EMI. My pressure outputs were not working correctly. When I tried to use pressure it would not be a smooth transition of voltage. It was like the pressure was being affected by an LFO, or even the random voltage source. It just fluctuated almost like a tremolo effect made the pressure outputs useless unless I wanted a wobbly wavering sound. You could even see the Pressure LED on the 218 flickering as it randomly spat out voltages. If I sped up the cycling EG or other features it would affect the pressure outputs in weird ways. the strange thing was that it was super inconsistent. It never happens when I perform and only happens in my studio. After weeks of being upset and confused. I found that a small desk lamp with a CFL was causing all of these issues. I immediately threw out that lamp and the issue has not returned. My guess is that this lamp has horrible grounding (or none at all) and was feeding electrical interference back into the Easel. I could turn the CFL on and the issue occurred. Turn it off and instantly the pressure outputs worked correctly. However I did find that when this issue was happening if I were to place one hand on the metal face plate of the 208, or if I were to hold one end of the ground cable on the side of the Easel it wouldn't happen. But now with no CFL in the studio. The Easel is working flawlessly. So I guess it was a combo of grounding and EMI.

However, I dont know if there are other Easel owners like me...but I get worried every time I turn on my BEMI made Easel that something is not going to work right... But I still love it more than any other synth I own.. its a true love hate relationship haha
INSTAGRAM: @musicalfungus

YOUTUBE: youtube.com/musicalfungus

SOUNDCLOUD: soundcloud.com/musicalfungus

User avatar
boops
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 766
Joined: Mon May 06, 2013 6:06 am
Location: Paris France
Contact:

Post by boops » Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:58 am

Many thanks for your report , I have a 218 e :)
FS :custom buchla 203 style càbinet ,skiff new design,boat ,hardware for diy cabinet ,easel case ,new 1u to 10u to 56u and more. / New 208 buchla card 12 /
HQ small case buchla psu PCB
https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewt ... 93#3118393
https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewt ... highlight=

User avatar
Anechoic
Common Wiggler
Posts: 135
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2015 12:27 pm

Post by Anechoic » Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:45 am

musicalfungus
What period Easel is it/Rev. Board# ?

User avatar
musicalfungus
Common Wiggler
Posts: 115
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 7:31 pm
Contact:

Post by musicalfungus » Mon Nov 27, 2017 2:29 pm

Anechoic

It was purchased in February of this year. So My guess is that it was assembled either late last year or early this year. Not sure what Rev it is or the board#. I do know that it has the original classic big red rogan knobs. I think at some point this year BEMI changed the knobs to the newer Rogan knobs found on the 200e series

I prefer to only have to open it up and unscrew the housing if I absolutely have too. Next time I have to get inside the instrument I will check the Rev/board#.

However, where would I look to find this info? On the 208 boards or the 218 boards?
INSTAGRAM: @musicalfungus

YOUTUBE: youtube.com/musicalfungus

SOUNDCLOUD: soundcloud.com/musicalfungus

User avatar
chiasticon
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 273
Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 5:33 pm
Location: the heart of it all

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by chiasticon » Mon Mar 02, 2020 1:38 pm

reviving an old thread since I'm dealing with this issue...

wondering if anyone else has found a solution for this. I'm using a BUSA Easel and I'm getting the issue of random bursts of pulses if I hold a finger on a 218e note. and sometimes it'll switch to different notes as well/instead. two ways to stop it are either: touch the metal face of the 208, or lift my feet off the ground (seriously) onto my office chair legs. I bought a Furman power conditioner that filters EMI/RFI and have also tried using the Easel in its own outlet, with nothing else in the studio powered, and nothing has fixed the issue. studio is on its own circuit and has grounded outlets. nothing else is on the circuit other than the outlets and the overhead lights.


think it's something to do with the Easel/218e or just the way it is? previous owner had no issues and it was just given a clean bill of health by a tech.

User avatar
chiasticon
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 273
Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 5:33 pm
Location: the heart of it all

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by chiasticon » Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:57 pm

video below to demonstrate what's going on with mine...

as can be seen in the video, it occurs when I switch both studio monitors on. if I have one on, there's a *bit* of weirdness but not much (you can see it jump notes in the video). when I turn the other one on, it goes nuts. and yes, I tried moving the Easel around the room and to different outlets, moved the monitors over to an EMI/RFI filtered surge protector, etc. same results: OK with monitors off, goes nuts with them on. monitors are Adam A5's, by the way. decent monitors with grounded power. very confusing...


User avatar
rolsteins
Common Wiggler
Posts: 68
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 4:52 am

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by rolsteins » Fri Mar 13, 2020 8:19 am

chiasticon wrote:
Mon Mar 02, 2020 1:38 pm
reviving an old thread since I'm dealing with this issue...

wondering if anyone else has found a solution for this. I'm using a BUSA Easel and I'm getting the issue of random bursts of pulses if I hold a finger on a 218e note. and sometimes it'll switch to different notes as well/instead. two ways to stop it are either: touch the metal face of the 208, or lift my feet off the ground (seriously) onto my office chair legs. I bought a Furman power conditioner that filters EMI/RFI and have also tried using the Easel in its own outlet, with nothing else in the studio powered, and nothing has fixed the issue. studio is on its own circuit and has grounded outlets. nothing else is on the circuit other than the outlets and the overhead lights.


think it's something to do with the Easel/218e or just the way it is? previous owner had no issues and it was just given a clean bill of health by a tech.
usually those glitches suggest there is something wrong with grounding of your room's (or venue's) electricity system. plug a wire into Easel's headphones output and other end of wire into... your trousers (or keep holding it in hand). Works for me. ;)

User avatar
Peake
I'm in ur DIY. Filling cases with Buchla
Posts: 6455
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 10:00 pm
Location: Loss Angeles

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by Peake » Fri Mar 13, 2020 9:12 pm

Would something like a medical isolation transformer help?
This is not the place I'd imagined it to be.

jimfowler
Veteran Wiggler
Posts: 505
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:13 pm
Location: New York
Contact:

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by jimfowler » Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:01 am

What power supply is being used here?

User avatar
Graham Hinton
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3056
Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:28 pm
Location: England
Contact:

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by Graham Hinton » Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:53 am

chiasticon wrote:
Mon Mar 02, 2020 1:38 pm
I'm using a BUSA Easel and I'm getting the issue of random bursts of pulses if I hold a finger on a 218e note. and sometimes it'll switch to different notes as well/instead. two ways to stop it are either: touch the metal face of the 208, or lift my feet off the ground (seriously) onto my office chair legs. I bought a Furman power conditioner that filters EMI/RFI and have also tried using the Easel in its own outlet, with nothing else in the studio powered, and nothing has fixed the issue. studio is on its own circuit and has grounded outlets. nothing else is on the circuit other than the outlets and the overhead lights.

think it's something to do with the Easel/218e or just the way it is? previous owner had no issues and it was just given a clean bill of health by a tech.
You are looking at this completely the wrong way. It is nothing to do with power and buying a Furman box was a complete waste of money. The problem is between you and the Easel and the way its touch sensitive switches work. The reason it changes when you lift your feet off the floor or turn the a monitor on/off is that your body is picking up different amounts of stray magnetic fields from all the power wiring. I suspect that neither the Easel nor yourself are grounded.
rolsteins wrote:usually those glitches suggest there is something wrong with grounding of your room's (or venue's) electricity system.
Incorrect. They suggest that the Easel is not grounded.
plug a wire into Easel's headphones output and other end of wire into... your trousers (or keep holding it in hand).
That makes your body at the same potential as the Easel 0V, whether it is grounded or not. Yes, it will work, but you shouldn't have to bodge it like that.
Peake wrote:Would something like a medical isolation transformer help?
No. The problem is that there is isolation when no isolation is required.
jimfowler wrote:What power supply is being used here?
One that isolates the ground.

When are synthesizer manufacturers going to understand that synthesizers should be properly grounded?
That's a rhetoric question, the answer is probably never.

jimfowler
Veteran Wiggler
Posts: 505
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:13 pm
Location: New York
Contact:

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by jimfowler » Sat Mar 14, 2020 8:10 am

That was going to be my guess/suggestion. There are switching supplies that ground the thing to which it is supplying power. The Cincon supplies do not, to my knowledge, do this.

User avatar
chiasticon
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 273
Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 5:33 pm
Location: the heart of it all

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by chiasticon » Sat Mar 14, 2020 10:32 am

Graham Hinton wrote:
Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:53 am
You are looking at this completely the wrong way. It is nothing to do with power and buying a Furman box was a complete waste of money. The problem is between you and the Easel and the way its touch sensitive switches work. The reason it changes when you lift your feet off the floor or turn the a monitor on/off is that your body is picking up different amounts of stray magnetic fields from all the power wiring. I suspect that neither the Easel nor yourself are grounded.
thanks for the explanation (and others!). fwiw the Furman was one of the cheaper $30 power strips (not one of the insane $600 ones or something) and I needed another power strip anyway. also I have verified that the power in the room is grounded correctly via one of those little plug in testers.

is there a way to ground the Easel using the grounding port, if I don't have any other banana gear to plug it into?
jimfowler wrote:
Sat Mar 14, 2020 8:10 am
That was going to be my guess/suggestion. There are switching supplies that ground the thing to which it is supplying power. The Cincon supplies do not, to my knowledge, do this.
there was another thread here about using a Meanwell power supply instead :https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewt ... p?t=201326

I don't get the difference of what that power supply is doing versus the Cincon one. Graham Hinton commented there that it wasn't correct/safe either, so I dunno. is this a medical isolating transformer like Peake suggested?

User avatar
Graham Hinton
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3056
Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:28 pm
Location: England
Contact:

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by Graham Hinton » Sat Mar 14, 2020 2:06 pm

chiasticon wrote:
Sat Mar 14, 2020 10:32 am
is there a way to ground the Easel using the grounding port, if I don't have any other banana gear to plug it into?
First test continuity between the Earth pin on the mains lead plug and that port. If it is already connected then you don't need to, but I suspect it is not.
You can make a connection by using a wirable mains plug and putting a wire on to only the Earth pin.

jimfowler wrote:
Sat Mar 14, 2020 8:10 am
There are switching supplies that ground the thing to which it is supplying power.
There are, but that type usually just link the mains Earth to one of the outputs which isn't the right way to do it. Ideally you want the Earth taken through on a separate wire rather than sharing a wire carrying several amps and it should be connected to the 0V of the circuitry, not the 0V of the PSU.

User avatar
chiasticon
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 273
Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 5:33 pm
Location: the heart of it all

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by chiasticon » Sat Mar 14, 2020 2:27 pm

Graham Hinton wrote:
Sat Mar 14, 2020 2:06 pm
First test continuity between the Earth pin on the mains lead plug and that port. If it is already connected then you don't need to, but I suspect it is not.
it passed this test. they are indeed connected.

not sure where that leaves me, though... :hmm:

User avatar
Graham Hinton
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3056
Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:28 pm
Location: England
Contact:

Re: Buchla 218 Grounding vs. Balance Power - Resolved!

Post by Graham Hinton » Sat Mar 14, 2020 4:26 pm

chiasticon wrote:
Sat Mar 14, 2020 2:27 pm
it passed this test. they are indeed connected.

not sure where that leaves me, though... :hmm:
It leaves you ungrounded. Try a wire from the grounding port to a wrist strap or similar. I haven't seen an Easel keyboard schematic, but it probably relies on you changing the capacitance of the inputs to ground which assumes that you are grounded. If you are not then you are injecting a mains frequency at the detection circuitry.

Post Reply

Return to “Buchla, EMS & Serge”