SSL Scat-Talker update

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dslocum
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SSL Scat-Talker update

Post by dslocum » Mon Jul 13, 2015 5:29 am

As promised, here's a quick update on the SSL Scat-Talker...

Hardware is mostly done. Firmware is getting close. All good things! Yeah!

I very recently had the distinct honour of demonstrating this video of my new Scat-Talker to the President and several top scientists at Bell Laboratories here in NJ. I have another meeting later this week with hopes of meeting Max Mathews' son Boyd, so I can show him what I am planning for the Scat-Talker. I hope to dedicate it to Max's memory.

Enjoy.

SSL Scat-Talker Demo 1

[video][/video]
Last edited by dslocum on Mon Jul 13, 2015 7:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
Doug Slocum
Synthetic Sound Labs
www.steamsynth.com
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"I guess all the Forest Mims Radio Shack books I read finally paid off!"
"I ordered twice as many _______ as I thought I'd need, only to find out that I'm still less than half way to having enough."
"...this whole thing was started by a dream and a mouse." - Walt Disney
"Flatulence sounds aren't just for brass and reed instruments anymore, thanks in large part to Dr Moog." - Ockeghem

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Thalassa
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Post by Thalassa » Mon Jul 13, 2015 5:34 am

Good work , it sounds great :hail: :hail: :hail:

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Mon Jul 13, 2015 6:30 am

Really great! WANT! :hyper:

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Scot Solida
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Post by Scot Solida » Mon Jul 13, 2015 7:43 am

:eek:

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duluthdack
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Post by duluthdack » Mon Jul 13, 2015 8:06 am

I want more videos...or to own the damn module!

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unwar
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Post by unwar » Mon Jul 13, 2015 8:10 am

hells yea...its scat time

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robotmakers
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Post by robotmakers » Mon Jul 13, 2015 8:49 am

I'm thinking a few dozen of these to replicate some Ligeti choirs.

It's Kubrickian!
Roger

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Post by sduck » Mon Jul 13, 2015 9:00 am

Amazing!
flickr cloud of sound touyube NOT A MODERATOR ANYMORE

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fac
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Post by fac » Mon Jul 13, 2015 10:36 am

Must have! :drunkhomer: :moneyburn:

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Dave Peck
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Post by Dave Peck » Mon Jul 13, 2015 12:16 pm

I see the picture of this module on the S.S.L. site but there is no additional info - so is this a 1V/octave oscillator with a vocal formant wave table? And can this wavetable be swept manually & by CV, as shown by the knob twiddle a the end of the video? What about the programmed speech wave sequence at the beginning of the demo that is singing the lyrics - is that ONLY an on-board demo, or can the user program & store user-defined wave sequences in the module?

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Post by jupiter8 » Mon Jul 13, 2015 2:03 pm

This is cooler than the coolest thing ever.

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dslocum
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Post by dslocum » Mon Jul 13, 2015 3:32 pm

Dave Peck wrote:I see the picture of this module on the S.S.L. site but there is no additional info - so is this a 1V/octave oscillator with a vocal formant wave table? And can this wavetable be swept manually & by CV, as shown by the knob twiddle a the end of the video? What about the programmed speech wave sequence at the beginning of the demo that is singing the lyrics - is that ONLY an on-board demo, or can the user program & store user-defined wave sequences in the module?
It uses an old Votrax SC-01 speech chip from the 80's with a CPU interface and expo pitch response. No, not a VCO with a wavetable output. It has been a long time to get to this stage. Several design obstacles such as getting it to do decent 1V/oct (currently usable over about 2 octaves, which is about all all you need for speech).

Many of you will be familiar with the "War Games" movie from the 1980's which used a device with a SC-01 inside. "Shall we play a game?"

In order to get the phonemes (basic elements of speech) to produce "words", you need to connect many phonemes in correct sequence, with appropriate lengths and spacing (silence). It can be quite tedious stringing these together, and then if you want it to sing, that's a whole other animal. I took me several days to "code" the "Daisy, Daisy" demo, so if you're thinking of doing a song with the Scat-Talker, be ready for some late nights. I'm happy to help with hints and tricks for those who are daring. There is no internal provision for storing your own phoneme sequences.

I'll be supporting the Scat-Talker with several documents that will show the phonemes, timing, rules and a large dictionary of "words" that you can program into your sequencer of choice.

For a sequencer, although I haven't actually tried it yet, you should probably consider a DAW to output to a MIDI to CV converter. One CV output would control one of the 64 phonemes, another the pitch. The pitch goes from Chipmunks to gargling under CV.

The ST has a "Done" output that will tell you when the phoneme has completed it's default timing, a 1V/Oct in, an aux CV input with attenuator (think vibratos), and a Gate / Trig input.

Switches are "Phoneme / Demo" mode, and "Gate / Trig / On" mode, with a manual Gate / Trig pushbutton.
Doug Slocum
Synthetic Sound Labs
www.steamsynth.com
------------
"I guess all the Forest Mims Radio Shack books I read finally paid off!"
"I ordered twice as many _______ as I thought I'd need, only to find out that I'm still less than half way to having enough."
"...this whole thing was started by a dream and a mouse." - Walt Disney
"Flatulence sounds aren't just for brass and reed instruments anymore, thanks in large part to Dr Moog." - Ockeghem

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Post by dslocum » Mon Jul 13, 2015 3:54 pm

robotmakers wrote:I'm thinking a few dozen of these to replicate some Ligeti choirs.

It's Kubrickian!
Roger
Well, maybe Ligeti with a bad cold! :hihi:
Doug Slocum
Synthetic Sound Labs
www.steamsynth.com
------------
"I guess all the Forest Mims Radio Shack books I read finally paid off!"
"I ordered twice as many _______ as I thought I'd need, only to find out that I'm still less than half way to having enough."
"...this whole thing was started by a dream and a mouse." - Walt Disney
"Flatulence sounds aren't just for brass and reed instruments anymore, thanks in large part to Dr Moog." - Ockeghem

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Dave Peck
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Post by Dave Peck » Mon Jul 13, 2015 6:33 pm

Very cool. I would be interested in something like this not for painstakingly stringing phonemes together to create recognizable words, but as an interesting oscillator that can provide changing timbres under CV control. By using some complex CV sources, maybe a couple of slow LFOs plus a note-triggered random generator that would cause the Scattalker to begin each new note with a different phoneme, and then slowly change the timbre a bit throughout the duration of the note, I bet you would be able to do stuff along the lines of the atmospheric vocal-y synth sound used as the main melodic part in the "Premonition of Circular Clouds" track from Robert Rich's "Bestiary" CD.....

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Post by duluthdack » Tue Jul 14, 2015 3:41 am

Dave Peck

I'll agree, creating words wouldn't be the reason I use it. I would probably sequence this as a perc unit with changing phonemes to accent a beat.

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Dob
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Post by Dob » Tue Jul 14, 2015 5:33 am

Damnit.
Now I understand the practical use of a ponytail... 'cause pretty soon I won't even be able to get a decent haircut anymore.

:moneyburn:

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Post by ualslosar » Tue Jul 14, 2015 7:02 pm

I can see my synth yelling "LAZY BUM" repeatedly when I pass by...

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Post by Bryan B » Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:32 am

I should know better by now, but i thought this was a joke module for a while. This is no joke!

This is very cool and it would be so much fun to experiment with such a module!
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Post by Faustgeist » Fri Jul 17, 2015 9:18 pm

Oh yes, I want two of these puppies. 5u for the win!

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Post by trentpmcd » Sun Jul 19, 2015 7:40 am

Cool! My first thought was HAL would be proud. Then, feeling a little stupid, I Googled Max Mathews and discovered that it was no coincidence that HAL would be proud.

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dslocum
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Post by dslocum » Sun Jul 19, 2015 6:36 pm

Here's what the final panel will probably look like. Comments?

Note the dedication to Max _and_ HAL (though a bit too low rez to see in this) :goo:

Image
Doug Slocum
Synthetic Sound Labs
www.steamsynth.com
------------
"I guess all the Forest Mims Radio Shack books I read finally paid off!"
"I ordered twice as many _______ as I thought I'd need, only to find out that I'm still less than half way to having enough."
"...this whole thing was started by a dream and a mouse." - Walt Disney
"Flatulence sounds aren't just for brass and reed instruments anymore, thanks in large part to Dr Moog." - Ockeghem

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unwar
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Post by unwar » Sun Jul 19, 2015 6:48 pm

looks good. can't wait to start experimenting.

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Post by AnalogBastard » Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:18 pm

Every so often, I see a new module that makes me go :mygod: .. This is definitely one of them :tu: :yay:

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Post by spinach_pizza » Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:35 pm

This looks amazingly cool, Doug. :tu:

I do have one comment: I noticed that a switch toggles between phoneme and demo. I can see people playing the demo once or twice and then just leaving the switch set at phoneme...which seems sort of like a waste of a switch to me. Unless I'm missing something about the utility of the demo?

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Post by robotmakers » Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:00 pm

Finally, a module to watch over me while I'm in hibernation and to monitor the AE35 unit for faults. I think I'll also patch it into the pod bay doors. What could possibly go wrong? Care for a game of chess, scat-talker?

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