FAQ & Terms of UseFAQ & Terms Of Use   Wiggler RadioMW Radio   Muff Wiggler TwitterTwitter   Support the site @ PatreonPatreon 
 SearchSearch   RegisterSign up   Log inLog in 

Analogue Computers & Music
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Artist Discussion  
Author Analogue Computers & Music
My interest in analogue computers is reaching its peak. I am searching for examples of music made using analogue computation. The only one that I have actually heard is Hecker's "Acid in the Style of David Tudor", where he used a Comdyna with a Buchla for the majority of the tracks.

(photo is from

Look for work by Peter Zinoviev and Morton Subotnik as a start
Mood Organ y/ eorien/medien_die_wir_meinen/projekte/think-analogue/kulk
Mood Organ

Not exactly what's usually referred to as analogue computing, but perhaps of interest to you.
Mood Organ
Thanks for the links thumbs up

A colleague of mine has actually been in contact with one the designers of the Intel chip used for Tudor's Artificial Neural Network synth. If they can get the firmware loaded onto it, there may be a chance of building one.

Anything more specific? I know some of Subotnick's work, but I cannot find anything to do with Analogue Computers.

Pete Kember has/had and used a Comdyna.
I use lab gear more than actual analogue computers, but I did do this a few years ago with an EG&G Universal Programmer and a Linear Gate. So you could say that has a computational element as opposed to my usual method of just using lab gear as a gigantic modular synthesiser

Mood Organ
Dan Slater has an interesting article (from 1998) but it's behind a paywall.

Anyone know this guy, or any music he's recorded?
Hecker mentions Dan Slater's article in an interview about "Acid in the Style of...". Other than that, I know nothing. ound_and_Artificial_Neural_Networks.pdf
Anything more specific? I know some of Subotnick's work, but I cannot find anything to do with Analogue Computers

For whatever reason I thought Subotnik had spent a lot of time with old electronics lab gear before the Tape Center and don buchla, but I cant find what I was thinking of, probably was someone else. Certainly, it has been argued that Buchla was building modular analog computers with the intent of making music with them, but that is not, I think, what you had in mind.
Historically the lab equipment used most often for music were signal generators. As to what analog computers are generally doing is solving differential equations in realtime. Voltages go in which are measured as numeric values and the voltage out is measured as a result of the programming. As the inputs change, the output reflects the program patched up. Comdyna uses a +10v offset as a reference as I understand it, but It shouldn't be too difficult to remove it for modular use. Never found the specs of how fast they process, I'd assume it's more a control voltage processor and generator rather than an audio processor though have not confirmed.
A lot of those analog(ue) computers can be used as audio mangling devices, or control voltage processors - you just have to figure out and experiment with the inputs & outputs
Mood Organ

electronic music composition with analog computer filter programs and the Arp 2500 and 2600. originally designed as tape track for performance with bass clarinet and improvised percussion.
pre Telesoniek Atelier Studio 1989

WT analog studios
Hi all,
was planning to post something on this topic for a long time, and now I finally can:-) Here some unsorted text:-)

The posts from Mood Organ (thanks!) are related to my person,
I started experimenting with a Hitachi 240 analog computer in 1988.
The hint came from an article by Joel Chadabe in the great book:
The development and practice of electronic music by Appleton and Perera,
where Chadabe said: a modular synthesizer is conceptually akin to an analog computer.
That puzzeled me and started the research in these machines. Through contacts I in no time found several 240's in the basements of technical highschools in the country, and got them all:-)

Composer David Roosenboom did a piece with an analog computer, however in a response to a letter (yes from a typewriter back then:-) I got no specific information on how he applied it to his music.

By just studying the large amount of literature on analog computation I could experiment with patch programs suiteble for electronic music, at low frequencies for voltage control, and on high frequencies for audio processing.

There is still a lot you could discover as it is a real engineering machine; just try out and look and listen what it does. At The Institute for Sonology in The Hague teacher Peter Pabon uses analog computer methods applied in Physical Modelling synthesis.

The Hitachi 240 computer are now in use at the Willem Twee studios in 's-Hertogenbosch, where we give courses, also in analog computers in electronic music.
You can rent the studios and work there including assist if you want.
Andrea Taeggi made his recordings with the analog computers here:-) smokin'
Info here:

By the way, in the studio we also have those EG&G instruments that are basically analog computer derived functions, very useful in sound synthesis.

Thanks for reading, and there is still a lot that can be discovered in the analog electronic art:-)
I like programs and players of such type. So what can be better than this?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Artist Discussion  
Page 1 of 1
Powered by phpBB © phpBB Group