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LZX/Sandin Image Processor Modules/Kits (official thread)
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Video Synthesis Goto page 1, 2  Next [all]
Author LZX/Sandin Image Processor Modules/Kits (official thread)
Wanted to start a new thread on this, since most notes are buried in other threads and we're about to release these.

LZX Industries is very happy to present some new modules adapted from the Sandin Image Processor circuitry in a format compatible with the rest of our modular system for video synthesis and processing.

If you aren't familiar with the Sandin Image Processor, it was an early modular video synthesizer developed in 1971 by Dan Sandin. More information and historical notes here:

The LZX/Sandin modules are officially endorsed by Professor Sandin, who got to see the prototypes in person last week in Chicago (an exciting visit!) While the Sandin IP schematics are "open source", we wanted Professor Sandin to receive some compensation, so he will be receiving royalty payments from sales of these modules.

The core circuit designs and functional interfaces are identical to the original Sandin Image Processor schematics, however some additional circuitry has been added to adapt for the LZX standard of high impedance and 1V signals. Parts selection in the case of op-amps and diodes have been updated to modern equivalents: LM6172 op-amps and 1N5711 diodes as used in other LZX modules. This was due to Professor Sandin's request that these modules perform with as much quality as possible, as was the intention of the original Image Processor -- and also due to the lack of availability of the original op-amps and germanium diodes used.

We are releasing two modules in December 2011, Differentiator and Function Generator. Modules will be available as PCBs only, Full Kits, or Assembled Units. Tentative pricing for these two modules is $149 for assembled and $99 for kits. We aren't taking any sort of pre-orders at this time, modules will be available when they are in stock.

Following these, we may also release Amplitude Classifier. The other Sandin modules' functions are covered in other modules offered by LZX, so unless there is a huge demand, we won't be offering clones of those.

Here's the final panel artwork for Function Generator and Differentiator. We'll be ordering these in the next few days, so if you have any feedback you'd like to be considered, please speak now.

Differentiator, 4HP
This module is a video rate high pass filter with six inputs, each representing different cutoffs. This module can be used for edge extraction or enhancement, or as an alternative way of mixing signals. Inputs can be unipolar or bipolar. Output is bipolar.

Function Generator, 4HP
This module is a continuous waveshaper which allows inversion and level control over the lights, mids, and darks of an image or any other signal. While the circuit is designed to accept and output bipolar voltages (+/-0.5V) a switch has been added to apply an offset to the input and output for conditioning unipolar 0-to-1V signals.

Please let me know any questions.
excited! this will make the Color Video Decoder & Frame Synchronizer much more needed for me. i love that these are available as kits. ive done a few kits but i have a question on the instructions. most of the kits ive done have been fairly easy (step by step for each component) to a little more advanced ( PCB diagram with components and their values pointed out) to more advanced (technical schematic) which i have not done yet since im not comfortable reading electronic schematics yet (forgive my laymen nomenclature). Where do you see your DIY modules in terms of construction instructions?
I would call these intermediate level kits. The instructions won't go step by step for each component or provide advice on how to solder, but there will be a full component key/legend, PCB diagram, and BOM list as well as some tips on the frontpanel mounting and wiring. All parts on these modules are thru-hole parts. If you check out the assembly manual for the LZX BitVision, you will see what basically to expect:
looks comfortable enough for me. thanks!
Part of me really wishes that these were VC controllable, but I like the 4HP size and that's what VCAs and mixers are for, after all.
these look super cool cant wait to build them
If we made them voltage controllable, they definitely wouldn't be the Sandin IP modules any more, since it would take a lot of extra circuitry and cost (and probably wouldn't be feasible DIY projects either.) Although I can definitely see what you mean.

Part of the reason we released Triple Video Processor was for cases like this -- it's perfect for doing something like summing in an LFO and applying gain/bias with your signal before patching it into Function Generator for example. Or for doing a wet/dry mix of an original signal and the output of Differentiator, for "edge enhancement" type effects.

Triple Video Multimode Filter will do all the voltage controlled highpass stuff you want. Differentiator just presents an interesting alternative.
Stoked for dem kits! Never maintain cash savings again
Very excited these two are happening. I would STRESS that you really should also do the Amplitude Classifier. I really love this module, and this others will too if they got their hands on it.

Yes! Amplitude Classifier is a must, and if we don't do an exact functional clone of this IP module verbatim, it will be because we are replicating its functions in other module(s) we have planned, the same as how Adder/Multiplier, Comparator, and Oscillator modules have functional equivalents within the LZX system already. One way or another, a chained comparator type module is forthcoming.

Here's a quick mockup of Amplitude Classifier layout on a 22HP panel.

Definitely going to be picking up a kit for both of these.
It's also worth noting that in the "Brief Systems Level Description" of the Sandin Image Processor documentation, it's recommended that a Classic IP configuration contain 3x each of Function Generators and Differentatiors. In the Classic IP, there were 3x each of these behind a single frontpanel, but since we're in Euro-land, with variable sizes, we're putting 1x of each behind a frontpanel. If you're doing a DIY panel, you could probably do a triple panel if you wanted.
The IP boxes/panels were pretty large, so fitting a lot on one was a bit easier than Euro. They were 10 inches high and 4 inches wide. So that's like 6U tall and 20HP wide. Since they had no rails and mounting screws, there was even more space to fit stuff. They also had bigger knobs and looser spacing. So a lot more could fit into a 40HP Euro panel than in one IP panel.
Will the kits include front panels?
Yes, they will be full kits with PCB, panel, and all required parts other than supplies and tools with which to assemble them. We may also offer the PCB separately. We haven't done all the parts buys yet, so if anyone wants anything other than a full kit or a bare PCB, best to speak your mind on that.
Sign me up for FULL kits on these modules.

Any update on these?
Still should have them ready to go by the end of December. smile
Id def want some PCBs if you offer them! awesome
It's motherfucking bacon yo
I want all your stuff on pcb's....
Most of our modules are not even close to feasible for thru-hole designs or self-assembly. But any of them that we can (like these Sandin clones) we'll happily offer PCBs for.

If you want assembled PCBs for any of the other modules (like for a different format adaptation) that's possible, but the cost difference between that and a fully assembled module is not very big at all.
Ok, that means a bit longer waiting time for me to save up money, but shorter building time so I will probably get them at the same time anyway smile
Just to be clear in case I was confusing with that last statement, the Sandin IP modules are our only thru-hole/DIY modules. They will be available as full kits, assembled, or bare PCB only. We'd love to provide more modules like this in the future.

Assembled PCBs (with surfacemount parts mounted) could theoretically be provided for our other modules, if an experienced DIY'er wanted them specifically for a special project, but the price for assembled PCBs would be pretty close to the price for the assembled modules anyway -- so it's not that sensible.
any update on these kits?
They've been in stock at Analogue Haven for a couple months now.
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