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Arduino General Discussion Thread
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Music Tech DIY Goto page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next [all]
Author Arduino General Discussion Thread
EATyourGUITAR
Here it is. Discuss all things ARDUINO. the best information from this thread will be added to the wiki. I don't know exactly how that happens but a mod told me that it can be done. I'll kick off the discussion with this list of shields at http://www.shieldlist.org
What shield do you use? Got any good books? Whats your favorite synth related Arduino project?

I want to buy a shield soon. I'm looking at the uno but I'm not sure yet.

http://www.arduino.cc/

It's peanut butter jelly time!
Jarno
Excellent idea!

Been looking at Arduino's myself, they are pretty easy to program, tons of IO.

Bought a Uno and two Nano's. Especially the Nano is very appealing, you only need a simple board with some buffering, plonk on a Nano and you can use it for anything you'd like. I think the Uno is a bit too large for this.
Had a look at the ArdCore as well, but I do think that's a bit too barebones.

First think on my agenda is to do a masterclock with Arduino, but I would also like to do a sequencer (maybe a parametric one like the one Tombola did).

One thing that is not completely clear is how to incorporate a (higher than 8 bit) DAC or ADC, but I'll get to that in due time, a "walk before you run" kind of thing.
alphabetter
My Electronics for Artists course includes some horrible square-wave organs built around an Arduino.

I am just doing some experiements with PWM output. http://lockerz.com/s/160902073
Anyone know what a good filter to use after a 1 bit PWM output is to get it back to something that looks OK? Third order Bessel is too whimpy. Going to try fourth order Butterworth when I get some time.

Overall the Arduino is great as an experimental platform though not really well adapated to audio without external components.
robotfunk
20objects has PCBs available for Ardcore, a project that allows you to embed an arduino in a module

http://20objects.com/ardcore/
Jarno
Like I said, a bit too barebones IMHO. Arduino has a ton of IO and the ArdCore really only has 2 analog ins, and 4 digital I/O, while the Arduino has 8 analog ins and 14 digital I/O.

But it is an almost off the shelf solution, probably a pretty quick build.
x2mirko
Ahh, Arduinos. They are absolutely awesome. Always wanted to get into microcontrollers since i did a practical course at the university, but never did it until i found out about arduinos. Such a nice learning curve grin

By now I have build a lot of stuff using arduinos. As for synth stuff, i've only build two things:
1. An Arduinome (check this and this. Build me the equivalent of a 128. Was my first bigger project and, well, i kinda screwed up the enclosure. It's all a bit wobbly, but works perfectly fine. It's one of the lower entries of my to-do-list to fix this and make it a really sturdy enclosure.

2. A 4x8/2x16 step sequencer. Designed it completely by myself (which is not saying much as it really isn't complex at all lol ). It's essentially one arduino and a few multiplexers. The arduino doesn't handle the voltages, it just does the logic.
It consists of two completely independent units of 2x8 sequencers. Both have a clock and reset input. Each row has it's own output, but each pair of rows shares another output that first outputs 8 steps of the first, then 8 steps of the second row, alternating between the two. That way, i can use each of the units as an 16 step sequencer instead of 2x8 steps.
Apart from that, there's the brain switch, which turns off the clock and reset inputs and turns on the brain of the arduino, making it listen to a serial connection via usb for easily syncing it to my daw and also for doing more crazy stuff like adressing single steps or using different patterns for the sequencer (reverse, pendulum and so on). First i wanted to build all that into the hardwarepart of the sequencer (adding all kinds of switches for different modes of operation), but i figured it would be more fun to have a very simple interface. Also, i could just add an expander which adds those options, if i really wanted to.
One thing i really misjudged were the leds i used. Those things light up my whole room when it's dark. Also i think i'd go blind if i'd look right into them lol
EATyourGUITAR
what do you think of the pro mini 328? I like the size and price but I'm concerned about starting projects on the UNO and moving them over to the Arduino Duemilanove 328 hardware. I really like the pad per hole universal shields. I don't like the on-board 2.1mm power headers. synth modules have totally different power headers. small finished products get a chassis mount 2.1mm power entry module anyway. I have numerous 9.5V power supplies that were for my guitar pedals. most shields have regulators that let you use anything from 7v to 12v but I may want access to my 9v rail for other stuff. I was thinking about desoldering the power socket from the shield.
x2mirko
Jarno wrote:
One thing that is not completely clear is how to incorporate a (higher than 8 bit) DAC or ADC, but I'll get to that in due time, a "walk before you run" kind of thing.


It's actually pretty easy. There are libraries for both SPI and I2C for the arduino and you really don't need to do a lot to set up the communication with a DAC/ADC as long as you make sure that the one you buy speaks one of those protocols.
EATyourGUITAR
I don't know anything about SPI but I have looked at using I2C DAC & ADC before when I almost made a bit crusher. a friend of mine made a voltage controlled bit crusher in a DIP8 PIC. after I saw that I gave up on the I2C version. I see some people add ram to the arduino to get longer delay times for audio effects. I have no idea what is compatible or what libraries they use to add ram.
Jarno
Hey x2mirko, that sequencer is pretty damn sexy!
mckenic
Im not trying to be a prick here and PLEASE take this with a pinch of salt/ignore completely if you already know this... I think the terminology is getting a little mixed up.

The Arduino is a programmable board. I run wires out of mine to a gutted Wah pedal and into Max4Live - there I use it as the Wah controller in Guitar Rig. The latest, most up to date board is the Uno. The older board is the Duemilanove.

Shields are used to build projects and they sit atop the board - I have built Arduinome, Drum trigger, Wave File player and Midi/CV shields. My Wave player wont work as more grunt is needed so it wont run on my Duemilanove board and Im hoping to pick-up an Uno board asap.

I think Arduino boards are FANTASTIC to try stuff out - they got me into building DIY kits (Sammich/x0x/Flight of harmony etc.) but because of that there are LARGE gaps in my DIY knowledge. Power/multiplexing etc. I know nothing about as its all done by an Arduino and a Shield hihi

Arduino & Max/Msp is like Pizza & Coke for me! They go wonderful together!

So again, sorry if ya'll already know all this - please ignore and Im not trying to be a dick!
robotfunk
Jarno wrote:
Like I said, a bit too barebones IMHO. Arduino has a ton of IO and the ArdCore really only has 2 analog ins, and 4 digital I/O, while the Arduino has 8 analog ins and 14 digital I/O.

But it is an almost off the shelf solution, probably a pretty quick build.



It has 4 analog ins, you can choose either a pot or a CV input for each. I'm assuming 8 digital pins are used to drive the DAC, that does not leave you with too many digital pins (which are not created equal)
Jarno
Thought you needed only a couple of pins to drive the dac.

By the way the neutron shield modulator seems great as well, wonder when it's for sale.
x2mirko
@mckenic: I didn't really see anything mixed up in the earlier posts, but it's still good to have a little definition in the thread, i guess - after all, it helps to make sure everyone means the same thing when talking about these things thumbs up

mckenic wrote:
The Arduino is a programmable board.


If one wants to be really precise, the name arduino covers the hardware (as in: the board), the software (IDE and programming language) and the documentation/learning ressources. If you ask the developers, it even includes the community. It's really all meant to be one unit.

@Jarno: Thanks! it's a lot of fun and probably my best-executed diy-project as of yet. Even though it's pretty simple, i'm very proud of it w00t
x2mirko
Jarno wrote:
Thought you needed only a couple of pins to drive the dac.


Depends on how you communicate with it. The simplest solution is to send every bit to the dac on a seperate line - which needs ridiculous amounts of digital pins for, say, a 14-bit dac (14 pins). With protocols such as spi and i2c, the bits are transmitted serially and therefor need a lot less lines (if i remember correctly, it's 3/4 pins for spi (depending on the variant of spi you are using) and 2 pins for i2c. I'm pretty sure one could design a adc/dac shield for the arduino which allows more analog ins/outs that the ardcore, if that is the goal.
I guess the ardcore designer also had cost in mind - having all the options of digital and analog ins/outs needed for a generic project while keeping the cost at a nice level. adc/dacs are pretty expensive in comparison to most other parts - at least at high resolutions.
mckenic
Yup of course! thumbs up

I prolly needed to do that in my head as I was getting a little confused thumbs up

Really, really cool sequencer BTW mate! Multiplexers confuse the hell out of me! Although the Collins book is helping!

At the moment, Im using the PWM out and some mad equations posted here somewhere to get crazy pitched madness - I'll try find a link. I'd LOVE to get the variables controlled by a pot or something!
EATyourGUITAR
mckenic wrote:
So again, sorry if ya'll already know all this


some of us know already but all the information is appreciated. there are people of all skill levels reading and contributing to this thread. that is the best part.
thumbs up
sduck
It's all greek to me, so be liberal with your definitions and explanations and circles and diagrams please. I want/need to know more about these. Any web pages with arduino for dummies type stuff?
x2mirko
sduck wrote:
It's all greek to me, so be liberal with your definitions and explanations and circles and diagrams please. I want/need to know more about these. Any web pages with arduino for dummies type stuff?


In my opinion, the best way to get started is buying a board (and one of the many arduino-experimentation/beginner kits that are available from different sites) and just starting with the learning-section on the arduino-page. The whole page is really good for learning hands on.
Neutron7
Sorry about the horn tooting!

how about a board that:
takes an arduino UNO or clone.

Can have 16 controls, which can be pots, switches or (up to 8 way)multi way switches.
has an option of PWM 10 bit or 12 bit SPI DAC 2 chan out.
up to 8 LEDs
does level conversion and shifting for 2 CV outs and 2 CV in
output filter can be customized.
has 2 gate/trigger ins/outs
MOTM/EURO/.com power connectors
onboard regulator, protection etc.
MIDI in/out
can take aditional shields, and has an amplifier to bring them to synth level.



I finally have someone helping with the documentation for it,
Jarno
Very nice! How, when, how much?

Just started doing a board of my own (Arduino clock with LED readout).
mckenic
PLEASE - toot away!

I need to understand exactly how I would use your board Neutron7 - but my mind is racing already with possibilities!
Neutron7
you could use it for anything you want to modulate your synth with.

the outputs and inputs have adjustable gain, as well as offset. so you can
shift output from +-5v to 0-10v and reduce and ofset the input CV to get full scale on the arduino input from synth CVs

on the one in my modular at the moment, i have
selectable by switch:

1 dual ADSR with linear or "capacitor" output and retrigger
2 envelope controlled LFO (level and/or rate)
3 time-level type envelope
4 burst generator (outputs a fixed amount of pulses on a gate)
5 adjustable low frequency noise / sample n hold.
6 chaos generator (8 kinds of chaos)
7 8 stage voltage sequencer
8 dual LFOs with adjustable sync-phase

I have settled on 8 pots, 1 8 way selector switch and 4 toggle switches as the "standard" which my programs will work with, but you could modify the program to have twice as many controls(with 2 control boards instead of 1), if you wanted to try a 16 stage sequencer, for example. or not use the multiplexor board at all, for something with just a couple of controls.

what it can not do very well with current arduinos is do more than a basic audio rate oscillator or sound processor. there is a new arduino coming out with a 98 mhz 32 bit ARM chip though, so i expect that to change in a big way!
lazerkind
I did a basic dual osc module with my arduino.
Sounds rather cool in a lofi way.
7CV in + 11 knobs and 3 switches to control various modes, tracking and octaves.
Some demos.
Dual Sine FM
[s]http://soundcloud.com/lazerkind/dual-osc-fm-demo[/s]
Dual Saw FM
[s]http://soundcloud.com/lazerkind/dual-osc-demo-ii-saw-mode[/s]
WTF!
[s]http://soundcloud.com/lazerkind/dual-osc-demo-iii-nasty-mode[/s]
x2mirko
lazerkind wrote:
I did a basic dual osc module with my arduino.
Sounds rather cool in a lofi way.
7CV in + 11 knobs and 3 switches to control various modes, tracking and octaves.
Some demos.
[s]http://soundcloud.com/lazerkind/sets/dual-osc-demos[/s]


cool stuff. Did you use external adcs for the cv inputs? I've played around a bit with an arduino as osc, but didn't manage to get the tracking right yet - it felt like that was a problem of accuracy of the internal adc, but i wasn't sure about that - might also just have been me being stupid wink

also: is the source code available somewhere? would love to check it out smile
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