tom moody

tom moody's weblog
(2001 - 2007)

tommoody.us (2004 - )

2001-2007 archive

main site

faq

digital media tree (or "home" below)


RSS / validator



BLOG in gallery / AFC / artCal / furtherfield on BLOG

room sized animated GIFs / pics

geeks in the gallery / 2 / 3

fuzzy logic

and/or gallery / pics / 2

rhizome interview / illustrated

ny arts interview / illustrated

visit my cubicle

blogging & the arts panel

my dorkbot talk / notes

infinite fill show


music

video




Links:

coalition casualties

civilian casualties

iraq today / older

mccain defends bush's iraq strategy

eyebeam reBlog

hullabaloo

tyndall report

aron namenwirth

bloggy / artCal

james wagner

what really happened

stinkoman

antiwar.com

cory arcangel / at del.icio.us

juan cole

a a attanasio

rhizome.org

three rivers online

unknown news

eschaton

prereview

edward b. rackley

travelers diagram at del.icio.us

atomic cinema

lovid

cpb::softinfo :: blog

vertexList

paper rad / info

nastynets now

the memory hole

de palma a la mod

aaron in japan

NEWSgrist

chris ashley

comiclopedia

discogs

counterpunch

9/11 timeline

tedg on film

art is for the people

x-eleven

jim woodring

stephen hendee

steve gilliard

mellon writes again

eyekhan

adrien75 / 757

disco-nnect

WFMU's Beware of the Blog

travis hallenbeck

paul slocum

guthrie lonergan / at del.icio.us

tom moody


View current page
...more recent posts



A lot of the (sucky) music you hear today in movies, TV, and advertising is made with software synths and samplers. Sucky not because it's made with virtually but because it's made for business people, who want everything bland (except for the triphop between Adult Swim cartoons--that's good). Nowadays your average PC can imitate any synth and even convincingly reproduce symphonic instruments. 20 years ago a softsynth cost $50,000 and looked like....this.

PPG Realizer

From a website devoted to the now defunct German company PPG Instruments:
The Realizer may well have been the world's first virtual instrument, yet ironically some feel the stress of its development put PPG out of business. It was the last PPG product, and never got beyond the prototype stage. Still, its features were staggering, even by today's standards. (Check out the photo above to see it emulating a Minimoog.)

From the September 1986 issue of Keyboard Magazine, Dave Frederick wrote an article on the 1986 summer NAMM show stating:

"An impressive exhibit from PPG was the Realizer (about $50,000). This consists of software versions of familiar synthesizer configurations. It allows you to design your own analog, FM digital, and sampled sounds, patch any of the components of one instrument into another instrument, and then sequence or sample the resulting sound. Wolfgang Palm, designer of the Realizer and head of PPG Instruments, earns the the quote-of-the-show award for explaining how he designed it: 'I copied the circuit diagrams into software.' No easy task."

The picture above shows the Realizer control unit only. In addition to it were racks that contained the actual processing hardware.
Hat tip to G.K. Wicker, whose links also led to the images below, of the Space Invaders-style interface to the famous hexagonal Simmons drum kit. (Another defunct company.) Check out the little guy drumming, enlarged in the detail .

Simmons SDX Screen

Simmons SDX Screen (Detail)

- tom moody 1-20-2006 11:29 pm [link]