retrointerfacing

- connecting past and future -

Archive for the ‘music’ Category

Video Projection System

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For the 100th Gonnagle performance I designed a ‘live video drawing tool’ using webcam, LED spots and processing app..

projectie schrijfsel

Software has been written in Processing.. pretty straightforward.. Especially the filters are simple to use but very powerfull.. In the application they are controlled using a midi controller (Korg NanoKey)


void draw() {
background(255);
if (cam.available() == true) {
cam.read();
}
if (useRotate) {
translate(width/2, height/2);
rotate(PI);
translate(-width/2, -height/2);
}
image(cam, 0, 0);

if (useBW) filter(THRESHOLD, constrain(thresholdLevel, 0, 1));
if (useInvert) {filter(INVERT); fill(0);}
else fill(255);
if (useBlur) filter(BLUR,1);
if (useRotate) {
translate(width/2, height/2);
rotate(PI);
translate(-width/2, -height/2);
}
}

Written by edwin

May 3rd, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Posted in Processing, music

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Standalone dial-a-song

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Using a telephone retro-interface and Arduino wav-shield-derivative a box has been build which allows you to use an old rotary phone as standalone dial-a-song system. This makes an excellent CD-pre-listening device for our CD-sales stand at concerts.

r0013957

The system is fully documented (including schematics, software, PCB layout) on the wiki. Although numerous designs have been made where the innards of rotary telephones have been replaced by other electronics (birthday card sound chip, GSM telephone), this project has a completely different approach. No changes to the telephone have been made. The phonebox generates line-voltage, even the 90V 20Hz ringer voltage. A sound input/output is added for line level signals. The box is powered using 12V dc, so mobile operation is possible.

phonebox electronics

The idea (accidentally re-invented) is not new - so it is in two respects a retro-interface From wikipedia: Established by rock band They Might Be Giants (TMBG), Dial-A-Song consisted of an answering machine with a tape of the band playing various songs. The machine played one track at a time, ranging from demos and uncompleted work to fake advertisements the band had created.

So basically this design is your dial-a-song-in-a-box….

Written by edwin

August 22nd, 2010 at 8:03 pm

Keltic harp tuning when no key is available

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This is probably a very very rare issue that needed a special solution. Anyway. If somebody out there find him or herself in the same situation, read on, remember, and know what to do.

If you’re out on a stage, with a folk-band, you have your basic tools, the harp is seriously in need of tuning, but, alas, no tuning key can be found, do this:

harpkey2 harpkey tuningPins

Written by edwin

January 3rd, 2010 at 3:56 am

Posted in home improvement, music

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Listening to EM fields

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Listening to electromagnetic fields is easy and fun (you can actually listen if a wire is ‘live’ or not, provided AC current is running through). Especially laptop computers emit a lot of EM noise in audible range.

Use the electronics of an old walkman. Perhaps you have the guts of a walkman lying around, perhaps the motor and wheels have already been used to make a solar roller or whatever. Anyway, if the electronics are still in one piece, you can simply hook them up to a pair of headphones or connect them to the audio input of a computer (recording using Audacity). Anyway.. go ahead and discover the enormous amount of fluctuating fields around you … EM field sounds from laptop or see the recording in progress on youtube

Written by edwin

December 23rd, 2008 at 10:29 pm

Posted in DIY, music

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Listening to candlelight

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I remembered reading once that manufacturers of electric candles had been using melody-card chips as LED drivers, causing these candles unseeingly to emit music. In order to ‘audify’ this optical sounds, I connected a BPW34 diode (with large Silicon cell, so it actually generates a voltage) to a jack chassis and hooked it up to an amplifier. The following youtube clip shows the results. Strange enough in this candle no beautiful (Christmas) melodies, but a strange repetitive crazy synth….

Written by edwin

December 23rd, 2008 at 10:15 pm

Posted in DIY, music

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Portable room acoustics

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I’m currently living in an apartment without the possibilities of building a permanent recording studio. (In one of the previous houses I lived in I had a room specially modified for recording and practicing) I still want to be able now and then to record instruments without the sound of my concrete square room, without the high ‘ringing’ noise you get when clapping your hands together.

From the acoustic insulation of this previous room I had some very thick foam mats for soundproofing left, as well as a couple of sheets of acoustic dampening foam, each 50 x 100 cm wide. I mounted them into wooden boxes with hinges in between, so I have as sort of portable sound-deadening room divider. Here are some pictures as well as the ‘before - after’ recordings of a cajon. On a normal set of speakers the effect is not so clear, but try it with headphones :) Without or With screen

Written by edwin

December 22nd, 2008 at 6:27 pm

Posted in DIY, home improvement, music

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DrawDio

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I came across the drawdio at ladyada.net and drawdio.com. Again a wonderfully simple idea, but very imaginary and creative! I made one as Sinterklaas-present for my mother. I didn’t have time to buy a kit, so I had to use parts that were lying around. Using the schematic Limor posted on her site I made the design on breadboard. Instead of the low voltage NE555 (TLC551?) I had only a normal 555 lying around, so I couldn’t use a 1.5V battery but used a 3.6V lithium cell from a salvaged shake-light instead. The speaker was taken from a toy-piano. The polycarb bulb can be bought in craft-stores. Instead of the american type 2n** transistors I used the BC557 / BC547 types that are more common in Europe for the amplifier stage. Be aware: in the schematic limor posted, the pinning of the 555 is not logical (swapped pins) and the amplifier stage is displayed wrong (the one posted on the bottom of the site with the pnp at low side and npn at high side is the correct scheme for the amplifier). This version of the pen in action: check youtube.

drawdiocup

drawdiocup2

drawdio

Written by edwin

December 6th, 2008 at 10:23 pm

Posted in DIY, music

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