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Jack Hertz

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About Jack Hertz

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    Bay Area, CA
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    Sound Design, FM Synthesis, Publishing, Improvised music, Music Concrete, Digital Synthesis, Visual Design, Video Production, Software Development, Unix, Outdoors, Spirituality, Reading, Publishing

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  1. Jack Hertz

    Dubreq Stylophone S-1 Pocket Synthesizer

    What is a Stylophone?” you ask. The original Stylophone pocket synthesizer was invented in 1967 by Brian Jarvis and manufactured by Dubreq from 1968 to 1975 as Stylophone, the original pocket electronic organ. Over three million original Stylophone synthesizers were produced and sold before the company ceased production. Today’s Stylophone reissue was introduced by the inventor’s son, Ben Jarvis and is manufactured by Dubreq, Ltd. The reissue retains all of the original features but with up-to-date technology. The current Stylophone retro pocket synth is a modern, portable synthesizer with a hit-filled past and present. The Stylophone’s unique sound has featured on numerous hit records. How many single instruments, manufactured by one company, can claim a list of artists who have played it that includes David Bowie, Queen, Rick Wakeman, Vangelis, Kraftwerk, Orbital, Marilyn Manson, Gotye, The Beatles, The White Stripes, Vince Clarke, and hundreds more? Check out this StylophoneYouTube gallery showcasing Stylophone music by a number of famous artists. A piece of history in the palm of your hand. Dubreq’s Stylophone is an iconic and extremely popular keyboard instrument that was a lot of musicians first foray into simple synthesis. The classic look of the retro design and chromed speaker grille returns with this true to form reissue of the original. When the nickel-plated keyboard and the stylus connect it completes the circuit and make the distinct ‘buzz’ sound which made the stylophone famous. The S1 features a vibrato function and three truly retro voices: Bass, Classic, and Treble. All providing their own feel and sound. There are line outs and line ins so there are plenty of connectivity options. With new technology bringing it up to date - the Stylophone is as fun as it was in 1967. Features + Classic retro design with chromed grille + Nickel-plated keyboard played with brass-tipped stylus + Vibrato function + Line-in and headphone sockets (3.5mm jack) + 3 voices, bass, classic and treble + Built-in stylus + Built-in Speaker + Vibrato Switch + Volume Control + Tone Switch + Tuning Control + MP3 Input (3.5mm) + Line Out (3.5mm) + 3.5mm Cable Inc
  2. DUBREQ launch the Stylophone Gen R-8, a brand NEW Touch Analog Synthesizer, designed and manufactured in Britain. Packed with features of much larger and more expensive instruments. + Full analog signal path + Steel enclosure + Dual VCOs with Saw, Square and PWM (oscillator 1) + Sub oscillators and Subsub oscillators for room shaking bass + Unique British design 12dB VCF with Low pass, High pass, Band pass and wide Notch + Fast and punchy envelope + Supersensitive 3-octave TOUCH keyboard + Glide and Modulation keys for expressive performance control + 8 waveform LFO with S&H and One-shot feature + 19 CV/Gate patch points for advanced modular patching + Grungy analog style Delay with modulation CV + Drive knob for extra boost and fatness + 16-step sequencer with 8 banks and on-the-fly switching + MIDI in/out
  3. All compositions by Hugh Le Caine processed in The Canadian Electronic Ensemble's studio. Published in co-operation with the Hugh Le Caine Project. Contains tracks demonstrating the Electronic Sackbut, the first voltage-controlled synthesizer.
  4. There is a MIDI add-on kit for the Korg Volka Modular synth. 

     

    1. Ian Craig

      Ian Craig

      Nice video. 

      (my keystep is only boring white 😥 🙃)

  5. Those who live in the company of trees will tell you they talk with the wind. This Music Plants Trees! Proceeds from this album will be donated to Plant a Billion Trees Project. Please help support our great green friends with the power of sound.
  6. OMG!!! I cannot wait to get mine. Anyone else into this beast?
  7. A Solution for a modular MIDI world The recent surge in AU plugin availability (for audio and MIDI) on iOS opens up new modular ways of stringing musical tools and instruments together. This modularity comes with a million new needs for creative MIDI routing: the plumbing between plugins and controllers. Suddenly there is a lot of demand for MIDI handling and manipulation plugins. Most of which is very specific to one particular workflow or even one single project. While it’s fun to make such MIDI plugins, it’s not realistic to expect developers to address every esoteric use case with a dedicated MIDI plugin. There simply aren’t enough of us to create and maintain products for every specific need :) Introducing Mozaic I’m creating a new product, codenamed Mozaic, to make it as easy as possible to roll your own AU MIDI plugins, ranging in complexity from simple/basic filters to moderately sophisticated apps and generative plugins. Mozaic will be able to cover a lot of plumbing ground. If Super Mario has taught us anything about plumbing, it is this: It can be a lot of fun There’s always a learning curve, but a well-designed learning curve is gentle and contributes to the fun challenge These two insights have been guiding principles for my design of Mozaic as a tool that seeks to balance power, accessibility and depth. So what’s Mozaic? Mozaic consists of two main ingredients: (A) a very readable and flexible scripting language and (B) a programmable AU MIDI plugin container Very unfinished work in progress The MIDI plugin part is like a MIDI controller with lots of features (such as ready-to-use LFOs, AU Parameters, host communication, tempo syncing, timer events, scales, programmable metronome, etc.) which you can tap into using the scripting language. This means all the heavy lifting is done for you by the plugin. As with all AUv3, each plugin instance can run a different script. The scripts are powerful and designed for MIDI and music applications; you can set up an LFO using a single line of script and get usable MIDI values from the LFO with just one additional line. Writing a funky MIDI filter (e.g. round-robin distribution of incoming notes over several MIDI output channels) would just take a handful of lines of script. About the scripting language I’ve put a lot of effort into designing a language that’s powerful for MIDI applications and at the same very readable for humans. This means that you can look at the preset scripts — or someone else’s code — and get a good idea of what’s going on. And make it easy to quickly modify a script for a project you’re working on. The scripting language is pretty powerful, because I designed it specifically around MIDI plugin use cases. It’s fully event-based (e.g. you can make things happen when MIDI comes in, when the host starts playing, when the user tweaks a knob, and two dozen other useful events) It’s easy to respond to MIDI, or to generate MIDI of your own (e.g. for generative apps, CC generators, or oddball sequencing concepts) You get easy access to AUv3 functionality, such as the AU host’s status and transport information, AU Parameters, host synchronization, etc. You can freely use (and dynamically label) all knobs and buttons on the provided plugin GUI to let your users interact with your plugin as if it were a MIDI controller device built-in LFO support, pedal support, musical scales support, etc. makes it easy to do interesting stuff with just a few lines of code No need to know anything about the dreadfully undocumented internals of Apple’s AU standard or how to write realtime-safe code I’m also writing a programming guide, which should be easy enough for anyone to dive into and get started quickly. It will teach you the syntax of Mozaic Script, but also explain how to effectively use conditionals, nested loops, variable arrays, and lots of other useful programming basics. In summary, Mozaic will not be for everyone and does not offer the instant-gratification factor of the next synth plugin. But I’m putting a lot of depth and value in it, just under the surface, waiting to be unlocked by the creative community.
  8. Voltage Research Laboratory Organic Modular Synthesizer Explore the Natural Systems and Lesser Known Fringes of Analog Synthesis An Organic Synthesizer by Pittsburgh Modular The Voltage Research Laboratory is a completely different analog synthesizer where every function of the instrument has been influenced by the behaviors and systems of the natural world. Wildly experimental and extremely deep, the Voltage Research Laboratory is a sonic playground created to explore the natural systems and lesser known fringes of analog synthesis. The Voltage Research Laboratory is 100% eurorack modular format compatible and is comprised of 3 separate eurorack modules housed together in a purpose-built, handmade eurorack enclosure. More than a collection of tools and functions, it is a unique modular synthesizer designed to reward deep experimentation and encourage the creation of unique sonic systems. Voltage Lab Synthesizer Voice Module The unique sound palette of the Lifeforms Voltage Lab originates with a complex oscillator pair that utilizes a wide range of shaping and manipulation options to move away from basic geometric shapes to more harmonically rich tones. A custom wave folder with enhanced waveform warping, linear FM, amplitude modulation, ring modulation, waveform cycling, hard sync, and more are available for extreme sonic research. Manipulation A set of multi-function generators work as interactive voltage processing systems to create and modify complex control voltages. The function generators act as voltage controllable envelopes, LFOs, slew generators, and more to produce evolving control signals. Voltage controllable parameters and multiple unison modes create complex and intertwined modulation systems through time. Interaction Twin dynamics controllers pull everything together. A unique circuit expanding on the classic low pass gate, the dynamics controller with variable response adds an organic depth to the sound of the Lifeforms Voltage Lab by simulating the natural behavior of sound. The multi-mode signal processor features a 12db resonant filter, VCA, and percussive low pass gate modes. Dimensional Sound interacts with the world around it. The Voltage Lab uses analog delay to simulate this interaction and create an artificial sense of time and space. Manipulation of delay time and feedback add depth and warmth through reverb, chorus, flanging, Doppler, slap back, and echo type effects. Unstable Systems Chaos is everywhere. Random gates and control voltages spark uncontrolled reactions, disrupt systems, and generate ideas. The Voltage Lab utilizes noise, stepped random CV, a pseudo-random sequence generator, pitched random CV, pitched random sequences, and random gates to add multiple levels of unpredictability to any patch. Interactive Touch Controller Module Intuitive and inspiring, the Lifeforms Touch Controller replaces the creative restrictions of a traditional chromatic keyboard with a set of fully configurable multi-dimensional touch pads. A duophonic touch controller that utilizes two sets of five touch pads to offer a flexible and interactive performance surface. Performances can be interpreted with a unique combination of monophonic and duophonic responses. The channel animator is available to quickly generate complex sequences or glitchy chaos. Intuitive and inspiring, the Lifeforms Touch Controller is the perfect launchpad for an experimental journey. Output Utility Module A Voltage Research Laboratory exclusive, the Utility module adds a few welcome features to round out the functionality of the instrument. A unity gain signal mixer / splitter along with stereo headphone and line outputs. Research Console Eurorack Case A beautiful 96hp eurorack enclosure designed with the warmth of walnut and the strength of steel. The Research Console eurorack format modular case pairs classic desktop synthesizer ergonomics with a modern eurorack form factor and clean, reliable power supply.
  9. Unlock your sweet dreams This eight voice polyphonic synthesizer keyboard is a performance machine that can usher in soundscapes of distant dreams and worlds previously out of reach. The 37-key velocity and pressure sensitive keyboard with aftertouch gives you a whole new level of expression and control of the Digitone’s intuitive sound engine. Imagine the sound of whispering dunes, rolling thunder, or the twinkle of distant stars. These are the things that dreams are made of. 8 voice polyphonic digital synthesizer Restrictions are for the dreamless With this ready-to-go performance machine, curiosity is all you need. Wield the Digitone’s powerful sound engine with even more control with intuitive sound crafting, 37 keys, 8 voice polyphony, mod and pitch wheels, dedicated outputs per track, and brand new customizable controls. Multimap lets you configure and assign individual sounds per region, triggering sounds or patterns with the tap of a key, while the ability to use portamento and arpeggio flourishes with the freedom of three octaves. Twist through the looking glass and back with the flick of a wrist. Sculpt your sound With the Digitone’s powerful and easy to use FM engine you have Digitone dynamism in keyboard form. A variety of dedicated features put the power at your fingertips. Get maximum control out of the machine with eight new assignable knobs. Choose the function you want for each knob to tailor your Digitone Keys, and then let loose. The freedom to switch between tempestuous and serene soundscapes in an instant is laid out in front of you. In an Elektron first, the Digitone Keys helps you liberate your live show with a flexible mod and pitch wheel setup, allowing you to warp your sound to another world with multiple modulations. Get connected With separate outputs for each track, connecting to external effects mixers and pedals, audio interfaces, and modulation sources is easier than ever before. Pinpoint single Digitone Keys tracks to process independently from the rest of your sound.
  10. Jack Hertz

    Korg minilogue xd module

    The long-awaited desktop module of KORG’s next-generation analog synthesizer minilogue xd module is the new desktop module version of minilogue xd, the four-voice polyphonic analog synthesizer with a customizable digital multi-engine and built-in stereo digital effects. The desktop module is equipped with the same controllers as the keyboard version, making it a great choice not only as an additional sound module for your keyboard or DAW but also providing excellent performability, giving you an easy way to include an analog polyphonic synth in your setup. It's also equipped with a poly-chain function that lets you connect it with another minilogue xd or minilogue xd module so that the two units can operate as a polysynth with a total of up to eight voices in your studio or on stage. Equipped with an analog synthesizer circuit and a digital multi-engine Voice structure of minilogue xd is 2VCO + MULTI ENGINE, 1VCF, 2EG, 1VCA, and 1LFO. In addition to the distinctive circuits found in the series, such as wave shaping to shape the overtones of the oscillator and a sync/ring switch, there's also cross modulation, a two-pole filter that can be both sharp and fat, and a drive switch that adds thickness and drives signal into minilogue xd’s filter. Every parameter has been tuned in detail based on what musicians want out of their synth. The sounds range from the warm pads typical of analog to fat basses and crisp lead sounds, covering every situation. The additional sound design possibilities of digital sound are delivered by the multi-engine: the third oscillator in addition to the two analog VCOs. This engine, which is equipped with three different types of sound generator (noise, VPM, and open-source user oscillators) lets you take advantage of a sonic character that's different than analog, and use it at the same time as the analog engine, infinitely expanding xd module’s potential through hybrid sound design. High-quality digital effects minilogue xd’s high-quality digital effects use 32-bit floating point DSP processing, adding a finishing touch to its deep sound design platform. The three types (modulation effects, reverb, and delay) can be used simultaneously, letting you choose from a wide range of variations including chorus, ensemble, warm tape delay, and a diverse variety of reverb. The user effect slots allow you to load your own effect programs that you've created. User customization brings out infinite potential The minilogue xd features a customizable open-source environment. The unit comes with 16 user oscillator slots and 16 user effect slots that you can customize. Oscillators and user programs that you’ve created with the SDK (Software Development Kit) can be loaded into the minilogue xd via the dedicated librarian software, as well as oscillators other users share online. What sounds can you create using the fusion of expanded digital oscillators with analog synthesis? Create original programs, share code, and participate in the user community. KORG even provides sample code to get you started. Polyphonic Step Sequencer One of the major features of the minilogue xd series is its 16-step step sequencer. Each of the factory-preset programs has an embedded sequence pattern created with performance in mind. The step sequencer provides 16 steps, and supports both realtime recording and step recording. You can use the 16 step buttons to select a step directly, allowing quick editing to replace the pitch of a step or to mute it, or even improvisatory performances. Motion sequence lets you record the movements of up to four knobs, adding time-varying change to the sound, and you can record not only smooth changes in value but also values that change precisely at each step. You can use this to have different parameter values at each step; for example, you might create a drum pattern or sound effect from just a single program. This allows countless ideas to be unleashed. When you turn Keyboard mode on, these 16 buttons operate as a keyboard of more than an octave, providing a convenient way to check the sound. Poly chain support The minilogue xd module can be used in conjunction with another unit (*2) in the minilogue xd series (*1) for poly assignment settings. Specify one unit as the master and the other as the slave, and they will play as an eight-voice polyphonic synthesizer (*3). This supports a variety of uses, such as a voice-expansion module for the minilogue xd or as a sound module for a DAW-based production system. *1: For keyboard-equipped models, supported in system ver. 1.10 or later. *2: Any combination of the xd and xd module can be used. *3: The two xd units can each play four voices, for a maximum total of eight voices. The master unit takes priority for producing notes, and the fifth and subsequent voices are assigned to the slave unit.
  11. Jack Hertz

    Korg Volca Nubass Vacuum Tube Synthesizer

    A powerful bass synth with a sound source based around a vacuum tube oscillator. The acid bass machine with the pinnacle of modulation and distortion. Even today, when digital technology allows electronic musical instruments to simulate any sound imaginable, people seek the warm harmonics and distortion produced by analog vacuum tubes. This distinctive sound has a quality beyond words that sets it apart, and cannot be captured by a response curve; it's the unmistakable sound of tubes. The volca nubass is the first analog synth to be equipped with a Nutube new-generation vacuum tube in its oscillator. Vacuum tube plus analog means that the sound is warm, thick, and rich. The familiar transistor ladder filter gives it the character of a classic bass machine, along with overdrive, and huge-sounding distortion. An acid bass machine for a new generation combines classic sound with the power of modern synthesizer design. It's the volca nubass. The fusion of a newly developed vacuum tube oscillator with a classic ladder filter A vacuum tube oscillator circuit forms the heart of volca nubass, utilizing groundbreaking Nutube technology The Nutube is equipped with two vacuum tubes; one is used in the oscillator to generate a sawtooth wave or square wave. The other vacuum tube is used in the drive circuit of the sub oscillator, adding depth and warmth one octave below the oscillator. This oscillator and sub oscillator provide a circuit structure that brings out the harmonic character that only a real vacuum tube could provide. A transistor ladder low-pass filter that produces a distinctive sound The low-pass filter defines the sound of this bass machine; it uses a transistor ladder design found on classic analog bass synths. This filter is uniquely dynamic in the way it affects a sound more than just ranging from bright-to-dark. Its wide range of timbral possibilities makes it ideal for a broad variety of dance music; you can use it to create the distinctive modulation that can be heard in acid house, or increase the resonance to bring out a sharp character that's appropriate for techno. Analog driver circuit nubass is equipped with overdrive that uses an analog circuit reminiscent of a classic stompbox. Turning the knob toward the right compresses the volume while causing mild distortion, adding thickness to your bass sounds. The tone knob also lets you adjust the crispness of the high-frequency range. A 16-step sequencer that lets you automate parameters The volca nubass is equipped with a full-fledged 16-step sequencer with a variety of functionality; by using it in conjunction with a rhythm machine, you can construct rhythm tracks or loop music. You can use the 16 buttons for step input just like the rest of the volca series, or play the buttons as a keyboard for realtime recording. The chain function lets you play back multiple sequence patterns in succession, allowing you to loop up to 16 sequences. The motion sequence function can record knob movements, applying parameter changes over time to the sound. This can be used when creating loops, or for live performances that are dynamic and original. Up to 16 sequence patterns together with motion sequences can be saved in internal memory. There's also an active step function that lets you skip steps that you specify during playback; sequence patterns become more dynamic and exciting when they can be edited in real time during performances. Three functions to create grooves on volca nubass The sequencer of the volca nubass provides three functions that add the slap and slide performance techniques that are distinctive of acid bass: these transpose, accent, and slide functions are accessible and controllable through the step sequencer. Transpose is a function that plays a note one or two octaves higher; it adds movement to the bass line while staying within the original scale. Accent emphasizes a note, creating dynamics that make the rhythm expressive. And the slide function that's indispensable to acid sound creates a smooth transition to the next note. Use these functions to add a sense of groove, and volca nubass will come alive in your performances and compositions. Randomize settings can be applied to each of these three functions. In addition to generating unpredictable patterns, you can update the randomize settings to keep varying the patterns, bringing out more unexpected and exciting ideas from the sequencer. Excellent playability Connectors that allow synchronized performance and external control Since this unit provides a sync jack for easy connection to Korg groove machines, you can connect it to another volca series unit or to equipment such as an electribe or the SQ-1, and enjoy synchronized playback with the sequencer. There's also a standard MIDI IN connector, so you can use the volca drum as a sound module for your DAW.
  12. Jack Hertz

    Rob Hordijk Blippoo Box

    By using a nonlinear feedback system, patterns are created that exhibit chaotic properties like attractors, bifurcations, etc. Second, the filter also uses a nonlinear feedback system that can go into ranges where bifurcations occur, which results in the creation of ‘undertones’, where the period doublings create harmonic partials that are lower in frequency as the signal fed into the filter. The chaotic behavior of the Blippoo Box reveals itself through the repetitive nature of the sound patterns it produces when in a stable state. When a control know is changed to a new position, the box will soon go into an apparent random state and then will find a new balance in a new stable state where it repeats another sound pattern. Tiny changes in a knob setting can sometimes produce dramatic differences in pitches and durations for new patterns. By careful tuning and changing the amount of modulation by the resonator, many timbral structures can be given to a pattern. Still, the particular design of the resonator and how it reacts when excited by the chaotic core of the Blippoo Box will impose a certain sonic character on the final sound, giving the instrument its own personality.
  13. Jack Hertz

    Enso Looper Real-time Audio Looper

    An architecturally unique and sonically characterful looping toolkit for producers and live performers, inspired by both modern looper pedals and vintage tape-based setups, Enso combines elegant and intuitive UI design with a deep but accessible feature set and stellar sound quality. Enso’s operation will be immediately familiar to users of hardware looper pedals or plugins such as Ableton Live’s bundled Looper. Start playback of the host DAW, hit Enso’s record button and capture your instrumental performance into a loop of whatever length you like, up to ten minutes (five minutes on iOS). Then, without stopping playback, overdub further passes to create layered grooves, complex harmonic textures, or dense, evolving soundscapes. Beyond those basics, though, Enso takes software looping into new territory. Two Overdub modes configure the plugin for conventional looper pedal behaviour or Frippertronics-style ‘dual tape deck’ manoeuvres, affecting the handling of the Feedback parameter for an endless range of layering possibilities; and up to four Sectors can be effortlessly defined, each with its own start and end points, for on-the-fly rearrangement of the loop. With Enso, time and motion become truly fluid, as speed and direction are handled completely independently for playback and recording, the ‘through-zero’ bipolar Speed controls smoothly transitioning from forwards to backwards, and vice versa, in real time. Want to record forwards at half speed, while simultaneously playing the buffered loop in reverse at 1.25x? Of course you do… Onboard tape-style saturation, filtering and chorus effects bring dirt, frequency-shaping and stereo thickening to the party; and a comprehensive MIDI assignment system makes it a snap to set your MIDI pedal or button controller up for operation of all Enso’s buttons and switches. With its animated play and record heads, meanwhile, the looping waveform display provides a clean, clear visual representation of the potentially mind-bending temporal acrobatics taking place, letting you get a handle on exactly what’s happening at a glance. Giving you everything you need for limitlessly creative looping, on stage and in the studio, Enso is one of Audio Damage’s most beautifully realized plugins yet, and an empowering addition to any musician’s arsenal of effects
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