Electronic Music Review

..
No. 4 October 1967
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Distribution for electronic music by
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Truma nsburg, N.Y. 14886
(607) 387-6101
Electronic Music Review
No. 4 October 1967
Contents

Tristram Cary

Robert A. Moog
------------------lntrOductlO";to-Mlxers-andleveTcontr01s------------16
James Seawright

Gerald Shapiro

Hugh Le Caine

Frederi c Rzewski

Fernando von Reichenbach .

Robert A. Moog

Paul Ketoff
--------------------The-Sinket--------------------------------39
Kurt Stone, Joel Chadabe


Reynold Weidenaar, Editor; Yael Gani, Associate Editor; Robert A. Moog, Technical Editor.
EMR is published quarterly qy the Independent Electronic Music Center, Inc., Trumansburg,
N. Y. 14886. Personal subscriptions are avaLiable through IEMC membership (annual dues $6);
institutional subscriptions, one year $8, two years $15. Outside North America, add 50<: per
year, payable in U.S. funds.
EMR is indexed in Music Arti cle Guide and in International Repertory of Musi c Literature (RILM).
© 1968 by the Independent Electronic Music Center, Inc.
EMscope
Due to the fact that EMR Nos. 2/3 (Repertoire International des Mu-
siques Electroacoustiques / I nternational Elec tronic Music Catalog)
has undergone further production delays and will be unavailable for
about two months, we have decided to go ahead with publication of
this issue (EMR No.4) . Product ion of forthcoming issues will con-
tinue on schedule, and we hope that all 1967 members and subscrib-
ers will receive their copies of Nos. 2/3 in February. We deeply
regret these continuing delays, but we must emphasize that this
special issue is truly a massive undertaking, and will doubtless be
one of the most unique and useful publications in the field of e-
lectronic music.
THE ADVISORY COUNCIL
The IEMC has established a large and active Advisory Council com-
prised of leading musicians and engineers . Through individual com-
munication and consultation , the Council members provide criticism,
-comments, and recommendations to the Editors regarding the content
and direction of the magazine. Most of the Council members are di-
rectly involved in electronic music. The few that are not were
asked to join in order to provide a broader perspective of evalua-
tion from their positions as leading representatives of contempora-
ry music in general. EMR is concerned with electronic music as a
useful medium for many styles of musical expression , not as a sin-
gle esthetic credo. The diverse membership of the Advisory Council
reflects this concern. The members of the Council are:
Jose Vicente Asuar - Composer ; Director, Estudio de Fonologla Musi-
cal, Comision de Estudios Musicales, Instituto Nacional de Cul-
tura y Bellas Artes, Caracas.
Larry Austin - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, Univer-
sity of California at Davis ; Editor, SOURCE - Music of the A-
vant Garde.
Milton Babbitt - Composer, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Cen-
ter, New York City.
Henk Badings - Composer; Director, Studio fUr Elektronische Musik,
Staatliche Hochschule fUr Musik Stuttgart.
James W. Beauchamp - Engineer, Experimental Music Studio, Universi-
ty of Illinois, Urbana.
Paul Beaver - Composer, Los Angeles.
Luciano Berio - Composer , Juilliard School of Music, New York City.
Boris Blacher - Composer, Studio fUr Elektronische Mus ik, Techni-
sche Berlin.
Karl-Birger Blomdahl - Composer, Elektronmusikstudion, Sveriges Ra-
dio, Stockholm.
Harald Bode - Chief Systems Engineer, Bell Aerosystems, Buffalo.
Walter Carlos - Composer, New York City.
Tristram Cary - Composer, Fressingfield, England.
Joel Chadabe - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, State
University of New York at Albany. ,
Henri Chiarucci - Physicist, Groupe de Recherches Musicales de
l'Office de Radiodiffusion-Television Fran9aise, Paris.
2
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
Gustav Ciamaga - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, uni-
versity of Toronto.
Edward T. Cone - Composer & Author, Princeton University, Prince-
ton, N.J.; Co-Editor, Re:Pspective'S of New Music.
Aaron Copland - Composer, Peekskill, N.Y.
Lowell Cross - Composer & Author, University of Toronto.
Hugh Davies - Composer & Author; Director, Electronic Music Work-
shop, University of London Goldsmiths' College.
Aurelio de la Vega - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio,
San Fernando Valley State College, Northridge, Calif.
Herbert Deutsch - Composer, Hofstra College, Hempstead, N.Y.
Tod Dockstader - Composer, Westport, Conn.
John Eaton - Composer & Performer, American Academy in Rome .
Donald Erb - Composer, Cleveland Institute of Music.
Robert Erickson - Composer, Encinitas, Calif.
Richard Felciano - Composer, San Francisco.
Ross Lee Finney - Composer, Electronic Music Studio, University of
Michigan, Ann Arbor .
Allen Forte - Musicologist, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
Cambridge.
Emmanuel Ghent - Composer, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Cen-
ter, New York City.
Anthony Gnazzo - Composer & Engineer; Director, Tape Music Center
at Mills College, Oakland, Calif.
Lejaren Hiller - Composer; Director, Experimental Music Studio, U-
niversity of Illinois, Urbana .
Otto Joachim - Composer, Montreal.
David Johnson - Composer, Studio ftir Elektronische Musik, West-
deutscher Rundfunk,
Paul Ketoff - Engineer, NIS Films, Roma.
Gershon Kingsley - Composer, New York City.
Gottfried Michael Koenig - Composer; Director, Studio voor Elek-
tronische Muziek, Rijksuniversiteit te Utrecht.
Ernst Krenek - Composer, Palm Springs, Calif.
Hugh Le Caine - Engineer; Director, Elmus Lab, National Research
Council of Canada, Ottawa.
George Logemann - Director, Computer Research Center, Rockland
State Hospital, Orangeburg, N.Y.
Alvin Lucier - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, Bran-
deis University, Waltham, Mass.
Max V. Mathews - Director, Behavioral Research Laboratory, Bell
Telephone Laboratories, Murray Hill, N.J.
Richard Maxfield - Composer, San Francisco State College.
Ilhan - Composer, Istanbul.
Gordon Mumma - Composer & Performer, Merce Cunningham Dance Founda-
tion, Inc., Sonic Arts Group, ONCE Group, New York City.
Max Neuhaus - Performer, New York City.
Alwin Nikolais - Composer & Choreographer, Alwin Nikolais Dance
Company, New York City.
Pauline Oliveros - Composer, University of California at San Diego,
La Jolla.
Harry F. Olson - Vice President, Acoustical and Electromechanical
Research, R.C.A. Laboratories, Princeton, N.J .; Editor, Journal
of the Audio Engineering Society .
J.R. Pierce - Executive Director of Research, Communications Scien-
ces Division, Bell Telephone Laboratories, Murray Hill, N.J.
Walter Piston - Composer, Belmont, Mass.
OCTOBER 1967 3
Henri PO,usseur - Composer; Director, studio de Musique Electronique
de Bruxelles.
Mel Powell - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, Yale Uni-
versity, New Haven, Conn.
Dick Raaijmakers - Composer & Engineer, 's-Gravenhage, Netherlands.
Roger Reynolds - Composer, Tokyo.
Frederic Rzewski - Composer & Performer, Roma.
Oskar Sala - Composer, West Berlin.
James Seawright - Technical Supervisor, Columbia-Princeton Elec-
tronic Music Center, New York City.
Nicolas Slonimsky - Musicologist, New York City.
Jaap Spek - Engineer, Experimental Music Studio, University of Il-
linois, Urbana.
Morton Subotnick - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, In-
termedia Program, New York University, New York City.
Josef Tal - Composer; Director, Center for Electronic Music in Is-
rael, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
James Tenney - Composer & Engineer, Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute.
Bertram Turetzky - Performer, Wethersfield, Conn.
Vladimir Ussachevsky - Composer; Director, Columbia-Princeton Elec-
tronic Music Center, New York City.
Knut Wiggen - Composer; Director, Elektronmusikstudion, Sveriges
Radio, Stockholm.
Raymond Wilding-White - Composer, De Paul University, Chicago.
George Balch Wilson - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio,
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Fritz Winckel - Composer; Director, Studio ffir Elektronische Musik,
Technische Berlin.
Charles Wuorinen - Composer, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music
Center, New York City.
Iannis Xenakis - Composer, Indiana' University, Bloomington.
La Monte Young - Composer, New York City.
MEMBER SERVICES
STUDIO - The IEMC electronic music studio is now available for
rental by members. Information on rates and equipment facilities
may be obtained upon request.
INFORMATION SERVICE - Members may submit questions of a technical
or general nature to be answered either by letter or in the pages
of EMR. The Editors will either answer such inquiries in full or
refer the member to organizations or reference literature where an
answer may be obtained.
EQUIPMENT EXCHANGE - Members who wish to buy, sell, or trade equip-
ment may list such information in EMR. The cost is $5; maximum 50
words.
COMPETITIONS
The Department of Music, Dartmouth College, announces the Dartmouth
Arts Council Prize ($500) for an outstanding composition of elec-
tronic music. The judges of the competition will be-Milton Babbitt,
Vladimir Ussachevsky, and George Balch Wilson. Deadline for submis-
sion of works is March 1, 1968, and the results of the competition
4
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
will be announced April 6, 1968. Rules and regulations may be ob-
tained by writing Mr. Jon Appleton, The Dartmouth Arts Council
Prize, Griffith Electronic Music Studio, Dartmouth College, Han-
over, N. H. 03755.
The International Federation for Information Processing announces
medals for three musical works composed by a computer; the theme
may be supplied to the computer, but the finished composition must
be determined entirely by the action of the computer. Entries will
be judged by a panel of musicians and computer programmers, and
winning ones will be performed at the IFIP Congress at Edinburgh in
l\l.1glJ..st 1968. Fl.1rther details are available. froID. the. COUJmittee
for IFIP Congress, 345 E. 47 St., New York City 10017, or from the
IFIP Congress, 23 Dorset Sq., London N.W.l, England.
SEMINAR
David Tudor will conduct an informal seminar in live electronic
performance at the Tape Music Center at Mills College, December 3 -
January 20 and March 24 - April 21. The fee is $50. Further infor-
mation is available from the T.M.C., Mills College, Oakland, Calif.
94613.
RECENT PUBLICATIONS
Beauchamp, James W. A Computer System for Time-Variant Harmonic A-
nalysis and Synthesis of Musical Tones. 1967. Experimental Music
Studio, School of Music, University of Illinois, Urbana, Ill.
61801. Softbound - free.
Cage, John. A Year From Monday. 1967. Wesleyan University Press,
Middletown, Conn. 06457. Hardbound - $7.92.
Contactorgaan Elektronische Muziek (Prospectus). 1967. C.E.M., Ma-
rius Bauerstraat 30, Amsterdam 17, Netherlands. Free.
Cross, Lowell. Bibliography of Electronic Music. 1967. University
of Toronto Press, Toronto 5, Canada. Hardbound - $5.00.
E.A.T. News (first issue). January 1967. Experiments in Art and
Technology, Inc., 9 E. 16 st., New York City 10003. Free.
KUpper, Leo. Couleurs Potentiels d'Attraction des
Sons 1966(?). Studio de Recherches et de Structura-
tions Electroniques Auditives, 26, Av. Jeanne, Bruxelles 5, Bel-
gium. Softbound - free.
Meyers, Robert G. Technical Bases of Electronic Music. In Spring
1964, Winter 1964, and winter 1966 issues of Journal of Music The-
ory, Yale School of Music, New Haven, Conn. 06520.
Olson, Harry F. Physics and Engineering. 1967. Dover Publi-
cations, Inc., 180 Varick st., New York City 10014. Softbound -
$2.75.
OCTOBER 1967
5
Schaeffer, Pierre. Trait§ des Objets Musicaux. 1966. Editions du
Seuil, Paris.
RECENT STEREO LP RECORDS
CBS 32110044 - Karlheinz Stockhausen (Mikrophonie I; Mikrophonie II).
COLUMBIA MS 7051 - Milton Babbitt (EnsembZes for Synthesizer), John
Cage (Variations II), Henri Pousseur (Trois visages de Liege) .
ELEKTRA EKS 74009 - Mort Garson (The Zodiac) .
FOLKWAYS FMS 33436 - Robert Aitkin (Noesis) , Victor Grauer (Infer-
no), Jean Eichelberger Ivey (PinbaZZ) , Hugh Le Caine (Dripsody) ,
John Donald Robb (CoZZage), Myron Schaeffer (Dance R473), Val T .
Stephen (Fireworks; Orgasmic Opus) , Arnold Walter / Harvey Olnick /
Schaeffer (Summer IdyZ).
HELIODOR HS 25053 - Lejaren Hiller / Robert A. Baker (Computer Can-
tata), Hiller / Leonard M. Issaacson (IZZiac Suite) .
NONESUCH 71174 - Morton Subotnick (SiZver AppZes of the Moon).
ODYSSEY 32160156 - Robert Ashley (She Was a Visitor), John Cage
(SoZos for Voice 2), Alvin Lucier (North American Time CapsuZe 1967) .
ODYSSEY 32160158 - Gordon Mumma for Cybersonic Bandoneon) .
ODYSSEY 32160160 - Richard Maxfield (Night Music), Pauline Oliveros
(I of IV), Steve Reich (Come Out).
OWL ORLP 11 - Tod Dockstader / James Reichert (Omniphony I) .
RCA VICTOR VIC(S) 1239 - Henri Pousseur (Rimes pour differentes
sources sonores).
SVERIGES RADIO (Box 955, Stockholm 1, Sweden) RELP 5023 - Ralph
Lundsten (EMS NR 1), Leo Nilson (Aurora; Skivsida 2), Lundsten /
Nilson (Tre eZektroniska "pop"-stycken; Visioner av fZygande
tefat) .
TURNABOUT 34177 - Luciano Berio (Omaggio a Joyce), Jacob Druckman
(Animus I), Ilhan (Six PreZudes for Magnetic Tape) .
VANGUARD VSD 79222 - Gershon Kingsley / Jean-Jacques Perrey (The I n
Sound from Way Out).
PLEASE NOTE
Information on recent records and publications , establishment of
new studios, forthcoming concerts, lectures, seminars, special e-
vents, etc., should reach EMR no later than one month before month
of publication
6
ELECTRO IC MUSIC REVIEW
Superserialismus-Is There a Cure?
Tristram Cary
The basi5-J?riteria of musical (or indeed any artistic) judgement do not change. Human Art is
by definition a human affair, invented by Homo Sapiens to please other Homines Sapientes. We
can still enjoy the plays of Sophocles and Aristophanes because they are talking about exactly
the same things as we are talking about today.
The 20th century flatters itself that it has invented new things, new devices for artistic commu-
nication, new horizons of creative surveillance. But, of course it hasn't, except in the most su-
perficial sense. Certainly a musician has today a wider range of raw materials, but I am re-
minded of a composer who visited my studio and tried out a few manipulations of sound. "Mar-
velous," he said, intoxicated with power as he twiddled all the wrong knobs and filled the room
with great roars and bangs, "you can make any sound you I ike." But you can't really; you can
only make more than before. The same will apply to the most sophisticated studio of the future
which we can picture in our wildest flights of science fiction imagination. The kind of comment
made by my visitor might have been made if Monteverdi had been able to I isten to Berl ioz's or-
chestra. It might have seemed to him that the resources of instrumental sound had been so en-
larged that anything was possible.
But the parameters of music asan art are firmly and irrevocably tied tothe human imaginationas
creator, and the human ear and brain as receptor and interpreter. Naturally the composer uses
the resources of the age into which he happens to be born, which is why a lot of us spend time
chopping up little bits of brown ribbon instead of composing cantatas; but our problem is no dif-
ferent - we must have something to say and we must (even if it's a long time later) get through
to someone what we are talking about.
Itis axiomatic that many composers tend to be out of step with their public, and also that a good
90% of the work of any age is evanescent tripe which will die with its period. Some of the mu-
sical public apparently think that this time we really have gone too far, but of course this is
not a new view either - Ofle critic pronounced after the first performance that Tannhat.lser had
not a single recognizable tune from beginning to end -an opinion about a highly melodic work
with which we find it hard to agree. But there does all the same appear to be a different slant
to our thinking, and this is caused by the extramusical factors which intrude into much of our
work. The conventional composer naturally concerns himself with the fingering the clarinetist
must use and other necessary technical matters, but he doesn't want to know (why should he?)
what waveform the instrument is producing - he only wants to know what it sounds I ike.
In our workshops we do want to know, indeed must know, what our raw materials are made of,
but we must also guard carefully against making our I ittle green pictures or our calculations an
end in themselves. Musically speaking, it is only the sound that means anything. When I was
studying basic harmony, we were actually encouraged to do our exercises visually, by chord
shape on the paper, and certainly this enabled one to do a correct exercise when the pandemo-
nium ora music college prevented the mind's ear from hearing clearly. But it had little to do
with training a composer.
OCTOBER 1967 7
The evidence of a lot of work that is going on rather supports this method, however. We tend to
suffer from Superserial ismus, or the pursuit of the perfect crossword puzzle. Ever since Schoen-
berg, the pitfall of serialism has been that it provides a refuge of acceptable academicism for
the creatively underendowed (this does not apply to Schoenberg - needless to say). Thework-
ing out of an idea to its bitter technical end is now more than ever possible, and we can call
on computers to make jolly sure that no stone is left unturned. It is clear that a large number
of people think we are enlarging our artistic horizons by this kind of means, but I doubt it. I
use the word "artistic" advisedly - there is no doubt, of course, that we are increasing our
knowledge of musical physics.
It is impossible for anyone to assess the permanent value of work going on around him. There
seems, though, to be a rather alarming lack of actual contact not so much with the listening
public as with the people who might be expected to be more receptive-one1s fellow musicians.
It is interesting to note that early concrete pieces, I ike Symphonie Pour Un Homme Seul, are
still tremendously effective because they use the new language as a fresh, lively, "happening"
thing, instead of as a laboratory of sound. The impact is musical and direct, and we do not feel
underprivileged if we haven1t been told all about the modus operandi. We can hear the machin-
ery if we stop and think, but it is the direct experience of the sound that counts.
This is not an impassioned advocacy of empirical over. serial methods, but simply an observation
of intelligent people listening to things. "Serialism" I am using in the strict sense of organiza-
tion of some or all parameters (not necessarily just linear pitch progression), applied to a piece
of music and seen through to its conclusion. A lot of serial instrumental music is not serial by
this standard, and much electronic music which would like to be is not because it is not accu-
rate enough. But what we have to question is the esthetic validity of such procedures. Simply
put, the difference is this: - Q: Why did you make that sound? A: (from serial composer) Be-
cause its pitch is number 4 in a thus and thus series which I have calculated; because its loud-
ness is part of a controlled program of dynamics on thus and thus principles; because its length
is determined by a thus and thus metric structure. This is the sound, friend - there is, there
could be no other sound in this place. A: (from non-serial composer) Because it seems musi-
cally right at this point; I have writing music for X 'years and am prepared to back
my experience and intuition; because I rather like it.
The practical composer almost always partakes a little of both philosophies, but I think it is in-
controvertible that e lectronic composers tend more to schizophrenia on this matter than others-
because accuracy is expected of them, and because in the absence, very often, of clear esthet-
ic guidelines it is easiest to fall back on serial justifications of procedures. II I did it because
I like it" takes more courage to maintain in the face of "You like that!! II than "I did it because
the principles of this style of composition demand it."
In our haste to explore the physics and mathematics of what we are we perhaps tend
to forget the psychology. There is a lot of work to be done on the. .effect of. sou.nds
that are taken out of context but in themselves carry a charge of famd lar suggestIon. At Its sIm-
plest we can do what the pop artist does by painting a can of soup ten feet high . By presenting
a sou'nd in a special context we create by that act alone a special dimension for it, and cause
the listener to hear it anew. If we splice together, say, a distant natural sound, a human vow-
elan "unknown" electronic sound, and a close natural sound, we place the recognizable sounds
in'a brand new light, although our recognition is sti ll there. Our studios e nable us to int:grate
the total aural experience in a way which could never be done before, and we cannot Ignore
this capability even when we are deliberately aimi ng a abstro C ose rs ha ve broken
8
_- =C _fUSI C REVIEW
down and wept when, after weeks of working at a new, subtle, and exact sound-mixture, the
first person to hear it says it sounds like some sort of organ.
The more sophisticated studios now have such complete resources that it requires enormous self-
discipline by the composer not to be merely pyrotechnic and astonishing, but also thoughtful
and interesting. If you write both sorts of music there is a moment in your career when for the
very first time you are scoring for full symphony orchestra, and it is a heady experience. As
your ideas develop you have to make your own disciplines and restrictions to prevent the rich-
ness of the possibil i t i ~ s from getting out of hand. I seem to detect in some electronic music that
the Martians have begun to take over, and the composer is letting the machinery have its way.
Th is road leads to tota I abstraction and total lack of communi cation, because the essentia I mind-
to-mind contact is replaced by a machine-to-mind contact, which mayor may not be success-
ful, and will certainly be unpredictable.
Experiment and research have a great fascination in themselves, and every possible way of do-
ing everything should be tried, but I thinkwe must recognize that a lot of our results may be of
minimal interest as permanent works of art. The definitive great works of First Period Electronic
have yet to be written (or I have missed them), and if they are too long in coming we must re-
examine the premises of our arguments. Changes are afoot in instrumental music, and there is
even a return to-oh horrors-recognizable tunes. It is certain that the fundamental work now
proceeding will add to knowledge and understanding, butonlyour great-grandchildren will know
whether it added anything to Art in its time, or went to joi.n the Great Magnetic Junkheap.
While it is true that there is nothing new, only new clothes for old ideas, we have certainly
made for ourselves a gaudier and costlier suit of clothes than ever before. The difficulty is that
many musicians are uncertain how to wear them, and many engineers are designing new styles
which mayor may not be musically interesting. Thetail has often wagged the dog in human af-
fairs, but let us hope to make an exception in this case.
o Electrons (as Sophocles never said), 0 Recalcitrant Holes and all Ye Assembled Nand Gates,
Keep Your Appointed Places - under my thumb.
OCTOBER 1967 9
Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls
Introduction to Mixers and Level Controls
Robert A. Moog
Basically, a mixer is a device with at least two inputs and at least one output. The signal at
an output is the linear algebraic sum of the signals applied to the inputs, in proportions deter-
mined bysetting the level controls and routing switches. These level controls and routing switch-
esmayeither be panel-mounted mechanical devices, or may be voltage- or light-activated com-
ponents. Filtering (usually called equalization in mixer applications), reverberation, and other
strictly linear operations may also be available.
A level-control amplifier (or voltage-controlled amplifier) is a device with a signal input, a
signal output, and one or more control inputs. T h ~ magnitude of the signal output is directly
proportional to that of the signal input, the constant of proportional ity being determined by the
magnitudes of the voltages appl ied to the control inputs. A mixer that uses level control am-
plifiers in place of mechanical level controls is called a voltage-controlled mixer, and is use-
ful primarily for rapidly varying the signal level, or rapidly changing the signal routing.
The ideal mixer would have as many inputs as there are signal sources in a given situation, and
as many outputs as there are channels of recording or monitoring. It would accept signals over
as wide a range of levels as possible, and introduce no noise or distortion. It would offer smooth,
convenient control over the ampl itude of the various inputs, and the facil ity for routing any com-
bination of inputs to any of the outputs. The ideal level control ampl ifier would accept signals
over an extremely wide range of levels, and would introduce no noise or distortion. Its gain
would be voltage-variable over a very wide range, and would resp<!>nd instantaneously to changes
in control voltage. However, control voltage variations would not feed through to the output.
The objective specifications by which existing mixers and level control amplifiers are described
serve to indicate the extent to which the device in question departs from ideal behavior. Ba-
sic characteristics which are generally specified are listed below. Since most of these specified
quantities have been adopted because of their use in specifying conventional audio equipment,
their significance within the framework of electronic music composition will be indicated.
LEVEL: Level is synonymous with amplitude or strength in describing a signal. A device input
is rated according to the optimum level of signal for which it was designed, and sometimes also
for the maximum level that it can accept without exceeding a certain percentage of distortion.
A device output is rated according to the maximum level of signal that it can deliver without
excessive distortion. Two units of level are commonly used: the volt and the decibel. The volt
is a measure of electrical force, while the decibel, strictly speaking, is proportional to the log-
arithm of the electrical power. In present day audio practice, the concept of power transfer
between two devices is not often invoked except in very large installations, and the decibel is
used instead as a measure of the logarithm of the voltage: OdB is usually taken to be that volt-
age which appears across a 600-ohm resistor that is dissipating one milliwatt of power, or .774
volt. An increase of 20 dB in the signal level increases the voltage by a factor of 10; an in-
10
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
crease of 6 dB increases the voltage by a factor of 2. The standardization of signal levels among
the instruments in a studio contribute to operating convenience and minimization of noise and
overload problems. The standard level in a given studio is called "line level". Most profes-
sional audio equipment is designed to work with line levels of either +4dB or +8 dB, since these
signal levels are readily produced and yet are high enough to effectively mask the spurious noises
which are usually present. Microphones, phonograph pickups, and tape reproduce heads nor-
mally produce signalsof much lower level than +4dB, and their signals require preamplificatibn
to be consistent within a studio. On the other hand, speakers require power levels in excess of
+30 dB, and power ampl ifiers are used to raise I ine level signals to suitable power levels.
IMPEDANCE: Impedance is a measure of the voltage required to cause a standard amount of
current to flow. The output impedance of a device is the impedance which would be observed
at the output if the device were producing no signal. As with level, it is advantageous to stand-
ardize impedance within a studio. The standard, or I ine, impedance of professional audio e-
quipment varies from 50 to 600 ohms, and is selected on technical considerations. The match-
ing of impedances of an output and the input whi ch it feeds is necessary only if the transmission
I ine is long, or if the signal level is low; e.g., mi crophone impedances must be matched. With
line level equipment, however, it is usually permissible to have all inputs high impedance, and
to match impedances by connecting appropriate resistors across all outputs. This arrangement
enables one output to feed many inputs.
FLOATING, BALANCED, AND UNBALANCED LINES: A floating output is one in which the
voltage produced is not referred to ground or any other fixed electrical reference. A balanced
output is one in which two voltages of opposite polarity are produced; only one voltage is pro-
duced in an unbalanced output. Outputs may be either floating, balanced, or both. Each re-
duces the amount of extraneous noise induced in the transmission line.
DISTORTION: In any device using non-linear components (this includes virtually all studio e-
quipment) the signal is distorted and additional frequencies (harmonics or modulation products)
are produced. Distortion is generally listed as a percentage of the desired signal. While some
types of distortion are more audible than others, a distortion of less than 1% is generally inau-
dible, while a distortion of greater than 2% is audible. Distortion is added to a signal by ev-
ery device through which it passes. Therefore, large studios using many signal-handling steps
require very low distortion figures for each signal-handling device. On one point on a distor-
tion vs. signal level graph of a device, the distortion usually rises rapidly for small increases in
signal level. This point is called the overload level of the device.
NOISE: Of the unwanted output of a device, noise is the portion where the ampli.tude is con-
stant with respect to input signal variations. Generally two components of noise are present:
random fluctuations and power I ine or other extraneous pickups. The first is heard as a pitchless
hiss, crackle, or roar; the latter is heard as a pitched hum or whine. While it is possible to re-
duce hum pickup to negligible levels by shielding and other straightforward measures, random
fluctuations are always present in electronic circuitry; they exist as a result of basic physical
properties- of matter in general and electronic components in particular. Noise is usually spec-
ified in one of two ways. Sometimes an equivalent noise source is postulated. This is a hypo-
thetical signal generator that, when connected to the input of a device, produces the noise ob-
served at the output. The magnitude of the hypothetical generated noise signal is called "equiv-
alent input noise", and is usuallyon the order of a few microvolts. Noise can also be specified
in terms of the ratio between the noise level at the output of the device and the signal level
produced at the output at the onset of overload. This ratio is called the "dynamic range", and
may lie between 60 and 120 dB.
OCTOBER 1967 11
GAl N: Gain is the ratio of the magnitude of the output signal to that of the input. line level
mixers usually provide a small amount of gain (perhaps 20 dB), while microphone mixers provide
60 or 70 dB. Unlike noise and distortion figures, gain is not a measure of the merit of a mixer •.
The optimum amount of mixer gain for a given studio is that which produces line level output
from the lowest level source which is likely to be used.
The arrangement of controls in a mixer varies according to the use of the mixer. There are three
main functional sections of a typical mixer: input level controls to determine the proportions of
the mixture, routing controls and switches to determine which inputs are to be fed into a given
output channel, and output level controls (sometimes called master gain controls) to determine
how much of the fina I mixture appears at an output. Small mixers are usually constructed as in-
tegral units; larger mixers are often assembled from widely available modular subassemblies.
Fig. 1 is a photograph of a simple high qual ity mixer with five inputs and one output. This type
of mixer is relatively inexpensive, and is suitable for a small studio or live performance. Fig.
2 shows a modular input amplifier and equalizer, and Fig. 3 shows a 12-input, 4-output profes-
sional audio mixer assembled from such modules.
The articles in this symposium discuss various aspects of the use of mixers in electronic music
composition. James Seawright discusses the basic technical features of mixers. Gerald Shapiro
describes a collection of simple modules that are particularly appropriate for electronic music.
Hugh Le Caine's article on level controls includes an extensive discussion on control devices.
Frederi c Rzewski describes a performance-oriented mixer using photoresistors as level controls,
while Fernando von Reichenbach discusses a photoresistor mixer designed for the realization of
pre-programmed musical material. Finally, Robert A. Moog tells how to build a simple 2-out-
put, battery operated mixer suitable for both composition and performance.
Fig. 1 (above). The Shure Model PE68M Microphone/Music-
al Instrument Mixer.
Fig. 2 (right). The Electrodyne Model ?09L Equalizer-
Amplifier Module. The input level control along the
lower half of the panel is a slide-type
calibrated in decibels of attenuation .
12 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
Fig. 3. The Electrodyne ACC-1204 Audio Control Console.
Note input level and equalizer controls (lower l e f t ) ~
routing switches (upper l e f t ) ~ and output controls
(right). VU meters (top) indicate levels of outputs.
Definitions
Note: Definitions of many basic terms appearing in this symposium may be found in the Jonuary 1967 issue of EMR.
An audio signal is transmitted as an alternating (AC) voltage; control signals and power supply voltages are usually direct (DC) voltages.
The level of a DC voltage refers to its instantaneous magnitude; the level of an AC voltage refers to its RMS avelage magnitude. "Level" is
not used in referring to power supply or other voltages that carry no information. Level may be measured directly in VOLTS (a unit of elec-
trical force) or in DECIBELS (dB), which are proportional to the logarithm of the signal magnitude.
An INPUT or LOAD receives information; an OUTPUT or SOURCE supplies information. The IMPEDANCE of an input is a measure of the
voltage across it required to produce a given amount of current through it. The unit of impedance is the OHM ( r2 ). In a I-ohm load, 1 volt
across it produces 1 ampere through it. An AMPLIFIER is a device that increases the level of a signal; an ATTENUATOR reduces the level.
The standard level in a studio is LINE LEVEL, to which signals are brought before they are manipulated. A PREAMPLIFIER brings low level
signals to line level; a LINE AMPLIFIER restores attenuated signals to line level; a POWER AMPLIFIER increases a line level signal to a lev-
el appropriate for driving speakers or similar transducers.
GAIN is the ratio of the output level to the input level of an amplifier, and is usually expressed in units of dB. Similarly, ATTENUATION
is the ratio of the output level to the input level of an attenuator. INSERTION LOSS is the minimum attenuation. EQUALIZATION is the
tailoring of the frequency response of a device, usually to correct uneven frequency response of another devi ce.
Mechanically activated attenuators are referred to as CONTROLS, or, more precisely, POTENTIOMETERS (or POTS). The TAPER of a pot
isthe relationship between the mechanical rotation or position and the attenuation. The level of a LINEAR TAPER pot is directly proportional
to the mechanical rotation or position; the level of an AUDIO TAPER pot is proportional to the exponential of the mechanical position or ro-
tation for at least a portion of the device's motion. The SLIDER of a pot (sometimes called WIPER ARM) moves along the resistance element
across which the input is connected . Two or more pots are said to be GANGED when their sliders are mechanically linked to move together.
A PANN I NG POT has one input and two outputs, and is used to continuously "move" the signal from one output to the other. A SEGUE POT
has two inputs and one output and is used to "fade" from one input to the other.
The PHASE of an AC signal is a measure of the position of the signal in time with respect to some reference, and is usually measured in de-
grees: a 360-degree phase difference equals one period of repetition. Two signals are IN PHASE when the phase difference between them
is zero or a multiple of 360 degrees; otherwise, they are OUT OF PHASE. In a common but less correct sense, two signals are said to be in
phase when no phase difference exists between them, and out of phase when no phase difference exists between them but one is the algebraic
negative of the other. This usage is applied to amplifiers, speakers, and other devices where polarity, rather than bona fide phase shift, is
involved. An OPERATIONAL AMPLIFIER is a very high gain amplifier, the output of which is out of phase with the input. Resistors or oth-
er electronic components are connected between output and input to determine the characteristics of the device. A PUSH-PULL circuit (usu-
ally an amplifier) is a symmetrically designed amplifier that needs both in-phase and out-of-phase inputs.
A PHOTOCELL is any component whose characteristics depend upon the intensity of light incident upon it. The resistance of a PHOTORE-
SISTOR decreases as the incident illumination increases . A PHOTOVOLTAIC CELL is a DC voltage source; the voltage increases as the in-
cident illumination increases.
An INTEGRATED CIRCUIT is a semiconductor device that operates as a complete circuit. For example, complete low-power line amplifiers
are now available as single, very small components. An OR GATE is a bi-state device with one output and two or more inputs. The output
will be "on" when at least one of the inputs is "on". A CROSS BAR SWITCH is an array of single switches which allows the connection of any
output to any input in any combination. A VOLUME COMPRESSOR AND EXPANDER is a level control amplifier whose gain is made to de-
pend on the level of the input signal so as to either decrease or increase the dynamic range of the signal. A SCHMITT TRIGGER, or SCHMITT
LEVEL DETECTOR, is a bi-state device that changes states when its input goes through a preset voltage.
OCTOBER 1967
13
Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls
Fundamental Concepts -
of Electronic Music Mixers
James Seawright
One of the most frequently performed operations in the electronic music studio is that of mixing.
The operation is probably performed a great deal more often than the composer realizes, for
many studio devices such as tape recorder preamplifiers, oscillators, reverberation units, fil-
ters, etc., actually incorporate mixers in order to increase their versatility. The mixer is per-
haps taken for granted more than any other studio device, with the possible exception of the
tape recorder, yet its potential usefulness extends far beyond its function as a combiner of sig-
nals and can affect the composer1s entire attitude toward the organization and production of a
composition.
Mixing is basically a process of adding signal amplitudes algebraically. At any given instant,
the sum or output voltage must equal the input voltages (or at least be proportional to their in-
stantaneous sum). Consider the case in which two signals of the same frequency and amplitude
are mixed. If they are exactly in phase (Fig. lA) the resultant will be a signal of twice the am-
plitude; if they are 180 degrees out of phase (Fig. lB) the resultant will be an exact cancel-
lation. Now consider the effect of mixing two signals of slightly different frequencies, but with
equal amplitudes (Fig. lC): Note that as the two signals go from an in-phase condition to an
out-of-phase condition, the resultant ampl itude goes from a maximum value of twice the ampl i-
tude of either input to a complete cancellation. The rate at which this happens will correspond
to the difference in frequencies of the two signals. This is the reason that audible differences
in amplitude, or IIbeats
ll
, are heard when two instruments are played at sl ightly different fre-
1\ 1\ 1\
-.- RESULTANT
1\ 1\ 1\
V V
Q.
vv -*-
'\. {\ f\ f\
NO RESULTANT
T '\I SIGNALS CANCEL
A
IN PHASE
VV
20..
B
180' OUT OF PHASE
1\ 1\ 1\
-.-
/' ~
n. 1\ 1\
/'
V V
Q.
V V
--"-
n. n. 1\ , n. 1\ n.
V V V
~
V V V
'\I
C
ETC-
0
ETC-
1\ !\ !\ !\
/'
~
/'
vVVV ""=7"
Fig. 1. Representative waveforms resuZting from mixing sine waves
of various frequency and phase reZationships.
14 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
quencies. A final case, that of mixing two signals of greatly differing frequencies, is illustrat-
ed (Fig. 1 D): Note that in every example the resultant is always the instantaneous algebraic sum
of the inputs.
There are several ways in which the effect of mixing may be achieved with electronic circuit-
ry. The usual way is by means of a resistive network which allows signals to combine and then
appear, mixed, at a common output, yet minimizes unwanted interactions between signals or
signal sources. Such a network is shown in Fig. 2A. In order to achieve the minimum of in-
teraction between sources, the network must be designed in such a way that there is a large net
loss in signal amplitude through it. If a mixing network has a large number of inputs, the mix-
ing loss may be as high as 40 or 50 dB. In order to offset this loss, an ampl ifier is almost always
included in the mixer to restore the signal output level to the nominal level of the inputs.
Before going into more detail, let us consider for a moment the way in which sounds are mixed
acoustically. When an instrument is played, its vibrations are transmitted to the air. The air
may be considered as a load against which the instrument works. Sound waves in the air pro-
duced by one instrument will naturally affect other instruments just as they affect our eardrums,
by causing them to vibrate, but the effect, when considered as an interaction, is exceedingly
sl ight. A second instrument being played in a room where the air is already vibrating from the
first instrument simply imposes additional vibrations upon the air. The mixing process takes place
in the air; at any given instant, the amplitude of the sound wave at a given point in the room
is the algebraic sum of the various sound waves of the individual instruments which are being
played (allowing for attenuation caused by propagation, and taking into account the phase dif-
ferences caused by propagation time).
In the circuit of Fig. 2A, an analogous process takes place. Input signals applied to the input
volume controls appear as voltages across the controls. Moving the slider on a control causes
a sample voltage of an amplitude proportional to the position of the slider to be applied to the
appropriate mixing network input. This network is seen by the voltage as a multiple-resistance
path to ground (Fig. 2B). Depending on the values of the mixing resistors Rl through R6, and
the resistor R
in
, a voltage will appear at point A having a value proportional to the value of
the voltage at the volume control slider. If more than one voltage is applied to more than one
input, the mixing effect of the network will result in the voltage at point A being proportional
to the algebraic sum of all the applied input voltages. Note that if the sliders of volume con-
trols 2 through 6 are at ground, the resistances of R2 through R6 will have a certain net value
as resistance in parallel with R
in
, thus lowering the effective value of Rin' The fraction of the
VOLUME MIXING
CONTROLS RESISTORS
RI
512
R3
R4
R5
R6
A B
RIN
CIRCUIT AS SEEN BY INPUT I
"---y-' RI N
R2-6
Fig. 2. Basic resistor-network/ampZifier mixer.
OCTOBER 1967
OUTPUT
15
input voltage at Rl which will appear at point A will depend on the ratio between the value of
R 1 and the net parallel resistance of R2 through R6 and Rin. Raising any of the other volume
control sliders, as would be necessary to introduce another signal for mixing, adds resistance
between point A and ground and raises the net parallel resistance value. Thus the actual value
of the loss incurred by any given signal depends on the setting of the other inputs, and this in-
teraction is minimized by making the mixing resistances Rl through R6 relatively high in value.
However, the higher these values become, relative to the value of Rin' the higher the net mix-
ing loss, so that a compromise has to be reached in all practical cases.
The resistance Rin in many cases is not an actual resistor, but the input resistance (impedance)
of the ampl ifier which follows the mix ing network. This ampl ifier, whose task it is to restore the
gain lost in the mixing network, is the source of most of the signal distortions and noise found
in mixers. The resistance network itself, ideally, is perfectly linear in operation. The ampli-
fier, however, may not be, and if not will introduce distortion. The necessity of having up-
wards of 70 dB gain, to overcome mixing losses and have a reserve of gain, requires that the
signal-to-noise characteristi c of the ampl ifier be excellent.
So far we have considered a mixer whi ch, in the example of Fig. 2, is capable of mixing six
signals in any proportion to form one resultant. Such a mixer might, in practice, be used to
combine oscillator outputs to form complex timbres, Qr to mix several tape loops running at dif-
ferent speeds. The usefulness of such a mixer would be increased considerably, however, by
providing means whereby input signals could be mixed at several outputs, either separately or
simultaneously. With this type of mixer, various signals could be mixed in differing propor-
tions for a two-channel output to a stereophoni c tape recorder.
There are several approaches to this type of multi-channel mixer, and in each case certain pe-
cui iarities. The first approach might be as shown in Fig. 3A. Here, each input channel may
be switched after its volume control to the output channel at which it is desired .. Note that the
arrangementof the switch is such that the inputof the mixing network not being used is ground-
ed. A mixing network and amplifier will be needed for each output channel, but the arrange-
ment offers economy and simplicity of construction.
A
c
MIXING
RESISTORS
A3 eo A4
TO A2
TO A3
TO A4
TO A2
TO A3
TO A4
BANKS {
3 - 6
MIXING
RESISTORS
B
A2 - A4
~
:1 TO A2
1 TO A3
TO A4
~ U T
MIXING
RESISTORS
1
A2 - A4
Fig. 3. Representative multi-channel mixer configurations.
16
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
A slightly more versatile plan is shown in Fig. 3B. Here, the selector switch has been replaced
with a bank of individual switches or push-buttons, so that a signal at a given input may be sent
to any combination of outputs. Obviously, since the level of the input signal has already been
determined by the volume control setting, the signal will appear at the same level at each of
the outputs to wh i ch it is sent.
The most versatile arrangement is that of Fig. 3C. A matrix of volume controls, in effect a sep-
arate set of input volume controls for each output channel, allows the user to send an input sig-
nal to any combination of outputs at any combination of levels. This system is quite workable
up to about six inputs and four output channels, but beyond this begins to invol ve such a de-
mand for panel space for controls that it becomes cumbersome. In all of the three versions of
multi-channel mixers described, master volume controls may be provided in the output lines, as
shown.
In the actual design and construction of mixers, several important factors appear. First of all,
a mixer can be designed to operate atoptimum quality for only one general category of signals.
A microphone mixer, for example, must be designed to match the output characteristics of the
microphones with which it will be used. Sometimes a mixer may be arranged to have a variety
of inputs, each suitable for a specific class of signals. A microphone input would then have to
incorporate an additional stage of preamplification to raise the signal to a level compatible
with other line level signals from other inputs with which it may be mixed. In commercial and
broadcast audio practice, mixers are usually designed to have a 600-ohm input and output im-
pedance. Since all the other devices in the commercial studio have 600-ohm outputs, they
may be connected to the mixer inputs without loss . Only in the situation in which it is de-
sirable to connect a 600-ohm output device to more than one 600-ohm input at the same time
do difficulties arise. This situation occurs frequently in electronic music when, for instance,
the composer wishes to set up several mixtures of the same set of signals through several chan-
nels of a mixer, and then fade from one to another 0 A tape channel may be connected to sev-
eral inputs at the same time, each input being set to a different level, and routed to a different
output. (This is very likely to occur with mixers of the type shown in Fig. 3A.) In order to
avoid the loading effect which occurs when an output drives an excessively low impedance load
(such as three 600-ohm inputs in parallel, a net resistance of 200 ohms), and the consequent
loss in signal level and possible distortion, it is much more desirable to design the mixer to have
high-impedance inputs; high-impedance lnputs will place a negligible load on low-impedance
outputs and may be paralleled almost without practical limit. The type of mixer illustrated in
Fig. 3C is really not feasible except with high-impedance inputs.
It should be clear by this time that the mixer is really capable of much more than mixing. In a
well-designed studio, the mixer may be arranged to serve as the coordinating unit, almost as a
II switchyard II for signals. It also offers the logical place to locate a monitoring system for o-
riginating signals to the studio speaker-amplifiers. A typical arrangement for a small studio is
shown in Fig. 4. Note the use of normal connections between the tape recorders and the mixer
inputs and outputs. The tape input and output I ines go from the machines to and from the mixer
through pairs of jacks for each channel of input or output. Insertion of a patchcord plug in ei-
ther of these jacks breaks the normal connection and establ ishes an alternate connection through
the patchcord which may then be connected to another unit. In one case, one of the jacks es-
tabl ishes an input to the mixer, the other an output from a tape channel; in the other case, one
jack establishes an output from the mixer, the other an input to a tape. The monitoring facil-
ities provide for connecting to the input of speaker-ampl ifiers (high impedance) a signal from
OCTOBER 196 7 17
anyone of the numbered points (per channel) i this may be by means of rotary or push-button
switches. A mixing and routing facility based on this arrangement appears in Fig. 5.
The saving in time and the increase in operating efficiency with such a system cannot be over-
emphasized. Electronic composition is a tedious enough business as it is. With a mixer system
arranged to coordinate the tape recorders and provide for monitoring, it becomes possible to
carry out many of the routine studio operations such as editing, copying, etc., without any
patching at all, even for monitoring. Yet the mixer is always available for the mixing of other
MIXER NORMAL
CONNECTIONS
®CD
®G 0 0
(1).
TR 2 A a B
PLAYBACK
<V
o
SPEAKER I
0 V AMPLIFIER
@o
®
o
@
TR 3 A a B
PLAYBACK
INPUTS
,----
I
I
I
I
FROM TR
(OR MIXER)
THE SYMBOL
DENOTES'
- -l
I
I
I
I
[;
I
I TWO JI I
I ADJACENT I
JACKS
I J2; I
I I
I
I
L _______________
MONITOR SWITCH
0
00
/
,'" IY SPEAKER 2

Fig. 4. Mixer configuration appropriate for a small studio.
Fig . 5. Mixing and signal
routing facility at the Co-
lumbia-Princeton Electronic
Music Center. On the lower
input attenuators ap-
pear along the chan-
nel selector switches are in
the and output at-
tenuators appear along the
top. The upper panels pro-
vide both patchcord and
push-button signal routing.
18 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
signals, and the modification of signals between tape output and mixer input can be accom-
plished by patching other connections in place of the normal connections.
Sometimes it will be found desirable to have other separate mixers available for, say, mIxing
oscillator outputs without involving the main mixer. These mixers may be relatively simple in
design, offering four inputs and one or two outputs. These mixers are sometimes referred to as
sub-mixers, and may even be arranged to be a part of a larger general studio mixer, either as
separate units on the same panel, or as a part of the large mixer norma Ily, but capable of be-
ing isolated by appropriate switches, when necessary.
A great many practical details have been omitted from the above discussion, as the general in-
tent of this article is not to provide actual construction information. The actual requirements
for a mixer, especially a general-purpose studio mixer, are so dependent on the other facilities
available in any studio that it is best to design each mixer to suit its application, rather than
to try to offer more than the most general guidelines in an article such as this. It is, however,
realized that this is an impractical attitude to take from the point of view of the independent
composer or small studio user. If the user is unable to design and build his own mixer, or to
afford the custom building by commercial sources, there is little in the way of modular or kit-
form equipment which is really suitable for electronic music use. Thus many small studios are
forced to rely upon limited mixing facilities which may, in many cases, be adaptations of com-
mercial hi-fi-grade units, or to take advantage of the recently available mixers which offer sig-
nal characteristics of good quality but have a limited adaptability to studio coordination, at
least as outl ined above.
At present, there seems to be no prospect of automatic or programmed equipment which will su-
persede the classical techniques in the area of compositional organization. Since the mixer is
also most useful in this area, it would seem that any improvement in this fundamental studio u-
nit would be directly reflected in the quality of the music produced.
OCTOBER 1967 19
Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls
Functional Design of
Electronic Music Mixers
Gerald Shapiro
The purpose of th is arti cle is to describe a new method of designing audio mixers for the synthe-
sis and performance of music employing electronic media. The three most important concepts
employed in the mixer to be described are: functional design, plug-in modular construction, and
the use of passive circuits wherever possible. By using techniques derived from these concepts,
it is possible to produce a high quality mixer with substantially greater flexibility than is cur-
rently available in commercial mixers.
In general, the current practice is to design an audio mixer as a single, complete instrument.
The logic of the mixer is sequential. That is, the individual components of the mixer (inputs,
mixing grids, etc .) are designed for their place in a sequence of operations. It is possible, how-
ever, to isolate several distinct functions in a complete audio mixer. The three most basic func-
tions are: (1) amplification, (2) mixing-distributing, and (3) amplitude control. A mixer can be
designed and built as a numberof separate, functional (rather than sequentia l) plug-in modules,
each performing one of the operations listed above. Several different types of modules can be
designed for each funct ion, and as many dupl ications of each as are necessary to form a mixer
of the required capacity can be built. These modu les can then be patched together in the most
convenient sequence for a studio operation or a performance.
Each module should be complete and self-contained, buil t into a standard-size panel with all
t he necessary jacks for patching included. The only connections that should be made behind
the front panel of any plug-in module are those to the power supply, for active modules such
as amplifiers. These connections can be made with a printed circuit edge connector or similar
easily removable connector so that the active modules are as easy to install and remove as the
passive ones. If a modular stud io system such as those of Buchla or Moog is already employed,
the power supply, panel sizes, patching jacks, and other connections should be made to con-
form with this system. The modules can then be plugged into existing consoles, or a new cab-
inet can be built to house the entire mixer.
For a performance that requires the use of electronic equ ipment, as many mixing modules and
other pieces of equipment as are necessary for the performance can be removed and installed in
a separate portable cabinet, and taken to the concert hall . If a piece requires mixing facili-
ties not already available in the system, a new module can be designed and built, and easily
installed in the performance console. In this way, each performance is done with the "ultimate
performance machine" that we all dream of, and enough equipment is left in the studio so that
the usual work there can continue.
20 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
In order to reduce the cost of this type of mixer, as many of the modules as possible should be
passive. That is, they should be able to carry audio signals in either direction • Obviously,
a mixing network, if carefully designed for the purpose, can become a distributing network.
In the same way, a panning potentiometer which divides a signal between two channels can be
used as a pan-segue control to mix portions of two signals into one channel.
The relatively low cost of high gain integrated circuit operational amplifiers makes it possible
to design a single amplifier module for the mixer. Many duplications of this module will be
needed. A rotary switch can be suppl ied to give various amounts of gain and perhaps equal-
ized settings for tape head and magnetic cartridge. Balanced and unbalanced inputs and out-
puts can be included as required. A circuit might also be added for treble and bass equal iza-
tion. Fig. 1 is a block diagram of a possible amplifier module .
The basic mixing-distributing units (Figs. 2, 3) are simple Y connections with the addition of
switches and attenuators. Two types of basic units have been devised so far. Both are passive
circuits as described above.
B A L ~
INPUT
~ - - -
-::-
UNBALANCED
INPUT
-
-
+60 dB
+20 doB
+12dB
+6ciB
+
Fig. 1. Circuit of amplifier module.
MIXING
-
DISTRIBUTING
..
1
Fig. 2. Circuit of on/off mixing-
distributing unit.
OCTOBER 1967
BASS
EQUALIZATION
TREBLE
MIXING
-
OUTPUTS
DISTRIBUTING
-
Fig. 3. Circuit of either/
or mixing-distributing
unit.
21
The addition of a voltage-controlled switch {Fig. 4} with a panel jack to accept a control volt-
age from an external source such as a sequencer allows the mixer to be programmed for a series
of operations. If a voltage-controlled switch is included, it can be designed into an "or gate"
type circuit to allow for manual control as well.
The most important partof the mixing-distributing unit is the switch, or combination of switch ..
es. The attenuators are included to pre-set levels. Although they might be employed during a
performance or studio operation to manually vary the amplitude of a signal, this is not their pri-
mary function. The attenuation circuit (Fig. 5) employed in these units has been especially de-
signed to work equally well in either direction.
R 1 and R 3 are fixed resistors of equal value. R 2 is an audio taper potentiometer of equal or
smaller value. In determining the values of the three resistors, a compromise must be decided
upon between preserving the taper of the potentiometer and the amount of insertion loss in the
circuit. The determining factor is the ratio of either of the fixed resistors to the potentiometer.
A large ratio preserves the integrity of the potentiometer but increases the insertion loss. A ra-
tio of 1 : 1 yields an insertion loss of 6 dB and a taper that is 5.5 dB higher than the ideal at
50% rotation of the potentiometer. Lower ratios seem to be too destructive of the logarithmic
taper of the potentiometer for adequate control. Fig. 6 illustrates the relationship of insertion
loss and taper for an attenuating circuit between a 19w impedance output and a high impedance
input.
Experience has shown that it is generallyadvisable to build mixing modules that are made up of
clusters of basic units. Panels with small clusters or only basic units are more flexible but very
many are needed and higher amplification is necessary to overcome the multiple insertion loss.
Panels with larger clusters of the basic units are less flexible but easier to use and require less
amplification. Circuits of two such arrangements are shown in Figs. 7 and 8. Several different
types of clusters can be designed and included in the mixer for greater flexibility. Of course,
new ones can always be added cheaply as required.
CONTROL
VOLTAGE
INPUT
VOLTAGE-
CONTROLLED
SWITCH
,..
N
OU T
I
Fig. 4. Block diagram of m ~ x e r with voltage-
controlled switch.
22
RI R ~
0 'VIA
P
'VIA
R2
-=
Fig. 5. Attenuation
circuit of mixing-
distributing unit.
0
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
z
o
o
-10
-20
-30
j: -40
'"
::I
Z
UJ
I-

III -50
-d
INSERTION LOSS
RI_ 9XR2_20 d.B
RI =R2_ 6 d.B
RI .. '5XR2 - 3·5d.B
RI"· IXR2_ ·
5
d.B
R I -R 3
Fig. 6. Insertion
loss versus rotation
of the attenuation
when in-
serted between a low
impedance output and
a high impedance
input.
__________ L-__________ __________ __________
Fig. 8. Circuit of on/off
larger mixing module with
voltage-controlled switch.
OCTOBER 1967
% OF ROTATION 25% 50% 75% 100%
Fig. 7. Circuit of either/or
larger mixing module.
CONTROL
VOLTAGE
INPUT
VOLTAGE-
CONTROLLED
SWITCH
1
23
o
Fig. 9. Circuit of
attenuator amplitude
control module.
Fig. 10. Circuit of pan-segue amplitude con-
trol module.
Two types of amplitude control modules have been designed. The most basic one (Fig. 9) is a
simple attenuator with an on/off switch added for convenience. The second type (Fig. 10) is
the pan-segue control mentioned earl ier in the article. It is made up of two identical passive
attenuators. The two potentiometers have opposite tapers and are ganged.
Other types of modules can be designed and included in a mixer of this type. V.U. or dB me-
ters ~ r e helpful if not essential in any mixer. One or several cross bar switches would help re-
lieve the congestion of a complicated patching setup. Finally, monitor amplifiers can be in-
cluded if necessary.
Manyof the proposals in this article are tentative insofar as they represent thinking that has not
yet been applied to the production of an existing piece of equipment. This is only a first step
in the exploration of the possibilities of functional mixers. These possibilities are only limited
by the ingenuityof the composers and engineers working in the field of electronic music. One
important area not covered in this article is the design of the panels for the plug-in modules.
Obviously, a greatdeal of attention must be given to the problem in order to achieve the great-
est possible convenience of operation.
Acknowledgements:
Considerable technical assistance in the preparation of this article was provided by Karl Amat-
neek. Many of the original concepts utilized here were first worked out in collaboration with
Bill Maginnis, the technician at the Tape Music Center at Mills College.
24 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls
Some Applications of
Electrical Level Controls
Hugh Le Caine
Electrical level controls have many uses in the electronic music studio. Some of those consid-
ered a t one time or another by the writer will be described briefly. Most of the devices de-
scribed were developed under the direction of Gustav Ciamaga and form part of the equipment
of the University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio.
The most famil iar electrical level control circuit (Fig. 1), which goes back to the early days
of vacuum tubes, uses two amplifiers in push-pull. When transistors are used, the relation be-
tween gain and bias is closer to an exponential one than it is when vacuum tubes are used, and
a better match is obtained between the two transistors.
In setting up the circuit of Fig. 1 the output balance is adjusted to minimize the change in DC
level at the output, with control voltage. The gain balance is then set to minimize the second
harmonic of the signal appearing at the output. If an instrument for measuring the second har-
monic is not available, the gain balance may be set to give the most symmetrical waveform at
the output using a sine wave input about three times the normal maximum value.
SINGLE-ENDED TO PUSH-PULL I ,I VARIABLE GAIN II 'I -P-U-S-H--P-U-L-L-T-O---'
AMPLIFIERS IN SINGLE-ENDED
DC SUPPLY
PUSH-PULL I
68K 4·7K 4·7K 4·7 K
I N >----r.L..-+-I
33K
4·7K
100
CONTROL TERMINALS
Fig. 1. Basic electrical level control.
OCTOBER 1967
22
I
I 10K
I
I 10 K
I
P31
10K OUTPUT
BALANCE
OUT
25
The attenuator shown in Fig. 2 is simply made with printed circuit techniques to give a long-
wearing control without contacts. The variable capacitors that control the voltage applied to
the electrical level control consist of fixed plates arranged in pairs on printed circuit board and
one movable plate for each pair. The construction can be seen in the photograph. The assem-
bled attenuators are seen on the left. The cover plate has been moved over to show the pairs of
fixed plates (center) and the movable plates (right).
The hand capacitance control for four speakers shown in Fig. 3 was used in the University of To-
ronto Electronic Music Concert of 1963. The grids are made by printed circuit techniques and
covered with a layerof plastic. Soft tones are elicited by lightly touching the board, loud tones
by a more extensive contact •

-°1°1°1·°1°1
~ 10 10 10 10 10
~ 2 0 20 20 20 20
-30 30 30 30 30

Fig. 2. Attenuator without contacts using
the level control of Fig. 1.
Fig . 3. Hand capaci-
tance control.
The circuit of the hand capacitance control is shown in Fig. 4. Capacitor C is initially ad-
justed with hands off the board so that there is no AC voltage across the diode and no DC out-
put. When the hands are placed on the board as previously described, a DC output is obtained
that is used to operate four electrical level controls, one for each section.
ONE SECTION OF
C
(PRESET)
THE HAND CAPACITANCE
CONTROL OF FIGURE 3
I
DC OUTPUT
(ON E FOR EACH
SECTION)
OSCILLATOR
(ONLY ONE FOR
ALL FOUR SECTIONS)
Fig. 4. Circuit of the hand capacitance control of Fig . 3.
26 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
The touch-sensitive key 1 is an indispensable envelope shaper for the electronic music studio.
Electrical acceleration and electrica l sustain
2
extend the usefulness of the simple touch-sensi-
tive key (see Fig. 5). When the key is struck a sharp blow, electrical acceleration counter-
acts the inertia of the key by increasing the rate at which the level rises. When the key is op-
erated more slowly, normal touch-sensitive control is obtained. The electrical sustain facili-
tates the production of uniform slow decays and is useful when it is desired to sustain the sound
after the finger has left the key. The sustain may be put into action by operati ng a stop tablet,
a sustaining pedal, or a wrist bar.
OSCILLATOR DC
AMPLIFIER
ACCELERATION
DC
AMPLIFIER
ELECTRICAL
LEVEL
CONTROL
SUSTAIN
Fig. 5. Electrical acceleration and sustain
on a touch-sensitive key.
The general purpose expander-compressor shown in Fig. 6 has a limited amount of usefulness in
modifying the envelopes of existing tones, in changing the characteristics of a reverberation de-
vice, as an "amplitude filter"
3
, and in noise suppression. The circuit shown in Fig. 6 is ar-
ranged to control the important variables in a convenient way. The control zone covers a con-
stant range in terms of decibels at the input but may be moved closer to the maximum level (0
dB) or farther from it. The amount of expansion or compression may be usefully varied from none
to a maximum of 30 dB. In an amplitude filter a greater range is required.
INP UT
I
-30 DB
o DB
~
I
TOP END OF CONTROL
ZONE ADJUSTMENT
LOGARITHMIC
RECTIFIER
ISEE FIGURE 7)
I N OUT
ELF;CTRICAL
LEVEL
CONTROL
CONTROL
TERMI NALS
I N ~ OUT
I
1 I
OUTPU
FIXED
MAXIMUM NONE
DC VOLTAGE
AMOUNT OF COMPR ESSION
OR EXPANSION
~
Fig. 6. General purpose expander-compressor.
OCTOBER 1967
T
27
Inthe block diagram of Fig. 6, the logarithmic rectifier of Fig. 7 isused to obtain uniform com-
pression or expansion as shown in Fig. 8. The top end of the control zone is moved from 0 dB
to -30dB input level by means of a variable attenuator on the input to the logarithmic rectifi-
er. The amount of compression or expansion introduced is varied without changing the output
level for OdB input level by means of a potentiometer, one end of which is connected to a con-
stant DC voltage equal to the maximum output of the rectifier. Compression or expansion is ob-
tained by applying the voltage from the potentiometer to one or the other of the termi-
nals of the basi c level control.
INPUT
PUSH- PULL
AMPLIFI ER
a
RECTIFIER
DC SUPPLY
IN270
____ __________
ONE -WAY-TI ME
CONSTANT
LOGARITHMIC
ELEMENT
AMPLIFIER
8
FOLLOWER
Fig. 7. Logarithmic rectifier suitable for use in the expanders and
compressors shown here.
Fig. 8. Output level versus
input level in the general
purpose expander-compressor.
28
CONTROL ZONE
o DB
-40

__ -80
-80 -70 -60 -50 -40 - 30 - 20 -10 o
INPUT LEVEL
....J
W
>
W
....J
I-
::J
0...
I-
::J
o
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
For systematic noise reduction where compression in recording and a complementary expansion on
playback is used, location of the top of the control zone 20 dB or so below the maximum level
is recommended since any misfit between compression and expansion is less noticeable at lower
levels. A compression of 20 dB over the next 30 dB may be used with a corresponding expan-
sion in playback. Though the improvement in noise level is dramatic, there is bound to be a
certain amount of envelope modification.
Simultaneous compression before and expansion after a noisy device is helpful in suppressing the
noise while leaving the envelope unchanged. The signal which is applied to the input of the
device is compressed by a control voltage derived from the signal. The same voltage operates
an expander connected to the output of the device which restores the original envelope (see
Fig. 9).
LOGARITHMIC
RECTIFIER
IN OUT
ELECTRICAL
LEVEL
CONTROL
CONTROL
TERMINALS
1/
IN OUT
NOISY
DEVICE
IN OUT
ELECTRICAL
LEVEL
CONTROL
CONTROL
TERMINALS
IN II OUT
1 I
I I
I 1
~ UT
INPUT
COMPR ESSION E XPANSION
Fig. 9 . Simultaneous compression and expansion before
and after a noisy device.
The" Hamograph" of Myron Schaeffer is a device in which a hand-drawn envelope is imposed
upon sound material 4 • Schaeffer used loops of clear 35 mm. motion-picture film upon which
masks cut from black" Mystik" tape were stuck. 16 mm. single perforation film may be used;
it gives half an inch of useable width. Paper charts may be marked with india ink or-pencils.
A photoresistor reader suitable for use in any of these arrangements is shown in Fig. 10. Half
the case has been removed to show the six photovoltaic cells used with an inch-long aperture
(for 35 mm. film). The resistors arranged as shown in Fig. 10 give a nearly linear relation be-
tween the length of slot exposed and the voltage developed. This leads to a nearly linear re-
lation between the level in dB and the length of slot exposed.
Fig. 10. Optical envelope shaper for 35
mm. motion picture film used in Myron
Schaeffer's Hamograph.
OCTOBER 1967 29
In a modified form of the Hamograph developed by Ciamaga, magnetic recording on control
tapes is used instead of photoelectric reading from motion picture film. This system has the dis-
advantage that the envelope cannot be identified by eye • However, envelopes are easily du-
pi icated on an ordinary tape recorder and the apparatus is much easier to set up, most of the
necessary components being standard tape equipment. Electrical level controls in this device
are operated by the output from the control tapes.
The two channel alternator (Fig. 11) is a device suggested by Ciamaga which differs from the
well-known electronic switch in that the gain in one channel is gradually decreased while the
gain in a second channel is gradually increased at the same rate. This device is most interesting
as a producer of small modifications of tonal material. It can produce a IIcomplementary trem-
010
11
consisting of a periodic gradual increase and decrease of level in one musical part accom-
;panied by a decrease and increase of level in another part. A range of lI a lternation tremolos"
where the tonal material is gradually replaced by an altered version at normal tremolo rates can
be produ ced •
IN I
ELECTRICAL
LEVEL
CONTROL
CONTROL.
TERMINALS
II
~
ELECTRICAL
LEVEL
CONTROL
CONTROL
TERMINALS
II
~
.
TRIANGULAR
WAVE
GENERATOR
OUT I
OUT 2
Fig. 11. Two channel alternator.
The envelope shaper or ligate" -(Fig. 12) converts continuous sound material into a II note
ll
; that
is, it determines the rise and fall of intensity from the beginning to the end. The design objec-
tives were:
(1) The attack and decay rates should be independently adjustable over a wide
range.
(2) Peak intensity should be independent of the setting of the attack and decay
ra tes •
(3) Tones consisting predominantly of II steady statell sections and those consist-
ing of an attack period followed immediately by a decay period should be
producible.
(4) Action should be initiated either by a key or in response to timing signals
which can be recorded on tape or obtained from rhythm instruments such as
the Rhythmi con
5

To satisfy the first two requirements the circuit has been designed to terminate attack and de-
cay periods with reference to a fixed voltage
6
• To satisfy the third requirement, two divisions
have been incorporated, each having its own level control amplifier. The IIsustained
li
division
30 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
>--
G TI MIN
INPU T
FULL WAVE
RECTIFIER
V
SCHMITT
LEVEL
DETECTOR
i
BISTABLE
CIRCUIT
-7-
l
; : ~
/
Fig. 12. Envelope shapero
i /
ELECTRONIC
SWITCH
~ "
?
ELECTRONIC
SWITCH
6"
?
"TRANSIENT" DIVISION
i
ATTACK
/ ELECTRICAL
/'
DC SUPPLY
LEVEL
CONTROL
TI MING 11
I
vt.
CAPACITOR
LIMITING
of CAY J 1
DEVICE
I
ATTACK
~
DC SUPP LY
ELECTRICAL
-y
LEVEL
"-
CONTROL
TIMING 1
I
vi.
CAPACITOR
LIMITING
y
1 I
DEVICE
DECAY
l
"SUSTAINED" DIVISION
begins the attack when the timing signal reaches the threshold level. When the standard vol-
tage has been reached, the level remains at the maximum value as long as the timing signal con-
tinues. When the timing signal stops, the decay period begins and continues until the sound is
inaudible. In the "transient" division the attack period begins when the timing signal reaches
the threshold level. When the standard voltage has been reached, however, the decay period
begins whether the timing signal is still present or not.
The DC output of the Schmitt level detector in Fig. 12 is used to operate the "sustained" divi-
sion. When the timing signal starts, the electronic switch connects the "sustained" timing ca-
pacitor to the DC supply through the adjustable "attack" resistor. When the vol tage has reached
the predetermined value, a limiting device prevents any further rise. At this point the output
level has reached a standard maximum value. When the timing signal stops the electronic switch
connects the timing capacitor to the decay resistor and the decay period begins.
When the timing signal starts, a pulse from the Schmitt level detector moves the bistable cir-
cuit into the "attack" state. In this state a separate electronic switch in the "transient" divi-
sion connects a timing capacitor to the DC supply through an adjustable "attack" resistor. When
the voltage has reached the predetermined value, a limiting device moves the bistable circuit
into the "decay" state and the decay period begins. Action in the "transient" division thus de-
pends upon the start of the timing signal and not upon its duration.
The sound from both divisions can be mixed in any proportion to give a variety of envelopes.
The two divisions have separate inputs and outputs as well as mixed inputs and outputs so that
OCTOBER 1967 31
filters, ring modulators, and other signal modifying devices can be used to produce related but
different tonal material for the transient and sustained divisions. Several transient divisions can
be used together, each carrying different material.
REFERENCES
1. Hugh Le Caine, "Touch-Sensitive Organ Based on an Electrostatic Coupling Device", Jour-
nal of the Acoustical Society of America, XXVII, 4, July 1955. 781.
2. Used on the "Electronic Sackbut"; see: H. Le Caine, "Electronic Music", Proceedings of
the Institute of Radio Engineers, XLIV, 4, April 1956, 457.
3. Alfredo Lietti, "Soppressore di disturbi a selezione d'ampiezza". Elettronica, 5, Sept.-
Oct. 1955, 1.
4. Myron S. Schaeffer, "The Hamograph", Institute of Radio Engineers Transactions on Audio,
AU-l0, 2, Jan.-Feb. 1962,22.
5. Joseph Schillinger, The Mathematical Basis of the Arts, Philosophical Library, New York,
1948, 665.
6. Auxiliary apparatus with Canadian patent 587,741.
32
The Department of Music
Dartmouth College
announces
the inauguration of
THE GRIFFITH ELECTRONIC MUSIC STUDIO
and
THE DARTMOUTH ARTS COUNCIL PRIZE
For an Outstanding Composition of Electronic Music
(Five Hundred Dollars)
The judges of the competition will be
MILTON BABBITT
Director, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center
GEORGE BALCH WILSON
Director, University of Michigan Electronic Music Studio
VLADIMIR USSACHEVSKY
Director, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center
April 5-6, 1968
Regulations may be obtained by writing to Jon Appleton,
Dartmouth Arts Council Prize, Griffith Electronic Music
Studio, Dartmouth College. Hanover, New Hampshire 03755
Unentbehrlich fur aile, die sich mit
moderner Musik beschaftigen
MELOS
..
ZEITSCHRIFT FUR NEUE MUSIK
Jeden Monat:
• Beitrage international anerkannter
Autoren
• Diskussionen tiber aktuelle Fragen
• Berichte von massgeblichen
Aufftihrungen moderner Konzert-
und Btihnenwerke
• Buch-, Schallplatten- und
N otenbesprechungen
Jahresabonnement: 22,20 OM
Einzelheft: 2,20 OM
Fordern Sie Probeexemplare yom
MELOS-VERLAG • 65 MAINZ
WEIHERGARTEN 1-9
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls
A Photoresistor Mixer
for Live Performance
Frederic Rzewski
The photoresistor mixer is an extremely simple device that I designed and constructed for use in
a specific composition of mine, Impersonation. In this composition the effect of movement of
sound in space is called fori furthermore, each channel (there are eight) is required to IImove
ll
independently of the others, so that one channel may move clockwise around the room, another
counter-clockwise, while a third darts rapidly from point to point, a fourth meanders in a ran-
dom fashion, and so forth. The solution that I found to this problem is, I am sure, by no means
the best one, but it satisfied the internal musi cal requirements that I had set up, and remained
within the external I imitations imposed upon me by lack of funds, technical experience, and
assistance.
Each input signal is split into four parts, the level of ~ a c h part controlled by illuminating the
photoresistor with a penl ight (see Fig. 1). The four outputs go to four ampl ifiers and loudspeak-
ers. The loudspeakers may be set up in the four corners of the room. The photoresistors I used
(Philips B8-73105) are very inexpensive. For each channel the four photoresistors are mounted
in a circle, 4 cm. in diameter, on a bakelite panel (see Fig. 2).
INPUT
IK 4·7K
- - - - -
--l- -
AMp· I
-=
IK 4·7K
AMp· 2
IK 4·7K
AMp· :3
IK 4·7K
AMp·4
-
Fig. 1 (above) . Schematic diagram
of one channe Z.
Fig. 2 (right). Physical arrange-
me nt of one channel.
OCTOBER 1967
INPUT
TO
AMPLIFIER
33
I mounted four such circular groups on one large panel to form a four-channel mixer. Over each
group I mounted a cylinder, 5 cm. long and 5 cm. in diameter, painted black {for this I used tin
cans}. Inside each cylinder, resting firmlyover the photoresistors, I placed a disc of dark trans-
parent plexiglass, with a rubber sleeve fitted around it, to protect the resistors from stray light.
(Later I thought of using two discs of polarized glass, one of which could be rotated, so as to
find the proper degree of transparency for any ambient light situation.)
Finally I mounted the panel inside a metal box, 20 cm. x 20 cm. x 10 cm., with four circular
holes cut in the top that fit snugly over the tin cans. On the sides of the box are jacks for the
four inputs and sixteen outputs. The shields and grounds are all connected together and sol-
dered to the box at one point. The sixteen outputs are divided into four groups of four, labeled
"north", "south", "east", and "west". The photoresistors on the "north" pole of each circle go
to the "north" group, those on the "south" pole to the "south" group, and so on. The position
of the photoresistor in the circle is therefore equivalent to that of the corresponding loudspeaker
in the room; ideally, for each channel, the panel presents a two-dimensional abstraction of that
space, with the audience in the middle. By moving the penl ight horizontally and vertically
over each cylinder, variations in luminance are created that should correspond to like variations
in the intensity of the sound from each loudspeaker. Two people can control the levels of four
channels, each player with a penl ight in each hand. Or one person, using one or more light
sources, can control all four channels.
Although a mixer of this sort presents obvious disadvantages from the studio viewpoint (inaccu-
racy, difficulty of controlling the distribution of light, etc.}, it acquires a certain interest if
one considers it as a performing instrument. For example, by exploiting the inherent charac-
teristics (and limitations) of light-.sensitive resistors, certain unusual effects are obtainable. By
sudden illumination of the photoresistors {with a. stroboscope, say}, very sharp, explosive attacks
can be obtained (which are, of course, noise-free); and, by altering the values of the resistors,
the characteristic "tail" which follows can be lengthened or shortened. In general, very radi-
cal variations in level can be created that are awkward, at best, and often accompanied by
noise when attempted with conventional potentiometers. When mixing four different tapes, for
example, extremely rapid passages from one channel to another can be effected by moving the
light manually across the various cylinders. Why sixteen outputs instead of four? In situations
where more than four loudspeakers are used, the channels can be combined to move in different
ways.
This mixer was very inexpensive and easy to build. Technically, it is unsophisticated, but mu-
sically it is effective: for it satisfies my first precept, which is to make music with whatever
means I have at my disposal.
34
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls
The Sound Level Photoprogrammer
Fernando von Reichenbach
This experimental device substantially improves stereophonic sound reproduction in an audito-
rium. Its main features are a very wide dynamic range and displacement of the sound configu-
ration around the audience with no restrictions on the numberof channels or speakers used. The
device is automati cally triggered by signals recorded on the same magnetic tape that reproduces
the sound.
Music, voices, or sound effects commonly used in theaters require high and low volumes alter-
nately. The adjustment of volume controls for the loud passages causes tape hiss to become au-
dible when sound level decreases. Different ways to remedy the problem have been suggested.
Useof tapes. of the low-noise type and recording on a wider track are the obvious solutions, al-
though the latter sometimes involves sacrificing the number of tracks to be recorded. Use of
volume compressor and expander units, variations of bandwidth according to the volume repro-
duced, or improvement of special recorder izations are more costly approaches.
Another solution is to record the whole program at almost the same level and, on reproducing,
to fade down to the proper levels the passages which so require. But a very skilled operator is
needed for this, and it becomes impossible when the volumes of many speakers must be controlled
in varying proportions for' the achievement of sound patterns. By means of the sound lev-
el photoprogrammer, this complicated manipulation becomes programmed forautomaticoperation.
Six speakers are located around the auditorium. Each has its own power amplifier and the vol-
ume of each amplifier is controlled by means of two photoresistors per amplifier which connect
to both outputs of a two-channel tape recorder. Flashlight bulbs with lenses illuminate the pho-
through a transparent film, inches wide, on which the program is prepared with
segments of plastic tape. The different degrees of opacity accorded to the film determine the
exact ampl itude suppl ied to the speaker. A transport mechanism (synchronous motor with mag-
netic clutch) moves the film at approximately six mm. per second. Longitudinal tracks on the
transparent film correspond to six different speakers: each track controls the sound level from
either one or both of the recorder channels. Another lateral track takes care of synchroniza-
tion and is controlled by its own photoresistor. The apparatus may be seen in Figs. 1 and 2.
Speech, music, or sound effects are recorded on two tracks of the magnetic tape. On a third
track, a pilot tone is recorded which triggers each change of volume. The tone closes the re-
lay, which sets the film in motion. As the film advances, a transparent section passes over the
photoresistors; each new section of film contains the information for the volumes of the speakers
for a corresponding section of tape. This motion continues until a black bar on the synchroniza-
tion trackappears and stops the film. Upon receiving another signal, the film advances again.
The length of time during which the film advances is determined by the distance between black
bars; the signal indicates only at what moment movement must begin. The volume of sound is-
OCTOBER 1967 35
suing from each speaker depends on the quantity of I ight going through the film over the pro-
gramming unit. For black tape, the attenuation is better than 70 dB. Tapes of various colors in
single and double layers allow adjustment of the volume in each passage. The sound is record-
ed near 0 dB. The reproduction levels are so adjusted that tolerable maximum volume coincides
with direct passage of light.
This inexpensive gadget, built in April 1966 for a theatrical performance, still operates well.
In some respects it can be compared to the experiences of Pierre Henry with coi Is. Once the
initial temptation to use the photoprogrammer merely for the sake of effect is overcome, a new
field of experience in sound perception will remain open to art production.
Fig. 1. A static stereophonic sound configuration is
inserted on transparent film. It is equivalent to the
volume adjustment by 12 independent potentiometers.
Fig. 2. A monaural program
is fed to the photoprogram-
mer. Diagonal bar on the
film (top of picture) allows
sound to circle the room.
36 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls
Construction of a Simple Mixer
Robert A. Moog
Th ismixer fulfills the basic requirements of a small studio or a modest performance setup. There
a re two identical channels; each has one microphone input, four line inputs, a master gain con'-
trol, and a VU meter. A segue pot mixes the two outputs in any proportion. The entire mixer
is powered by two 9-vol t batteries.
Two variations of a simple operational amplifier circuit perform the ampl ifying and mixing func-
ions. Operational amplifier Al is connected to provide high input impedance for the micro-
phone transformer (see Fig. 1). The gain of the microphone preamplifier portion is determined
by the switched resistor network between the output and the inverting (-) input of A 1. Oper-
ational ampl ifier A2 is connected as an analog adder to perform the mixing function. The gain
of the adder portion, like the gain of the microphone preamplifier, is determined by the pdr":
ti cular resistor that is switched in between the output and the inverting input of A2.
The complete schematic diagram of one channel is shown in Fig. 2. The microphone impedance
switch selects the tap on the input transformer for the appropriate input impedance or, in "HI"
position, bypasses the input transformer. The operational ampl ifier circuit of the mic preamp
consists of a balanced input stage Ql and Q2, and second stage Q3. This particular configu-
ration gives high open loop gain without coupling capacitors, resulting in excellent low fre-
quency response and overload recovery. The gain is roughly equal to the ratio between the
feedback resistor switched by SW 2 and R5. The operational ampl ifier circuit of the adder is
identical in configuration to that of the mic preamp, except for the inclusion of one transistor
( Q6) to provide greater current gain. The adder gain is equal to the ratio between the feed-
back resistor switched by SW3, and any of the input resistors Rla-R22. The VU meter is driven
by emitter follower Qa so that the non-I inear impedance of the meter does not introduce dis-
tortion at the output.
Fi g. 1. Simplified
di agram of one mixer
channe l.
OCTOBER 1967
MICROPHONE PRE AMPLIFIER PORTION
INPUT I
:
I

I
40 I
I
I
I
I
M'CROgHON' -II: +
,
-4-=
LINE
] INPUTS -=
I
I
I
I
MIXER PORTION
GAIN

SEGUE
SEGU't OUTPUT
FROM SECOND
CHANNEL
37
MICROPHONE PREAMPLIFIER
SW4
POWER ON
C4
SW2
PREAMP-I
GAIN
RIO
R12
RI5 R20
GREEN
___ TO
+9V
LINE
INPUT
+3 : [j±]
RIS R21
BLACK
ii:
J4
LINE
INPUT
,,4
:
,
_______ TO
- 9V
RI7 R22
J5
' NUMBERS IN RECTANGLES
ARE D'C' VOLTAGES WITH
FRESH BATTERIES'

, LEAD BASE CONFIGURATION
FOR ALL TRANSISTORS,
E 8
Fig. 2. Schematic
diagram and parts
for one chan-
Except for

power
list
nel.
the
se-
segue
the
B 1, B2 - 9-volt battery (Eveready 11266 or
Cl - 220 pF ceramic capacitor
C2, C3, C5, C6 - 80 mF, 16-volt elec. capacitor
C4 - 0. 2 mF, 100-volt mylar capacitor
C7 - .0033 mF ceramic capacitor
C8 - 4.7 pF ceramic capacitor
C9 - 1 mF, 16-volt e lec. capacitor
Jl - Three-pin female audio connector(Cannon XI:.R 3- 31 or equiv.)
J2-J9 - Two-conductor phane jack
Ml - Small VU meter (Simpson 10472 or equiv.)
Ql, 02, Q4, Q5 - High gain, low noise silicon NPN
transistor (2N3391A or equiv.)
Q3, 06, 07 - High gain, low noise silicon PNP transistor
(2N4058 or equiv.)
Q8 - Medium gain sili con NPN transistor (2N3392 or equiv.)
Rl", R6, R18, R19, R20, R2 1,R22 - 100 K, 1/2-watt res.
R2* - 47 K, 1/ 2-watt res .
R3*, R25 - 180 K, 1/ 2-watt res .
R4, R9 - 1 K, 1/2-watt res.
R5 - 10K, 1/2-watt res.
ADDER
[jJjJ R 31
SW3
ADDER GAIN
J8
SEGUE
OUTPUTS
J9
OUTPUTS
J7

R36
FROM VU METER OF
OTHER CHANNEL
R7 - 430 K, 1/2-watt res.
R8, R28 - 1 Meg, 1/2- watt res.
R10* - 22 K, 1/2-watt res.
R 11, R 12, R30, R31, R33, R36 - I DO-ohm, 1/2-watt res.
R13, R14, R15, R16, R17 - 100 K audio toper pot
R23 - 22 Meg audio taper pot
R24 - 100 K screwdri ver-adjustment trim"mer pot
R26 - 110 K screwdr iver-adjustment trimmer pot
R27 - 470 K screwdriver-adjustment trimmer pot
R29* - 82 K screwdriver-adjustment trimmer pot
R32* - 2.2 K screwdriver-adjustment trimmer pot
R34 - 220-ohm screwdriver-adjustment trimmer pot
R35, R38 - 5 K linear toper pot
R37 - 3.3 K, 1/2-watt res.
SWl - 4- position, 3-pole, shorting-type rotary switch
SW2, SW3 - 3-positi on, I-pol e, shorting-type rotary switch
SW4 - 2-pole, si ngle-throw toggle switch
T1 - 50-, 250-, and 600- ohm primary to a5- Kilohm secondary
microphone input transformer (Triad A9J or equiv . )
gue and
output
entire circuit is
repeated for the
other channel.
* These resistors should be deposited carbon or other low noise type.
Fig. 3. Front view of mixer. Fig. 4. Rear view of mixer.
The entire mixer maybe housed in a standard 171Jx71J x3" aluminum chassis. The leads associated
with the inputs and the gain switches of the mixer should be kept as short as possible. The in-
put lead to the mic preamp should be shielded. The ground symbols in Fig. 2 are actual con-
nections to the chassis. Each operational amplifier is built on a separate circuit board and is
positioned for shortest lead length. Fig.3 shows the arrangement of the panel while Fig. 4 re-
veals the placement of the circuits. The construction and testing of the mixer will present no
problems to anyone with a modest amount of experience in building electronic equipment. Mod-
ifi cations in the overall design, such as changing the number of channels or inputs, or adding
signal routing switches, should be similarly straightforward.
Performance specifications based on measurements made on a completed mixer are listed below. The preamp gain wos set at +40 dB and the
adder gain at +10 dB. Except where noted, controls were turned up for maximum gain, and the mic impedance was set at 250 ohms.
Impeda nce of microphone input: 50 ohms, 250 ohms, 600 ohms, or 80 Kilohms, selectable by SWI
Impedance of a line input: 50 Kilohm!
Impedance of on output: 0-1 250 ohms, depending upon setting of master gain control
Equivalent noise source referred to line input: 8 microvolts
Equivalent noise source referred to mic input: 0 . 5 microvolts
Frequency response of line input: ±' dB 0-30 kHz
Frequency response of mic input: ±1 dB 40 Hz-13 kHz; ±2 dB 20 Hz-19 kHz
Total harmonic distortion at output level of 0 dB ( I kHz test signal): less than 0.2%
38 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
The Synket
Paul Ketoff
The Synket (Synthesizer and Ketoff) is an electronic system that both generates and controls
sound. It can be considered a bona fide musical instrument because its flexibil ity permits the
performance of electronic music compositions without pre-recording (something which has not
been possible with traditional studio systems).
I t would be useful, before discussing the Synket, to clarify general concepts of sound. The
parameters of sound can be summed up as frequency, amplitude, waveform, and time. Fre-
quency, amplitude, and waveform can be varied in time. These variations are called modula-
ti ons. Modulations occur separately or several together (i.e., frequency, amplitude,andwave-
form can all be modulated simultaneously), and these can have different shapes during the same
time span. From this derives the infinite variety of sound. Perhaps the most common and il-
lustrative example of this phenomenon is the human voi ce, where the larynx can be considered
a complex sound generator that varies ampl itude and frequency. The sound generated in the
larynx passes through the mouth and nose where the oral cavity, by changing shape and size,
modulates the timbre, and at the same time the mouth, by opening and closing, modulates the
amplitude.
The Synket is conceived to generate and modulate sounds in terms of frequency, timbrel spec-
trum, and ampl itude, where the modulations can be controlled individually or several together.
The process suggests the word "sound-combiner", and there are three parallel systems so called,
racked one above the other. A detailed block diagram of a sound-combiner appears in Fig. 1.
Each of the sound-combiners includes: (1) a square wave generator, with a range of 5-20,000
Hz, controllable continuously with a knob, or in discrete steps using a keyboard; (2)a chain of
push-button dividers that divide the frequency of the generator by 2, 4, 8, 3, or 5( permitting
an enriching of the harmonic spectrum as the dividers are depressed; (3) a selective (variable
Fi g. 1 . Functional
b lock diagram (A)
and panel arrange-
ment (B) of a sound-
combiner. The num-
bers within the
bl ocks in A are the
conti nuously vari-
ab le controls (l arge
circ les) in B. Simi-
the numbered
switche s are the
re ctangular push-
and the
numb ered terminals
ar e the small circu-
lar jacks.
OCTOBER 1967
A
B
JI 0
J 2 0
J30
J3

8 80 o
o J4
88
O J.
o J6
QJ
39
bandpass) filter with continuous action from 40-20,000 Hz, making possible profound timbrel
changes; (4) control of volume to allow balancing with the other combiners; and (5) modulators
that can modulate the frequency of the generator, the frequency of the filter, and the ampli-
tude of the signal.
The square wave generators, with their dividers, can be linked together in different ways, so
that different harmonic combinations can be obtained with one single generator . In this way
one can obtain sounds that spread ten octaves or sounds that, derived from the same tone, with
divisions in 6ths, 5ths, and 3rds, produce unusual beats. Further, when a very low frequency
is used, the square wave is perceived as pulses, giving various rhythmic combinations.
The filter of each combiner permits extreme variations in timbre; for example, the slow pulses
can change continuously from a sound similar to a drum to the sound of a drop of water as the
frequency of the filter is raised. It is worth noting, in passing, that each filter can function,
in effect, as a sine wave generator.
The modulator on each combiner, as has already been said, makes it possible to vary the fre-
quencyof the generator, the frequency of the selective filter, and the volume of the signal.
Each modulator can be controlled: (l)by a separate oscillator; (2)by the sound generators, giv-
ing the possibility of synchronizing rhythmic imp'ulses and modulations; (3) from a keyboard; or
(4) from an external sound source. In addition, the modulators of each combiner can be linked
in such a way that they are synchronized with each other .
The other parts of the Synket are: (1) a white noise generator that can be put in each combiner
and modulated as the square wave generator; (2) three ampl itude modulators with intermittent
action (with three different characteristics) that can modulate each or all the combiners; and
(3) an octave filter bank that affects the signal output from any or all combiners.A block dia-
gram of the complete Synket appears in Fig. 2, and the control panel in Fig. 3. A photograph
of the complete Synket appears in Fig. 4.
While it is difficult to imagine all the rhythmic combinations and sounds one can produce, per-
haps one can have an idea, from this description, what the possibilities of this instrument are.
An important advantage of the Synket is that it permits the real-time composition of electron-
ic music, e liminating manyof the annoying interruptions of splicing, editing, and mixing tapes.
What once made necessary many hours of work and a multitude of machines and processes can
now be done in a brief time with a single apparatus. The problems of composition for and play-
ing on the Synket become, more or less, similar to those of composing for and playing on tra-
ditional instruments and, with the possibility of live performance, one avoids the discomfort of
the impersonality we have felt with electronic music until now, as well as the many mechani-
Fi g. 2 . BLock di a-
gram of the compLete
Synket. Letters and
numbers refer to
jacks that aLLow un-
usuaL or compLex in-
terconnections to be
set up.
40
~ SOUNO-
I COMBINER I
I 1 -+-------1 SOUND-
COMBINER 2
BI
CI I +-----{ SOUND-
COMBINER 3 I
I WHITE NOISE I
GENERATOR I
A/2 A/3
r--
'" 0
!<
oJ
"
B/2 B/3
0
0
,.
w
oJ
..
CI2 C/3
i<
I-
'-
AI7
I
B/S
A/4 A/5
B/4 B/5 CIS CI7 OCTAVE I C/8 C/9
FILTER BANK
C/4 , C/5
AIS
rrn
BI7
Al8 A/9 8/8 B/9
I I I
A/ID BIIO CliO
ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
3. Control panel of the
(top to bottom): mod-
octave filter
_ a t c h three sound
c ombiners.
5 :¢: 5 5 :¢: 5 5 :¢: 5
@@ @@
@ o
OFFSPEEOIO 0 VOL. 10 OFFSPEE010 a VOL.IO
OFFSPEED
IO
MOO. S
O
\IOL- 10
MOD· I MOD· 2
o 0 0 0 o 0 0 CJ D O CJ =

ij

ij ij
@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @
5
@
@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @
@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @
o VOL- 10
@ 15 5 5 55:¢: 5 5
@
;@:@@@@@@
@
@ a a -------.10 OFF 10 OFFSPEEO 10 a VOL- 10 a VOL. 10 @
MODULATOR
o 000 0 0000 0000 D
@ 15 5 5 5 S * 5 5
@@:@@@@@@
@
@
@ a a 10 OfF 10 OFFSPEEO 10 0 VOL. 10 a VOL. 10 @
MODULATOR
D ODD D DO D O ODD 0 D
@ 15 5 5 55:¢: 5 5
@

@
@
MODULATOR
0 DOD D OD D 0 D ODD D
Fig. 4. Paul Ketoff
(le ft ) and composer-
performer John Eaton
with the Synket.
cal disadvantages the tape recorder presents when electronic music is combined with instrumen-
tal and/or vocal music.
(translated by Joel Chadabe)
OCTOBER 1967
41
I
I
Reviews
Organized Sound by Tod Dockstader; Owl Records, ORLP 6, 7, 8 (stereo only).
The following review restricts itself quite del iberately to the sounds that emanate from the speak-
ers. No attempt has been made to delve into the underlying mechanics by which these sounds
were produced. The review is exclusively a listenerls reaction .
In the liner notes for these three records, Tod Dockstader emphasizes repeatedly that his crea-
tions are not music in the accepted sense, but Ibrganized sound
l1
• He is an engineer, not a mu-
sician, and he likes it that way. On the liner for Quatermass he says: III have the feeling that
the training live had (engineering) for what 11m doing, is the best training, and if I had musi cal
training 11m not sure it would help me, and I suspect it might hinder me. You see, I deal in a
sort of chaos of sound: in Apocalypse, for instance, therels one little movement that has in it
a cat screaming, a dime store toy that moos when you turn it upside down, doors opening and
slamming shut - of course, all this is very difficult to identify in the piece now, but those are
the sources. 11 •
In the liner notes for the record containing Luna Park, Dockstader makes a statement that is
more to the point and less likely to get him into hot water. Here he says that the pieces repre-
sent 11 simply an instinctive arrangement of alternating tension and release 11. With this more
forthright explanation the listener can approach the recorded sounds without feeling an obli-
gation to search in them for more than meets the ear.
Record ORLP 6 presents three pieces. In the earliest of these, Traveling Music (1960), we
hear clearly separated sounds: gong beats which initiate sustained, drone-like noises of inde-
terminate pitch. Soon these are opposed by sharply percussive, clear beats and pulsations which
alternate stereophonically from speaker to speaker. Both ingredients - the sustained and the
percussive - are now developed. The drones lose their gong-beat attack and become contin-
uous bands of sound which overlap or pile up and change timbre, loudness, and other charac-
teristics. At the same time, the pulsations also grow in timbral and dynamic variety, yet do
not lose their metric regularity. They grow faster, however, and at their fastest they very near-
ly turn into pitch vibrations. At the same time, the drone entrances become more and more dis-
tinct and regular until they turn into regular, almost percussive beats. Thus the c:;ontrast of sus-
tained sounds versus metric pulses is reversed.
Whereas the thematic ingredients presented in Luna Park (1961) are quite a bit more complex
1
they are nevertheless of equally unmistakable and impressive identity. The dominating sound
pattern here consists of a kind of mechanical laughter. In the first section of the piece this
pattern is manipulated through superimpositions, retards and accelerations, stereophonic alter-
nations, echo effects, and the I ike. The second section counters these lively goings-on with
sustained intervals which move upward in slow, dove-tailed gl issandi. The third section returns
to a fast and tumultuous design.
Apocalypse (1961) is somewhat more elusive in its sounds. There is a multitude of swellings,
fadings, gl issandi, and stereophonically alternated timbral contrasts, etc. Unfortunately, every-
42 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
ing is so undefined and chaotic that it is difficult, if not impossible, for the l"istener to fi rd
focal point, a dominating {or at least germinal} source pattern. Throughout its four move-
ents, Apocalypse seems to remain shapeless and aimless and thus grows more and more tedious
i n spite of all its activity.
One might interject at this point that Dockstader, throughout his explanations, mentions tha
is early works represent experiments with the medium of taped sound as such, the way primi-
t ive man may have enjoyed mere tappings on a hollow piece of wood, etc. Eventually, he says,
these experiments began to lose some of their fascination for him and he felt he had to opera te
more planfully and to organize sounds more judiciously, just as primitive man eventually bega n
to organize his taps and pitches into patterns and melodies. In Apocalypse Dockstader seems
to be in a transitional stage; he has gone beyond experimentation but has not yet succeeded 10
harnessing his sounds convincingly.
The next record, ORLP 7, presents two fragments from Apocalypse which, in Dockstader's words,
are chips that fell off the original Apocalypse in the process of reducing it in size .from a form
that runs "for hours" to its present duration of some 19 minutes. The first of these "chips" is a
study in percussive tremolo effects ranging from the rapid "trrr" of a drum stick bouncing on a
hard surface to something more akin to a pneumatic drill. Only the last sound in the piece is
a single impact - it resembles {and may actually be}a timpani stroke. A multitude of rolls and
t remolandi are manipulated in loudness and speed, timbre and pitch; there are gl issando effects,
sharp rattles and blurred whirrs, single patterns, overlapping ones, and simultaneous soundings
of any number of variations of all. of them; and after all the changes have been rung, the piece
suddenly ends. Unfortunately, although it drums and chirps and makes a lot of entertaining
noises, there is I ittle evidence of an overall structural design.
The second fragment does more or less the same thing with a related basic sound pattern: flow-
ing, vibrato-I ike pulsations rather than percussive ones. It seems less interesting and imagina-
ive and has a somewhat disturbing ostinato pitch pattern of four chromatic steps of regular 6/8
eter which enters and dominates the action somewhere in midstream and seems peculiarly In-
congruous. This piece, too, runs around rather aimlessly and then ends abruptly.
In Drone {1962} Dockstader juxtaposes a guitar and electronically generated sounds. Through
ma ny different manipulations these sounds are made to oppose each other even more than they
do normally. Conversely, they are altered to the point of near identity. This timbral meeting
ground, however, is not constant but ranges from electronic imitations of "real" guitar sounds
to guitar sounds whose timbral characteristics have been altered to simulate typical electronic
sounds. It is quite a fascinating business.
Water Music (1963) is the most recent work on this record. It consists of six parts, each in-
volving a different treatment of noises generated in one wayor another in connection with wa-
ter. To judge by the sounds emanating from the speakers, Dockstader avoided obvious splash-
ings and gurgl ings. He concentrated instead on the hooting pitches produced by blowing over
tops of bottles containing various amounts of (presumably) water, on percussive noises produced
by dripping water taps, or on hitting pots, bowls, and tubs filled with different amounts of wa-
ter. However, there also are noises that sound like the scraping of a fingernail along the teeth
of a comb; there are strange, pitiful mewls and howls, and a multitude of other sounds. The
individual movements are quite short and full of imaginative effects. Even so (and similar to
the early Apocalypse) this work lacks direction, suffers from a paucityof potent germinal ideas,
and thus remains aimless and shapeless.
OCTOBER 1967 43
The third record, ORLP 8, contains only one piece: Quatermass (1964). This work represents
a major step forward from the earlier experimentations and artistic gropings toward genuine ar-
tistic communication. It is as inventive as Luna Park and Traveling Music but has in addition
a strangely frightening, tensely driving air of mystery. Here, unlike in the preceding pieces,
one senses a preconceived vision and a much more successfully controlled structure. The char-
acter of sounds and patterns is well defined in each of the five movements, and the
themselves are well contrasted from one another, yet complement each other. Moreover, they
are held together by certain ideas which go through the entire piece.
The first movement, Song and Lament (a rather misleading title since the movement consists of
three, not two, parts and begins with the Lament), contrasts booming gong sounds, artificial.ly
lowered in pitch and prolonged in length, with loud, nasal, anguished wails. Added to these
are synthetic sounds which, however, remain in the background. (The wails, incidentally,
were generated by a toy balloon which was blown up, then the air let out slowly through its
finger-pinched neck whose length was changed by pull ing and stretching to al ter the pi tch, tim-
bre, loudness, etc.) Once taped, the balloon sounds were treated to a remarkable variety of
additional manipulations, and similar sounds were added synthetically. The total impression of
this movement is strangely upsetting, almost frightening; a most unusual tour de force.
The second movement, Tango, sets percussive, Jllotoric noises against siren-like glissandi, and
shot-like reports against sustained and continuous sounds resembling some of the material of the
first movement. It all begins mysteriously with muffled machine rhythms. These grow in com-
plexity. Then, suddenly, the anguished wails of the first movement enter. The fabric now
grows louder and ever more chaotic and aggressive. At its peak of menacing confusion there is
a short burst of crossfire from speaker to speaker, followed by a stunned silence. A half-heart-
ed attempt to resume the ghostly commotion is snuffed out by a final coup de grace.
Parade is the title of the third movement, but it is no parade in the ordinary sense. Dockstader
explains that he wanted to celebrate a "sort of pompous, John Philip Sousa kind of crashing a-
bout". The entire piece is "of cymbals and white noise II • The cymbal sounds are distorted and
manipulated to create unusual effects, such as cymbal glissandi. And the white noise is the
between-stations-hiss of an FM radio, filtered, altered, coaxed, and pummeled. Dockstader
chose cymbals because they produce the closest "Iive" equivalent to electronic white noise. In
the piece, the cymbals provide high metallic sizzlings and crashings, while the synthetic sound
generator adds a turmoil of ramblings, swishings, and boomings, punctuated by roars and bangs.
Eventually the low, electronic growls drive out the silvery cymbal glitter. Toward the end of
this section the nasal balloon cries of the preceding movement enter the fray, but are quickly
squel ched and smothered by the powerful hissings and boomings. There is a strong atmosphere
of tragic conflict, almost of catastrophy, over all of this. Considering the title Dockstader has
given to this movement, one wonders whether he had intended it to elicit such .a reaction from
a listener or whether the piece just happened to turn out this way. But whatever the reasons
for its character, this movement is an impressive feat and one not easily forgotten.
Flight is a long, reflective, rather quiet movement which presents a succession of episodes full
of weird sounds and patterns. Unlike the preceding "sound organizations" it is not governed
by a single idea or a dominating and unifying conflict. Rather, it operates along free associ-
ation, one episode giving rise to the next, and so forth. This technique does not easily produce
convincing forms, and in spite of an ostinatofigure of two alternating low pitches at the inter-
val of a fifth, which appears early in the piece and reappears at a higher pitch at the very end,
the movement is in constant danger of falling apart. It _is interesting to listen to, however, be-
44 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
couse of its great variety of sounds, textures, a nd patterns, and its a
ension. Nevertheless, the listener is likely to lose track of its direction,
The last movement, Second Song, recapitulates and develops as i ts chi ef task the ba ll oon ils,
etc. of the first movement. In addition, it combines these ingredients with mos t of the soo
and textures of the other movements, separately as well as in various combina ti ons and a lso
rings to this new conglomerate of known materials a number of new sounds and pa tterns. I is
us the most ambitious and most complex of all the movements, and much of wha t it contains
is remarkably imaginative and eloquent. But again, one encounters that certain weakness o.
stru cture: the movement fails to come to a focal point, a climactic culmination, and it ends un-
expectedly and rather disappointingly - a real pity considering the wealth of ingenu ity and i-
magination which has gone into it in every other respect.
** *
In the beginning of this review I quoted Dockstaderls acknowledgement that he has had no mu-
sicol t raining and does therefore not consider his creations to be musicol compositions in any
conventional sense. He has simply experimented with random sound sources, manipulated the
sounds in many ways, and arranged the results into pieces of some sort. Summing up his method
e says: IINow, there's no [need for] musical training in making music out of that. II
I the liner notes for the record which begins with Drone he writes: IIln practice, music is an
rgani zation of abstract sounds that is acceptable; if unacceptable, itls called noise •••• [My]
ieces are full of such rejected sounds, as well as some of the more acceptable noise-makers of
e orchestra. They are for people who listen - to sound; who I isten to music as organized
sound, enjoy sound, and follow and explore the organization. II
fter I istening to six LP sides of these sound structures two impressions predominate: On the one
nd , Dockstader is without doubt an enthusiastic and imaginative creator of memorable noises .
o sound source is too lowly or too refined for him, none is too crude or too delicate for his
rposes. On the other hand, his ever-alert sensitivity to sounds and his considerable resource-
,. Iness in manipulating them is not equaled by a commensurate artistically creative imagination
and by adequate knowledge of the craft of putting a musical composition (for want of a better
erm) together. Granted that some of the pieces on these records rise considerably above the
level of mere experiments, even the bestof them nevertheless fall short of being truly convinc-
ing artistic statements. This regrettable fact becomes increasingly apparent with repeated hear-
ings: instead of growing more arresting and communicative, the pieces soon lose their initial
fa scination without revealing new facets. They simply become more and more obvious. No a-
mount of Dockstaderls rather awkward, pseudo-esthetic sophistry can gloss over this crucial
shortcoming.
- Kurt Stone
OCTOBER 1967 45
Concert Piece for Synket and Symphony Orchestra, John Eaton
Performance: John Eaton, Synket, accompanied by the Berkshire Music Center Orchestra con-
ducted by Gunther Schuller; Tanglewood, August 9, 1967.
It is difficult to discuss John Eaton's Concert Piece for Synket and Symphony Orchestra outside
of the context of the growing interest in electronic performing instruments (and electronic com-
positional systems in general). It is as if the instrument should be reviewed as well as the piece,
although it is in a certain sense unfair to the composer (the piece itself was excellent and in
many ways compositionally innovative) to devote much time to his instrument. Yet to under-
stand the composition one must understand the material from which it is composed.
The Synket is a performable and portable electronic sound system designed and built by Paul
Ketoff in Rome, Italy. Basically, it consists of three sound systems (Eaton calls them IIcom-
biners
ll
) racked one above the other, each containing a square wave generator and various fil-
ters and control voltage generators which act upon the signal of that particular system; thesys-
tems can be patched into each other so that one signa I generator can be controlled by any of
the other systems. In addition there are various envelope generators, pulse generators, and
control voltage generators that can be applied to any parameter of any system. (Ketoff's de-
scription of the Synket appears elsewhere in this issue; see also IIA Portable Electronic Instru-
ment" by John Eaton, in the October 1966 Music Journal.) Theoretically, the machine would
seem extremely versatile within its particular limitations. But the most important criteria for
judging a performing instrument are its contrC;;ls.
The Synket is performed by pushing buttons, turning dials, playing keyboards, depressing a vol-
ume pedal, and every now and then patching. Although the complexity of type of control is
understandable because of the instrument's history (it was originally designed as a compact stu-
dio instrument for the American Academy in Rome), and although Eaton's was a virtuoso per-
formance, much exploration of the possibilities of this instrument stiil needs to be done. What
are the capabilities of the instrument in terms of other esthetics or compositional ideas? To what
extent does the difficulty of performing on the Synket lead one into Synket cliches? To what
extent is electronic nuance (there II such a thing) possible, or how carefully can the sounds be
controlled and predicted? And how can we now judge fully the use of the instrument without
greater experience in listening to others' compositions for it?
The compositional problem of the piece is relating two worlds of sound in a way that they seem
part of the same piece. One could unite them in procedure while giving them different mate-
rial, or unite them in procedure and material, or make them totally different but simultaneous,
or.. .• In this case, the orchestra was made to sound I ike a Super-Synket. The orchestra was
divided into two groups tuned a quarter-tone apart, designed not to be heard stereophonically
but as one mass of sound. Aside from Eaton's interest in quarter-tone music generally (his own
words are worth repeating: II ••• this allows me to bathe rejuvenescently in the ancient but still
pure springs of microtonal melody."), this tuning of the orchestra permits a meeting on common
ground with the "tuning" of the Synket, which is, of course, not played diatonically (to im-
agine it so would b.e ridiculous). With the quarter-tone tuning of clusters, occasional legato
phrases in the woodwinds and brass, strong shifts of register, and very sophisticated timbre
changes, the orchestra enters the Synket sound world, which leaves Eaton free to mingle with-
out fear of offending.
46 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW
ow does a Synket socia-lize with an orchestra without bringing to mind a strange piano con-
certo? The dramatic roles that the orchestra and soloist enacted in the Romantic piano concerto
ere basically quite simple, predictable, and formulated on the support-or-opposition drama
etween an instrument of one basic timbre (piano, say) and an instrument of many timbres (or-
estra). The problem was how not to have a brilliant orchestra make a single piano seem dull.
In Eaton's piece the problem is, in many ways, reversed. The Synket can be louder than the
orchestra, it can change timbre (perhaps even more effectively than the orchestra), it can play
igher, faster, and it has flashing lights. There is a necessary compromise in the Synket part,
and t he Synket must be brought into the world of the orchestra as well as vice versa. This was
one very successfully. The Synket moved in and out of the texture, making statements of var-
yi ng power, and of varying character, in relation to the orchestra, so that a kind of scale of
diffe rence was felt from similarity to dissimilarity. Someof the most effective moments had the
Synket interjecting its own material against the orchestra playing waves of undulating phrases,
and these strikingly effective moments were the moments best performed.
erformance of this piece is difficult in many ways. The Berkshire Music Center Orchestra is
an excellent group, but playing quarter-tone chords is new enough, in this country at least, so
t they are difficult to hear exactly. But then first performances of complex pieces are 01-
ays difficult to hear exactly. I would say the performance was overall very effective. Gun-
e r Schuller conducted, and the success of the orchestra's performance was due largely tothat.
=aton is incredibly virtuoso on the Synket. But should his range of skills be always necessary,
r should we consider the Synket a prototype of performing instruments to come that will give
re possibilities for greater control with less effort?
seems to me that deriving maximum potential from any performing instrument depends on two
_esi gn characteristics: simplicity of control and diversity of output. I would suggest an instru-
ent with three-dimensional controls, such as a lever that goes up and down, in and out, and
ideways, each direction controlling a certain parameterdefined by which of several foot pedals
is depressed. Further, that the generators and modifiers are replaceable with other types that
con be placed into the machine with a clasp. Thus, fewer controls can be handled more pre-
cisely and can be used to control a greater variety of components. I suggest this (and without
great deal of thought, because I have not been very involved with performing electronic mu-
ic up until now) largely for purposes of comparison, because I feel that there is a great danger
in thinking of the Synket as the instrument, and because the Synket is ~ , not less, interest-
i g when thought of as a prototype that deals in an ingenious and sophisticated way with elec-
ronic performance problems. In portability, it will serve as a model. Perhaps Ketoff will re-
esign it in a different direction. Perhaps we'll have Synket ensembles.
The problem is that Eaton's piece raises so many interesting problems. I could not help but no-
ti ce, again, thatelectronic soundsare so basically different from instrumental sounds even when
they are united so ski Ilfully. And yet, in a different way, they were closer than I've heard them
before because performing the Synket is more unpredictable than hearing the same sounds on
tape, and tape machines are notoriously indifferent to the mood of the moment. The piece rais-
es questions at so many levels, and it is such a splendid composition besides, that it should be
pl ayed in many places and soon. You know, the idea of performing electronic music is lively.
- Joel Chadabe
OCTOBER 1967 47
Contributors
TRISTRAM CARY operates his own studio in Fressingfield, England, and is currently setting up
a teaching studio at the Royal College of Music, London.
JOEL CHADABE is Director of the Electronic Music Studio at the State University of New York
at Albany.
PAUL KETOFF is Technical Supervisor of NIS Films, Roma.
HUGH LE CAINE is Director of the Elmus Lab, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa.
ROBERT A. MOOG is Technical Editor of EMR.
FREDERIC RZEWSKI is a member of the composing-performing group Musica Elettronica Viva,
Roma.
JAMES SEAWRIGHT is Technical Supervisor of the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Cen-
ter, New York City.
GERALD SHAPIRO is Director of the Studio for Electroni c Music, Brown University, Providence,
Rhode Island.
KURT STONE, music editor and musicologist, is Director of Publications, Alexander Broude,
Inc., New York City.
FERNANDO VON REICHENBACH is Technical Directorofthe Electronic Music Laboratory, In-
stituto Torcuato Di Tella, Centro Latinoamericano de Altos Estudios Musicales, Buenos Aires.
IN STEREO
BY TOD DOCKSTADER
AND JAMES REICHERT
A Major Pioneering Work in mus-
ical composition, combining tech-
niques of ELECTRONIC and
INSTRUMENTAL music composi-
tion in a fully integrated, unique
and powerful manner.
Released by
OWL RECORDS
1229 University Ave.
Boulder, Colorado
48 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW


SOURCE, unique music periodical of avant-garde composition, presents in each issue five
or more provocative new works attractively published in open score: orchestral, chamber,
musico-t heatrical , electronic, schematic, graphic, band, choral, solo .
SOURCE publishes articles in relevant areas of avant-garde music: new compositional ap-
proaches and techniques, theatrical and graphic aspects of new music, and music aesthetics.
Photo essays, composer interviews and monographs, reviews of current records, books, and
musi c further enhance the value of SOURCE.
SOURCE presents and articles by such distinguished composers and musicians as
obert Ashl ey, Larry Austin, David Behrman, Mario Bertoncini, Earle Brown, Allan Bryant,
Harol d Budd, joseph Byrd, john Cage, Guiseppi Chiari, Barney Childs, Alvin Curran, Morton
Feldman, David Freund, jerry Hunt, Lukas Foss, Toshi Ichiyanagi, Ben johnston, Alvin Lucier,
Stanley Lunetta, john Mizelle, Gordon Mumma, Harry Partch" David Reck, Roger Reynolds,
- rederick Rzewski, Karlheinz Stockhausen, David Tudor, Bertram Turetzky, and Arthur
'oodbury.
acclaim for SOURCE has been enthusiastic:
any publ ications claim to represent the avant-garde but few do so in fact. Now we have
the real thing in the issuance of SOURCE, subtitled " music of the avant-garde." Composer
l arry Aust i n of the UC Davis campus, its editor, has achieved lucid presentation of the
main tenets of musical avant-gardism in articles by and conversations with its most pro-
vocative creators. And, oh yes, SOURCE contains an abundance of real music as well.
-Leonard Stein, Los Angeles Times
... Perhaps the most significant recent development has taken place with the appearance
of the publication, SOURCE . . . this magazine, containing both music and articles, succeeds
in giving a clear picture of one of the very important contemporary movements, which
reminds one of what that other California publication, New Music Quarterly (Henry Cowell,
Edi tor), accomplished forty years ago for what was then called the "ultra modern idiom."
-Saturday Review
thi nk you've done beautifully and everyone else is of the same opinion.
-John Cage, composer
... the first periodical to combine articles and music since the Etude .... The periodical
shoul d be of interest to non-musicians, as well as musicians, with its complete examples of
how avant-garde music is conceived and notated.
SOURCE appears semiannually, in a large
f ormat, wi th a spiral bindi ng. It .averages
eighty pages of scores, fifteen of articles,
and five of half-tones.
One year subscription, 2 issues, $9
($ 12 outside U.S. and Conodo)
Two year subscripti on, 4 issues, $17.50
($23 outside U.S. and Canada)
Single issue rate, $5 ($7, resp.)
All fore ign subscriptions payable in U.S. dollars
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Electronic Music Review

No. 4 October 1967

Contents
Tristram Cary

EM~ope----------------------------------2

--------------------Superseri~~mus=lsT~reac:ure?-----------------7

Robert A. Moog ------------------lntrOductlO";to-Mlxers-andleveTcontr01s------------16 James Seawright
------------------~ndamen~ICon~ptsofErectro"~c1A~~-M~e~-------14

Gerald Shapiro
---------------~~-~ncITooorDeJinclElectron~-M~fcM~ers----------20

Hugh Le Caine
------------------So~e-AppncOt~nsof8eCtric~-le~~-Contrors---------25

Frederi c Rzewski
------------------APhOtore~StO"rM~erfurl~e-PeriO"~ance-----------33

Fernando von Reichenbach Robert A. Moog

.

----------~-------f~sou~-Gverpho~progran1mer-----------------35

------------------Eorn~ct~noTaSfm~eMl~er-------------------37

--------------------The-Sinket--------------------------------39
Kurt Stone, Joel Chadabe
--------------------Re~ews----------------------------------42
ContribUtO"~-------------------------------48

Paul Ketoff

Reynold Weidenaar, Editor; Yael Gani, Associate Editor; Robert A. Moog, Technical Editor. EMR is published quarterly qy the Independent Electronic Music Center, Inc., Trumansburg, N. Y. 14886. Personal subscriptions are avaLiable through IEMC membership (annual dues $6); institutional subscriptions, one year $8, two years $15. Outside North America, add 50<: per year, payable in U.S. funds. EMR is indexed in Music Arti cle Guide and in International Repertory of Musi c Literature (RILM).
©

1968 by the Independent Electronic Music Center, Inc.

EMscope
Due to the fact that EMR Nos. 2/3 (Repertoire International des Musiques Electroacoustiques / I nternational Elec tronic Music Catalog) has undergone further production delays and will be unavailable for about two months, we have decided to go ahead with publication of this issue (EMR No.4) . Product ion of forthcoming issues will continue on schedule, and we hope that all 1967 members and subscribers will receive their copies of Nos. 2/3 in February. We deeply regret these continuing delays, but we must emphasize that this special issue is truly a massive undertaking, and will doubtless be one of the most unique and useful publications in the field of electronic music. THE ADVISORY COUNCIL The IEMC has established a large and active Advisory Council comprised of leading musicians and engineers . Through individual communication and consultation , the Counc il members provide criticism, comments, and recommendations to the Editors regarding the content and direction of the magazine. Most of the Council members are directly involved in electronic music. The few that are not were asked to join in order to provide a broader perspective of evaluation from their positions as leading representatives of contemporary music in general. EMR is concerned with electronic music as a useful medium for many styles of musical expression , not as a single esthetic credo. The diverse membership of the Advisory Council reflects this concern. The members of the Council are: Jose Vicente Asuar - Composer ; Director, Estudio de Fonologla Musical, Comision de Estudios Musicales, Instituto Nacional de Cultura y Bellas Artes, Caracas. Larry Austin - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, University of California at Davis ; Editor, SOURCE - Music of the Avant Garde. Milton Babbitt - Composer, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center, New York City. Henk Badings - Composer; Director, Studio fUr Elektronische Musik, Staatliche Hochschule fUr Musik Stuttgart. James W. Beauchamp - Engineer, Experimental Music Studio, University of Illinois, Urbana. Paul Beaver - Composer, Los Angeles. Luciano Berio - Composer , Juilliard School of M usic, Ne w York City. Boris Blacher - Composer, Studio fUr Elektronisc h e M ik, Tec hnius sche Universit~t Berlin. Karl-Birger Blomdahl - Composer, Elektronmusikstudion, Sveriges Radio, Stockholm. Harald Bode - Chief Systems Engineer, Bell Aerosystems, Buffalo. Walter Carlos - Composer, New York City. Tristram Cary - Composer, Fressingfield, England. Joel Chadabe - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, State University of New York at Albany. , Henri Chiarucci - Physicist, Groupe de Recherches Musicales de l'Office de Radiodiffusion-Television Fran9aise, Paris. 2

ELECTRONIC M USIC REVIEW

Gustav Ciamaga - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, university of Toronto. Edward T. Cone - Composer & Author, Princeton University, Princeton, N.J.; Co-Editor, Re:Pspective'S of New Music. Aaron Copland - Composer, Peekskill, N.Y. Lowell Cross - Composer & Author, University of Toronto. Hugh Davies - Composer & Author; Director, Electronic Music Workshop, University of London Goldsmiths' College. Aurelio de la Vega - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, San Fernando Valley State College, Northridge, Calif. Herbert Deutsch - Composer, Hofstra College, Hempstead, N.Y. Tod Dockstader - Composer, Westport, Conn. John Eaton - Composer & Performer, American Academy in Rome . Donald Erb - Composer, Cleveland Institute of Music. Robert Erickson - Composer, Encinitas, Calif. Richard Felciano - Composer, San Francisco. Ross Lee Finney - Composer, Electronic Music Studio, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor . Allen Forte - Musicologist, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge. Emmanuel Ghent - Composer, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center, New York City. Anthony Gnazzo - Composer & Engineer; Director, Tape Music Center at Mills College, Oakland, Calif. Lejaren Hiller - Composer; Director, Experimental Music Studio, University of Illinois, Urbana . Otto Joachim - Composer, Montreal. David Johnson - Composer, Studio ftir Elektronische Musik, Westdeutscher Rundfunk, K~ln. Paul Ketoff - Engineer, NIS Films, Roma. Gershon Kingsley - Composer, New York City. Gottfried Michael Koenig - Composer; Director, Studio voor Elektronische Muziek, Rijksuniversiteit te Utrecht. Ernst Krenek - Composer, Palm Springs, Calif. Hugh Le Caine - Engineer; Director, Elmus Lab, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa. George Logemann - Director, Computer Research Center, Rockland State Hospital, Orangeburg, N.Y. Alvin Lucier - Composer; Director, Electronic Music Studio, Brandeis University, Waltham, Mass. Max V. Mathews - Director, Behavioral Research Laboratory, Bell Telephone Laboratories, Murray Hill, N.J. Richard Maxfield - Composer, San Francisco State College. Ilhan Mimaro~lu - Composer, Istanbul. Gordon Mumma - Composer & Performer, Merce Cunningham Dance Foundation, Inc., Sonic Arts Group, ONCE Group, New York City. Max Neuhaus - Performer, New York City. Alwin Nikolais - Composer & Choreographer, Alwin Nikolais Dance Company, New York City. Pauline Oliveros - Composer, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla. Harry F. Olson - Vice President, Acoustical and Electromechanical Research, R.C.A. Laboratories, Princeton, N.J .; Editor, Journal

of the Audio Engineering Society .
J.R. Pierce - Executive Director of Research, Communications Sciences Division, Bell Telephone Laboratories, Murray Hill, N.J. Walter Piston - Composer, Belmont, Mass.

OCTOBER 1967

3

Bertram Turetzky . James Seawright . New York University. Deadline for submission of works is March 1. Urbana.Composer & Engineer. University of Michigan. and George Balch Wilson. Nicolas Slonimsky . New York City. New York City. sell.Musicologist. Information on rates and equipment facilities may be obtained upon request. The Editors will either answer such inquiries in full or refer the member to organizations or reference literature where an answer may be obtained. Fritz Winckel .Composer. New York City. Raymond Wilding-White . Wethersfield. EQUIPMENT EXCHANGE . Frederic Rzewski .Engineer. Chicago.Composer.Composer. The judges of the competition will be-Milton Babbitt. INFORMATION SERVICE . studio de Musique Electronique de Bruxelles. COMPETITIONS The Department of Music. 's-Gravenhage. Director. Bloomington.Composer & Performer. Center for Electronic Music in Israel. Sveriges Radio.Composer. Indiana' University. Electronic Music Studio. Hebrew University. Knut Wiggen . New York City.usseur . Ann Arbor. La Monte Young . Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center. Director.Members may submit questions of a technical or general nature to be answered either by letter or in the pages of EMR. Experimental Music Studio. Technische Universit~t Berlin.Composer. Studio ffir Elektronische Musik. George Balch Wilson . Intermedia Program. Vladimir Ussachevsky . De Paul University. 1968. Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center.Technical Supervisor. or trade equipment may list such information in EMR. Roma. Conn.Henri PO.Composer. Yale University.Composer. maximum 50 words.Members who wish to buy. Charles Wuorinen . Electronic Music Studio. Electronic Music Studio. Conn. Josef Tal . West Berlin. Tokyo. Director.Composer. New Haven. Dick Raaijmakers . Director. Director. Vladimir Ussachevsky. Oskar Sala . Mel Powell . Netherlands. Stockholm. Director.The IEMC electronic music studio is now available for rental by members. New York City.Performer. Elektronmusikstudion.Composer & Engineer. New York City. announces the Dartmouth Arts Council Prize ($500) for an outstanding composition of electronic music. University of Illinois. MEMBER SERVICES STUDIO . Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center. Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute. The cost is $5.Composer. Director.Composer. Jerusalem. Jaap Spek . Roger Reynolds . Dartmouth College. James Tenney . and the results of the competition 4 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW .Composer. Iannis Xenakis .Composer.Composer. Morton Subotnick .Composer. Director.

06457. Entries will be judged by a panel of musicians and computer programmers. The International Federation for Information Processing announces medals for three musical works composed by a computer. Leo. Wesleyan University Press. 1967. Oakland.will be announced April 6. the theme may be supplied to the computer. Studio de Recherches et de Structurations Electroniques Auditives.C.T. 06520. OCTOBER 1967 5 . The fee is $50. H.. December 3 January 20 and March 24 . Bruxelles 5. 1966(?). 26. N.. 1967. In Spring 1964.. 23 Dorset Sq. Hardbound .$5. John.00. Mills College. Meyers. 61801. 9 E. froID.. and winter 1966 issues of Journal of Music Theory. Cross. A Year From Monday. Conn.free. England. Rules and regulations may be obtained by writing Mr. Dartmouth College. Griffith Electronic Music Studio.1glJ. Calif. Dover Publications. Bibliography of Electronic Music. 1968. Amsterdam 17. Hardbound . 47 St. 1967. Toronto 5.. The Dartmouth Arts Council Prize. SEMINAR David Tudor will conduct an informal seminar in live electronic performance at the Tape Music Center at Mills College. 16 st. 94613... A Computer System for Time-Variant Harmonic Analysis and Synthesis of Musical Tones. Canada. James W. C. Further information is available from the T. 345 E.A. Marius Bauerstraat 30.1rther details are available. the.st 1968. News (first issue). Music~ Physics and Engineering. New York City 10003. Inc..M. and winning ones will be performed at the IFIP Congress at Edinburgh in l\l. or from the IFIP Congress. School of Music. 03755. Winter 1964. January 1967. Conn.. Fl.M. Jon Appleton. 180 Varick st.92.75. Free. Urbana. Yale School of Music.$7. London N.E. Couleurs Sinuso~daleset Potentiels d'Attraction des Sons Sinuso~daux. E.W. New York City 10014. but the finished composition must be determined entirely by the action of the computer. u~s~ COUJmittee for IFIP Congress. New Haven. 1967. Lowell. Softbound $2. University of Toronto Press. Experiments in Art and Technology. Robert G. Free. Softbound . RECENT PUBLICATIONS Beauchamp. KUpper. Jeanne. Av. University of Illinois.l. Softbound . Technical Bases of Electronic Music. Contactorgaan Elektronische Muziek (Prospectus). Belgium. Olson. Ill.April 21. Netherlands. Harry F. Inc. Hanover. Experimental Music Studio. 1967. New York City 10017.free. Middletown. Cage.

Editions du Seuil. Leo Nilson (Aurora. ODYSSEY 32160156 . Mikrophonie II). Trait§ d es Objets Musicaux.Richard Maxfield (Night Music). Henri Pousseur (Trois visages de Liege) . Paris. Lundsten / Nilson (Tre eZektroniska "pop"-stycken. Orgasmic Opus) . etc.Luciano Berio (Omaggio a Joyce). Alvin Lucier (North American Time CapsuZe 1967) . Stockholm 1. Skivsida 2). ODYSSEY 32160160 .Tod Dockstader / James Reichert (Omniphony I) . ODYSSEY 32160158 . Arnold Walter / Harvey Olnick / Schaeffer (Summer IdyZ). FOLKWAYS FMS 33436 . Myron Schaeffer (Dance R473). Hiller / Leonard M. SVERIGES RADIO (Box 955. ELEKTRA EKS 74009 . Steve Reich (Come Out). Jacob Druckman (Animus I). RECENT STEREO LP RECORDS CBS 32110044 . Pierre.Gordon Mumma (Mesa~ for Cybersonic Bandoneon) . Baker (Computer Cantata). John Cage (Variations II). TURNABOUT 34177 .. establishment of new studios.Robert Ashley (She Was a Visitor). Issaacson (IZZiac Suite) . Victor Grauer (Inferno). John Cage (SoZos for Voice 2). Val T . special events. Jean Eichelberger Ivey (PinbaZZ) . PLEASE NOTE Information on recent records and publications . 1966.Robert Aitkin (Noesis) .Gershon Kingsley / Jean-Jacques Perrey (The I n Sound from Way Out). Sweden) RELP 5023 .Henri Pousseur (Rimes pour differentes sources sonores). Ilhan Mimaro~lu (Six PreZudes for Magnetic Tape) . COLUMBIA MS 7051 .Lejaren Hiller / Robert A. lectures.Milton Babbitt (EnsembZes for Synthesizer). should reach EMR no later than one month before month of publication 6 ELEC TRO IC M USIC REVIEW . OWL ORLP 11 . Pauline Oliveros (I of IV). Stephen (Fireworks.Mort Garson (The Zodiac) .Schaeffer. seminars. Visioner av fZygande tefat) .Karlheinz Stockhausen (Mikrophonie I. forthcoming concerts. RCA VICTOR VIC(S) 1239 . Hugh Le Caine (Dripsody) .Ralph Lundsten (EMS NR 1). John Donald Robb (CoZZage). HELIODOR HS 25053 . NONESUCH 71174 . VANGUARD VSD 79222 .Morton Subotnick (SiZver AppZes of the Moon).

by chord shape on the paper. and certainly this enabled one to do a correct exercise when the pandemonium ora music college prevented the mind's ear from hearing clearly." But you can't really. It might have seemed to him that the resources of instrumental sound had been so enlarged that anything was possible.Superserialismus-Is There a Cure? Tristram Cary The basi5-J?riteria of musical (or indeed any artistic) judgement do not change. Human Art is by definition a human affair.Ofle critic pronounced after the first performance that Tannhat. of course it hasn't. The same will apply to the most sophisticated studio of the future which we can picture in our wildest flights of science fiction imagination. and the human ear and brain as receptor and interpreter. Certainly a musician has today a wider range of raw materials. but our problem is no different . but I am reminded of a composer who visited my studio and tried out a few manipulations of sound. but we must also guard carefully against making our Iittle green pictures or our calculations an end in themselves. what our raw materials are made of. In our workshops we do want to know. But there does all the same appear to be a different slant to our thinking. But the parameters of music asan art are firmly and irrevocably tied tothe human imaginationas creator. and this is caused by the extramusical factors which intrude into much of our work. But. When I was studying basic harmony. it is only the sound that means anything. The 20th century flatters itself that it has invented new things.we must have something to say and we must (even if it's a long time later) get through to someone what we are talking about. but he doesn't want to know (why should he?) what waveform the instrument is producing . The conventional composer naturally concerns himself with the fingering the clarinetist must use and other necessary technical matters.lser had not a single recognizable tune from beginning to end -an opinion about a highly melodic work with which we find it hard to agree. We can still enjoy the plays of Sophocles and Aristophanes because they are talking about exactly the same things as we are talking about today. Naturally the composer uses the resources of the age into which he happens to be born. but of course this is not a new view either . which is why a lot of us spend time chopping up little bits of brown ribbon instead of composing cantatas. But it had little to do with training a composer. new horizons of creative surveillance. OCTOBER 1967 7 . invented by Homo Sapiens to please other Homines Sapientes. indeed must know. new devices for artistic communication. and also that a good 90% of the work of any age is evanescent tripe which will die with its period. except in the most superficial sense.he only wants to know what it sounds Iike. "Marvelous. The kind of comment made by my visitor might have been made if Monteverdi had been able to Iisten to Berl ioz's orchestra." he said. we were actually encouraged to do our exercises visually. intoxicated with power as he twiddled all the wrong knobs and filled the room with great roars and bangs. you can only make more than before. "you can make any sound you I ike. Musically speaking. Itis axiomatic that many composers tend to be out of step with their public. Some of the musical public apparently think that this time we really have gone too far.

and we cannot Ignore this capability even when we are deliberate ly aimi ng a abstro C ose rs ha ve broken 8 _. It is clear that a large number of people think we are enlarging our artistic horizons by this kind of means. becaus~ I have bee~ writing music for X 'years and am prepared to back my experience and intuition.=C _fUSI C REVIEW . The practical composer almost always partakes a little of both philosophies. It is interesting to note that early concrete pieces. and much electronic music which would like to be is not because it is not accurate enough. although our recognition is sti ll there. friend . Theworking out of an idea to its bitter technical end is now more than ever possible. because I rather like it. serial methods. but I doubt it. A lot of serial instrumental music is not serial by this standard. and we do not feel underprivileged if we haven1t been told all about the modus operandi. I use the word "artistic" advisedly . We can hear the machinery if we stop and think.The evidence of a lot of work that is going on rather supports this method. There is a lot of work to be done on the. and a close natural sound. but simply an observation of intelligent people listening to things. are still tremendously effective because they use the new language as a fresh. This is not an impassioned advocacy of empirical over.nds that are taken out of context but in themselves carry a charge of famd lar suggestIon. the pitfall of serialism has been that it provides a refuge of acceptable academicism for the creatively underendowed (this does not apply to Schoenberg . but it is the direct experience of the sound that counts. a distant natural sound. "Serialism" I am using in the strict sense of organization of some or all parameters (not necessarily just linear pitch progression)." In our haste to explore the physics and mathematics of what we are disco:eri~g. There seems.needless to say).effect of. It is impossible for anyone to assess the permanent value of work going on around him. and we can call on computers to make jolly sure that no stone is left unturned. II I did it because I like it" takes more courage to maintain in the face of "You like that!! II than "I did it because the principles of this style of composition demand it. however. This is the sound. instead of as a laboratory of sound. very often. Ever since Schoenberg. applied to a piece of music and seen through to its conclusion. that we are increasing our knowledge of musical physics. sou. Simply put. But what we have to question is the esthetic validity of such procedures.there is. The impact is musical and direct. and because in the absence. If we splice together. there could be no other sound in this place. or the pursuit of the perfect crossword puzzle.Q: Why did you make that sound? A: (from serial composer) Because its pitch is number 4 in a thus and thus series which I have calculated. By presenting a sou'nd in a special context we create by that act alone a special dimension for it. A: (from non-serial composer) Because it seems musically right at this point. the difference is this: . say. "happening" thing. and cause the listener to hear it anew. of course. we perhaps tend to forget the psychology. because its length is determined by a thus and thus metric structure. but I think it is incontrovertible that e lectronic composers tend more to schizophrenia on this matter than othersbecause accuracy is expected of them. a human vowelan "unknown" electronic sound. Iike Symphonie Pour Un Homme Seul. lively. Our studios e nable us to int:grate the total aural experience in a way which could never be done before. to be a rather alarming lack of actual contact not so much with the listening public as with the people who might be expected to be more receptive-one1s fellow musicians.there is no doubt. we place the recognizable sounds in'a brand new light. though. At Its sImplest we can do what the pop artist does by painting a can of soup ten feet high . of clear esthetic guidelines it is easiest to fall back on serial justifications of procedures. because its loudness is part of a controlled program of dynamics on thus and thus principles. We tend to suffer from Superserial ismus. ~ublectlve .

The more sophisticated studios now have such complete resources that it requires enormous selfdiscipline by the composer not to be merely pyrotechnic and astonishing. and the composer is letting the machinery have its way. 0 Recalcitrant Holes and all Ye Assembled Nand Gates. The difficulty is that many musicians are uncertain how to wear them. and every possible way of doing everything should be tried. and exact sound-mixture. and there is even a return to-oh horrors-recognizable tunes. and if they are too long in coming we must reexamine the premises of our arguments. but let us hope to make an exception in this case. The definitive great works of First Period Electronic have yet to be written (or I have missed them). Thetail has often wagged the dog in human affairs. but also thoughtful and interesting. It is certain that the fundamental work now proceeding will add to knowledge and understanding. and many engineers are designing new styles which mayor may not be musically interesting. subtle. after weeks of working at a new. and will certainly be unpredictable. or went to joi. because the essentia I mindto-mind contact is replaced by a machine-to-mind contact. the first person to hear it says it sounds like some sort of organ. While it is true that there is nothing new. we have certainly made for ourselves a gaudier and costlier suit of clothes than ever before. o Electrons (as Sophocles never said). Th is road leads to tota I abstraction and total lack of communi cation. but I thinkwe must recognize that a lot of our results may be of minimal interest as permanent works of art.down and wept when. I seem to detect in some electronic music that the Martians have begun to take over. OCTOBER 1967 9 .n the Great Magnetic Junkheap. and it is a heady experience. Changes are afoot in instrumental music. Keep Your Appointed Places . only new clothes for old ideas. butonlyour great-grandchildren will know whether it added anything to Art in its time. which mayor may not be successful. Experiment and research have a great fascination in themselves. If you write both sorts of music there is a moment in your career when for the very first time you are scoring for full symphony orchestra. As your ideas develop you have to make your own disciplines and restrictions to prevent the richness of the possibil iti~s from getting out of hand.under my thumb.

A mixer that uses level control amplifiers in place of mechanical level controls is called a voltage-controlled mixer. The objective specifications by which existing mixers and level control amplifiers are described serve to indicate the extent to which the device in question departs from ideal behavior. and would resp<!>nd instantaneously to changes in control voltage. the concept of power transfer between two devices is not often invoked except in very large installations. and as many outputs as there are channels of recording or monitoring. and one or more control inputs. strictly speaking. their significance within the framework of electronic music composition will be indicated. Moog Basically. is proportional to the logarithm of the electrical power. an in- 10 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . It would accept signals over as wide a range of levels as possible. A device output is rated according to the maximum level of signal that it can deliver without excessive distortion. Its gain would be voltage-variable over a very wide range. Since most of these specified quantities have been adopted because of their use in specifying conventional audio equipment. in proportions determined bysetting the level controls and routing switches. These level controls and routing switchesmayeither be panel-mounted mechanical devices. and the facil ity for routing any combination of inputs to any of the outputs. However. and sometimes also for the maximum level that it can accept without exceeding a certain percentage of distortion. convenient control over the ampl itude of the various inputs. or . The ideal level control ampl ifier would accept signals over an extremely wide range of levels. and other strictly linear operations may also be available. a mixer is a device with at least two inputs and at least one output. Two units of level are commonly used: the volt and the decibel.or light-activated components. The volt is a measure of electrical force. and introduce no noise or distortion. and is useful primarily for rapidly varying the signal level. In present day audio practice. while the decibel. Basic characteristics which are generally specified are listed below. LEVEL: Level is synonymous with amplitude or strength in describing a signal. Th~ magnitude of the signal output is directly proportional to that of the signal input. the constant of proportional ity being determined by the magnitudes of the voltages appl ied to the control inputs. or rapidly changing the signal routing. Filtering (usually called equalization in mixer applications).774 volt. An increase of 20 dB in the signal level increases the voltage by a factor of 10. and would introduce no noise or distortion. The signal at an output is the linear algebraic sum of the signals applied to the inputs. reverberation. A device input is rated according to the optimum level of signal for which it was designed. The ideal mixer would have as many inputs as there are signal sources in a given situation. or may be voltage. control voltage variations would not feed through to the output.Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls Introduction to Mixers and Level Controls Robert A. A level-control amplifier (or voltage-controlled amplifier) is a device with a signal input. It would offer smooth. and the decibel is used instead as a measure of the logarithm of the voltage: OdB is usually taken to be that voltage which appears across a 600-ohm resistor that is dissipating one milliwatt of power. a signal output.

NOISE: Of the unwanted output of a device. and power ampl ifiers are used to raise I ine level signals to suitable power levels. The first is heard as a pitchless hiss. This point is called the overload level of the device..g. While some types of distortion are more audible than others. while a distortion of greater than 2% is audible. the distortion usually rises rapidly for small increases in signal level. OCTOBER 1967 11 . Distortion is added to a signal by every device through which it passes. the latter is heard as a pitched hum or whine. Noise can also be specified in terms of the ratio between the noise level at the output of the device and the signal level produced at the output at the onset of overload.crease of 6 dB increases the voltage by a factor of 2. BALANCED. With line level equipment. signal level graph of a device. Microphones. IMPEDANCE: Impedance is a measure of the voltage required to cause a standard amount of current to flow. Sometimes an equivalent noise source is postulated. Therefore. and is usuallyon the order of a few microvolts. Generally two components of noise are present: random fluctuations and power I ine or other extraneous pickups. Distortion is generally listed as a percentage of the desired signal. mi crophone impedances must be matched. The matching of impedances of an output and the input whi ch it feeds is necessary only if the transmission Iine is long. it is usually permissible to have all inputs high impedance. e. balanced. noise is the portion where the ampli. DISTORTION: In any device using non-linear components (this includes virtually all studio equipment) the signal is distorted and additional frequencies (harmonics or modulation products) are produced. A balanced output is one in which two voltages of opposite polarity are produced. On the other hand. crackle. and their signals require preamplificatibn to be consistent within a studio. On one point on a distortion vs. it is advantageous to standardize impedance within a studio. phonograph pickups. and to match impedances by connecting appropriate resistors across all outputs. or both. produces the noise observed at the output. The standard. large studios using many signal-handling steps require very low distortion figures for each signal-handling device. The magnitude of the hypothetical generated noise signal is called "equivalent input noise". or if the signal level is low. speakers require power levels in excess of +30 dB. or roar.of matter in general and electronic components in particular. and tape reproduce heads normally produce signalsof much lower level than +4dB. The standard level in a given studio is called "line level". however. they exist as a result of basic physical properties. AND UNBALANCED LINES: A floating output is one in which the voltage produced is not referred to ground or any other fixed electrical reference. While it is possible to reduce hum pickup to negligible levels by shielding and other straightforward measures. Each reduces the amount of extraneous noise induced in the transmission line. and is selected on technical considerations. The output impedance of a device is the impedance which would be observed at the output if the device were producing no signal. and may lie between 60 and 120 dB. Most professional audio equipment is designed to work with line levels of either +4dB or +8 dB. impedance of professional audio equipment varies from 50 to 600 ohms. This arrangement enables one output to feed many inputs. This is a hypothetical signal generator that. since these signal levels are readily produced and yet are high enough to effectively mask the spurious noises which are usually present. This ratio is called the "dynamic range". Outputs may be either floating. only one voltage is produced in an unbalanced output. FLOATING.tude is constant with respect to input signal variations. or Iine. random fluctuations are always present in electronic circuitry. Noise is usually specified in one of two ways. The standardization of signal levels among the instruments in a studio contribute to operating convenience and minimization of noise and overload problems. a distortion of less than 1% is generally inaudible. when connected to the input of a device. As with level.

The Shure Model PE68M Microphone/Musical Instrument Mixer. 1 (above). line level mixers usually provide a small amount of gain (perhaps 20 dB). Finally. and output level controls (sometimes called master gain controls) to determine how much of the fina I mixture appears at an output. The articles in this symposium discuss various aspects of the use of mixers in electronic music composition. The arrangement of controls in a mixer varies according to the use of the mixer. while microphone mixers provide 60 or 70 dB. and Fig. Unlike noise and distortion figures. while Fernando von Reichenbach discusses a photoresistor mixer designed for the realization of pre-programmed musical material. Moog tells how to build a simple 2-output. 1 is a photograph of a simple high qual ity mixer with five inputs and one output. The input level control along the lower half of the panel is a slide-type attenuator~ calibrated in decibels of attenuation . 4-output professional audio mixer assembled from such modules. This type of mixer is relatively inexpensive. Fig. Hugh Le Caine's article on level controls includes an extensive discussion on control devices. 2 shows a modular input amplifier and equalizer. Robert A. The optimum amount of mixer gain for a given studio is that which produces line level output from the lowest level source which is likely to be used. and is suitable for a small studio or live performance. Fig. 2 (right). Gerald Shapiro describes a collection of simple modules that are particularly appropriate for electronic music. Fig. gain is not a measure of the merit of a mixer •. The Electrodyne Model ?09L EqualizerAmplifier Module.GAl N: Gain is the ratio of the magnitude of the output signal to that of the input. larger mixers are often assembled from widely available modular subassemblies. 3 shows a 12-input. 12 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . Frederi c Rzewski describes a performance-oriented mixer using photoresistors as level controls. Fig. James Seawright discusses the basic technical features of mixers. routing controls and switches to determine which inputs are to be fed into a given output channel. battery operated mixer suitable for both composition and performance. There are three main functional sections of a typical mixer: input leve l controls to determine the proportions of the mixture. Small mixers are usually constructed as integral units.

The Electrodyne ACC-1204 Audio Control Console. For example. a LINE AMPLIFIER restores attenuated signals to line level. A PREAMPLIFIER brings low level signals to line level. The standard level in a studio is LINE LEVEL. which are proportional to the logarithm of the signal magnitude. The output will be "on" when at least one of the inputs is "on". EQUALIZATION is the tailoring of the frequency response of a device. and is used to continuously "move" the signal from one output to the other. very small components. is involved. complete low-power line amplifiers are now available as single. an ATTENUATOR reduces the level. A VOLUME COMPRESSOR AND EXPANDER is a level control amplifier whose gain is made to depend on the level of the input signal so as to either decrease or increase the dynamic range of the signal.Fig. GAIN is the ratio of the output level to the input level of an amplifier. or SCHMITT LEVEL DETECTOR. A PANN I NG POT has one input and two outputs. Mechanically activated attenuators are referred to as CONTROLS. control signals and power supply voltages are usually direct (DC) voltages. is a bi-state device that changes states when its input goes through a preset voltage. a POWER AMPLIFIER increases a line level signal to a level appropriate for driving speakers or similar transducers. and out of phase when no phase difference exists between them but one is the algebraic negative ofthe other. and other devices where polarity. An OR GATE is a bi-state device with one output and two or more inputs. usually to correct uneven frequency response of another devi ce. A SCHMITT TRIGGER. the level of an AUDIO TAPER pot is proportional to the exponential of the mechanical position or rotation for at least a portion of the device's motion. an OUTPUT or SOURCE supplies information. The unit of impedance is the OHM ( r2 ). The PHASE of an AC signal is a measure of the position of the signal in time with respect to some reference. otherwise. two signals are said to be in phase when no phase difference exists between them. A PHOTOVOLTAIC CELL is a DC voltage source. In a I-ohm load. Two or more pots are said to be GANGED when their sliders are mechanically linked to move together. An audio signal is transmitted as an alternating (AC) voltage. Similarly. A PHOTOCELL is any component whose characteristics depend upon the intensity of light incident upon it. The TAPER of a pot isthe relationship between the mechanical rotation or position and the attenuation. In a common but less correct sense. A SEGUE POT has two inputs and one output and is used to "fade" from one input to the other. An INPUT or LOAD receives information. The resistance of a PHOTORESISTOR decreases as the incident illumination increases . An AMPLIFIER is a device that increases the level of a signal. Note input level and equalizer controls (lower left)~ routing switches (upper left)~ and output controls (right). and is usually expressed in units of dB. the voltage increases as the incident illumination increases. Two signals are IN PHASE when the phase difference between them is zero or a multiple of 360 degrees. 1 volt across it produces 1 ampere through it. A PUSH-PULL circuit (usually an amplifier) is a symmetrically designed amplifier that needs both in-phase and out-of-phase inputs. INSERTION LOSS is the minimum attenuation. This usage is applied to amplifiers. POTENTIOMETERS (or POTS). VU meters (top) indicate levels of outputs. The SLIDER of a pot (sometimes called WIPER ARM) moves along the resistance element across which the input is connected . The level of a LINEAR TAPER pot is directly proportional to the mechanical rotation or position. ATTENUATION is the ratio of the output level to the input level of an attenuator. speakers. to which signals are brought before they are manipulated. Definitions Note: Definitions of many basic terms appearing in this symposium may be found in the Jonuary 1967 issue of EMR. 3. A CROSS BAR SWITCH is an array of single switches which allows the connection of any output to any input in any combination. An INTEGRATED CIRCUIT is a semiconductor device that operates as a complete circuit. The level of a DC voltage refers to its instantaneous magnitude. rather than bona fide phase shift. An OPERATIONAL AMPLIFIER is a very high gain amplifier. Level may be measured directly in VOLTS (a unit of electrical force) or in DECIBELS (dB). "Level" is not used in referring to power supply or other voltages that carry no information. The IMPEDANCE of an input is a measure of the voltage across it required to produce a given amount of current through it. or. OCTOBER 1967 13 . more precisely. Resistors or other electronic components are connected between output and input to determine the characteristics of the device. the level of an AC voltage refers to its RMS avelage magnitude. the output of which is out of phase with the input. and is usually measured in degrees: a 360-degree phase difference equals one period of repetition. they are OUT OF PHASE.

Mixing is basically a process of adding signal amplitudes algebraically. with the possible exception of the tape recorder.. the resultant ampl itude goes from a maximum value of twice the ampl itude of either input to a complete cancellation. V C 1\ !\ !\ !\ '\I ETC - /' 0 ~ /' vVVV ""=7" Fig. actually incorporate mixers in order to increase their versatility. If they are exactly in phase (Fig.Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls Fundamental Concepts of Electronic Music Mixers James Seawright One of the most frequently performed operations in the electronic music studio is that of mixing. ~ B '\I NO RESULTANT CANCEL SIGNALS 180' OUT PHASE n. V 1\ V n. {\ f\ f\ /' V 1\ V 1\ -. yet its potential usefulness extends far beyond its function as a combiner of signals and can affect the composer1s entire attitude toward the organization and production of a composition. 14 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . lA) the resultant will be a signal of twice the amplitude. The mixer is perhaps taken for granted more than any other studio device. The operation is probably performed a great deal more often than the composer realizes. reverberation units.Q. Representative waveforms resuZting from mixing sine waves of various frequency and phase reZationships. At any given instant. VV T vv OF 1\ 1\ 20. ~ ETC- n..Q. or IIbeats ll . Consider the case in which two signals of the same frequency and amplitude are mixed. oscillators. The rate at which this happens will correspond to the difference in frequencies of the two signals. etc. if they are 180 degrees out of phase (Fig. --"- V 1\ V 1\ /' n. Now consider the effect of mixing two signals of slightly different frequencies. for many studio devices such as tape recorder preamplifiers. but with equal amplitudes (Fig. This is the reason that audible differences in amplitude. the sum or output voltage must equal the input voltages (or at least be proportional to their instantaneous sum). 1. n. filters. V V 1\ V . lC): Note that as the two signals go from an in-phase condition to an out-of-phase condition. are heard when two instruments are played at sl ightly different fre1\ V IN 1\ V 1\ -. lB) the resultant will be an exact cancellation. RESULTANT 1\ -*- A 1\ PHASE '\.

2. by causing them to vibrate. and taking into account the phase differences caused by propagation time). If more than one voltage is applied to more than one input. In order to offset this loss. an analogous process takes place. the resistances of R2 through R6 will have a certain net value as resistance in parallel with Rin .quencies. is exceedingly sl ight. 1 D): Note that in every example the resultant is always the instantaneous algebraic sum of the inputs. the amplitude of the sound wave at a given point in the room is the algebraic sum of the various sound waves of the individual instruments which are being played (allowing for attenuation caused by propagation. Before going into more detail. A second instrument being played in a room where the air is already vibrating from the first instrument simply imposes additional vibrations upon the air. Sound waves in the air produced by one instrument will naturally affect other instruments just as they affect our eardrums. and the resistor Rin . The usual way is by means of a resistive network which allows signals to combine and then appear. its vibrations are transmitted to the air. the network must be designed in such a way that there is a large net loss in signal amplitude through it. 2A. This network is seen by the voltage as a multiple-resistance path to ground (Fig. a voltage will appear at point A having a value proportional to the value of the voltage at the volume control slider. 2B). OCTOBER 1967 15 . The mixing process takes place in the air. Basic resistor-network/ampZifier mixer. at any given instant. Moving the slider on a control causes a sample voltage of an amplitude proportional to the position of the slider to be applied to the appropriate mixing network input. mixed. but the effect. thus lowering the effective value of Rin' The fraction of the VOLUME CONTROLS MIXING RESISTORS RI A B CIRCUIT AS SEEN BY INPUT I 512 R3 R4 OUTPUT R5 RIN "---y-' R2-6 RI N R6 Fig. In order to achieve the minimum of interaction between sources. the mixing loss may be as high as 40 or 50 dB. an ampl ifier is almost always included in the mixer to restore the signal output level to the nominal level of the inputs. If a mixing network has a large number of inputs. Such a network is shown in Fig. Input signals applied to the input volume controls appear as voltages across the controls. When an instrument is played. when considered as an interaction. the mixing effect of the network will result in the voltage at point A being proportional to the algebraic sum of all the applied input voltages. The air may be considered as a load against which the instrument works. A final case. yet minimizes unwanted interactions between signals or signal sources. that of mixing two signals of greatly differing frequencies. There are several ways in which the effect of mixing may be achieved with electronic circuitry. let us consider for a moment the way in which sounds are mixed acoustically. Depending on the values of the mixing resistors Rl through R6. 2A. at a common output. is illustrated (Fig. Note that if the sliders of volume controls 2 through 6 are at ground. In the circuit of Fig.

Note that the arrangementof the switch is such that the inputof the mixing network not being used is grounded. and in each case certain pecui iarities. Raising any of the other volume control sliders.. is capable of mixing six signals in any proportion to form one resultant. however. but the input resistance (impedance) of the ampl ifier which follows the mix ing network.6 { A2 . various signals could be mixed in differing proportions for a two-channel output to a stereophoni c tape recorder. Qr to mix several tape loops running at different speeds. This ampl ifier.A4 ~ :1 TO TO A4 A2 . The resistance Rin in many cases is not an actual resistor. 2. is the source of most of the signal distortions and noise found in mixers. However. Here. the higher these values become. whose task it is to restore the gain lost in the mixing network. The necessity of having upwards of 70 dB gain. and this interaction is minimized by making the mixing resistances Rl through R6 relatively high in value. each input channel may be switched after its volume control to the output channel at which it is desired . Thus the actual value of the loss incurred by any given signal depends on the setting of the other inputs. Such a mixer might. With this type of mixer. to overcome mixing losses and have a reserve of gain. adds resistance between point A and ground and raises the net parallel resistance value. is perfectly linear in operation. either separately or simultaneously. as would be necessary to introduce another signal for mixing. The first approach might be as shown in Fig. 16 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW .input voltage at Rl which will appear at point A will depend on the ratio between the value of R1 and the net parallel resistance of R2 through R6 and Rin. by providing means whereby input signals could be mixed at several outputs. The resistance network itself. in practice. and if not will introduce distortion. however. requires that the signal-to-noise characteristi c of the ampl ifier be excellent. so that a compromise has to be reached in all practical cases. A mixing network and amplifier will be needed for each output channel. relative to the value of Rin' the higher the net mixing loss. The amplifier. A MIXING RESISTORS B MIXING RESISTORS c A3 eo A4 1 MIXING RESISTORS BANKS 3 . There are several approaches to this type of multi-channel mixer. Representative multi-channel mixer configurations. may not be. but the arrangement offers economy and simplicity of construction. in the example of Fig. So far we have considered a mixer whi ch. be used to combine oscillator outputs to form complex timbres. 3. The usefulness of such a mixer would be increased considerably. ideally. 3A.A4 1 TO A2 A3 TO A2 TO A3 TO A4 ~UT TO A2 TO A3 TO A4 Fig.

In commercial and broadcast audio practice. In all of the three versions of multi-channel mixers described. A typical arrangement for a small studio is shown in Fig. a net resistance of 200 ohms). The type of mixer illustrated in Fig. This system is quite workable up to about six inputs and four output channels. In a well-designed studio. In one case. Only in the situation in which it is desirable to connect a 600-ohm output device to more than one 600-ohm input at the same time do difficulties arise. 4. It also offers the logical place to locate a monitoring system for originating signals to the studio speaker-amplifiers. and then fade from one to another A tape channel may be connected to several inputs at the same time. the signal will appear at the same level at each of the outputs to wh i ch it is sent. it is much more desirable to design the mixer to have high-impedance inputs. (This is very likely to occur with mixers of the type shown in Fig. the other an input to a tape. each input being set to a different level.) In order to avoid the loading effect which occurs when an output drives an excessively low impedance load (such as three 600-ohm inputs in parallel. and the consequent loss in signal level and possible distortion. in effect a separate set of input volume controls for each output channel. Insertion of a patchcord plug in either of these jacks breaks the normal connection and establ ishes an alternate connection through the patchcord which may then be connected to another unit. several important factors appear. allows the user to send an input signal to any combination of outputs at any combination of levels. Sometimes a mixer may be arranged to have a variety of inputs. A microphone input would then have to incorporate an additional stage of preamplification to raise the signal to a level compatible with other line level signals from other inputs with which it may be mixed. the mixer may be arranged to serve as the coordinating unit. for instance. almost as a II switchyard II for signals. master volume controls may be provided in the output lines. the selector switch has been replaced with a bank of individual switches or push-buttons. the other an output from a tape channel. Since all the other devices in the commercial studio have 600-ohm outputs. one jack establishes an output from the mixer. one of the jacks establ ishes an input to the mixer. First of all. the composer wishes to set up several mixtures of the same set of signals through several channels of a mixer. 3C is really not feasible except with high-impedance inputs. mixers are usually designed to have a 600-ohm input and output impedance. 0 It should be clear by this time that the mixer is really capable of much more than mixing. A microphone mixer. 3C. a mixer can be designed to operate atoptimum quality for only one general category of signals. A matrix of volume controls. since the level of the input signal has already been determined by the volume control setting. This situation occurs frequently in electronic music when. must be designed to match the output characteristics of the microphones with which it will be used. Obviously.A slightly more versatile plan is shown in Fig. 3B. for example. so that a signal at a given input may be sent to any combination of outputs. in the other case. as shown. they may be connected to the mixer inputs without loss . The most versatile arrangement is that of Fig. and routed to a different output. each suitable for a specific class of signals. Note the use of normal connections between the tape recorders and the mixer inputs and outputs. high-impedance lnputs will place a negligible load on low-impedance outputs and may be paralleled almost without practical limit. The monitoring facilities provide for connecting to the input of speaker-ampl ifiers (high impedance) a signal from OCTOBER 196 7 17 . In the actual design and construction of mixers. Here. 3A. The tape input and output Iines go from the machines to and from the mixer through pairs of jacks for each channel of input or output. but beyond this begins to invol ve such a demand for panel space for controls that it becomes cumbersome.

The saving in time and the increase in operating efficiency with such a system cannot be overemphasized. J2. ~~R MI~~~ I I ~ L _______________ Fig. Mixer configuration appropriate for a small studio. Electronic composition is a tedious enough business as it is. even for monitoring. <Vo ~ 0 ®CD ~"~ V ~ SPEAKER AMPLIFIER I @o ®@ 00 0 / o MONITOR SWITCH TR 3 A a B PLAYBACK . 5.-l I I I I I JI I I TWO I I I I I I INpA~~~CH ADJACENT JACKS [. it becomes possible to carry out many of the routine studio operations such as editing.'" INPUTS IY SPEAKER 2 ~AMPLIFIER ~ . 18 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . without any patching at all. etc. Mixing and signal routing facility at the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center. Yet the mixer is always available for the mixing of other MIXER NORMAL CONNECTIONS ~oo TR 2 A a B PLAYBACK ®G 0 0 (1).---I I THE SYMBOL I I FROM TR (OR MIXER) DENOTES' . The upper panels provide both patchcord and push-button signal routing. copying. Fig . With a mixer system arranged to coordinate the tape recorders and provide for monitoring. On the lower panel~ input attenuators appear along the bottom~ channel selector switches are in the center~ and output attenuators appear along the top. 4. A mixing and routing facility based on this arrangement appears in Fig. 5.anyone of the numbered points (per channel) i this may be by means of rotary or push-button switches..

as the general intent of this article is not to provide actual construction information. These mixers are sometimes referred to as sub-mixers. there seems to be no prospect of automatic or programmed equipment which will supersede the classical techniques in the area of compositional organization. realized that this is an impractical attitude to take from the point of view of the independent composer or small studio user. be adaptations of commercial hi-fi-grade units. it would seem that any improvement in this fundamental studio unit would be directly reflected in the quality of the music produced. and the modification of signals between tape output and mixer input can be accomplished by patching other connections in place of the normal connections. Sometimes it will be found desirable to have other separate mixers available for. OCTOBER 1967 19 . when necessary. or as a part of the large mixer norma Ily. especially a general-purpose studio mixer. At present. but capable of being isolated by appropriate switches. at least as outl ined above. mIxing oscillator outputs without involving the main mixer. there is little in the way of modular or kitform equipment which is really suitable for electronic music use. rather than to try to offer more than the most general guidelines in an article such as this. and may even be arranged to be a part of a larger general studio mixer.signals. Thus many small studios are forced to rely upon limited mixing facilities which may. Since the mixer is also most useful in this area. say. or to afford the custom building by commercial sources. A great many practical details have been omitted from the above discussion. It is. offering four inputs and one or two outputs. in many cases. are so dependent on the other facilities available in any studio that it is best to design each mixer to suit its application. however. either as separate units on the same panel. The actual requirements for a mixer. or to take advantage of the recently available mixers which offer signal characteristics of good quality but have a limited adaptability to studio coordination. These mixers may be relatively simple in design. If the user is unable to design and build his own mixer.

and as many dupl ications of each as are necessary to form a mixer of the required capacity can be built. If a modular stud io system such as those of Buchla or Moog is already employed. If a piece requires mixing facilities not already available in the system. to isolate several distinct functions in a complete audio mixer. as many mixing modules and other pieces of equipment as are necessary for the performance can be removed and installed in a separate portable cabinet. These connections can be made with a printed circuit edge connector or similar easily removable connector so that the active modules are as easy to install and remove as the passive ones. complete instrument. In this way. The three most important concepts employed in the mixer to be described are: functional design. Several different types of modules can be designed for each funct ion. The only connections that should be made behind the front panel of any plug-in module are those to the power supply. The modules can then be plugged into existing consoles. buil t into a standard-size panel with all t he necessary jacks for patching included. The logic of the mixer is sequential. or a new cabinet can be built to house the entire mixer. mixing grids. each performing one of the operations listed above. etc . however. patching jacks. That is. and (3) amplitude control. the current practice is to design an audio mixer as a single. it is possible to produce a high quality mixer with substantially greater flexibility than is currently available in commercial mixers. Each module should be complete and self-contained. and the use of passive circuits wherever possible. In general.Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls Functional Design of Electronic Music Mixers Gerald Shapiro The purpose of th is arti cle is to describe a new method of designing audio mixers for the synthesis and performance of music employing electronic media. A mixer can be designed and built as a numberof separate. It is possible. and easily installed in the performance console. the power supply. for active modules such as amplifiers. For a performance that requires the use of electronic equ ipment. each performance is done with the "ultimate performance machine" that we all dream of. functional (rather than sequentia l) plug-in modules. The three most basic functions are: (1) amplification.) are designed for their place in a sequence of operations. and taken to the concert hall . a new module can be designed and built. and enough equipment is left in the studio so that the usual work there can continue. and other connections should be made to conform with this system. panel sizes. (2) mixing-distributing. Th ese modu les can then be patched together in the most convenient sequence for a studio operation or a performance. 20 ELECTRON IC MUSIC REVIEW . the individual components of the mixer (inputs. plug-in modular construction. By using techniques derived from these concepts.

a mixing network. as many of the modules as possible should be passive. BAL~ INPUT +60 dB +20 doB ~---::- - +12dB +6ciB BASS UNBALANCED INPUT EQUALIZATION OUTPUTS + TREBLE Fig. they should be able to carry audio signals in either direction • Obviously. The basic mixing-distributing units (Figs.. Circuit of either/ or mixing-distributing unit. - MIXING DISTRIBUTING . Fig. a panning potentiometer which divides a signal between two channels can be used as a pan-segue control to mix portions of two signals into one channel.In order to reduce the cost of this type of mixer. Two types of basic units have been devised so far. Balanced and unbalanced inputs and outputs can be included as required. A circuit might also be added for treble and bass equal ization. That is. 1 MIXING DISTRIBUTING - Fig. Circuit of amplifier module. can become a distributing network. if carefully designed for the purpose. 1 is a block diagram of a possible amplifier module . Fig. OCTOBER 1967 21 . 3. 1. Both are passive circuits as described above. A rotary switch can be suppl ied to give various amounts of gain and perhaps equalized settings for tape head and magnetic cartridge. 2. Circuit of on/off mixingdistributing unit. Many duplications of this module will be needed. 3) are simple Y connections with the addition of switches and attenuators. In the same way. 2. The relatively low cost of high gain integrated circuit operational amplifiers makes it possible to design a single amplifier module for the mixer.

Lower ratios seem to be too destructive of the logarithmic taper of the potentiometer for adequate control. Attenuation circuit of mixingdistributing unit.5 dB higher than the ideal at 50% rotation of the potentiometer. N OU T RI 0 R~ 'VIA I Fig. Panels with larger clusters of the basic units are less flexible but easier to use and require less amplification. 7 and 8.. R 2 is an audio taper potentiometer of equal or smaller value. The attenuators are included to pre-set levels.The addition of a voltage-controlled switch {Fig. it can be designed into an "or gate" type circuit to allow for manual control as well. The attenuation circuit (Fig.. Although they might be employed during a performance or studio operation to manually vary the amplitude of a signal. Experience has shown that it is generallyadvisable to build mixing modules that are made up of clusters of basic units. Several different types of clusters can be designed and included in the mixer for greater flexibility. Of course. 6 illustrates the relationship of insertion loss and taper for an attenuating circuit between a 19w impedance output and a high impedance input. Fig. new ones can always be added cheaply as required. Panels with small clusters or only basic units are more flexible but very many are needed and higher amplification is necessary to overcome the multiple insertion loss. A large ratio preserves the integrity of the potentiometer but increases the insertion loss. a compromise must be decided upon between preserving the taper of the potentiometer and the amount of insertion loss in the circuit. es. Circuits of two such arrangements are shown in Figs. A ratio of 1 : 1 yields an insertion loss of 6 dB and a taper that is 5. this is not their primary function. 4} with a panel jack to accept a control voltage from an external source such as a sequencer allows the mixer to be programmed for a series of operations.. In determining the values of the three resistors. or combination of switch . 22 m~xer P R2 'VIA 0 -= with voltage- Fig. The determining factor is the ratio of either of the fixed resistors to the potentiometer. Block diagram of controlled switch. If a voltage-controlled switch is included. ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . R 1 and R 3 are fixed resistors of equal value. The most important partof the mixing-distributing unit is the switch. CONTROL VOLTAGE INPUT VOLTAGECONTROLLED SWITCH . 4. 5. 5) employed in these units has been especially designed to work equally well in either direction.

Insertion loss versus rotation of the attenuation circuit~ when inserted between a low impedance output and a high impedance input. 7.B -50 RI"· IXR2_ · 5 d. Circuit of on/off larger mixing module with voltage-controlled switch.. CONTROL VOLTAGE INPUT VOLTAGECONTROLLED SWITCH 1 Fig. '5XR2 .B RI .B RI =R2_ 6 d.o -10 R I -R 3 -20 -30 j: z o INSERTION LOSS Fig. Circuit of either/or larger mixing module.3·5d.B UJ I- ~ III -d -60~ __________L -_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _~_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _~_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _~ 25% 50% 75% 100% % OF ROTATION Fig. OCTOBER 1967 23 . 6. 8. ::I Z '" -40 RI_ 9XR 2_20 d.

Fig.o Fig. Two types of amplitude control modules have been designed. a greatdeal of attention must be given to the problem in order to achieve the greatest possible convenience of operation. This is only a first step in the exploration of the possibilities of functional mixers. 9) is a simple attenuator with an on/off switch added for convenience. Finally. Circuit of attenuator amplitude control module. V. Other types of modules can be designed and included in a mixer of this type. 9. Acknowledgements: Considerable technical assistance in the preparation of this article was provided by Karl Amatneek. 24 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . 10) is the pan-segue control mentioned earl ier in the article.U. Circuit of pan-segue amplitude control module. These possibilities are only limited by the ingenuityof the composers and engineers working in the field of electronic music. Obviously. One or several cross bar switches would help relieve the congestion of a complicated patching setup. the technician at the Tape Music Center at Mills College. The second type (Fig. 10. or dB meters ~re helpful if not essential in any mixer. The most basic one (Fig. Many of the original concepts utilized here were first worked out in collaboration with Bill Maginnis. monitor amplifiers can be included if necessary. One important area not covered in this article is the design of the panels for the plug-in modules. It is made up of two identical passive attenuators. The two potentiometers have opposite tapers and are ganged. Manyof the proposals in this article are tentative insofar as they represent thinking that has not yet been applied to the production of an existing piece of equipment.

OCTOBER 1967 25 . In setting up the circuit of Fig. which goes back to the early days of vacuum tubes. If an instrument for measuring the second harmonic is not available.. Some of those considered a t one time or another by the writer will be described briefly. uses two amplifiers in push-pull. 1 the output balance is adjusted to minimize the change in DC level at the output. The most famil iar electrical level control circuit (Fig. 1).L. the gain balance may be set to give the most symmetrical waveform at the output using a sine wave input about three times the normal maximum value. 1.-+-I I 4·7K P31 10K OUTPUT 33K BALANCE 22 100 OUT CONTROL TERMINALS Fig. Basic electrical level control. The gain balance is then set to minimize the second harmonic of the signal appearing at th e output.I VARIABLE GAIN AMPLIFIERS IN PUSH-PULL II 'I-P-U-S-H--P-U-L-L-T-O---' I I SINGLE-ENDED 68K 4·7K 4·7K 4·7 K I 10K 10 K I I I N >----r. Most of the devices described were developed under the direction of Gustav Ciamaga and form part of the equipment of the University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio.Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls Some Applications of Electrical Level Controls Hugh Le Caine Electrical level controls have many uses in the electronic music studio. When transistors are used. the relation between gain and bias is closer to an exponential one than it is when vacuum tubes are used. SINGLE-ENDED DC SUPPLY TO PUSH-PULL I . with control voltage. and a better match is obtained between the two transistors.

3 was used in the University of Toronto Electronic Music Concert of 1963. The hand capacitance control for four speakers shown in Fig. of the hand capacitance control is shown in Fig. The variable capacitors that control the voltage applied to the electrical level control consist of fixed plates arranged in pairs on printed circuit board and one movable plate for each pair. The cover plate has been moved over to show the pairs of fixed plates (center) and the movable plates (right). When that is used Fig . Hand capacitance control. 2.The attenuator shown in Fig. Capacitor C is initially adhands off the board so that there is no AC voltage across the diode and no DC outthe hands are placed on the board as previously described. 4. one for each section. 3. 2 is simply made with printed circuit techniques to give a longwearing control without contacts. 3. 1. loud tones by a more extensive contact • • -°1° °1·1°1 1 ° ~ 10 10 10 10 10 ~20 20 20 20 20 -30 30 30 30 30 • Fig. The grids are made by printed circuit techniques and covered with a layerof plastic. The circuit justed with put. 26 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . a DC output is obtained to operate four electrical level controls. C (PRESET) ONE SECTION OF THE HAND CAPACITANCE CONTROL OF FIGURE 3 I DC OUTPUT (ON E FOR EACH SECTION) OSCILLATOR (ONLY ONE FOR ALL FOUR SECT IONS) Fig. Soft tones are elicited by lightly touching the board. 4. The construction can be seen in the photograph. Circuit of the hand capacitance control of Fig . Attenuator without contacts using the level control of Fig. The assembled attenuators are seen on the left.

in changing the characteristics of a reverberation device. or a wrist bar. and in noise suppression. Electrical acceleration and electrica l sustain 2 extend the usefulness of the simple touch-sensitive key (see Fig. The electrical sustain facilitates the production of uniform slow decays and is useful when it is desired to sustain the sound after the finger has left the key. OCTOBER 1967 27 . a sustaining pedal. The circuit shown in Fig. ELECTRICAL LEVEL CONTROL OSCILLATOR DC AMPLIFIER DC AMPLIFIER ACCELERATION SUSTAIN Fig. The control zone covers a constant range in terms of decibels at the input but may be moved closer to the maximum level (0 dB) or farther from it.The touch-sensitive key 1 is an indispensable envelope shaper for the electronic music studio. When the key is struck a sharp blow. 6 is arranged to control the important variables in a convenient way. 6 has a limited amount of usefulness in modifying the envelopes of existing tones. normal touch-sensitive control is obtained. 5. LOGARITHMIC RECTIFIER ISEE FIGURE 7) ELF. 5). as an "amplitude filter" 3 . electrical acceleration counteracts the inertia of the key by increasing the rate at which the level rises.CTRICAL LEVEL CONTROL CONTROL TERM I NALS IN OUT IN ~ OUT I INP UT -30 DB 1I NONE o DB OUTPU T MAXIMUM ~ FIXED DC VOLTAGE I Fig. When the key is operated more slowly. Electrical acceleration and sustain on a touch-sensitive key. The sustain may be put into action by operati ng a stop tablet. In an amplitude filter a greater range is required. 6. The amount of expansion or compression may be usefully varied from none to a maximum of 30 dB. I AMOUNT OF COMPR ESSION OR EXPANSION TOP END OF CONTROL ZON E ADJUSTMENT ~ General purpose expander-compressor. The general purpose expander-compressor shown in Fig.

6.. 8.. one end of which is connected to a constant DC voltage equal to the maximum output of the rectifier. DC SUPPLY IN270 INPUT ~------~I ~I____~I ~I__________~ PUSH. 28 L-_~-L-L _ _~~~~~~~L-_-L_~ -80 -80 -70 -60 -50 -40 . The top end of the control zone is moved from 0 dB to -30dB input level by means of a variable attenuator on the input to the logarithmic rectifier..PULL AMPLIFI ER ONE -WAY-TI ME CONSTANT a RECTIFIER LOGARITHMIC ELEMENT AMPLIFIER 8 FOLLOWER Fig. the logarithmic rectifier of Fig.. CONTROL ZONE o DB . Output level versus input level in the general purpose expander-compressor. o ~~--~--4 -60 I::J Fig. 7 isused to obtain uniform compression or expansion as shown in Fig..30 ..20 -10 o INPUT LEVEL ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW .J I::J 0. The amount of compression or expansion introduced is varied without changing the output level for OdB input level by means of a potentiometer.. Logarithmic rectifier suitable for use in the expanders and compressors shown here. 7.Inthe block diagram of Fig.. Compression or expansion is obtained by applying the voltage from the potentiometer to one or the other of the contr~1 terminals of the basi c level control.J > ~~~~--+-----i W -40 W . 8.

The resistors arranged as shown in Fig. motion-picture film upon which masks cut from black" Mystik" tape were stuck. single perforation film may be used. Optical envelope shaper for 35 mm. 10. The same voltage operates an expander connected to the output of the device which restores the original envelope (see Fig. 9 . film). The signal which is applied to the input of the device is compressed by a control voltage derived from the signal. location of the top of the control zone 20 dB or so below the maximum level is recommended since any misfit between compression and expansion is less noticeable at lower levels. Simultaneous compression and expansion before and after a noisy device. OC TOBER 1967 29 . Fig.For systematic noise reduction where compression in recording and a complementary expansion on playback is used. 9). there is bound to be a certain amount of envelope modification. 10. A compression of 20 dB over the next 30 dB may be used with a corresponding expansion in playback. 10 give a nearly linear relation between the length of slot exposed and the voltage developed. motion picture film used in Myron Sch aeffer's Hamograph. The" Hamograph" of Myron Schaeffer is a device in which a hand-drawn envelope is imposed upon sound material 4 • Schaeffer used loops of clear 35 mm. 16 mm. Paper charts may be marked with india ink or-pencils. Though the improvement in noise level is dramatic. Simultaneous compression before and expansion after a noisy device is helpful in suppressing the noise while leaving the envelope unchanged. it gives half an inch of useable width. A photoresistor reader suitable for use in any of these arrangements is shown in Fig. Half the case has been removed to show the six photovoltaic cells used with an inch-long aperture (for 35 mm. LOGARITH M IC RECTIFIER ELECTRICAL LEVEL CONTROL NOISY DEVICE ELECTRICAL LEVEL CONTROL CONTRO L T ER MINA LS IN OUT IN CONTROL TERMINALS IN OUT IN 1 / OUT II OUT 1I INPUT COMPR ESSIO N I I I 1 ~ UT E XPANS ION Fig. This leads to a nearly linear relation between the level in dB and the length of slot exposed.

11) is a device suggested by Ciamaga which differs from the well-known electronic switch in that the gain in one channel is gradually decreased while the gain in a second channel is gradually increased at the same rate. A range of lI a lternation tremolos" where the tonal material is gradually replaced by an altered version at normal tremolo rates can be produ ced • ELECTRICAL LEVEL CONTROL ELECTRICAL LEVEL CONTROL TRIANGULAR WAVE GENERATOR . TERMINALS CONTROL TERMINALS II II ~ ~ IN I OU T I OUT 2 Fig. This device is most interesting as a producer of small modifications of tonal material. (2) Peak intensity should be independent of the setting of the attack and decay ra tes • (3) Tones consisting predominantly of II steady statell sections and those consisting of an attack period followed immediately by a decay period should be producible. It can produce a IIcomplementary trem11 010 consisting of a periodic gradual increase and decrease of level in one musical part accom. envelopes are easily dupi icated on an ordinary tape recorder and the apparatus is much easier to set up. (4) Action should be initiated either by a key or in response to timing signals which can be recorded on tape or obtained from rhythm instruments such as the Rhythmi con 5 • To satisfy the first two requirements the circuit has been designed to terminate attack and decay periods with reference to a fixed voltage 6 • To satisfy the third requirement. 11. magnetic recording on control tapes is used instead of photoelectric reading from motion picture film. it determines the rise and fall of intensity from the beginning to the end. most of the necessary components being standard tape equipment. Two channel alternator. two divisions have been incorporated. that is. 12) converts continuous sound material into a II no te ll . CONTROL. This system has the disadvantage that the envelope cannot be identified by eye • However. The two channel alternator (Fig. each having its own level control amplifier. The envelope shaper or ligate" -(Fig.In a modified form of the Hamograph developed by Ciamaga. The design objectives were: (1) The attack and decay rates should be independently adjustable over a wide range. Electrical level controls in this device are operated by the output from the control tapes. The IIsustained li division 30 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW .panied by a decrease and increase of level in another part.

The DC output of the Schmitt level detector in Fig. the level remains at the maximum value as long as the timing signal continues. At this point the output level has reached a standard maximum value."TRANSIENT" DIVISION i i/ i TI MIN G INPU T >-- FULL WAVE RECTIFIER BISTABLE CIRCUIT ELECTRONIC SWITCH -7- ? V . 12. a limiting device prevents any further rise. When the timing signal starts. In the "transient" division the attack period begins when the timing signal reaches the threshold level. In this state a separate electronic switch in the "transient" division connects a timing capacitor to the DC supply through an adjustable "attack" resistor. The two divisions have separate inputs and outputs as well as mixed inputs and outputs so that OCTOBER 1967 31 . a pulse from the Schmitt level detector moves the bistable circuit into the "attack" state. Envelope shapero begins the attack when the timing signal reaches the threshold level. When the timing signal stops the electronic switch connects the timing capacitor to the decay resistor and the decay period begins. 12 is used to operate the "sustained" division. a limiting device moves the bistable circuit into the "decay" state and the decay period begins. however. TI MING CAPACITOR 11 1 ELECTRICAL LEVEL CONTROL I LIMITING DEVICE J I SCHMITT LEVEL DETECTOR ATTACK -y ~ DC SUPP LY 6" ? y vi.:~ ~" ATTACK / /' DC SUPPLY l ELECTRONIC SWITCH / of CAY vt. When the timing signal starts. the decay period begins whether the timing signal is still present or not. When the timing signal stops. When the standard voltage has been reached. When the voltage has reached the predetermined value. the decay period begins and continues until the sound is inaudible. When the standard voltage has been reached. When the vol tage has reached the predetermined value. Action in the "transient" division thus depends upon the start of the timing signal and not upon its duration. the electronic switch connects the "sustained" timing capacitor to the DC supply through the adjustable "attack" resistor. The sound from both divisions can be mixed in any proportion to give a variety of envelopes. TIMING CAPACITOR DECAY 1 I 1 I LIMITING DE VIC E "- ELECTRICAL LE VEL CONTROL l "SUS TA IN ED " DIVISION Fig.

741. New York. University of Michigan Electron ic Music Studio VLADIMIR USSACHEVSKY Director. Sept. Schallplatten. 665. Elettronica. Proceedings of the Institute of Radio Engineers.20 OM Fordern Sie Probeexemplare yom MELOS-VERLAG • 65 MAINZ WEIHERGARTEN 1-9 . Alfredo Lietti. Philosophical Library. Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center GEORGE BALCH WILSON Director. and other signal modifying devices can be used to produce related but different tonal material for the transient and sustained divisions. 781.. Dartmouth Arts Council Prize. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. 2. 1. 1968 MELOS ZEITSCHRIFT FUR NEUE MUSIK Jeden Monat: • Beitrage international anerkannter Autoren • Diskussionen tiber aktuelle Fragen • Berichte von massgeblichen Aufftihrungen moderner Konzertund Btihnenwerke • Buch-. REFERENCES 1. AU-l0. 3. Hugh Le Caine. 457. Jan. ring modulators. die sich mit moderner Musik beschaftigen the inauguration of THE GRIFFITH ELECTRONIC MUSIC STUDIO and THE DARTMOUTH ARTS COUNCIL PRIZE For an Outstanding Composition of Electronic Music (Five Hundred Dollars) The judges of the competition will be MILTON BABBITT Director. 5. 4. "Touch-Sensitive Organ Based on an Electrostatic Coupling Device".Oct.filters. "Electronic Music".20 OM Einzelheft: 2.22. 1948. 4. Griffith Electronic Music Studio. 1962. Hanover. Dartmouth College. XLIV. The Mathematical Basis of the Arts. Le Caine. Several transient divisions can be used together. Schaeffer. 4. April 1956. Myron S. Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center April 5-6. "The Hamograph". The Department of Music Dartmouth College announces Unentbehrlich fur aile.-Feb. 5. July 1955. 1955. Regulations may be obtained by writing to Jon Appleton. New Hampshire 03755 32 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . Used on the "Electronic Sackbut". Auxiliary apparatus with Canadian patent 587. 2. "Soppressore di disturbi a selezione d'ampiezza". each carrying different material. XXVII. Institute of Radio Engineers Transactions on Audio. see: H. 6. Joseph Schillinger.und N otenbesprechungen Jahresabonnement: 22.

2). on a bakelite panel (see Fig. Fig. 1 (above) . another counter-clockwise. in diameter. Impersonation.-= IK IK -. technical experience.- IK 4·7K AMp· I 4·7K AMp· 2 4·7K AMp· :3 IK 4·7K AMp·4 TO AMPLIFIER INPUT - Fig. a fourth meanders in a random fashion. 2 (right). the level of ~ach part controlled by illuminating the photoresistor with a penl ight (see Fig. The photoresistors I used (Philips B8-73105) are very inexpensive. by no means the best one. Each input signal is split into four parts. each channel (there are eight) is required to IImove ll independently of the others. Physical arrangeme nt of one channel. I am sure. The solution that I found to this problem is. 1). Schematic diagram of one channe Z. OCTOBER 1967 33 .Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls A Photoresistor Mixer for Live Performance Frederic Rzewski The photoresistor mixer is an extremely simple device that I designed and constructed for use in a specific composition of mine. For each channel the four photoresistors are mounted in a circle. INPUT - --l. but it satisfied the internal musi cal requirements that I had set up. The loudspeakers may be set up in the four corners of the room. 4 cm. and so forth. The four outputs go to four ampl ifiers and loudspeakers. In this composition the effect of movement of sound in space is called fori furthermore.. and assistance. so that one channel may move clockwise around the room. while a third darts rapidly from point to point. and remained within the external Iimitations imposed upon me by lack of funds.

by altering the values of the resistors. the characteristic "tail" which follows can be lengthened or shortened. with the audience in the middle. x 10 cm. The shields and grounds are all connected together and soldered to the box at one point. extremely rapid passages from one channel to another can be effected by moving the light manually across the various cylinders. Over each group I mounted a cylinder. (Later I thought of using two discs of polarized glass. one of which could be rotated. long and 5 cm. in diameter. certain unusual effects are obtainable. Or one person. variations in luminance are created that should correspond to like variations in the intensity of the sound from each loudspeaker. with four circular holes cut in the top that fit snugly over the tin cans. for each channel. very radical variations in level can be created that are awkward. This mixer was very inexpensive and easy to build. "south". I placed a disc of dark transparent plexiglass.s ensitive resistors. the panel presents a two-dimensional abstraction of that space. Two people can control the levels of four channels.}.I mounted four such circular groups on one large panel to form a four-channel mixer. using one or more light sources. to protect the resistors from stray light. resting firmlyover the photoresistors. ideally. and so on. x 20 cm. noise-free). 34 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . For example. can control all four channels. which is to make music with whatever means I have at my disposal. By moving the penl ight horizontally and vertically over each cylinder. of course. each player with a penl ight in each hand. stroboscope. painted black {for this I used tin cans}. explosive attacks can be obtained (which are. When mixing four different tapes. but musically it is effective: for it satisfies my first precept. "east". by exploiting the inherent characteristics (and limitations) of light-. it is unsophisticated. The sixteen outputs are divided into four groups of four. it acquires a certain interest if one considers it as a performing instrument. By sudden illumination of the photoresistors {with a. etc. In general. The photoresistors on the "north" pole of each circle go to the "north" group. labeled "north". at best. for example. so as to find the proper degree of transparency for any ambient light situation. On the sides of the box are jacks for the four inputs and sixteen outputs. with a rubber sleeve fitted around it. and often accompanied by noise when attempted with conventional potentiometers.. say}. Technically.) Finally I mounted the panel inside a metal box. difficulty of controlling the distribution of light. Although a mixer of this sort presents obvious disadvantages from the studio viewpoint (inaccuracy. 5 cm. very sharp. and. and "west". those on the "south" pole to the "south" group. the channels can be combined to move in different ways. The position of the photoresistor in the circle is therefore equivalent to that of the corresponding loudspeaker in the room. 20 cm. Inside each cylinder. Why sixteen outputs instead of four? In situations where more than four loudspeakers are used.

Another solution is to record the whole program at almost the same level and. per second. on reproducing. The length of time during which the film advances is determined by the distance between black bars. Six speakers are located around the auditorium. the film advances again. Upon receiving another signal. Music. This motion continues until a black bar on the synchronization trackappears and stops the film. variations of bandwidth according to the volume reproduced. The different degrees of opacity accorded to the film determine the exact ampl itude suppl ied to the speaker. each new section of film contains the information for the volumes of the speakers for a corresponding section of tape. twelv~ inches wide. music. Each has its own power amplifier and the volume of each amplifier is controlled by means of two photoresistors per amplifier which connect to both outputs of a two-channel tape recorder.Symposium: Mixers and Level Controls The Sound Level Photoprogrammer Fernando von Reichenbach This experimental device substantially improves stereophonic sound reproduction in an auditorium. a pilot tone is recorded which triggers each change of volume. Useof tapes. Another lateral track takes care of synchronization and is controlled by its own photoresistor. or sound effects are recorded on two tracks of the magnetic tape. 1 and 2. Different ways to remedy the problem have been suggested. Use of volume compressor and expander units. or sound effects commonly used in theaters require high and low volumes alternately. The adjustment of volume controls for the loud passages causes tape hiss to become audible when sound level decreases. and it becomes impossible when the volumes of many speakers must be controlled in varying proportions for' the achievement of changi~g sound patterns. which sets the film in motion. The volume of sound is- OC TOBE R 1967 35 . a transparent section passes over the photoresistors. although the latter sometimes involves sacrificing the number of tracks to be recorded. By means of the sound level photoprogrammer. to fade down to the proper levels the passages which so require. this complicated manipulation becomes programmed forautomaticoperation. Longitudinal tracks on the transparent film correspond to six different speakers: each track controls the sound level from either one or both of the recorder channels. A transport mechanism (synchronous motor with magnetic clutch) moves the film at approximately six mm. the signal indicates only at what moment movement must begin. Its main features are a very wide dynamic range and displacement of the sound configuration around the audience with no restrictions on the numberof channels or speakers used. As the film advances. on which the program is prepared with segments of plastic tape. voices. But a very skilled operator is needed for this. On a third track. or improvement of special recorder equ~1 izations are more costly approaches. The device is automati cally triggered by signals recorded on the same magnetic tape that reproduces the sound. Speech. The apparatus may be seen in Figs. of the low-noise type and recording on a wider track are the obvious solutions. The tone closes the relay. Flashlight bulbs with lenses illuminate the phot~resistors through a transparent film.

the attenuation is better than 70 dB. 1. still operates well. It is equivalent to the volume adjustment by 12 independent potentiometers. A static stereophonic sound configuration is inserted on transparent film. Tapes of various colors in single and double layers allow adjustment of the volume in each passage. Once the initial temptation to use the photoprogrammer merely for the sake of effect is overcome. Fig. a new field of experience in sound perception will remain open to art production. built in April 1966 for a theatrical performance. A monaural program is fed to the photoprogrammer. Diagonal bar on the film (top of picture) allows sound to circle the room. The reproduction levels are so adjusted that tolerable maximum volume coincides with direct passage of light. For black tape. Fig. 2. This inexpensive gadget. 36 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW .suing from each speaker depends on the quantity of I ight going through the film over the programming unit. The sound is recorded near 0 dB. In some respects it can be compared to the experiences of Pierre Henry with coi Is.

The gain is roughly equal to the ratio between the feedback resistor switched by SW 2 and R5.I I ~~+""'20 40 SE~~~NTOR . The gain of the adder portion. Operational amplifier Al is connected to provide high input impedance for the microphone transformer (see Fig. This particular configuration gives high open loop gain without coupling capacitors. Moog Th ismixer fulfills the basic requirements of a small studio or a modest performance setup. + I -4-= ] INPUTS I LIN E ~ -= ~ I I I SEGU't OUTPUT SEGUE I Fi g.. like the gain of the microphone preamplifier. 1.. 2. Two variations of a simple operational amplifier circuit perform the ampl ifying and mixing funcions.---~. There a re two identical channels.EL.. resulting in excellent low frequency response and overload recovery. 1). Th e complete schematic diagram of one channel is shown in Fig. each has one microphone input. in "HI" position. a master gain con'trol. The microphone impedance switch selects the tap on the input transformer for the appropriate input impedance or. The VU meter is driven by emitter follower Qa so that the non-I inear impedance of the meter does not introduce distortion at the output.=. Operational ampl ifier A2 is connected as an analog adder to perform the mixing function. is determined by the pdr": ti cular resistor that is switched in between the output and the inverting input of A2.. bypasses the input transformer. and a VU meter.ECTOR I I I I M'CROgHON'-II: INPUT I . The operational ampl ifier circuit of the mic preamp consists of a balanced input stage Ql and Q2. FROM SECOND CHANNEL OCTOBER 1967 37 . MICROPHONE PRE AMPLIFIER PORTION MIXER : PORTION GAIN I I---~-!=----. The entire mixer is powered by two 9-vol t batteries. The operational ampl ifier circuit of the adder is id entical in configuration to that of the mic preamp.S ymposium: Mixers and Level Controls Construction of a Simple Mixer Robert A. The adder gain is equal to the ratio between the feedback resistor switched by SW3. four line inputs. and second stage Q3.:S. and any of the input resistors Rla-R22. The gain of the microphone preamplifier portion is determined by the switched resistor network between the output and the inverting (-) input of A 1. Simplified di agram of one mixer chann e l. except for the inclusion of one transistor ( Q6) to provide greater current gain. A segue pot mixes the two outputs in any proportion.

1/2-watt res. 1/ 2-watt res .3 K. Each operational amplifier is built on a separate circuit board and is positioned for shortest lead length. The input lead to the mic preamp should be shielded. 07 . Q4.2 K screwdriver-adjustment trimmer pot transistor (2N3391A or equiv. B2 .I DO-ohm. R2 1. R19. or 80 Kilohms. Schematic diagram and parts list for one channel.Two-condu ctor phane jack R27 .. and the mic impedance was set at 250 ohms. Q8 . 2. ±2 dB 20 Hz-19 kHz T otal harmonic distortion at output level of 0 dB ( I kHz test signal): less than 0. 4 reveals the placement of the circuits. B1.110 K screwdr iver-adjustment trimmer pot J2-J9 .1 K. C2. 1/ 2-watt res . microphone input transformer (Triad A9J or equiv . 250-. Front view of mixer.) R34 . R31.) SW l .2% 38 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . 06. Except where noted. R9 . 4.3. R33. or adding signal routing switches. C6 . shorting-type rotary switch R2* . Rear view of mixer. Q5 .10K.4 .Kilohm secondary R4.9V LINE INPUT RI7 R22 SEGUE OUTPUTS vCr-<>--~-5~~~UE J5 J9 ~ ' NUMBERS E ~.) R26 .100 K screwdri ver-adjustment trim" mer pot Jl .47 K.4. R16. R12. and 600.22 Meg audio taper pot C9 . 2 mF.High gain. * Th ese resistors should be deposited carbon or other low noise type.Medium gain sili con NPN transistor (2N3392 or equ iv. The ground symbols in Fig. Fig. 1/2-watt res.2. R6. low noise silicon NPN R32* .5 K linear toper pot (2N4058 or equiv. Except for the batteries~ power switch~ segue pot~ and segue output jacks~ the entire circuit is repeated for the other channel. R17 . R15.82 K screwdrive r-adjustment trimmer pot Ql.430 K. low noise silicon PNP transistor R35. 3-pole. C3.2-pole. SW3 .220-ohm screwdriver-adjustment trimmer pot Q3.) R29* .0033 mF ceramic capacitor R13. 02.Small VU meter (Simpson 10472 or equiv. such as changing the number of channels or inputs. R14. _______ TO ~ . R25 . 2 are actual connections to the chassis.) R37 .R 3.3 shows the arrangement of the panel while Fig. T1 .position.4. 16-volt elec.3-positi on. 600 ohms.470 K screwdriver-adjustment trimmer pot Ml . R28 . I-pol e.Three-pin female audio connector(Cannon XI:.ohm primary to a5. 100-vo lt my lar capacitor R11.High gain. Performance specifications based on measurements made on a completed mixer are listed below . shorting-type rotary switch Rl". si ngle-throw toggle switch R3*. The entire mixer maybe housed in a standard 171Jx71J x3" aluminum chassis. 16-vo lt e lec.1 mF.9-volt battery (Eveready 11266 or equ~ivalent) R7 . C4 .MICROPHONE PREAMPLIFIER ADDER [jJjJ C4 SW2 PREAMP-I GAIN R 31 ~+-++--' OUTPUTS J7 RIO R12 SW4 POWER ON ~ _ _ _ TO +9 V RI5 R20 SW3 ADDER GAIN R36 GREEN BLACK ii: ~ : [j±] +3 LINE INPUT RIS R21 J8 J4 B2~ : . C7 .7 pF ceramic capacitor R23 . ) R5 . C5.1 Meg. SW2.31 or equiv.0 .22 K.. FROM VU METER OTHER CHANNEL OF 8 Fig. 1/2-watt res. should be similarly straightforward. R18. R36 . Cl . Fig.100 K audio toper pot C8 . capacitor R10* . 3.80 mF. 1/2 .watt res. The construction and testing of the mixer will present no problems to anyone with a modest amount of experience in building electronic equipment. 1/2-watt res. R20. Fig. 250 ohms. controls were turned up for maximum gain. 5 microvolts Frequency response of line input: ±' dB 0-30 kHz Frequency response of mic input: ± 1 dB 40 Hz-13 kHz.50-. 1/2-watt res. SW4 .R22 . R38 .180 K. 1/2-watt res. Impeda nce of microphone input: 50 ohms. A\ IN RECTANGLES ARE D'C' VOLTAGES WITH FRESH BATTERIES ' LEAD BASE CONFIGURATION FOR ALL TRANSISTORS . capacitor R24 .220 pF ceramic capacitor R8. depending upon setting of master gain control Equivalent noise source referred to line input: 8 microvolts Equivalent noise source referred to mic input: 0 . Modifi cations in the overall design. The preamp gain wos set at +40 dB and the adder gain at +10 dB.100 K. The leads associated with the inputs and the gain switches of the mixer should be kept as short as possible. 1/2-watt res. selectable by SWI Impedance of a line inpu t: 50 Kilohm! Impedance of on output: 0-1 250 ohms. R30.

Simila rly~ the numbered switche s are the re ctangular pushbu ttons~ and the n umb ered terminals ar e the small circula r jacks. waveform. modulates the amplitude. controllable continuously with a knob. amplitude. 1. o J6 OCTOBER 1967 39 .The Synket Paul Ketoff Th e Synket (Synthesizer and Ketoff) is an electronic system that both generates and controls sound. with a range of 5-20. The numbe rs within the bl ocks in A are the conti nuously variab le controls (l arge circ les) in B. and these can have different shapes during the same time span. modulates the timbre. amplitude. 1 . Modulations occur separately or several together (i. by opening and closing. 8.. The sound generated in the larynx passes through the mouth and nose where the oral cavity. and waveform can be varied in time. frequency. Each of the sound-combiners includes: (1) a square wave generator. to clarify general concepts of sound. amplitude. racked one above the other.e. by changing shape and size. J3 ~~~~RA~~~EI-_-A--?BC""'II. (3) a selective (variable A Fi g. The process suggests the word "sound-combiner". Perhaps the most common and illustrative example of this phenomenon is the human voi ce. Frequency.andwaveform can all be modulated simultaneously). Functional b lock diagram (A) an d panel arrangement (B) of a soundcomb iner. timbrel spectrum. where the larynx can be considered a complex sound generator that varies ampl itude and frequency. It would be useful. From this derives the infinite variety of sound. It can be considered a bona fide musical instrument because its flexibil ity permits the performance of electronic music compositions without pre-recording (something which has not been possible with traditional studio systems). These variations are called modulati ons.000 Hz. and there are three parallel systems so called. before discussing the Synket. (2)a chain of push-button dividers that divide the frequency of the generator by 2. where the modulations can be controlled individually or several together. A detailed block diagram of a sound-combiner appears in Fig. and time..-1~-------------' B JI 0 J2 0 J30 8 QJ 80 o 88 o J4 O J. or 5( permitting an enriching of the harmonic spectrum as the dividers are depressed. and at the same time the mouth. The Synket is conceived to generate and modulate sounds in terms of frequency. and ampl itude. or in discrete steps using a keyboard. 3. The parameters of sound can be summed up as frequency. 4.

(4) control of volume to allow balancing with the other combiners. The other parts of the Synket are: (1) a white noise generator that can be put in each combiner and modulated as the square wave generator. makes it possible to vary the frequencyof the generator. While it is difficult to imagine all the rhythmic combinations and sounds one can produce. BLock di agram of the compLete Synket. making possible profound timbrel changes. and the volume of the signal. 5ths. one avoids the discomfort of the impersonality we have felt with electronic music until now. and (5) modulators that can modulate the frequency of the generator. Each modulator can be controlled: (l)by a separate oscillator. In addition. as well as the many mechani- B/S I ~ SOUNO- A/2 I A/3 r-0 '" A/4 A/5 COMBINER Fi g. giving various rhythmic combinations. with the possibility of live performance. (2)by the sound generators. the square wave is perceived as pulses. (2) three ampl itude modulators with intermittent action (with three different characteristics) that can modulate each or all the combiners. what the possibilities of this instrument are.bandpass) filter with continuous action from 40-20. in effect. 0 0 !< oJ B/4 B/5 CIS CI7 OCTAVE FILTER BANK I C/8 C/9 CI I +-----{ SOUND- CI2 3 . e liminating manyof the annoying interruptions of splicing. (3) from a keyboard. as has already been said. from this description. Letters and numbers refer to jacks that aLLow unusuaL or compLex interconnections to be set up. and 3rds. similar to those of composing for and playing on traditional instruments and. as a sine wave generator. editing. BI 1 -+-------1 SOUNDCOMBINER I 2 B/2 B/3 " .. and (3) an octave filter bank that affects the signal output from any or all combiners. for example. and mixing tapes. with divisions in 6ths. The modulator on each combiner. The filter of each combiner permits extreme variations in timbre. 3. The problems of composition for and playing on the Synket become. the frequency of the filter. so that different harmonic combinations can be obtained with one single generator . that each filter can function. in passing. can be linked together in different ways. 4. C/5 C/3 COMBINER I AI7 I- i< 'AIS I WHITE NOISE GENERATOR I I I BI7 Al8 rrn III A/9 8/8 B/9 A/ID BIIO CliO 40 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . when a very low frequency is used. the frequency of the selective filter. The square wave generators. 2. or (4) from an external sound source. What once made necessary many hours of work and a multitude of machines and processes can now be done in a brief time with a single apparatus.. with their dividers. the modulators of each combiner can be linked in such a way that they are synchronized with each other . produce unusual beats. and the amplitude of the signal. derived from the same tone. and the control panel in Fig. Further.A block diagram of the complete Synket appears in Fig. A photograph of the complete Synket appears in Fig. 2 . It is worth noting. An important advantage of the Synket is that it permits the real-time composition of electronic music.000 Hz. giving the possibility of synchronizing rhythmic imp'ulses and modulations. In this way one can obtain sounds that spread ten octaves or sounds that. oJ w C/4 . perhaps one can have an idea. the slow pulses can change continuously from a sound similar to a drum to the sound of a drop of water as the frequency of the filter is raised. more or less.

5 :¢: 5 5 :¢: 5 5 :¢: 5 @@ @@ @ o OFF SPEEOIO 0 MOD· I VOL.1 0 MODULATOR a a VOL. ~d nk e t _ ~g . 10 OFFSPEE010 o 0 0 0 o MOD· 2 a VOL.10 . (translated by Joel Chadabe) OCTOBE R 1967 41 .IO OFF SPEED O IO MOO.10 OFF 000 0 5 ~ 5 10 0000 5 OFFSPEEO 10 VOL. 10 ODD D 15 5 5 DO D O ODD 0 5 5 D Control panel of the (top to bottom): mod~l a tor s~ octave filter bank ~ _ a t c h panel~ three sound c o mbin ers. 3.@:@@@@@@ @ a 55:¢: 5 @ @ @ I o a -------. 10 0000 @@:@@@@@@ @ a D @ 1 5 S * D 5 5 @ @ @ @ @ @ I a ~ 10 OfF ~ 10 OFFSPEEO 10 0 VOL . 10 M ODULATOR a VOL. 4. :@:@:~@@@ MODULATOR @ 55:¢: 0 DOD D OD D 0 D ODD D Fig. Paul Ketoff (le ft ) and composerperformer John Eaton with the Synket. S \IOL.10 0 0 CJ D O CJ = ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ij ~ ij ij @ @ @ @ 15 @ @ @ @ @ @ 5 @ @ @ 5 @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ 5 5 @ o VOL. cal disadvantages the tape recorder presents when electronic music is combined with instrumental and/or vocal music.

and at their fastest they very nearly turn into pitch vibrations. echo effects. and if I had musi cal training 11m not sure it would help me. and he likes it that way. 7. Soon these are opposed by sharply percussive. stereophonic alternations. all this is very difficult to identify in the piece now. etc. In the first section of the piece this pattern is manipulated through superimpositions. Dockstader makes a statement that is more to the point and less likely to get him into hot water. dove-tailed gl issandi. There is a multitude of swellings. The review is exclusively a listenerls reaction . but Ibrganized sound l1 • He is an engineer. Record ORLP 6 presents three pieces. The drones lose their gong-beat attack and become continuous bands of sound which overlap or pile up and change timbre. clear beats and pulsations which alternate stereophonically from speaker to speaker. retards and accelerations. The second section counters these lively goings-on with sustained intervals which move upward in slow.the sustained and the percussive . At the same time. yet do not lose their metric regularity. for instance. At the same time. and I suspect it might hinder me. we hear clearly separated sounds: gong beats which initiate sustained. Owl Records. the drone entrances become more and more distinct and regular until they turn into regular. I deal in a sort of chaos of sound: in Apocalypse.of course. Unfortunately. but those are the sources. No attempt has been made to delve into the underlying mechanics by which these sounds were produced. drone-like noises of indeterminate pitch. Both ingredients . loudness. 8 (stereo only). however. and other characteristics.ontrast of sustained sounds versus metric pulses is reversed. every- 42 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . Traveling Music (1960). With this more forthright explanation the listener can approach the recorded sounds without feeling an obligation to search in them for more than meets the ear. the pulsations also grow in timbral and dynamic variety. therels one little movement that has in it a cat screaming.Reviews Organized Sound by Tod Dockstader. and the I ike. Here he says that the pieces represent 11 simply an instinctive arrangement of alternating tension and release 11. On the liner for Quatermass he says: III have the feeling that the training live had (engineering) for what 11m doing. is the best training. Apocalypse (1961) is somewhat more elusive in its sounds. almost percussive beats. fadings. The following review restricts itself quite del iberately to the sounds that emanate from the speakers. In the liner notes for these three records. and stereophonically alternated timbral contrasts.are now developed. a dime store toy that moos when you turn it upside down. Tod Dockstader emphasizes repeatedly that his creations are not music in the accepted sense. Thus the c:. The dominating sound pattern here consists of a kind of mechanical laughter. gl issandi. You see. In the earliest of these. ORLP 6. They grow faster. The third section returns to a fast and tumultuous design. 11 • In the liner notes for the record containing Luna Park. not a musician. doors opening and slamming shut . Whereas the thematic ingredients presented in Luna Park (1961) are quite a bit more complex 1 they are nevertheless of equally unmistakable and impressive identity.

To judge by the sounds emanating from the speakers. overlapping ones. are chips that fell off the original Apocalypse in the process of reducing it in size . Through ma ny different manipulations these sounds are made to oppose each other even more than they d o normally. Throughout its four moveents. they are altered to the point of near identity. too. In Drone {1962} Dockstader juxtaposes a guitar and electronically generated sounds. OCTOBER 1967 43 . throughout his explanations. runs around rather aimlessly and then ends abruptly.from a form that runs "for hours" to its present duration of some 19 minutes. Even so (and similar to the early Apocalypse) this work lacks direction. there are strange. each involving a different treatment of noises generated in one wayor another in connection with water. there also are noises that sound like the scraping of a fingernail along the teeth of a comb. Unfortunately. however. mentions tha is early works represent experiments with the medium of taped sound as such. suffers from a paucityof potent germinal ideas. although it drums and chirps and makes a lot of entertaining nois es. pitiful mewls and howls. of them. bowls. In Apocalypse Dockstader seems to be in a transitional stage. in Dockstader's wo rds. etc. Eventually. vibrato-I ike pulsations rather than percussive ones. and thus remains aimless and shapeless. on percussive noises produced by dripping water taps. single patterns. The individual movements are quite short and full of imaginative effects. a dominating {or at least germinal} source pattern. One might interject at this point that Dockstader. just as primitive man eventually bega n to organize his taps and pitches into patterns and melodies. Conversely. A multitude of rolls and t remolandi are manipulated in loudness and speed.it resembles {and may actually be}a timpani stroke. there is Iittle evidence of an overall structural design. Apocalypse seems to remain shapeless and aimless and thus grows more and more tedious i n spite of all its activity. Water Music (1963) is the most recent work on this record. the way prim it ive man may have enjoyed mere tappings on a hollow piece of wood. and tubs filled with different amounts of water. sharp rattles and blurred whirrs. he says. these experiments began to lose some of their fascination for him and he felt he had to ope ra te more planfully and to organize sounds more judiciously. He concentrated instead on the hooting pitches produced by blowing over tops of bottles containing various amounts of (presumably) water. This timbral meeting ground. presents two fragments from Apocalypse which. if not impossible. Dockstader avoided obvious splashings and gurgl ings. ORLP 7. It seems less interesting and imaginaive and has a somewhat disturbing ostinato pitch pattern of four chromatic steps of regular 6/8 e ter which enters and dominates the action somewhere in midstream and seems peculiarly Incongruous. for the l"istener to fi rd focal point. It consists of six parts. Only the last sound in the piece is a single impact .ing is so undefined and chaotic that it is difficult. The second fragment does more or less the same thing with a related basic sound pattern: flowing. The next record. This piece. is not constant but ranges from electronic imitations of "real" guitar sounds to guitar sounds whose timbral characteristics have been altered to simulate typical electronic sounds. or on hitting pots. and simultaneous soundings of any number of variations of all. timbre and pitch. there are gl issando effects. he has gone beyond experimentation but has not yet succeeded 10 harn essing his sounds convincingly. However. and a multitude of other sounds. The first of these "chips" is a study in percussive tremolo effects ranging from the rapid "trrr" of a drum stick bouncing on a hard surface to something more akin to a pneumatic drill. the piece suddenly ends. It is quite a fascinating business. and after all the changes have been rung.

but it is no parade in the ordinary sense. however. reflective. electronic growls drive out the silvery cymbal glitter. These grow in complexity. John Philip Sousa kind of crashing about". Unlike the preceding "sound organizations" it is not governed by a single idea or a dominating and unifying conflict. coaxed. A half-hearted attempt to resume the ghostly commotion is snuffed out by a final coup de grace. tensely driving air of mystery. remain in the background. anguished wails. it operates along free association. Song and Lament (a rather misleading title since the movement consists of three. and shot-like reports against sustained and continuous sounds resembling some of the material of the first movement. suddenly. The entire piece is "of cymbals and white noise II • The cymbal sounds are distorted and manipulated to create unusual effects. this movement is an impressive feat and one not easily forgotten. At its peak of menacing confusion there is a short burst of crossfire from speaker to speaker.a reaction from a listener or whether the piece just happened to turn out this way. It _ interesting to listen to. And the white noise is the between-stations-hiss of an FM radio. with loud. the anguished wails of the first movement enter. It all begins mysteriously with muffled machine rhythms. The fabric now grows louder and ever more chaotic and aggressive. (The wails. were generated by a toy balloon which was blown up. almost of catastrophy. over all of this. Here. etc. Tango. followed by a stunned silence. rather quiet movement which presents a succession of episodes full of weird sounds and patterns. sets percussive. Dockstader chose cymbals because they produce the closest "Iive" equivalent to electronic white noise. But whatever the reasons for its character. yet complement each other. It is as inventive as Luna Park and Traveling Music but has in addition a strangely frightening. one senses a preconceived vision and a much more successfully controlled structure. the cymbals provide high metallic sizzlings and crashings. then the air let out slowly through its finger-pinched neck whose length was changed by pull ing and stretching to al ter the pi tch. they are held together by certain ideas which go through the entire piece. altered. nasal. Eventually the low. timbre. unlike in the preceding pieces. contrasts booming gong sounds. The first movement. such as cymbal glissandi. and pummeled. the movement is in constant danger of falling apart. not two. while the synthetic sound generator adds a turmoil of ramblings. beis 44 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . and similar sounds were added synthetically. swishings. The character of sounds and patterns is well defined in each of the five movements. parts and begins with the Lament). artificial. and boomings. Dockstader explains that he wanted to celebrate a "sort of pompous. Considering the title Dockstader has given to this movement. almost frightening.The third record. filtered. Rather. contains only one piece: Quatermass (1964). This technique does not easily produce convincing forms. Jllotoric noises against siren-like glissandi. This work represents a major step forward from the earlier experimentations and artistic gropings toward genuine artistic communication. Added to these are synthetic sounds which. There is a strong atmosphere of tragic conflict.ly lowered in pitch and prolonged in length. a most unusual tour de force. and so forth. however. the balloon sounds were treated to a remarkable variety of additional manipulations. one episode giving rise to the next. punctuated by roars and bangs.) Once taped. Flight is a long. but are quickly squel ched and smothered by the powerful hissings and boomings. Parade is the title of the third movement. incidentally. ORLP 8. Then. The second movement. In the piece. Toward the end of this section the nasal balloon cries of the preceding movement enter the fray. Moreover. The total impression of this movement is strangely upsetting. and in spite of an ostinatofigure of two alternating low pitches at the interval of a fifth. and the ~ovements themselves are well contrasted from one another. which appears early in the piece and reappears at a higher pitch at the very end. one wonders whether he had intended it to elicit such . loudness.

and much of wha t it conta ins is remarkably imaginative and eloquent. if unacceptable. a climactic culmination. a nd patte rns. stru cture: the movement fails to come to a focal point.to sound. and follow and explore the organization. itls called noise •••• [My] ieces are full of such rejected sounds. of the first movement. the pieces soon lose their initial fa scination without revealing new facets. and it e nds unexpectedly and rather disappointingly . ** * In the beginning of this review I quoted Dockstaderls acknowledgement that he has had no musicol t raining and does therefore not consider his creations to be musicol compositions in any conventional sense. textures. and its a ension. music is an rgani zation of abstract sounds that is acceptable. On the other hand. Granted that some of the pieces on these records rise considerably above the le vel of mere experiments. But again. Second Song.. II fter Iistening to six LP sides of these sound structures two impressions predominate: On the one nd .couse of its great variety of sounds. pseudo-esthetic sophistry can gloss over this crucial sh ortcoming. as well as some of the more acceptable noise-makers of e o rchestra. his ever-alert sensitivity to sounds and his considerable resource. Nevertheless.a real pity considering the wealth of ingenu ity and imag ination which has gone into it in every other respect. The last movement. separately as well as in various combina ti ons and a lso rings to this new conglomerate of known materials a number of new sounds and pa tte rns. it combines these ingredients with mos t of th e soo and textures of the other movements. II I th e liner notes for the record which begins with Drone he writes: IIln practice. Iness in manipulating them is not equaled by a commensurate artistically creative imagination and by adequate knowledge of the craft of putting a musical composition (for want of a better erm) together. and arranged the results into pieces of some sort. No amount of Dockstaderls rather awkward.Kurt Stone OCTOBER 1967 45 . manipulated the sounds in many ways. there's no [need for] musical training in making music out of that. who Iisten to music as organ ized sound. He has simply experimented with random sound sources. This regrettable fact becomes increasingly apparent with repeated hearings: instead of growing more arresting and communicative. one encounters that certain wea kness o . even the bestof them nevertheless fall short of being truly convincing artistic statements. I is us the most ambitious and most complex of all the movements. In addition. They simply become more and more obvious. o sound source is too lowly or too refined for him. They are for people who listen . none is too crude or too delicate for his rposes. Dockstader is without doubt an enthusiastic and imaginative creator of memorable noises . enjoy sound. Summing up his me thod e says: IINow. recapitulates and develops as its c hi e f task the ba lloon ils. the listener is likely to lose track of its dire ction. etc. .

Although the complexity of type of control is understandable because of the instrument's history (it was originally designed as a compact studio instrument for the American Academy in Rome). this tuning of the orchestra permits a meeting on common ground with the "tuning" of the Synket. strong shifts of register. in the October 1966 Music Journal.. What are the capabilities of the instrument in terms of other esthetics or compositional ideas? To what extent does the difficulty of performing on the Synket lead one into Synket cliches? To what extent is electronic nuance (there II such a thing) possible. or make them totally different but simultaneous. or unite them in procedure and material. playing keyboards. Yet to understand the composition one must understand the material from which it is composed. 1967. One could unite them in procedure while giving them different material. each containing a square wave generator and various filters and control voltage generators which act upon the signal of that particular system. The orchestra was divided into two groups tuned a quarter-tone apart. and very sophisticated timbre changes. designed not to be heard stereophonically but as one mass of sound. which leaves Eaton free to mingle without fear of offending. Basically. accompanied by the Berkshire Music Center Orchestra conducted by Gunther Schuller. Italy. which is. In addition there are various envelope generators. depressing a volume pedal. It is difficult to discuss John Eaton's Concert Piece for Synket and Symphony Orchestra outside of the context of the growing interest in electronic performing instruments (and electronic compositional systems in general). and every now and then patching. pulse generators."). The Synket is performed by pushing buttons. (Ketoff's description of the Synket appears elsewhere in this issue. occasional legato phrases in the woodwinds and brass. Synket. it consists of three sound systems (Eaton calls them IIcombiners ll ) racked one above the other.ls. or how carefully can the sounds be controlled and predicted? And how can we now judge fully the use of the instrument without greater experience in listening to others' compositions for it? The compositional problem of the piece is relating two worlds of sound in a way that they seem part of the same piece. Aside from Eaton's interest in quarter-tone music generally (his own words are worth repeating: II ••• this allows me to bathe rejuvenescently in the ancient but still pure springs of microtonal melody. and control voltage generators that can be applied to any parameter of any system. With the quarter-tone tuning of clusters. see also IIA Portable Electronic Instrument" by John Eaton. John Eaton Performance: John Eaton. not played diatonically (to imagine it so would b. and although Eaton's was a virtuoso performance. The Synket is a performable and portable electronic sound system designed and built by Paul Ketoff in Rome. much exploration of the possibilities of this instrument stiil needs to be done.e ridiculous).• In this case. It is as if the instrument should be reviewed as well as the piece.Concert Piece for Synket and Symphony Orchestra. although it is in a certain sense unfair to the composer (the piece itself was excellent and in many ways compositionally innovative) to devote much time to his instrument. 46 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . August 9. But the most important criteria for judging a performing instrument are its contrC.) Theoretically. turning dials. the orchestra was made to sound I ike a Super-Synket. the machine would seem extremely versatile within its particular limitations. the orchestra enters the Synket sound world. or. thesystems can be patched into each other so that one signa I generator can be controlled by any of the other systems. .. Tanglewood. of course.

The problem was how not to have a brilliant orchestra make a single piano seem dull. and formulated on the support-or-opposition drama etween an instrument of one basic timbre (piano. In portability. I would suggest an instruent with three-dimensional controls. But then first performances of complex pieces are 01ays difficult to hear exactly. Gune r Schuller conducted. it can play igh er. You know. in a different way.Joel Chadabe OCTOBER 1967 47 . e rformance of this piece is difficult in many ways. The piece raises questions at so many levels. the idea of performing electronic music is lively. in and out. There is a necessary compromise in the Synket part. Someof the most effective moments had the Synket interjecting its own material against the orchestra playing waves of undulating phrases. Further. reversed. again. The Synket can be louder than the orch estra. predictable. and of varying character. interesti g when thought of as a prototype that deals in an ingenious and sophisticated way with elecron ic performance problems. thatelectronic soundsare so basically different from instrumental sounds even when they are united so ski Ilfully. each direction controlling a certain parameterdefined by which of several foot pedals is depressed. such as a lever that goes up and down. in relation to the orchestra. fewer controls can be handled more precisely and can be used to control a greater variety of components. I would say the performance was overall very effective. The Synket moved in and out of the texture. that the generators and modifiers are replaceable with other types that con be placed into the machine with a clasp. r sh ould we consider the Synket a prototype of performing instruments to come that will give re possibilities for greater control with less effort? seems to me that deriving maximum potential from any performing instrument depends on two _esi gn characteristics: simplicity of control and diversity of output. And yet. But should his range of skills be always necessary. =aton is incredibly virtuoso on the Synket. I could not help but noti ce. I suggest this (and without g reat deal of thought. and the Synket must be brought into the world of the orchestra as well as vice versa. making statements of varyi ng power. In Eaton's piece the problem is. but playing quarter-tone chords is new enough. and it is such a splendid composition besides. and it has flashing lights. This was one very successfully. The Berkshire Music Center Orchestra is an ex cellent group. . and th ese strikingly effective moments were the moments best performed. and because the Synket is ~. it will serve as a model. Thus. because I feel that there is a great danger in thinking of the Synket as the instrument. so t they are difficult to hear exactly. that it should be pl ayed in many places and soon. in this country at least. so that a kind of scale of diffe rence was felt from similarity to dissimilarity. say) and an instrument of many timbres (orestra). and tape machines are notoriously indifferent to the mood of the moment. faster. because I have not been very involved with performing electronic muic up until now) largely for purposes of comparison. Perhaps Ketoff will rees ign it in a different direction. in many ways. and the success of the orchestra's performance was due largely tothat. they were closer than I've heard them before because performing the Synket is more unpredictable than hearing the same sounds on tape. and id eways. Perhaps we'll have Synket ensembles. Th e problem is that Eaton's piece raises so many interesting problems.ow does a Synket socia-lize with an orchestra without bringing to mind a strange piano concerto? The dramatic roles that the orchestra and soloist enacted in the Romantic piano concerto ere basically quite simple. not less. it can change timbre (perhaps even more effectively than the orchestra).

Buenos Aires. IN STEREO BY TOD DOCKSTADER AND JAMES REICHERT A Major Pioneering Work in musical composition. Rhode Island. England. Alexander Broude. MOOG is Technical Editor of EMR. FREDERIC RZEWSKI is a member of the composing-performing group Musica Elettronica Viva. Brown University. Roma. Ottawa. London. National Research Council of Canada. HUGH LE CAINE is Director of the Elmus Lab. music editor and musicologist. Inc. unique and powerful manner. Roma. KURT STONE. PAUL KETOFF is Technical Supervisor of NIS Films. New York City. JAMES SEAWRIGHT is Technical Supervisor of the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center. Providence. and is currently setting up a teaching studio at the Royal College of Music.Contributors TRISTRAM CARY operates his own studio in Fressingfield. JOEL CHADABE is Director of the Electronic Music Studio at the State University of New York at Albany. Boulder. Instituto Torcuato Di Tella. Centro Latinoamericano de Altos Estudios Musicales. FERNANDO VON REICHENBACH is Technical Directorofthe Electronic Music Laboratory. ROBERT A. combining techniques of ELECTRONIC and INSTRUMENTAL music composition in a fully integrated. Colorado 48 ELECTRONIC MUSIC REVIEW . GERALD SHAPIRO is Director of the Studio for Electroni c Music. Released by OWL RECORDS 1229 University Ave.. is Director of Publications. New York City.

solo . acclaim for SOURCE has been enthusiastic: an y publ ications claim to represent the avant-garde but few do so in fact. David Freund. which remin ds one of what that other California publication.50 ($ 23 outside U. Stan ley Lun etta. Morton Feldman. Alvin Lucier. . Photo essays. It . john Cage.S. containing both music and articles. David Tudor. and Arthur 'oodbury. accomplished forty years ago for what was then called the "ultra modern idiom.rederick Rzewski. Larry Austin . Lukas Foss. Roger Reynolds. and mu sic furthe r enhance the value of SOURCE. theatrical and graphic aspects of new music. SOURCE presen ts musi~ and articles by such distinguished composers and musicians as obert Ashl ey. subtitled " music of the avant-garde. Allan Bryant. Earle Brown. . . . band. this magazine. with its complete examples of how avant-garde music is conceived and notated. electronic. Bertram Turetzky. Harold Budd. David Behrman. Barney Childs. dollars . Alvin Curran. Now we have the real thing in the issuance of SOURCE. SOURCE appears semiannually. 4 issues. musico-theatrical . in a large f ormat. schematic. unique music periodical of avant-garde composition. The periodical shoul d be of interest to non-musicians. books..S. Gordon Mumma. succeeds in giving a clear picture of one of the very important contemporary movements. jerry Hunt. its editor. . Guiseppi Chiari. presents in each issue five or m ore provocative new works attractively published in open score: orchestral. $5 ($7. SOURCE publishes articles in relevant areas of avant-garde music: new compositional ap- proach es and techniques... composer . the first periodical to combine articles and music since the Etude . and Canada) Single issue rate. graphic. -Leonard Stein .~ SOU RCE. and Conodo) Tw o year subscripti on . Karlheinz Stockhausen. Ben johnston. . 2 issues. resp. Ed i tor). Perhaps the most significant recent development has taken place with the appearance of the publication." Composer l arry Austin of the UC Davis campus.'~OURn ~.S. reviews of current records. SOURCE contains an abundance of real music as well. One year subscription. $9 ($ 12 outside U. Harry Partch" David Reck. fifteen of articles.. Los Angeles Times . And. Mario Bertoncini. and fiv e of half-tones. oh yes. and music aesthetics. joseph By rd . choral. wi th a spiral bind ing. $17. New Music Quarterly (Henry Cowell.) All fore ign subscriptions payable in U. composer interviews and monographs. -John Cage. jo hn Mizelle.averages eig hty pag es of scores. .. chamber." -Saturday Review thi nk you've done beautifully and everyone else is of the same opinion . SOURCE . as well as musicians. Toshi Ichiyanagi. has achieved lucid presentation of the main tenets of musical avant-gardism in articles by and conversations with its most provocative creators.

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