Friday, May 11, 2018

HOWDY AND WTF--the AUDIODIWHY MANIFESTO

WTF?

Here I am writing another blog....

I started on analog stuff back in the 70's, moved to digital around 1988 or so?

And as an older tech guy I have gotten back into the old analog circuits and sounds from when I was young.  Why not?

Some of the goals for all of this:
  • Audio DIY is primarily a learning thing for me. I could buy some premade Eurorack VCO thingy, probably for way less money than building it myself ("DIY") and it will probably sound and work better than anything I can come up with, but that's OK. I have no formal training in physics, engineering or math. The little low frequency electronics knowledge I have was picked up mostly from my brother, who's an EE, reading books, the web, and what I can find on youtube. My college degree is in anthropology. But as they said in Animal House: "knowledge is good".  So yes I suck at a lot of this electronics stuff but want to get better at something (for a change). 
  • If I don't write this stuff down right away in a month I will never remember why I did x vs z on a particular project.  Not good if I really want to keep any of this working for any recording I do.
  • I have a website that covers elements of DIY but I mostly use it to post finished stuff.  This blog might help me better track things I am working on or struggling with vs. what is finished and known to work.  Gets back to "why not" and "knowledge is good".
  • I am trying to develop a strategy about how to do DIY in general.  Should everything be modular and reusable? Should I strive always for low parts count as I would with anything mechanical?   How much digital do I integrate without it sounding "too Casio?"
  • I grow weary sometimes of working on digital things all day long, and analog (mostly) audio is a refreshing change. It's puzzling at times in a way digital never is.
  • Things that used to cost a king's ransom, like a decent 200Mhz scope, now costs not a lot more than peanuts. Same with a good arbitrary waveform function generator or power supply whose output can be controlled from a python script.  Arduino and other low cost robotics type MPUs and AD/DA change things as well.  In other words, it's way cheaper and easier to mess around with this stuff vs. say 20-30 years ago.
  • I am getting too old to play music out--needing more sleep etc.--and DIY satisfies the strange OCD I have suffered from most of my life that surrounds audio and music.
  • My friends can tolerate it. 
  • Women will still date me even though I mess with this stuff.  That's probably an age thing.
  • It's not terribly embarrassing to be into having a workbench, parts, and then enjoy soldering stuff together. Yes I'm geeky--but I am, according to my friends and family--"highly functional" it worked for Bill Gates right? We can't all be Bill, but we can be ourselves?  Put the parrot on your shoulder and wear it with pride.
Not sure how often I can post.  But I will start soon.

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