Computer Music

Grant Stockly grant at
Sun Dec 24 19:36:30 CST 2006

At 04:01 PM 12/24/2006, you wrote:
>On 24 Dec 2006 at 14:27, Grant Stockly wrote:
> > I have source code and custom interface cards from ARP's project to create
> > the first consumer computer controlled synth.  The prototype was built out
> > of an Altair 8800.  Never finished, never released.  It was a top secret
> > project within the company
>Many (myself included) simply tied a capacitor to the front panel
>interrupt enable LED of the 8800 and fed it to an audio system.   It
>was quite workable.  Later I did an S-100 card with 5 GI sound chips
>on it.

MITS was prototyping the MU-1 music card with 6 square wave channels (no 
envelope/volume/pitch/etc).  When Pertec took over they killed the 
board.  I have a bare PCB version of this prototype and may bring it back 
to life...

There was a special version of basic for the card with added note/duration 
commands.  There was also a version of startrek for the card that ran under 
regular basic and had sound effects during the game.

ARP's project would have cost an individual a lot to put together.  A bank 
of Pro Soloists...

Now that system connected to the 4 channel Bose sound system (on loan) must 
have sounded amazing, even by today's standards!  : )


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