20 October 2007


The Casio MT-30 project (earlier details below) is 95% completed.
After stripping it down and giving it a good spruce-up I replaced all the noisy pots and switches. The new pots are smaller and smoother than the previous and the new switches have a more positive 'click' action. I had to remove the internal speaker to accomodate the new circuitry and I also removed the old (unreliable) rear phono output socket and replaced it with a regular jack socket. Same procedure with the old DC input socket.
The newly included ring-modulator is the only thing I'm not entirely happy with. At the moment both the carrier and modulator are being fed by the MT-30 audio so it acts more like a kind of harmonic octave shifter (upwards). But I've left a hole on the rear of the case to take a switched jack socket for feeding in external audio (an oscillator, or whatever) to the modulator input, which should be fun.

Casio MT-30 Modified
The newly refurbished and further modified Casio MT-30 keyboard.
The internal speaker in the photo below was removed to accommodate the new circuitry.

Casio MT-30 mods

Close-up view of modifications in top right panel.
Includes: the fixed/variable master clock, tune, primary octave switch, variable digital distortion, ring-modultaor balance and a psuedo/semi random function.

Casio MT-30 modsClose-up view of modifications on the left end column.
Includes: 'quick' memory select function, secondary octave switch, vibrato rate (slow or slower), vibrato depth (none or shallow) and hold.

All these modifications work in addition to the existing Casio controls.

10 October 2007


OK, so this is the first physical evidence of my CCCL experimental music project.
It's a self-contained noise synth consisting of: self-built Ring Modulator and two modified U-73 Synthesizers.
Amplification in this photo is via a Boss MA-1 micro monitor amp.

Chemistry Lessons 1st Build


This has been my workflow using First Build .
More to follow, including sound examples...

01 October 2007

CASIO MT30... and more

CCCL has taken (yet another) detour since my last blog.
As I'd previously said: it became apparent that building many of my rediscovered/resurrected circuits into self-contained battery powered units was going to be impractical, but that I was not abandoning that 'format' entirely. Well over the last week or so while 'rationalising' our (not inconsiderable) archive I found some more discarded effects pedals, a Casio keyboard, a drum machine, a percussion generator (a slightly clapped out 'Clap Trap' to be exact) and a drawer full of original synth books and brochures from the 1970s'. And surprisingly (to me at least) all of these units still worked.
The Casio keyboard, a heavily modified MT30 (see below), still sounded great, although the extra custom pots and switches are noisy/failing and all need replacing. PLUS... I also found few circuits and instruction sheets of further MT30 mods I'd never got around to installing. So first on my long CCCL 'to do' list is to renovate the MT30 to it's former glory and add the extra mods. This (particular) MT30 already has a very unique sound, due entirely to the mods: a variable clock rate, adjustable vibrato, octave shift, variable digital distortion and an LFO for extreme modulation. I'm also going to include a ring modulator and a band-pass filter.

Naked Casio MT-30