Thursday, September 3, 2009

What has keys but no lock?

Here's a little trip down melody lane: a web database entry for my old music keyboard, purchased circa 1987. What a high performer - not only was it a synthesizer (creating sounds synthetically was, even the salesman admitted, tedious) but a 16-bit sampler, which means you could grab real sounds using a microphone and manipulate them into instruments. You can see this new technology put to good use in Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986). The protagonist uses a "snoring" sound effect sample as part of a ruse to appear to be asleep in his bed (as he is obstensibly sick at home.)

There are also some interesting comments from site visitors about the device.

Anyone who knows me will not be overly surprised to learn that I still own this piece of 80's technology. Come to think of it I still have my PT-20 as well, a starter unit purchased circa 1981 (along with a tape recorder one of the first items I bought with my own funds, I believe.)

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