Forums

Synth Programming

Started by Unknown March 31, 2009
Hi,

I'm studying dsp and music at the moment and hope to do a masters in
this area in the fall. My research proposal is to build a synth with a
generic interface. The idea is that the keyboard interface could be
used for writing, mouse movements, playing music or whatever. An
efficient way of converting finger movements into digital information
in other words.

Anyway, I'm wondering what dsp processors are used by modern day
synths/keyboards? And what Real Time Operating Systems are used to
program them?

I've tried googling but the specs don't contain this kind of info.

Thanks,

Magnus.

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/may08/articles/clavianordwave.htm
http://www.roland.com/products/en/VP-770/specs.html
http://www.yamahasynth.com/products/mo/specifications.html

On Mar 31, 4:30�pm, magnus.morab...@gmail.com wrote:
> > I'm studying dsp and music at the moment and hope to do a masters in > this area in the fall.
well, good luck. what school are you getting your masters at?
> My research proposal is to build a synth with a generic interface.
what does this "generic interface" mean? something with a MIDI-IN socket that you plug in whatever keyboard or other MIDI controller into? besides interface, what sorta sounds do you want to get out of your proposed synth? what kinda synth alg(s) are you considering?
> The idea is that the keyboard interface could be used for writing, > mouse movements, playing music or whatever. An efficient way of > converting finger movements into digital information in other words.
that's what keyboards were optimized for. converting finger motions into information that defines the music. there are other human interfaces, but the traditional keyboard still is the most popular (and for good reason, in my opinion). Fatar in Italy designs MIDI keyboards that are exactly only that: no synth, just keyboard, mod/ pitch wheels, and MIDI out.
> Anyway, I'm wondering what dsp processors are used by modern day > synths/keyboards? And what Real Time Operating Systems are used to > program them?
i think that with 64+ voice polyphony, that most of these guys make their own chips to do the music synthesis (or maybe do it with some FPGA, perhaps more than one). if you were to do this with a SHArC, i am not sure you would be able to do 64 simultaneous voices on a single chip. it depends on what the synth algorithm is and what is the sampling rate (as well as the clock or MIPS rate of the chip). but if you're doing this for a school project, i would recommend getting a SHArC dev or eval system. or maybe a Mot 56K, since it is still alive in Freescale.
> I've tried googling but the specs don't contain this kind of info.
KORG or Yamaha or whomever aren't gonna tell you or their competitors what they do. r b-j
> Anyway, I'm wondering what dsp processors are used by modern day > synths/keyboards? And what Real Time Operating Systems are used to > program them?
Hi, this site seems to be what you're looking for: http://www.sequencer.de/blog/?p=2449 It looks like a lot of synths are based on Freescale 563xx DSPs. You may have a look at the Customer Case Studies sites at www.analog.com too: http://www.analog.com/en/embedded-processing-dsp/sharc/processors/customer-case-studies/resources/index.html http://www.analog.com/en/embedded-processing-dsp/tigersharc/processors/customer-case-studies/resources/index.html Zsolt
On 31 Mar, 21:30, magnus.morab...@gmail.com wrote:
> Hi,
'ello. Just delurking.
> Anyway, I'm wondering what dsp processors are used by modern day > synths/keyboards? And what Real Time Operating Systems are used to > program them?
Much of the Japanese made kit runs TRON as an OS but I've no idea what it's coded in. TBH most of it is custom code right down to the HW. Mad in this day and age but that's the way it's always been done. I say "mad" because these boxes aren't just running a DSP+UART+LED controller and keyboard scanner anymore. They've got USB, colour LCD displays, Ethernet etc etc etc I've seen QNX in the odd device and a lot of semi-custom RTOS's.
> I've tried googling but the specs don't contain this kind of info.
You'll have more luck with a screwdriver! I _think_ modern Korg stuff is using Blackfins (Radias, MS2000, Minis etc). However, some Korg kit (SW MMT stuff) is recompiled to ARM (Nintendo DS) and x86 (Korg Legacy collection) so there's some degree of flexibility at Korg (or a lot of engineers porting stuff) The Akai MPC range of samplers are using antique SH-2's. Yamaha brew their own DSP chips. There's a lot of variation out there. Yours, Matthew. http://www.burnttoys.net