Teenage Engineering designed a set of incredible pocket synthesizers that cost $59 each

Teenage Engineering designed a set of incredible pocket synthesizers that cost  each | The Verge

Very cool! High qual­ity yet afford­able. Very min­im­al­ist. Worth check­ing out!

But that all changes with the launch of the Pock­et Oper­at­or synth and drum machine series, a set of three cal­cu­lat­or-sized music-mak­ing tools that can be yours for less than $200 total. “Our goal was to make a synth that cost $49,” says CEO and head of design Jes­per Kout­hoofd, before paus­ing a bit sheep­ishly and admit­ting: “but we failed on that, so it’ll be $59.”


Lesson One: Major Scale

Ok, this may seem a bit weird to reg­u­lar read­ers of my blog, but I’m going to be archiv­ing my course­work in my Berklee/Coursera pro­grams on this blog.

Per­haps someone else will get some value out of it, or offer hints or sug­ges­tions for improve­ments. Either way, it’ll make it a very easy ref­er­ence to me and my growth through this course

Cours­era — Devel­op­ing your musi­cian­ship — Peer Assign­ment 1 — Les­son One: Major Scale

Write in your own words the defin­i­tions of har­mony, ear train­ing, and inter­val.

Har­mony — the rela­tion­ship between notes played at the same time, or chords. Notes played togeth­er that cre­ate a gen­er­ally pleas­ing sound is often called har­mo­ni­ous, and notes that don’t sound good togeth­er are often described as dis­har­mo­ni­ous. Har­mo­ni­ous notes are used to build a chord or chord pro­gres­sion.

Ear Train­ing — The activ­ity that teaches you to con­sist­ently, cor­rectly identi­fy a par­tic­u­lar sound and asso­ci­ate it to a music­al tone or equi­val­ent sound from an instru­ment. Ear train­ing will enable you to identi­fy when a sing­er is singing off key, or on key.

Inter­val — The dif­fer­ence in pitch or tone between two notes. Using the 12 note scale, the inter­val can be expressed as either a WHOLE inter­val or HALF inter­val depend­ing on which notes are used to make up the scale.

There is a spe­cif­ic pat­tern to the inter­val between notes in the 12 note scale: W-W-H-W-W-W-H.

In the key of C, a half inter­val exists between C and C#, and a whole inter­val exists between C and D. Wheras in the key of E, a half inter­val exists between E and F, and a whole inter­val exists between E and F#.

Find three record­ings of songs in the key of C and post links to per­form­ances of them that you find on You­Tube, Vimeo, Daily­mo­tion, or a sim­il­ar pub­lic video site.

Some resources I found help­ful to determ­ine song key:

Write the C major scale on the staff by hand.

(TYPE A OR B) WeeklyBeats9

Weekly­Beats sub­mis­sion for week 9. I may have gone over the top on this one. Intro is very heavy handed. Exper­i­mented with the new Z3TA+ synth for iPad, as well as the cur­rent stable; Thor, Sun­r­izer­XS, Nave, and a little Magel­lan. Lots of pans. Some com­pres­sion. A big exper­i­ment in many ways.… I hope you enjoy!

Album Art a shot from Artwick’s ori­gin­al Flight Sim­u­lat­or for the Apple ][.

Update: Love the com­ment I received on it over at Weekly­Beats:

Nice! Soundtrack for the birth of a new galaxy! Sounds great in my ATH-M50s!

WeeklyBeats7 — Cold Night

Cov­er for my latest sub­mis­sion to Weekly­Beats 2014. Wanted to go for an atmo­spher­ic sound again, some­thing more ambi­ent. Maybe this worked. Maybe not, but it came out as a com­plete unit. Also tried stick­ing to a small ‘band’. In this case used instru­ments from SampleTank: Blue Phaser elec­tric piano, Xpander Phat synth pad, Cos­mic Pad synth pad, and Min­im­oog echo 2 synth lead.

Also brought in some Abstract Atmo­sphere 50 from Gar­age­band — which I used as my DAW.

Image is from some­thing I took out the win­dow a bunch of years ago. Loved the light pil­lars in the minus 40 weath­er.

Cool Thing: A browser based Theremin

Well, it’s not really a Theremin but more of a sound toy. Yes, it’s a great dis­trac­tion and some­thing to piqué the curi­os­ity of your cube­mates. HTML5 based, it’s a very cool imple­ment­a­tion. The author states he’s work­ing on an update that will allow you to play along with your own music.. cool! Check it out!

WeeklyBeats5 — The Conversation

My latest sub­mis­sion to Weekly­Beats 2014. Had a lot of tech­nic­al chal­lenges with this one. Slower beat required more con­sid­er­a­tion of instru­ment selec­tion and place­ment. Also had to get vari­ous samples to sound ‘good’ at this beat and dis­covered the mud­di­ness that can be intro­duced by tweak­ing the sample fre­quency. Not a great tune, but a great learn­ing exper­i­ence.

Nova­tion Launch­pad, Thor, Gar­age­Band provided the tech and zing. Café.mp3 sample cour­tesy of moson on FreeSound.org