I’ve always been fascinated by technology and music and I love it when the two intersect. I am a particular fan of anyone who has created unusual music using technology and spend a good chunk of time myself tinkering at the overlap of computers, electronics and music.
I remember as a teenager reading R.A.Penfold’s various “Electronic Music Projects” books (I still have them!) and never really having the equipment or components to build any of the magical projects described within. That is so different now. Today, components, designs and sophisticated computer control are all easy if you know how and where to start.
I’ve also always been a fan of mechanical music machines – from steam organs, to cinema organs, pianolas, early electronic instruments such as the Theremin or Ondes Martinot, analogue synthesizers, MIDI, right up to digital synthesis and sampling, and computer music today.
This is my collection of simple DIY electronic music projects I’ve undertaken or found elsewhere on the web. It might provide a simple introduction for someone who has never tried anything like this before to have a go and see what technology can do for their own music creativity.
I am not an expert in any of this by any stretch of the imagination. Everything on this site comes with a “your mileage may vary” health warning. But I like to think of myself as an enthusiastic amateur with enough knowledge of electronics and computers to get a bit of sense out of a circuit someone else has designed and published, or to understand the code someone else has managed to create. With that in mind, I cannot vouch for the accuracy of anything said here, but it worked for me – that is the best I can do.
I do however like working out how others have managed to do what they’ve done and learning from it, so in that spirit I’ve tried to document what I’ve learned in the hope that someone else might be able to do the same.
I’m also not really skilled or particularly interested in the mechanical build side of things. I like the electronics and programming and am happy to leave it there as a seed for perhaps someone else’s final build.
There are lots of project resources out there on the Internet (see my ‘Getting Started‘ page for some links). My hope here is to build a curated list of simple, largely self-contained, projects that I’ve actually built myself and so believe that anyone could, with a few simple components or small outlay, also undertake.