Author Topic: Old computer music composer  (Read 1866 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Slothie

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 63
Old computer music composer
« on: August 04, 2012, 08:42:57 am »
I've been searching through some old electronics magazines for a project for a circuit that composed tunes and played them in real time.Unfortunately my collection has been decimated over the years and I've drrawn a blank.  I'm pretty sure it was in either E.T.I. or Practical Electronics in the late 70's, early 80's. It was based on the SC/MP microprocessor (that kind of dates it to the late 70's!).

I remember being facinated by the idea at the time but it way out of my budget at the time. If anyone has any info on it (hey, you might even be the author!) or even better a copy of the artical I'd love to see it and would be eternally grateful. Info on similar projects would also be of interest.

I've tried googling but all the terms I come up with draw a blank. Maybe its not on the interwebs!


Offline Zad

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1013
  • Country: gb
    • Digital Wizardry, Analogue Alchemy, Software Sorcery
Re: Old computer music composer
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2012, 05:50:52 am »
Elektor did an SC/MP computer in the late 70s, and the Elektor Junior Computer a few years later. I still have the PSU PCB partly populated, and the keyboard PCB with resist carefully drawn on, ready to etch. I must only have been 12 or so at the time! I actually learned how to program from the Junior Computer series of articles, manually working out how the processor shuffled binary numbers around.

I can't really post anything without breaching copyright, but Googling for Elektor SC/MP or Elektor Junior Computer comes up with plenty of results.

Offline Slothie

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 63
Re: Old computer music composer
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2012, 01:38:58 pm »
Sounds a bit advanced for the SC/MP computers I can recall seeing. OK it was a long time ago.

There is a list of ETI projects here http:
Thanks for those links. Hope I don't overload on nostalgia!!
I recall the author of the original article claiming the SC/MP was pretty maxed out - momentary pauses between stanzas while it calculated the next bit. And the tunes where very simple, I recall the article claiming they sounded a little "Medieval".

And I have to ask. Do you still have an actual SC/MP chip?
Does anyone still have their miniSCAMP computer?
Alas I don't still have an SC/MP. I used to have an old Sinclair MK14 I bpught second hand but that got chucked in the early 90s when to me it was just some bit of old junk. Still kicking myself for that one.
But you can do a pretty good emulation on a PIC in real time, as this lady shows.
I was going to port the algorithm to Arduino or similar, but thinking about it, it'd be way cooler to emulate the SC/MP and run the original hardware!  ;D

Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo