TitleThe Rebirth of Computer Music by Analog Signal Processing
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication1994
AuthorsFreed, A
Conference NameInternational Computer Music Conference
PublisherInternational Computer Music Association
Conference LocationAarhus, Denmark

Digital computation continues to offer spectacular solutions to signal processing problems at a rapidly decreasing cost. However, advances in VLSI design and manufacturing technology are not specific to digital processing systems and great cost/performance advances are also available from analog VLSI circuits. Indeed, many problems are solved most cost-effectively by using "mixed signal" technologies that allow analog and digital components on one chip. This paper explores the possibility that musical sound synthesis, processing and control systems would be better served by significantly more analog processing than the contemporary, mainly digital approach. An analog signal processing architecture is proposed consisting of a memoryless, multidimensional nonlinear function generator, a linear time-invariant system simulator, a non-volatile store, and interface, calibration, and control modules. This architecture is designed for real-time simulation of nonlinear dynamical systems, especially those that characterize acoustic musical instruments.