Circuit bending and Hardware hacking – When I saw this as a module choice for year 2 of my Creative Music Technology degree I knew immediately that it would be my 1st choice. It sounds fun and let me tell you … it is!! A lot of fun!!
So the general idea is that you go and buy an electronic, sound generating toy (battery powered only!) and then rewire the circuit board, adding switches, body contacts, potentiometers, buttons etc. to change the way it sounds.
I managed to find a Texas Instruments ‘Speak and Spell’ going cheap on ebay and having had one myself as a kid I thought it would be an ideal choice (also I know that this toy offers many opportunities to mess with the sound.) Reed Ghazala (the father of circuit bending) has hacked many of these and created instruments he calls ‘Incantors’.
Here’s a picture of the hacked ‘Speak and Spell’
And here’s some of the noises it creates!
Read on for a description of how I did it, including photos should you want to do it yourself.
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