I’d happily read more synth stuff on Lobsters.
Another reason why lobste.rs should get a dsp or signal-processing tag.
Recommended pairing with this article: Moritz Klein’s 4-part video series on building a (pure) analog oscillator from scratch. These videos are super clear and really helped improve my sketchy understanding of analog electronics.
The article is really interesting, and very polished, but I still missed something: The actual sound of the synthesizer. It would give nice context for someone not so deeply knowledgeable in the topic.
I’d suggest some sound/video to the start of the article, to showcase the sounds, effects being constructed in the article. I checked on YouTube, and found out that I do know the sound of this instrument, just didn’t know it was done with it. (I understand that there are equivalent products, but as I understand this is an iconic piece)
Yeah, the article doesn’t go into what makes the Juno’s sound distinctive. Saw and square/pulse waves are ubiquitous, and many synths since it have used DCOs. There may be quirks of the Juno’s osc circuit that color the sound. But filters are a huge component of the sound of any subtractive synth, so I’m guessing the Juno’s filter circuit(s) had a lot to do with it. The Juno also had an analog chorus effect built in.
One of the iconic Juno sounds is the “hoover” or “mentasm” which was all over early-90s hardcore/gabber music. Apparently this was done on the Alpha Juno (a later iteration?) which had an uncommon “PWM sawtooth wave, which inserts flat segments of variable width into a sawtooth waveform”. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hoover_sound
This was a great read, and I dig the layout, style of the blog, and prose. Looking forward for more synth content here.