Wednesday, 3 January 2018

Hyve Synth

This arrived in the mail today: A Hyve synth.
I've been eagerly waiting for this since Feb 2017.
It's facinating. I think the Hyve gets its name from the upper honeycomb keyboard (and it also sounds like a swarm of buzzy oscillators.... there are 60 voices !!!).

There aren't a lot of these Hexagonal Lattice type keyboards around. (Tonnetz).
It's very Buchla Easel in its responsiveness to touch.

The Hyve is a result of a kickstarter program.
Thanks Skot for this incredible instrument. It's a beautiful fusion of engineering with art.
So how does such a small synth have this huge sound? (I'll post some videos later).
The synth looks deceptively simple. The two main ICs are a SN74HC393DR & CD40106BM96
There are six 74HC393s. It's a dual 4-bit binary counter. Each chip contains 8 flip-flops.

There are two CD40106s. These are CMOS Hex Schmitt-Trigger Inverters.
Each chip consists of six Schmitt-Trigger inputs and is capable of making 6 square/pulse wave oscillators.

The upper section has a TDA1308T/N2,115 .. it's a audio amplifier & a UA78L05CPK .... a 5V voltage regulator.
If I'm understanding this circuit correctly, each CD40106 produces 6 square waves.
As there are two CD40106 we have 12 original square waves to play with.
Each square wave is fed into a Flip-flop. The flip flop outputs 4 squares waves (each a octave below the previous).

So in actual fact each of the original square waves has added to it 4 new waves at different octaves from the original. (1 + 4 = 5)

There are two CD 40106 ICs so there are 12 original square waves.
12 X 5 = 60
This I think, is how we achieve 60 voices.

(let me know if there are any mistakes)
This Octave-down effect has been used in the past in guitar pedals. The MXR Blue Box used this method to create a two octave drop by using flip-flop circuits to divide the frequency by two. 
This created a buzzy synthesizer like tone.

The Roland SH101 used a CMOS 4013 dual flipflop to give three sub-oscillator waveforms; square at -1 octave, square at -2 octaves, and a pulse at -2 octaves.
Roland just fed the main oscillator output to the CMOS 4013 bistable flip-flop circuit to give the sub oscillator waveforms. Simple but ingenious.

+ Hyve touch Synth Facebook
+ Kickstarter
+ Factmag
+ Muffs
+ Muffs - Hyve modifications

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