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Following the blinking LFO light on a hardware synth

Apr 25 2014 | 6:46 am

This is a fantasy project,

The synth is a Yamaha CS-5, although if i got it working i’d also try it on my fender rhodes which also has a blinking LED.

The light turns off and on to show the rate of the LFO.

Can i set up a light sensor or camera and a Max patch that measures the rate and either outputs a number in BPM or drives an LFO that matches the LFO in the synth?

any thoughts? x

Apr 26 2014 | 6:40 am

this should be doable with a cam and jitter i guess. Another thing to consider would be to pull the voltage applied to the led out of the synth and analyse it directly. Then the use of [timer] would be straightforward.

Apr 26 2014 | 6:50 am

thanks for your reply,

as to the voltage from the LED, it did occur to me, but i hesitate before taking apart my synth? i don’t suppose there is another way to "pull the voltage applied to the LED out of the synth",

assuming i managed this – being new to max – how would one use [timer]?

Apr 26 2014 | 8:04 am

My nephew did something like this, but to synchronize its pedals, delays, chorus and other time based effects .. even a cute envelope follower whose light increases as a function of the amplitude.
What did I think I should ask him directly, but can not receive or make calls from El Chino and I think this week is in isolation.
I think: Led Photoresistor (LDR) and a microcontroller, probably an arduino or something based on ATMEL …
The information collected in the arduino is processed in this wonderful, wonderfull application.
If CAM>jitter.. If i wanted capture all the lights… I think hmmm the fps per second…

Apr 26 2014 | 8:18 am

Thanks Wendy, naturally my heart beats a little faster thinking that you are the Wendy Carlos, who still inspires me (switched on bach), but this being the internet i suspect you have just taken the name,

either way, thanks for your response, i almost bought an arduino and light sensor yesterday- but i’m hesitant, more research required, should you manage to contact your nephew please let me know,


Apr 26 2014 | 8:24 am

So is the internet, my dear, one can not be sure of anything.
I’m glad you’re on track.

Apr 27 2014 | 1:35 am

If you’ve got a cam, I would first try the jitter road with a high rate metro.

Apr 27 2014 | 3:55 am

I’d never do this with a cam, the photo resistor thing is just so much more convenient IMHO

Apr 27 2014 | 3:59 am

i’m open to both options, anyone got an example of a jitter patch that would do this?

Apr 27 2014 | 6:12 am

May be, with ultra high speed fps cam..

Apr 27 2014 | 6:12 am

May be, with ultra high speed fps cam..

Apr 30 2014 | 6:53 am

Arduino Uno, Breadboard, Light Depending Resistor, Jump Leads… I’m on my way x

  1. 10313460_10154107061675722_1758954832481057538_n


May 04 2014 | 1:45 pm

current version, arduino, LDR… no max yet, just clumsy hardware x

  1. Prototype1


May 21 2014 | 10:07 am

prototype 2 – video of x

May 22 2014 | 4:07 am

…and if it is the real Wendy Carlos, so pleased that she’s using Louis Wain’s ‘Electric Cat’ as her avatar!

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Forums > MaxMSP