Below are pictures of "Betsy" the first modular that I built. The name came from a manager at mine at work who was fascinated by the scale of the project I'd undertaken and said I had to give it (or rather "her") a woman's name - like a WWII bomber or ocean liner. She took about a year to get this big. A lot of that time was spent figuring out how to do the lettering on the metal panels, learning enough electronics to debug my mistakes, and figuring out what all the different types of capacitors, resistors, and ICs were when order stuff (from Mouser and Newark). I worked on her between September 1995 and December 1996.
Clicking on the pictures will take you to larger pictures with more text detail.
By the winter or 1996 / 1997, "Betsy" was full grown. She was running well and spent many late nights happily twiddling knobs and running patch cables and making crazy noises. Unfortunately, after bringing her to a couple of live gigs and shlepping her up to my friend Dave's studio (aka Function on Sinewave records), I came to realize that Betsy was built for comfort and not for speed. It was time to evolve her into something leaner and meaner.
Enter "Spunky". I had a Calzone turntable case that I bought second-hand a couple years before that I was using for moving around my beloved 909/606/303 combo. At this time, Gene Stopp's ASM-1 project was in full swing allowing me to get a lot of synth out of a small circuit board. I was able to squeeze 2 of those ASM-1 synths, and a whole bunch of stuff taken out of Betsy into the Calzone case, and it made a mean portable (albiet heavy) modular.
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Copyright 1998, C.G. List