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Monday, January 24th, 2022 02:03 am

Synth Glossary

Many synths can only play one note at a time (they are monophonic). With the arpeggiator on, if more than one note is pressed at a time, the synth will alternate between the notes. They also often have a range control that allows the user to tell the ynth to play additional octaves - so if the range is set to two octaves the synth will play the keys that are held down in the octave that they are played and then in the next octave up/down....


The SH-7 is a 2-VCO, duophonic analog synthesizer with a 3 1/2-octave, 44-note (F-C) keyboard. Both VCOs can be switched between triangle, sawtooth, square, and pulse waveforms. VCO2 can be detuned from VCO1. Pulse- width can be controlled by the LFO or ENV1 (envelope generator 1). Each VCO has three sliders that adjust how much it is affected by the LFO, S/H, and a function called "Autobend". Autobend allows the VCO to slide up or down to a pitch. The Autobend function has controls for polarity and time. VCO1 has an additional square wave section (called VCO1B) wherein five sliders control the volume of each square wave (2', 4', 8', 16', and 32'). This works in much the same way as an organ's drawbars do. The SH-7 also features a ring modulator where the first input is VCO1 and the second is switchable between VCO2 and an external signal (via the external input jack in the back). There is a switch for oscillator sync. However, it does not achieve the usual "sync" sound. A mixer section provides five sliders, VCO1A, VCO1B, VCO2, Noise, and the last one switchable between the Ring Modulator and the External Signal.

The SH-7 features a single VCF (self-oscillating, 24dB/octave) with five sliders controlling modulation, many of them having a switch to choose between two options. The modulation sliders are for are the ENV1 (with switchable polarity), LFO or S/H, Keyboard or optional pedal, VCO1 or noise, and an envelope follower from the external signal (also with switchable polarity). The VCA can be controlled by either ENV1 or ENV2, and has a Hold button and a slider for LFO amount. Both ENV1 and ENV2 are ADSR envelopes and each has three trigger options, gate/trigger, gate, and LFO. The sample-and-hold section features three waveforms sources and an Output Lag slider (a rare but extremely useful feature). The LFO can output sine, up-ramp, or pulse waveforms, and has controls for rate and delay. Portamento can be set for just up, just down or both ways. The bender can be set to modulate the VCO, VCF, and/or the VCA with varying amounts of control voltage or LFO signal.

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