# opinions wanted please: how should I retrofit an analog synthesizer to be computer controlled.

Status
Not open for further replies.

#### J-P-G

##### New Member
Hi!

I would like some opinions please if you dont mind. I have one of those new, small analog synthesizers (Behringer Model D). It has a bunch of potentiometers, and switches, etc. to control the sound manually with hands/fingers. In my dream, I want to be able to control the sound manually with hands/fingers, as well as being able to have a computer/arduino control the components to change the sound. So while changing the sound with hands/fingers, then the computer could record the settings (possibly in a real time sequence) to be used later, either in a real time sequence playback, or just to have the computer recall the sound settings as preset sounds and change the controls on the analog synth without me touching the synth.

What level of difficulty is a project like this? Im basically an electronics noob, but have soldered together a few simple kits. Im a software developer for my day job, so I can handle any of the programming necessary for the computer/arduino (or whatever you suggest). I took a couple of electrical engineering classes back in college.

What do you think? Obviously I need to do some reading to get caught up on basic electronics, which Im doing now. Is this a crazy first project for a noob? Or is this doable?

#### dknguyen

##### Well-Known Member
Sounds crazy to me for a first project to me, and unwieldly no matter how much of an expert you are because you'd have to retro-fit like motors and motor controllers to each pot as well as a feedback circuit so the computer knows what the pot position should be.

If instead of manually turning the pots with motors, you connected a digitally controlled pot that the computer could use, then you'd have to work into the synthesizer alongside every manual pot and a switchover mechanism to use the digital pots instead of the manual ones (which might also change the sound since it's a completely different pot being used). You'd still need a feedback mechanism for every manual pot so the computer would know the position of the manual pot

Last edited:

#### alec_t

##### Well-Known Member
I want to be able to control the sound manually with hands/fingers, as well as being able to have a computer/arduino control the components to change the sound.
What functions can the MIDI IN control?
What level of difficulty is a project like this? Im basically an electronics noob,
Assuming the MIDI IN can't do what you want, it would be a monumental task, even for a seasoned electronics hobbyist.

#### MichaelaJoy

##### Active Member
J-P-G : Take a look at this project

It's a little bit more difficult that this.