Old Tech - Vintage Synthesizer Site

Buchla Music Box


Model 208 Stored Program Sound Source:
Sequencial Voltage Source
Envelope Generator
Modulation Oscillator
Complex Oscillator
Envelope Detector
Plug-in Card "patch" memory.

Model 218 Touch Activated Voltage Source:
29-note capacitance keyboard
Outputs: Pulse, Pressure, Voltage
Controls: Portamento, Three preset voltages selected by touch pads.

A publication for Music Easel Owners was called The Easel Weasel. The following is from Allen Strange's book:

~~~possesses and encompasses all other instruments of music - large and small however names - in itself alone. If you want to hear a drum, a trumpet, a trombone, cornetts, a recorder, flutes, pommers, shawms, a dolcian, racketts, sorduns, krummornes, violins, lyres, etc., you can have all these and many more unusual and charming things in this artful creation; so that, when you have and hear this instrument, you think not but that you have all the other instruments one amongst the other.

~Michael Praetorius,
Syntagma Musicum II
(De Organographia), 1619

(From The Terrey Collection - Sold)

The Buchla Electric Music Box, also known as the Music Easel, was released by Buchla and Associates in the 1970s. It consisted of a Model 208 Stored Program Sound Source, a Model 218 Keyboard and a Model 214A power Supply integrated into a Model 203-08 briefcase-style metal case.

The Plug-in card memory consisted of a PC board onto which resistors were soldered to define a patch. The board plugged into an edge connector on the panel upper left.

The original cost was $2850.

Click for large image of panel. Click for large image of PC board.

References: A-Z of Analogue Synthesizers by Peter Forrest, 1994, 1996, Surreal Publishing. Programming and Metaprogramming in the Electro-Organism - An Operating Directive for the Music Easel by Allen Strange, 1974.

Links: Synthmuseum

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