AUDIOVISUAL performing arts: 13-14 April 2024, london

crux festival of AUDIOVISUAL performing arts: 13-14 April 2024

Synth Building Electronics Workshop with Isn’tses

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A presentation and workshop by Tim Drage and Lisa McKendrick, creators of the Chernobylizer and Fort processor experimental sound art synths. 

Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about electronics and solder a synth circuit from a kit or learn the basics using a breadboard. 

Photo of Isn'tses performing

The workshop will start with a presentation covering the development of our noise synths the Fort Processor and Chernobylizer, the inspirations behind the electronics and sound as well as the psychogeographic elements of the design and artwork.

During the presentation the basics of electronics will be covered including identifying components, how to populate a PCB correctly, and reliable soldering techniques.

Photo of synth kit from Isn'tses

After the initial open presentation, there will be a workshop limited to 16 participants who will be able to choose from several synths that they can build. The workshop is open to beginners to soldering as well as those with some experience in electronics. All equipment is provided and attendees will be able to keep what they make. Once the synth building workshop is complete attendees will have gained the skills to be able to build a synth from a kit and have more confidence with this process after the class.

Workshop participants can choose to build one of the following circuits:

1. Light-controlled piezo contact mic noise synth.
This circuit utilises the 567 chip to create a ring modulated noise which is controlled by light via an LDR and built in colour-changing LEDs. The circuit also includes a piezo contact mic and can be built into a customised electroacoustic instrument using springs, rubber bands and other objects to interact with the contact mic.

2. Fort Processor
A psychogeographic noise synth controlled by knobs, light sensor and touch pads. It can create a wide range of heavy pulsing rhythmical noise and also can chop, fuzz and mangle incoming audio. We provide a complete kit of parts including PCB.

3. Chernobylizer (pictured above)
A psychogeographic noise synth controlled by knobs and touch pads which can create a world of unique aggressive sounds, including throbbing multi-oscillator pulsewaves, crunchy glitches, bass rumble, harsh noise, 8-bit-esque bleeps, geiger-counter clicks, and a unique motor-like power-draining effect. We provide a complete kit of parts including PCB.

To secure a place on the building workshop, participants can complete an online form that we will provide and they can contact us by email.

We will also have a few breadboards available and components so that everyone attending the presentation can try a very basic sound-generating circuit that requires no soldering.


Photo of synth kit from Isn'tses