◊ Electronoize Playshops

Fluxmonkey/bbob offers introductory workshops on building basic electronic music circuits. Hands-on sessions introduce basic concepts of electricity/electronics through simple projects, starting with primitive noise-makes and progressing through basic building blocks like oscillators and filters. Emphasis is on simple gizmos that allow for immediate sound-making, rather than rigorous engineering theory. We also encourage playing (messing with the circuitry, as well as performing), hence the name "playshop". Appropriate for teens or adults, sessions can be customized to your needs/audience. Please email if you're interested in scheduling.

A blog from our earliest sessions provides step-by-step instructions for some of our projects. Tinkerers and experimenters can use these as reference, or follow along via these detailed step-by-step instruction sheets:

During workshops we generally use solderless breadboards, but we also sell a couple of PCBs (see below) — the Looney Board, and 40106 Oscillator — which provides a more robust way to build permanent versions of the circuits you develop in workshop.

Many of the later projects are based on Nicholas Collins' excellent book Handmade Electronic Music: The Art of Hardware Hacking, which we heartily recommend.

Playshop PCBs

40106 HexOscillator

One chip and a handful of components let you build up to 6 simple oscillators, in various configurations

Each of the 6 Schmitt-Trigger Inverters on the 40106 CMOS chip is configured as an oscillator, the frequency of each is controlled by 2 resistors and a capacitor. Inputs/output points for each one are provided, outputs are also routed to a resistor or diode mixing matrix.

  • Complete step-by-step documenatation for a 40106 workshop project (3 oscillators controlled by photocells).
  • Earlier Breadboard-only instructions from the Electronoise Playshops (if we have time, I get folks to breadboard first to select component values, then transfer to PCB).
  • A similar circuit from Andreas Siagian (3 separate oscillators + 3 oscillators chained together) that could easily be built on our PCB.
  • If you're doing a workshop, contact us for quantity discounts.


LooneyBoard 1

One board, 10 oscillators, one "ring modulator", a 386 amplifier, and hundreds of build options.

An open-ended platform for implementing your own CMOS noise-making designs. Preconfigured to support 40106 chip (6 square-wave oscillators), 4093 (4 gated square-wave oscillators), 4011 ("ring modulator"), 386 amplifier, and a couple of passive mixers.