Hi, everyone. Welcome back to the show. The lead image here demonstrates that a radio can be a hat, but I'd like to dive even deeper on radio. Radio is more powerful than we give it credit. Its transformative possibilities as ubiquitous electromagnetic waves make it truly wonderful and ghostly. Did you know a common anxiety in the early century was picking up radio reception in your teeth, btw? Any random city has a good number of radio stations constantly broadcasting at the same time. We should be able to hear all of these stations at once, not one station at a time, so this week I'll show you a way to approximate that.
Simply put, in radio reception, the radio tuner is the censor. Instead of hearing all the stations at once, it allows you to only hear one station at a time, on the dial number you've selected. This "single station" concept is awfully boring, however – especially when you consider any city's radio feed might have 15-20 stations playing at the same time on the FM dial.
Removing the tuner from controlling the dial is a lot more fun, however, and this week I'll demonstrate a method, using control voltage, to play a radio tuner in a way where the the stations are notes on a keyboard, along with using modulation to make the entire dial spin back and forth at a strobe-like speed. We'll use an array of control voltage sources (a Pot Action Recorder, Stepped Voltage CV generator, and a few CV sequencers) and an Arradio module.
Prior to that, I remember my dad's wonderful Marantz 2200 series receiver, which he gifted my brother and me, partly, I feel, to not feel terrible about upgrading to something else for himself in the 1980s. (Just give the kids the old one!) I think the Marantz was better than the upgrade, though, and it gave me a lifelong addiction to radio dials and switches, as the Marantz had GREAT switches and dials. You can hear this memory in the lead track, "Basement Living Was Really Good".
Want to delight the undelightable? Episode Packs of Spoken Word with Electronics are great holiday gifts, incidentally. They're marked down to $5 a piece through the New Year. That's cheaper than a Radio Hat! Thanks for supporting the show.
Have a very good week, Ethan