Crumar T1 “Organizer”

Crumar’s T1 is a surprisingly nice 70’s drawbar organ that used the latest octave divider chips that were present in a lot of keyboards of that era. An additional feature that makes it more useful than your average organ is the addition of a very rich, fuzzy bass synth voice that can be added to the lower octaves of the keyboard. The synth voice has a basic resonant filter and a decay envelope that you have some control over. The organ voices sort of drop out in the bass section, so it really helps add a thick low end that would otherwise be lost. It also has a really nice LFO that can be applied as both a tremolo and a vibrato and the speed is controlled with a rotary pot.

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SIEL DK-600

SIEL DK-600 synthesizer
SIEL DK-600

This is a really good one. SIEL was an Italian company that always quite clearly had their own way of doing things. It is a 6-voice DCO polysynth with the ability to make just beautiful, delicate, lush tones. The square wave can go so low that it just sounds like a lawn mower in the distance. That’s not a very useful feature, but for some reason it always delights me when I encounter it. Continue reading “SIEL DK-600”

Farfisa Combo Compact (#3?)

Farfisa Compact Combo
Farfisa Compact Combo

We now have a waiting list for big instruments that won’t fit on our work table like combo organs, Wurlitzers and Rhodes pianos because we only have room to work on one of them at a time. So if you have a big instrument like this that you’d like us to work on any time in the next several months, it might be wise to get in touch now so you can get into the queue. We’re currently scheduling them out into April already. Continue reading “Farfisa Combo Compact (#3?)”

Crumar RoadRacer

the Crumar Roadracer electronic piano
the Crumar Roadracer electronic piano

Another idiosyncratic instrument from the Italian company Crumar, who brought us such underappreciated un-classics as the Multiman S and a T1 organ that Darian’s working on right now. This is an example of a type of “electronic piano” that was briefly popular in the 1970s, when top octave generators and multi-stage frequency divider ICs allowed the architecture that had been used in the previous decade’s combo organs to be made much more small and compact.  Continue reading “Crumar RoadRacer”

GEM Instapiano

GEM (Galanti) Instapiano
GEM (Galanti) Instapiano

This is a simple electronic piano from GEM (Galanti Elettro Musicale), an Italian company that previously had made a lot of combo organs.  It uses a concept similar to that of a combo organ, with divide-down architecture (using frequency divider ICs this time though) and passive filters to create the four sounds: Piano, Harpsichord, Honky Tonk, and the Bass sound which is always a different sound from the rest of the keyboard and cannot be altered.  The addition of a simple AR envelope makes it a “piano” instead of an organ. Continue reading “GEM Instapiano”