Built by Mike Walters, 2003
Chuck Johnson commissioned me to build a control voltage joystick controller for his Analogue Solutions modular synthesizer. I built it bipolar, outputing from -9 to +9 volts DC. There is also a gate switch, which outputs +5v when engaged. It operates on two 9v batteries. The coolest part of this device is the "power on" indicator. It's a blue LED installed on top of the joystick! I also wired a nice big capacitor over the poles to give the LED's a slow fading power off. The gate also has a blue LED indicator. The joystick has 4 outputs, x axis -9v, y axis -9v, x axis +9v, y axis +9v. Many thanks to Caleb Johnston who helped me with the basis of the bipolar schematic.
For those not in the know, most analog synthesizers are voltage controlled, and the oscillators' voltage is traditionally determined by notes on a keyboard. With a joystick controller, you can play notes by the position of a joystick. For example, side to side could determine the frequency of the oscillator, up and down could control the cut off frequency of the filter (which is also voltage controlled). You can get some neat theremin like effects.
I used an old Norelco electric shaver case as the chassis. The tolex was left on the bottom, but I stripped it off the top. I also left some of the deco lettering that still remained from "Norelco Electric". Only four letters survived, and it says "elco". There were also nice rust spots on the case which I liked. The inside of the case still smells like an old man. I made a locking system to keep the case closed with a spring loaded cabinet lock and a long screw.