PHYSICAL MODELS OF VINTAGE ELECTRIC PIANOS

I have conducted my first research activities on virtual acoustic models at Aalto University in Finland. I have worked on the Clavinet, the Rhodes piano and the Wurlitzer for years now, to learn all about their subtleties to produce realistic and computational efficient models.

INDUSTRIAL OUTCOMES

From Theory to Practice

VISCOUNT LEGEND 70S

Included by some music magazines in the top 10 innovative products of Los Angeles NAMM 2020, this is the first modular keyboard instrument to be ever produced. Its digital engine features sampling technology and physical modelling. I have developed the Rhodes, Wurlitzer and Clavinet physical models from ground up and conducted the sound design process. During this long R&D effort I have analyzed more than 10 keyboard instruments, their mechanics and electronics, I have conducted acoustic studies, including laser scanner vibrometry, and I have implemented tens of thousands of lines of code in Matlab, Python, C++ for Windows and C++ for the embedded DSP. Part of this research will also be published in scientific papers. The work is a collaborative between Viscount and my university, involving engineers, researchers and musicians to push the boundaries in sound synthesis.

PHYSIS PIANO

This was one of my first big projects in the music industry. I had the role of conducting sound design for the Rhodes piano and Clavinet (already implemented) physical models based on my (then) recent MSc studies. This implied studying the instruments, and their dynamical behavior to set thousands of parameters and laws to control these parameters. The results were good for the short time-to-market (and my little experience back then) and this instrument was one-of-a-kind, beautiful and innovative.

SCIENTIFIC PAPERS

A DIGITAL WAVEGUIDE-BASED APPROACH FOR CLAVINET MODELING AND SYNTHESIS

This is the last and biggest work on the Clavinet, with all our findings. The paper is open-access: 

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/1687-6180-2013-103

EXPRESSIVE PHYSICAL MODELING OF KEYBOARD INSTRUMENTS: FROM THEORY TO IMPLEMENTATION

This work reports details about the physical models employed in the Physis Piano. 

http://www.aes.org/e-lib/online/browse.cfm?elib=16678

Further technical details, analysis on computational cost and a benchmark of different computing platforms is provided in this paper:

https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/7362738

A FINITE DIFFERENCE METHOD FOR THE EXCITATION OF A DIGITAL WAVEGUIDE STRING MODEL

This work proposes merging two well-known physical modeling approaches for string modeling, the digital waveguide and the 1D finite differences (FDTD) and provides a stable and lossless numerical method to connect them.

http://www.aes.org/e-lib/browse.cfm?elib=16717

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TRIVIA AND PICTURES

My recent purchase: a Seventythree Rhodes from 1979, a late Mark I but essentially a Mark II inside. I'm running it with my Strymon Deco and a Ashdown bass amp.

Sweet! This one was rented for Sanremo festival 2020, before coming in my hands for my studies. The Wurli sound is so underestimated!!

Restoring my Rhodes Seventhythree

This was a moment of pure leisure. A Suitcase a Wurli and the Legend 70s during a sound design delight.

A cheapo bass of mine. The tone stack circuit was undoubtedly absurd. I rewired it completely to make it similar to the Fender Jazz Bass to get more control over the pickups blend. It doesn't sound as fat, but it slaps good as hell.

My parents bought me this 3/4 classical guitar when I was 5 yo. Only now I realize it was by Eko! Too late, my brother just salvaged it from my kid bedroom and unfretted it for some of his wicked experiments.

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