XYZ display recommendations

@rempesm I’m not trying to prevent anyone from getting the equipment they need. Quite the opposite. The purpose of private messaging is to prevent the prices from getting out of control. When that happens and prices out many artists, the community loses.

There was an infamous Mod Wiggler thread that revealed model numbers for numerous Tektronix and Leader displays, and now all of those models have increased in price by up to four times.

1 Like

BK Precision 1472C manual

BK Precision 1474S manual

6 Likes

@rempesm Matt, you have undermined all of my efforts to prevent the prices of these units from skyrocketing. That is a violation of community trust. Please remove your post.

2 Likes

It’s to keep flippers from working a very niche market, the info is available to those who ask.

1 Like

The point of this forum is to share information, not keep it obscured. In a post entitled XYZ Display Recommendations, one would expect to find model numbers of XYZ displays. I fully understand trying to prevent prices from increasing–it sucks when we can no longer afford to buy the things that we love to use. But limiting information in this particular thread isn’t going to stop price increases and sharing information within our community is far more important.

19 Likes

@Z0NK0UT

Chad,

Making sure that the needed information gets to buyers, not sellers/flippers, absolutely does help with preventing inflation and price gouging.

You own this forum and you can do what you like with it. But I started this thread, I did all of the work and I should have some say in how that information gets shared.

I must say that I am very, very unhappy with the way this has played out. My posts get instantly banned because I use all caps. Meanwhile, someone goes directly against my wishes, undermines my efforts, creates potential damage to the community. Despite my pleas, no action is taken. Offending party does not reply to public or private requests to have the information taken down. Moderator supports this guerilla action.

As I have said many times, I am not trying to obscure any information. If that were the case, I never would have offered to share the model numbers. I could have just kept that to myself. But I wanted to help other artists. Safely. Sanely. In a manner that does not price people out.

At this point I am very discouraged. If I had my wishes the whole thread would be deleted.

This creates a chilling effect on my level of participation. I see that I cannot trust some people, including moderators, to respect my intentions. So I am very much disinclined to share anything, ever.

I hear you and I can understand why you would feel unhappy. None of this went the way you had hoped or intended. I appreciate that you are trying to protect your fellow artists–it is an honorable motivation.

At the end of the day, sharing information (that can be collected in any fashion) in a post does not violate the rules of this forum. If someone asks me to remove a comment, I check to see if the comment violates the rules of the forum. In this case it did not. I don’t agree that sharing information about equipment on this forum directly results in harm to artists. Could there be an unintentional effect of prices increasing in the second hand market because of information gleaned here? Possibly. But the same information is shared in places with far bigger communities with much wider reaches (eg. Facebook).

If you would like to delete this thread entirely, that is your right and I support you. But I think it would be a detriment to the community, as there are artists that would benefit from knowing more about XYZ displays and your original posts contain helpful information.

4 Likes

I think your posts are some of the most consistently revealing and entertaining contributions on this forum. I really hope you don’t delete this post or stop posting. Please just take a moment and think about all of the fun times we are yet to have. Actually, a significant portion of my conversations with other video artists are directly related to how and what you share here.

The LZX Community just wouldn’t be the same without you @dryodryo. And besides, you entertained the idea of teaching us once you finally build your video synth! Please have mercy on our frabjous, undermining souls and most of all LONG LIVE LZX!

Thanks

2 Likes

@dryodryo You are the author of this thread, you can leave it up or take it down. But you don’t get editorial control over the comments or information that gets posted in response. Sharing model numbers and open access to video gear information is something that is not only inline with the rules, it’s actively encouraged here. So I don’t see how we can remove a comment with information like that, unless the information it contains is specifically false.

“Always yield to the Hands On Imperative!”, etc. :cowboy_hat_face:

4 Likes

We all want the same thing, which is for this art form to thrive. Sometimes we don’t agree on how to make that happen. That’s fine. But I am the kind of person who will respect your wishes even if I strongly disagree with them. That goes double if I am in a position of authority.

“This is not my first rodeo”, and I could tell you some funny / horrible stories about social networking in web 1.0 and 2.0 days. :smile: So I know all too well that moderators are under no obligation to remove content that doesn’t violate TOU. Again, that’s fine. Whatevs.

But hear me now and believe me later; open access is great until it’s not. We’re dealing with finite, non-renewable resources here. If you hunt the ocean and forest to extinction, you end up eating worms and insects.

The evidence in the case against “information wants to be free” is in the Mod Wiggler thread linked above. Once the word got out, those Tek and Leader displays became crazy expensive, and then complete unobtanium. So now we’ve got a speculative market, people are hoarding this stuff, ugh. Bad news.

The thing is, I’m actually making a decent living for the first time ever, and I could actually afford those insane prices, if I ever got so lucky to see a listing. But in very recent memory, that kind of expense would NOT have been an option. So I feel for all of the people who don’t have the advantage of disposable income. And I am NOT going to feed those people to the sharks.

Sometimes it’s necessary to take a conservative view. That’s when you have something to conserve, e.g. antique electronics for which there is no viable alternative. Today I just got pricing on a military spec stroke-to-raster converter … $15,000. In times like this, caution is advised.

Now, this situation may change in the next few years (hint hint), but in the meantime I don’t want to see people gouged or miss out entirely. You may not think that this little corner of the Internet can have much impact, but that is so, so wrong. Things go viral, you can’t control it, you are playing with FIYAH baby!

@7pip Thank you so much for your kind words. Someday I will do some YouTube videos, I promise.

Oh, and BTW I actually don’t have permissions to delete the thread. And even if I did have permissions, I don’t know if I would take the option. Don’t really feel like playing whack-a-mole against someone determined to disrespect my wishes.

1 Like

Hey peoples.

With the utmost respect for all sides here.

This is in fact -MY- fuck up. So before everyone decides to blow the roof off this thing, Aaron, I am sorry for blowing your spot, it was absolutely not my intention.

Couple things :

  1. These scopes kinda suck. If people want to fetishize these things, and turn them into ‘hype objects’ so be it, people deserve to pay whatever they do for them because they aren’t worth more than they are currently priced at in a real world capacity.

  2. I thought mistakenly read (and thought) that after these ‘findings’ were in place that this information would in fact be shared, and, for that I am sorry to have dropped the bomb, it is -my bad-. Delete the post. I personally think there are very few people here that want to scoop up $200 scopes, hoard them until a a Chris Cunningham video makes them cool, and sells them for that $600 increase. Seems like a lot of work to me.

I grew up poor. Poor enough that when I was cool with people, we had to share, by default. I also grew up in rap, punk rock, graffiti and design circles, and can tell you that as someone who spent his teens, 20’s and 30’s covering up records and hoarding information, lying about the types of tape I used to record records, and giving bogus gear lists on liner records, that -every single thing I have ever loved- is now just baseball cards for rich people, regardless of my best intentions of the people (and why) I shared things with, and that I firmly believe that mentorship and community is in fact a two-way share.

So, I scooped some off-numbers from the list, gave my .02 and shared my results. I had no intention of fucking it up for anyone, especially you, Aaron, as you were the person to share it in the first place.

If people put in the work, they should be able to do whatever they want with that info, and in this case, it was in fact me talking about something I did not find my my own free will and research.

Since coming to video art circles in the last couple years I have been scolded a couple times for not knowing the weird rules of this ‘private mind garden’ approach to ownership of tools that we did not make and are ultimately abusing and misusing for our creative pursuits… I have stated this before, to other people in this thread, that I am a firm believer in the artist-not-the-tools approach to making stuff and to be honest, probably care a lot less about this than most of the people here.

In complete contradiction that that statement, in my case I am using these tools -because- I am sick of getting my own visual language ripped off my agency assholes that won’t hire me, but ape my shit freely (because digital tools allow for the endless reverse engineering of language).

I am building visual processing toys that make it harder for someone to ‘copy’ the language that I have spent a lifetime learning, the same things that make something like AI tools less of a minefield than being involved in online pissing matches about ownership of things we did not invent.

But I am -always- going to share information about a thing with contemporaries and people in my community, same as I always have about certain ‘rare’ drum machines, synthesizers, bicycles, records, clothing, motorcycle parts and all the other cool stuff I have had, or been involved with, but can no longer afford.

If people are worried about this community being watched for monetary gain, then people should make it a closed community and vet the people coming to it, plain and simple.

The unfortunate and inconvenient truth is this : if people choose to sleep on information as it is presented to them, or to devalue things things in real time (such as me feeling my entire system at the start of pandemic out of panic, and now looking to pay cool-guy tax for a Memory Palace now) then people have to deal with the fact that we live in a bullshit world where this stuff happens, or make everything open source and available to everyone all the time (if that is in their ethical makeup).

If anyone wants to sell me any classic Roland synths, Stanley Cowell records on Strata East, or Studer Tape machines, give a shout. I will be happy to pay what they cost 25 years ago.

And with that, I will be checking out of the forums and go back to watching intently from the sidelines.

Catch y’all in real life and sorry for the disruption.
Rob.

3 Likes

yo rob!

this community needs more people with humble upbringings and connections to counter cultures like rap/punk/graffiti etc. it may not be totally clear, but many of us in this thread are trying to wrangle with the massiveness of @dryodryo. (hopefully the good dr. can appreciate that a lot of his traffic here and in other video circles has been received with a variety of reactions from ??? to ?!! to …)

i hope we have not let that attempt to kindly address what was obviously an over the top reaction dilute what is really important. i think it’s safe to say that all of us on some level think that what matters most is what these tools are meant to do.

MAKE STUFF.
MAKE STUFF.
MAKE STUFF.
MAKE STUFF.
MAKE STUFF.
MAKE STUFF.
MAKE STUFF.
MAKE STUFF.

it can’t be overstated that we need more making. these tools need time in rack with shared output so that all of us, the Creator included, can begin to refine and establish the work that’s been done in developing them.

i am responding somewhat incoherently and without the aid of capital letters because reading that this forum may be inching towards a mind garden reminded me of not yet formed feelings i have had myself. if you as someone who is turning over 60 days of forum time are more poignantly stating what i, someone with 600 days of forum time, have felt then the conversation should be developed. (even if zonker decides this is the wrong place to do it!)

i don’t know what else i can say without generalizing and categorizing to ill effect. but, i am hearing what you are saying. i am picking up what you are putting down. i am also hoping to reconnect you with an essence i still carry from my days on the street: nothing will ever work better than working hard. and hard work is what’s on the wall, what’s on the tape, what’s on the menu when you finally get to eat.

i think there is a case to be made around here for more heads to come out from under their thousands of dollars of video gear and share the process. share the result. share something that shows the work. without it, i struggle to differentiate the strange attitude on facebook about gear from the savagery of pop collectibles. nevermind the self serving elitism of asserting how satisfied one might be with results only described and never shared.

and on that note, you gotta recognize that of course when you ask for information straight up you may not get it right away. you might just get an ear full like the one i gave you about mixers and how every inch you get in this game in particular you probably are going to have to get on your own. in my opinion that’s because 80% of the people in the room just want to see it wiggle. and the other 20% have had to shell out a lot of time and money putting a game together that is only half solved by the pieces the Creator has been hood enough to give you.

anyways i hope you don’t duck the forum, that seems to be what most people do. we need the energy, even if it’s frustration with the way things are, so that you can share your piece about how you think things should be. thank you for taking the time to make a post, but i don’t think there’s an apology to be made here on your behalf. it’s our bad as longstanding forum users really, for reasons that are beyond this ramble.

3 Likes

@sixtoobeats No worries man, I asked you to take down the info when I saw it … long after you posted it. My fault. I actually thought it was a private message. This board software doesn’t make that distinction very clear.

But anyway, no harm, no foul. I AM upset with @rempesm Matt, I honestly think that was inappropriate and disrespectful, but whatever.

Now I am waiting for the moderator hammer to come down on me, even though I expressed my feelings in a civilized manner. This is the most uptight forum I’ve ever participated in. And I have been on the Internet since before the web even existed. So when there’s a hint of sarcasm, BOOM, the hammer comes down. But when someone takes an action that harms the community, that’s totally fine.

Anyway, these scopes don’t suck. At least the ones I have don’t suck. Maybe you got some that were in less than great shape. On the two 30MHz scopes I have, I’m seeing some wear and tear on the knobs and switches, but the display looks clean, as shown in my photos.

All right, have a great day. And yes, Make Stuff.

If I locate a scope for a good enough deal sans original probes (and for wider analysis of circuits and waveforms beyond scanning), is it worth picking up or would quality 20-60MHz replacements negate any money saved?

It’s been nice reading everyone’s thoughts here. I know this rant is probably getting off topic, but hey… it’s just a few of us in the room, right?

I feel like there’s too much focus on designer intent with our gear, and too much mental gymnastics taken by many users in trying to sort out how it all is supposed to fit together. There’s no magic formula or master plan in my head about how you are supposed to use any of this stuff at all. That’s why it’s a deconstructed “universal input” format. I’m just trying to keep a specific way of making stuff alive. Heck if I know what you’re gonna do with it – that’s not my department, that’s yours!

The biggest magic behind any of this is just that you can plug any voltage you want into a jack, and see it on a screen. Lick the end of the cable. Mix a camera with your saliva. Plug in a microphone. Patch your camera thru a chorus pedal and see what comes out the other end. Use a joystick to control two video wipes at the same time. Transition between two different live shots based on the amplitude of the actor’s voice. These were the kinds of wonders I was imagining when starting to dabble in all of this in the first place. I wanted to break an accessibility hole into how you are supposed to use video signals. What’s on the other side of that is a group effort.

As a company, we just try to be the art supply store, not the studio, not the record label, not the gallery. It’s designed to be used creatively – but more like a baton race or a game of exquisite corpse. When I sit down to make a module I’m taking the baton from a lineage of broadcast and synth designers – when you sit down to use it, you’re taking the baton from me. Now it’s yours.

I would love to see more discussion prompted by individual artistic visions for actual videos you want to make. For me, that’s the most useful feedback we can receive from any of you, in how it plays into the evolving system.

“How do I make this look like my grandma’s wallpaper?”
“How do I make the output feel more ghostly?”
“Any tips on creating a transition from a high energy patch to a low energy one?”
“I have an idea for a mood shift in a song I’m doing visuals for, what color palette works best?”

These are the kinds of questions and discussion that I think will help us grow. The least interesting part of the answers should be what exact modules or gear you used to get you to the right output. If we fixate too much on “what modules should I buy” then we’re truncating a wider discussion on creative goals before it can even occur. Sometimes the right answer might just be smearing chap stick on half of the camera lens.

10 Likes

Don’t worry about the probes, mate. They are cheap and easy to replace. Like $20. Also these old scopes will have deteriorated over time and without a tune-up you should not bother using them as testing instruments. Just get a new digital scope if you want to do that.

1 Like

Absolutely, sensei. You want to elevate the discourse, but we have all been hyper focused on hardware design. That’s great, but the gear is a means to an end.

Gearheads come with the territory in a popular medium. And video synthesis now qualifies as popular.
Your little company has democratized an obscure, rarified art form, made it approachable and affordable. So from where I’m sitting, you could stop today and still have made a significant dent in the universe.

In re this thread, and your prompt for artistic vision: for XYZ displays, I think there has been maybe too much emphasis on the Rutt Etra displacement effect, or what Nick called “melty face shit” on Twitch. It’s a very cool effect but it’s just the beginning.

Much interesting stuff is being done with advanced oscillographics on the PC. What I am seeing with the analog oscillators I have here (Syntonie, BSO) is that they are much messier than what I can get from the Expert Sleepers ES-9 and Reaktor. And I haven’t even gone into the whole world of PC apps for this.

So frankly that is probably the direction I’m headed with this, combining analog video and PC control voltages to drive the XYZ display. The PC is just way more reliable, sample accurate locking of picture, repeatability, etc. But the analog luminance and synced H & V ramp oscillators give flexibility and tactile control.

Aesthetically I’m looking for a complex geometric style. Think an Iranian mosque with a million DMT cupolas and interlocking fractal ley lines. John Whitney already took the “Arabesque” title, but that’s an inspiration. Also Larry Cuba’s work, especially “Two Space”, which changed my life when I saw it at CalArts. Joost Rekveld is also a master of this space, he’s taken the analog computing paradigm farther than any artist I know of.

I see so much video synth work that’s stuck in the rectilinear world of X and Y, H and V. It’s hard to break out of that when the raster is just made that way. Which is why I am still hoping for some kind of DVE in a tiny form factor, like MemPal only in 3D. That completely tears down the walls of the raster prison. Two channels of DVE, a little cross-feedback, and you can basically do anything.

Until I get some kind of DVE, the closest I can get to breaking the tyranny of the rectangle is oscillographics and raster manipulation.

3 Likes

I find it a lot easier to ask the targeted questions towards new gear and LZX products, absolutely. Much of the anxiety comes from where to begin with the older kit both mindfully in use and without missing any of the caveats that come with aging, fussy, mostly long-deprecated SD gear. I think my last experience with broadcast equipment was video production classes, not art-driven beyond understanding of lighting / editing, and some 31 years back!

Pre-pandemic I’m sure I’d just go to a few meetups to talk in person about approach :slight_smile:

1 Like

I would love the list of model numbers! Trying to compare scopes I see listed on eBay to determine what works well in XY mode:
EICO Model 460
Tektronix T921 (single channel but still has XY switch - compatibility unclear)

You can see previous work I’ve done with Oscilloscope Music here:
https://www.lovetech.org/osci-station

Thanks,
Rich DDT

2 Likes

Great work Rich…! I see your profile pic, were you a friend of Marty Kenny? I was also a subject of his series of “Psychedelic Homies” portraits.

I’ll direct message the info to ya.