This document was created in 2006, maybe earlier. I try to keep it up to date but often fail. Do not blindly trust anything in here, especially prices.
AKA Eurocard frames AKA IEC 60297 sub-racks. Manufacturers include APW, Elma and Schroff. supermoduul.com used to have some cheap. As of 2017, they seem to be out of frames but still have blank panels and accessories.
Molex 1625 series. Used in the old Oberheim SEM.
RS 664-581 (Cherry MX1A-A1NN) does not include a keycap, contrary to what the photo on the web site suggests. The UK site says the keycaps are available as SKU 664-660 which doesn't seem to be available from the French branch. Nice. Presumably, the same applies to RS 664-569 (Cherry MX1A-11NN).
The most common types of shaft are : round, 1/4" (6.35 mm) ; round, 6 mm; "knurled" a.k.a "serrated" a.k.a. "splined" (6 mm with 18 teeth) ; "D" (6 mm with a flat). Round shafts require knobs with a grub screw. Splined shafts and D shafts accomodate push-on knobs which are usually made of moulded plastic and much cheaper.
Curves a.k.a. laws a.k.a. tapers : the three most common curves are linear, log (a.k.a. "audio") and anti-log (a.k.a. "antilog", "reverse log" or "reverse audio"). In France (and, I believe, the rest of Europe), "A" means linear and "B" means log. In Japan and North America, it's the other way around. "C" always means anti-log.
One of the best deals there is on pots is the Alpha RV160 knurled shaft
Rapid, Futurlec and Mouser sell them.
Futurlec have the best prices.
Mike points out that
The pots from Rapid have longer spindles than
those from Futurlec. If direct panel mounting the ones from Rapid, the
spindles need cutting down..
Some people prefer G&H or Song-Huei's 16-mm carbon pots.
Beware of Piher pots. My experience has been that they become scratchy fast.
Anti-log pots are relatively hard to find. Banzai, Futurlec, Mouser and Small Bear carry Alpha anti-log pots. Futurlec and Mouser don't seem to have any dual-gang ones, unfortunately for people building or repairing parametric equalisers. Before you embark on a search for an anti-log pot, read these :
Beginners' Guide to Potentiometersby Rod Elliott.
Tom Arnold has Alpha RV16 50 kΩ linear, centre-tapped, 1 detent, 1/4"-shaft pots for sale
Mouser order code 313-1601F-500K is the Alpha RV16BF-10-15R1-B500K which is a 16 mm 500 kΩ linear carbon with a 1/4" shaft and a DPDT switch. Jürgen Haible used them in his Korg PS-3200 clone.
RS 467-5951 looks nothing like the photo on the web site. It is in fact the same product as Multicomp MCCPMB5 or CP-MB-5 which Farnell used to carry as 766-562. Not a bad knob but no skirt and the indicator "line" is almost 2 mm thick.
Resistors with specific temperature coefficients (E.G. +3500 PPM/K as needed in exponential converters). See Ian Fritz's Dial-a-Tempco Exponential Converter.
|1||?||?||?||?||?||?||The Bridechamber||link||2.50 USD|
|1||Panasonic-ECG||ERA-S33J102V||5%||+3300||0.1||SMD 0805||Digi-Key||P1.0KCDCT-ND||0.552 USD||David Brown used them to build an AM4075 ARP 4075 VCF clone.|
|1||?||?||1%||+3500||?||?||Elby Designs||link||6.10 AUD||Includes a 42.2 Ω resistor to lower the coefficient to +3300 PPM/K if desired.|
|1||?||?||?||+3500||axial||Oakley Sound Systems||link||5 GBP|
Equivalent to the old Tel Labs Q81
|1||Precision Resistor||PT146||1%||+3500||0.25||axial||Eli Manis||?||3.58 CAD||
Eli Manis Inc.|
8515 Place Devonshire
|1||Tyco/Meggitt||LT300016T261K0J||5%||+3000||0.17||axial||Farnell||0.92 GBP||No longer stocked as of 2008-12.|
|1||Akaneohm||LT16S102F33||1%||+3300||0.167||axial||Katayama Technical Service||link||40 JPY||See "Akaneohm" below.|
|1.8||Panasonic-ECG||ERA-S33J182V||5%||+3300||0.1||SMD 0805||Digi-Key||P1.8KCDCT-ND||0.552 USD|
|1.87||Akaneohm||LT16S1871F33||1%||+3300||0.167||axial||Katayama Technical Service||link||50 JPY||See "Akaneohm" below.|
|2||?||?||?||?||?||?||The Bridechamber||link||2.50 USD|
|2||Akaneohm||LT16S202F33||1%||+3300||0.167||axial||Katayama Technical Service||link||40 JPY||See "Akaneohm" below.|
|2||?||?||1%||+3500||?||?||Elby Designs||link||9.45 AUD||Includes a 84.5 Ω resistor to lower the coefficient to +3300 PPM/K if desired.|
|2||Micro-Ohm ?||?||2%||3500||0.25||?||Magic Smoke||link||3.50 USD|
|2||Precision Resistor||PT146||1%||+3500||0.25||axial||MFOS||link||9 USD|
|2||Tel Labs||Q81K||1%||+3300||?||axial 0.575"×0.15"||Jim Patchell||link||10 USD|
|10||Koa||LP1/8W10kF||1%||+3300||0.125||axial||Katayama Technical Service||link||40 JPY|
Akaneohm make an LT series of tempcos. Class G (2%) is standard, class F (1%) available upon request. On 2017-04-18, Takuya Katayama announced that Akaneohm plan to discontinue the LT series on 2018-03 and that anyone wanting to buy should contact him by 2017-05-31.
Koa reportedly make an "LP" class F (1%) resistor. No idea where you can get them but Mouser carry many Koa references.
KRL Bantry Components, inc. make tempcos from +80 PPM/K to +5000 PPM/K. They're not used to selling to individuals but they will deal with you if you have a large enough purchase : in 2005, "Metrophage" bought 600 USD worth of tempcos from them and got the prices down to 1.53 USD for the 1 kΩ and 1.77 USD for the 1.87 kΩ and 2 kΩ.
Micro-Ohm make tempcos from +1000 PPM/K to +5100 PPM/K.
Precision Resistor Company, inc. have +3500 PPM/K in stock. Other coefficients available.
Tyco/Citec LT300014T261K0J (+3000 PPM/K but +3300 PPM/K available)
Weltronic distribute Precision Resistor Company products in Germany.
Audio transformers. All right, that's for general audio, not synth DIY.
Sound Enhancement Products, Inc. manufacture the Accutronics reverb tanks. They don't sell to individuals.
Saint Quentin Radio in Paris carry a selection of Accutronics reverb tanks, which they get from a company in New Jersey. They're open to ordering other models for you as long as they're available from their supplier. You may have to wait until their next order.
Starting in the seventies, Solid State Music / Solid State Micro Technology manufactured a number of chips designed by Dave Rossum (of E-mu) and Ron Dow which were used in contemporary synths such as the Prophet 5. Their main competition was Curtis Electromusic Specialties, founded by Doug Curtis.
For many years around the turn of the century, SSM and CEM chips were out of production, hard to find and expensive. Recently, the situation has started to improve. Doug Curtis' widow Mary Curtis has revived CEM as Curtis Electromusic / On Chip and Sound Semiconductor / CruzTOOLS, Inc are releasing an SSM2144-like chip.
See Wikipedia's page on CEM and SSM chips in synthesizers and the Emulator archive.
Combined keyboard scanner and DCO. Outputs four square waves one octave apart which can be summed to approximate a sawtooth. Used in the Siel Mono and Jen SX1000.
Reissued in 2016 by Curtis Electromusic / On Chip. Second sourced / cloned in 2017 by Coolaudio as the V3340.
Harris/Intersil stopped making them (see under CA3280 below for details) but Rochester Electronics have taken them up and old stock is not hard to find.
The Bridechamber : CA3080
Futurlec : CA3080E.
Rochester Electronics have CA3080 in stock and are now manufacturing new ones.
Intersil made the CA3280 and discontinued it in 2005.
On 2005-05-24, Jim Patchell asked Intersil what the status of the CA3280 really was. Intersil support replied :
No new dies were made after the Findlay plant closed in September 2002. LTB, Life Time Buy for the CA3080E and CA3080AE is 2005-09-15 or when stock runs out. Production of CA3080 and CA3080A wafers stopped when the Findlay plant was closed down September 2002 and we have been building units from die inventory ever since.
On 2005-05-26, Don Tillman urged Intersil to keep the CA3280 alive. They replied :
I will pass on your concerns but please understand, these CA family of products were developed by RCA on a very old and obsolete fab process that is long since been discontinued and the fab plant was shut down and sold off. We have been living on wafer stock. Today the wafer stock has been depleted to the point we have to withdraw the product. We need to insure we have enough product remaining to support the life time buys that are now incoming.
So, we reluctantly must withdraw these CA parts as our stock is depleted and in good faith, notify our customer base in time for last time buys.
Later, they added :
We are sorry but what FAB equiptment we did not move to Florida, we sold with the building. The CA process was based on an old 7micron specialized process. So, the process is gone and is not worth the time and 10's of millions to rebuild when today we are working with sub micron processes. The market size for the CA part just will not return a profit for the cost.
As for other sources, I would start with our obsolete distributor, Rochester Electronics [rocelec.com]. You might consider looking at Analog Devcices [analog.com], linear Technology [ltc.com] or Maxim [maxim-ic.com] for alternatives.
Don Tillman's web log entry.
Patchell is now almost out of CA3280E.
Rochester Electronics sell Harris-branded CA3280. Quoting James Gallant :
The reason I brought the topic up is that I've found some at Rochester Electronics Inc. They have over 16,000 in stock spread between three part numbers, all of which are by Harris. I contacted them yesterday [2007-05-25], just before my first post on this topic, and they will sell to individuals. Their terms are $50 minimum order per line item. In other words, per unique part number ordered, not total order. They also take major credit cards for payment. The down side of this is that they do not list prices, you have to submit an RFQ, request for quote.
Unicorn Electronics may have some.
|Mfr||Mfr part no.||Pkg||Sup||SKU||Price|
Farnell sell the National LM13700M/NOPB (SMT, order code 1150053) via Newark and charge 25 EUR for this service.
Don Sauer tells The LM13600/LM13700 story.
The Philips fab in Caen where they were made burned down in December 2003. ON Semiconductor (Motorola) make an equivalent but, reportedly, it's not as good.
ON Semiconductor make the NE5517/AU5517. As of 2015-01, the DIP versions are tagged "last shipments" with links to Rochester. The SOIC-16 versions are still "active".
Long discontinued by Rohm/Roland and very hard to find. Open Music Labs sell a clone for 12 USD.
A nice, cheap, temperature-compensated quad VCA. Analog Devices, in their long term crusade against the SSM line, have obsoleted the SSM2164 in 2010 or early 2011.
Coolaudio have a clone, the V2164 which is
reportedly just as good.
V2164D is the DIP-16 version, V2164M is the SOIC-16 version.
It is available from Cabin Tech Global (no direct link, their web site does not allow
that), Small Bear Electronics (SOIC and DIP) and surely others.
One batch of V2164M from 2017-07 was made with the indent next to pin 9
instead of pin 1.
In that batch, the way to find pin 1 is to look for the white dot,
ignoring the indent.
The SSI2164, to be released in 2017 by Sound Semiconductor is expected to be an improved SSM2164.
The SSM2164 will go up in smoke if it loses the negative supply. Oscar Salas and Neil Johnson have found a simple and effective protection scheme (a Schottky diode from V- to ground). This paragraph may (and probably does) apply not only to the original SSM2164 but also to its clones.
THAT 2162 dual Blackmer VCA (QSOP only)
Profusion PLC and Mouser sell them.
Discontinued, replaced by THAT 218x.
Profusion PLC and Mouser sell them.
The SSM2044 is to be reissued in 2017 by Sound Semiconductor in SSOP with a different pin-out as the SSI2144.
FIXME Don't trust the grades in this table, they don't carry across manufacturers !
|LM336-5.0||4 ~ 6||10||15||TO-92(FB,C,A)|
|LM4041-ADJ||15||1.24 ~ 10||0.1 (-A)|
|REF01||12 ~ 40||9.7 ~ 10.3||20/65 (-C)|
|REF02||7 ~ 40||4.7 ~ 5.3||±100 (-D)|
|2||-||LM394||N||A||-||-||-||-||-||DIP-8 version discontinued in 1998.
Futurlec used to have some (out of stock as of 2009-10).
Bridechamber are out of stock.
TO-99 version marked "Lifetime buy 2010-07-30"
|LS318||L M||A†||-||-||A||-||-||In production. †DIP version deleted as of 2013-08 according to Scott Rider.|
|MAT02||M||-||-||-||-||-||-||Discontinued by AD in 2009, replaced by MAT12.|
|MAT12||M||-||-||-||-||-||-||Introduced by AD in 2010 in replacement of MAT02.|
|SSM2210||-||A||-||-||A||-||-||AD discontinued them in 2009.|
|SSM2212||-||-||-||-||A||-||-||Introduced by AD in 2010 in replacement of SSM2210. Only available in SOIC-8 !|
|-||2||LS358||O P||B||-||-||B||-||-||In production|
|2||2||THAT140||-||-||F||-||-||F||-||Discontinued. Jim Patchell has some for sale.|
|-||4||THAT120||-||-||H||-||-||H||-||Discontinued. Jim Patchell has some for sale.|
|5||-||CA3046||-||-||I||-||-||I||-||Discontinued by Intersil circa 2005.||Same die as CA3086 but differential pair tested for matching.
National still make the LM3046 but in
Ian Fritz 2008-12-12 :
I've used the CA3083 in many projects. The log conformance is *way* better than for the 3046, namely Re = 1.3 Ohm vs. 5.0 Ohms. The 3046 is pretty far down on the list for expo converters.
|CA3146||-||-||I||-||-||I||-||Discontinued. Futurlec, Nikko and a few other stockists have some.||High voltage version of CA3046. Intersil used to make them but now deny they ever did.|
Ian Fritz uses this device in his triangle core
VCO : |
I chose the CA3083 array for the converter transistors. My measurements indicate that these have much better characteristics than their specs indicate, with matching better than 0.2 mV and betas above 200. Although general-purpose arrays like this have a bit more emitter series resistance than expensive, special purpose pairs, the the D1-R14 feedback path provides highly effective compensation for the effects of this resistance.
|CA3183||-||-||-||J||-||-||J||Discontinued.||High voltage version of CA3083. Intersil (and apparently Philips) used to make them but now deny they ever did.|
|CA3086||-||-||I||-||-||I||-||Discontinued by Intersil.||Same die as CA3046 but differential pair not tested for matching.|
|3||2||CA3096||-||-||-||K||-||-||K||Discontinued.||Replaced by Intersil HFA3096 (same pinout, I think), which Digi-Key, Newark and others stock but is only available in SOIC.|
Pinout codes :
David G. Dixon 2009-12-05 :
[...] the Linear Integrated Systems
LS358 log conformance matched pnp [is] an excellent
candidate for expo converter applications [...]
Linear has two distributors: Trendsetter in Texas and Nacsemi in Florida.
Canadians can also obtain Linear parts from and Eli Manis in Quebec.
Linear also ships direct.
As far as I can tell, none of these suppliers have minimum order
Trendsetter likes to see orders of at least $50, and Linear of at least
$100 (which shouldn't be hard).
Eli Manis didn't mention any minimums, and seemed genuinely eager to
help, as did they all.
Bulk resistance (rBE) comparison by René Schmitz.
Parts to look into : Philips BC847BS and BC857BS (both used in the Arturia Minibrute), Zetex ZTX795A and ZTX1151A, 2SA798, 2SC1583, 2SC3381, 2SA1349, CA3045/LM3045, HFA3128, PMP4201 (used in the Opem Music Labs BA662 clone).
Logic Threshold Voltage Levels explains the difference between 4000-series or 74C and 74HCT.
An LED and a photoresistor in the same package, forming a current
The higher the current through the LED, the lower the resistance.
Useful for adding voltage control to a circuit but not without
quirks : resistance falls much quicker than it rises and the
relationship between input current and resistance depends on how long
the LED has been off (light history effect).
The VTL5Cx family, which includes the popular VTL5C2, VTL5C3, VTL5C3/2 and VTL5C4. Originally made by EG&G Vactec, later part of Perkin Elmer, now Excelitas Technologies. The VTL5C3 was second-sourced / cloned in 2012 by Coolaudio.
The NSL family (E.G. NSL-32) made by Silonex. Reportedly faster than the VTL5Cx.
Some (most ? all ?) types of photoresistors contain cadmium sulphide (CdS). Cadmium is one of the substances banned in the EU under RoHS. There used to be an exemption for "cadmium in photoresistors for optocouplers applied in professional audio equipment" but it has run out on 2010-01-01. Nevertheless, photoresistors are still widely available in the EU as of 2015-01.
Allied Electronics carry the entire VTL5Cx range and some Silonex NSL.
Specialised stores :
Cross-vendor search :
General electronic components resellers : E44 (mail order + stores in Nantes, Poitiers, La Roche-sur-Yon and Vannes), ECE espace composants électroniques (mail order + store at 66 rue de Montreuil 75011 Paris), ESR Electronic Components Ltd near Newcastle. RAM/Verdier SA/Zeus (mail order + stores in Paris) and RS Components (known as Radiospares in France, formerly Verospeed). Reichelt (Germany).
Their web site lists a number of shipping methods :
UPS Next Day UPS 2nd Day DHL Next Day Noon DHL Next 10:30 AM DHL Saver - Next 3 PM DHL 2nd Day Fedex Standard Fedex Priority 1 Fedex 2nd Day U.S. Express Mail
The cheapest is Express Mail. There is no ground delivery.
If you choose Express Mail as I did, the delivery guy will collect the VAT and handling charge. Have some change ready.
Until the second half of the 2000's, Farnell France would only deal with businesses. They will now sell to individuals. There is a minimum order and you will pay shipping but it's very reasonable.
There are sometimes delays but the goods usually do arrive.
A few things you might want to know before ordering from them :
If you live in France and chose FedEx International Priority shipping, you will get a bill from Coface for VAT and fixed handling charge (7.20 EUR + VAT).
This invoice will arrive about two months after the corresponding parcel. If you are running a group buy, you need to anticipate this. If you bill participants solely on what Mouser charged you, you will lose money.
Apparently, Coface is involved only because of FedEx's policy to off-load their "debt collection" to them. A similar policy may be in effect in other countries.
Just because Mouser's web site says a reference is in stock does not mean it is. After placing the order, you may get an email advising you that references that were "in stock" when you clicked on the button are now "this product is expected to be in stock by" various dates as far as five months in the future.
This is bad because it means another shipment. Even if Mouser pay the postage on the second parcel, Coface will bill you another 7.20 EUR + VAT. My last Mouser order was split in four. The last shipment was for 2.40 USD of chips. I asked Mouser to cancel it as I would rather lose 2.40 USD than 7 EUR.
After placing your order, you may get two emails referring to two different orders. If the second email says "WAIVE SHIPPING SPLIT ORDER", don't panic. It happened to me ; my 170-entry order was split into two 85-entry orders because it "didn't fit" (their biggest box, presumably).
Of course, that means an extra 7.20 EUR + VAT for dear old FedEx-Coface.
Rapid are funny. They ship orders in reused cardboard boxes. They seem to try to carry as few items as possible and be cheaper than everybody else. They are the anti-RS. If their headquarters came in contact with those of RS, they would probably annihilate each other, converting all their matter to energy.
They used to have a very stiff minimum order of 500 UKP for people
outside of the UK.
As of 2008-01, that is a thing of the past : their web site says
Export orders to countries outside the EU have a minimum
order value of £25. No minimum order value within the EU..
They do have a maximum order of sorts, however. If your order exceeds 500 GBP, you cannot pay by credit/debit card. "For security reasons", you must pay via bank transfer. This means a 12 GBP bank fee and a delay, hence items going out of stock in the meantime and complications with any "end column day" deals. The 500 GBP limit includes shipping and 20% VAT ; the "basket total" limit is closer to 370 GBP. Smile : back in 2009, it was 250 GBP and their online ordering system didn't know about the limit so you learned about it the next day.
Formerly known as Verospeed.
Beware of order codes beginning with 25 or marked as "Newark InOne". There is an additional charge of 15 to 25 EUR on those.
Historically, the French branch of Radiospares would sell to individuals with a small (or no) minimum order. Sometime in 2005 or 2006, they started enforcing a 150 EUR minimum order for individuals. So not content with being more expensive than Farnell, they are now also harder to deal with.
Update : in 2009, their terms have changed again. There is no minimum now but
At least this is the case for their French branch.
Most of the information on this page comes from synth-diy subscribers. Archives : http://dropmix.xs4all.nl/pipermail/synth-diy/ (from 2007-03 on), http://search.retrosynth.com/synth-diy/ (from 1995 on).
This is http://www.teaser.fr/~amajorel/sourcing/, last modified 2017-12-15.