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1931 __ Radio Organ of a Trillion Tones
Lesti (?) (?-?)
Comment : The "Radio Organ of a Trillion Tones" was created and developed by A. Lesti and F. Sammis in the USA. The Radio Organ used a similar technique as the Celluphone and variants - rotating photo-electric disks interrupting a light beam at different frequencies produced varied pitches an timbres from a vacuum tube oscillator; the principle was improved in the "Polytone".The Polytone Organ (1934) : A. Lesti and F. Sammis's development of the Radio Organ of a Trillion Tones was christened the 'The Polytone Organ', this instrument was a three keyboard manual organ using the same sound production system as the 'Radio Organ' - rotating photo-electrical tone-wheel sound generation. The instrument was completed in 1934 and was one of the first multi-timbral instruments.The Singing Keyboard (1936) : F. Sammis invented the "singing Keyboard" in 1936, a precursor of modern samplers, the instrument played electro-optical recordings of audio waves stored on strips of 35mm film which were triggered and pitched when the player pressed a key. More recent instruments such as the Mellotron and Chamberlin use a similar technology of triggered and pitched magnetic tape recordings. (Compiled from various sources, and quoted by Derek Holzer)
Urls : http://www.umatic.nl/tonewheels_historical.html (last visited ) http://www.keyboardmuseum.org/pre60/1930/radioorgan.html (last visited ) http://davidszondy.com/future/music/trillion_tone.htm (last visited ) http://biblio-fr.info.unicaen.fr/bnum/jelec/Solaris/d07/7caillaud.html (last visited )

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