Zack Scholl

Emulating a JP-8000 supersaw in SuperCollider

 / #supercollider #til 

Reverse-engineering a non-linear response curve for detuning multiple oscillators is the key to a great sounding synthesizer.

I recently learned about this great thesis by Adam Szabo where they carefully reverse engineer the detuning curve for the oscillators from a JP-8000 synthesizer. Essentially they evaluated frequency space for a bunch of values set on the synthesizer and calculated the space between the different frequencies from the fundamental.


This resulted in a fitting equation to get the same cruve, and luckily enough there is already a SuperCollider port of this equation from Eric Skogen. For my ears, it sounds great.

This is a great example of how a simple idea can become an amazing idea in its implementation. Detuning six oscillators is a simple thing, but the non-linear response built-in to the JP-8000 makes it way more pleasant as it increases the “sweet” spots.