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 PAIA modular found 
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Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 8:16 pm
Posts: 5
Post PAIA modular found
hi guys,
my dear friend let me take home an item to inspect. i was amazed - it is two big old cases:

inside we find PAIA modular guts and a homemade controller:

also a box of cables, books, etc:

then we have a PAIA Phlanger:

and expression pedal:

would you guys please help me to understand how much money this might be worth? i do not know modulars well enough to test and make sure that all of it works. it was built in the 70's and hasn't been used in some time.

thanks for any input!

Tue Sep 11, 2012 3:19 pm

Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 8:16 pm
Posts: 5
Post Re: PAIA modular found
it would also help if someone could get me as far as playing a note on this thing.. heh.. :oops:

Wed Sep 12, 2012 12:14 am
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Joined: Sun Nov 09, 2008 2:49 pm
Posts: 733
Post Re: PAIA modular found
The collection looks to be in good to great condition!

It has a power supply from the 2720 series, so it might be a system pieced together over time rather than one of the packaged systems.

The modules in this system are about the same complement as contained in a 4700J or 4700S and these systems were about the $500 range (kit form, and with more value completed and in good working order); however, it is just a nice monophonic voice and probably most valuable to a collector. With $500 plus in your pocket, there are plenty of other options to consider. The P9700S is about this price, new.

Here's a minimal patch to get sound:

First, the red and black plastic connectors are single-conductor pin or tip jacks (sockets) and plugs for control, etc. and the mini-phone connectors are for the audio signals (these can be single conductor (tip-tip)) within the system, but when going out to an external amp/speaker, mixer, etc, two-conductors are needed (tip-tip (signal) and sleeve-sleeve (ground)).

The keyboard controller and the module cabinet have separate power supplies so the first patch made should be the black pin jack on the keyboard panel to one of the three black pin jacks labelled "Ground" on a cabinet Wing panel.

One more patch from the keyboard to one of the VCOs and you should be able to connect to hear one of the output waveforms -- the pitch control voltage output (graphically represented with varying stepped levels) to the VCO control voltage input.

The other two connectors on the keyboard are for trigger outputs: Gate or Step, and, Pulse, for connection to the Function (Envelope) Generator which makes a control voltage typically for a VCA to frame the audio from a VCO or VCO into a VCF.

A gate-trigger is off (no voltage) when no keys are pressed and on (voltage) when a key is pressed. The pulse-trigger is momentary with the voltage condition for a short duration at the instant a key is pressed.

Go to the PAiA homepage and make the entry

/talk using the 4700

in the Search Site box and you'll see many topics which should help you learn more about the system, in particular, the one with the link to the booklet, Using the 4700S.

I haven't had the chance to post the manual for the 1500 Phlanger yet...

Just connect audio in and audio out. The Pulse or Ramp waves from the VCO sound good flanged.

The pedal is simply a volume pedal with a variable amount of the input available at the output.

Make this entry in the Search Site box to see extras

/talk 1600

Scott Lee

Thu Sep 13, 2012 1:25 pm

Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 8:16 pm
Posts: 5
Post Re: PAIA modular found
nice.. thank you for the info!
i am almost to the point of playing notes here - it responds to pitch CV, but i am not sure how to run this through the VCA to get gated notes.. what does it mean by 0db and 3db - are those inputs or outputs?

i have it on the floor facing up - maybe it is supposed to be on a table facing me so that it can bend inward? a lot of the cables are short and as you see - the VCA is on the opposite end from the VCOs... could i use the ADSR to gate notes also?

this is getting to be fun - now that i can hear some sawtooth bass i am excited.. :)

Thu Sep 13, 2012 4:57 pm

Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 7:43 pm
Posts: 80
Post Re: PAIA modular found
I saw your post on Muff Wiggler...very impressive condition! Over the years the PAiA panels tend to become pitted unless maintained instead of thrown in a box and stored in a garage!

To get the VCA pumping, run an audio jack from the VCO into either the 0 or 3dB in on the VCA (the 3dB input is louder than the 0dB input. You could run a softer wave like a triangle into the 3dB and a sawtooth into the 0dB and have them mixed together), then connect the out to your amplifier. Plug in the keyboard out into the VCO. Use a pin plug cable to go from the keyboard gate or pulse trigger (don't forget the ground!) to the Function (Envelope) Generator. Take another pin cable from the 5V out of the Envelope Generator and plug that into one of the black jacks on the VCA. Set the attack how you want it and move the decay clockwise. Hit a note and - bingo bango - you have created your first playable note!

I also noticed you had some of the Polyphony magazines in your collection. Those are terrific to learn what others in the day were doing with their PAiA synths, plus there are patches you can use as starting points to your sonic explorations. One other thing is that the magazines go for a nice sum on eBay if you decide to sell them.

Good luck!

Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:04 pm

Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 8:16 pm
Posts: 5
Post Re: PAIA modular found
ok. this has been very fun - i got the VCA working and ran audio out to my little guitar amp.. things go more strangely when i try to use the VCF or ADSR FEG.. like the signal fades in a circle and only triggers at certain points.. the ADSR does not seem to to work in the way that i would expect...

now i know that its sound is pretty harsh.. not something that i would ever devote several square feet of desk space to.. but, perhaps i will record a little with my laptop for samples later on.. :)

Sun Sep 16, 2012 4:19 pm

Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 8:16 pm
Posts: 5
Post Re: PAIA modular found
ah.. now the VCF and FEG are working.. it has a bit of personality.. i like the LP filter quite a bit.. :)

Mon Sep 17, 2012 12:09 am
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