January 4, 2009
Some people think that a good waveshape is one that looks like what is printed in a textbook. A clean SAW wave is not always the best sounding one. Buchla 259s do not address the waves at the main output by the way they look, but rather by their harmonic content. Sure, there's a square and sine output, but the main output is a blend between even and odd harmonics, between hi and low order harmonics and between lo and high timbre. This always seemed, to me, like the better way for a musician to deal with oscillator output. The 258 claims to have a saw and square wave, but I feel that the spirit has always been about even or odd harmonics. They crossfade from sine to saw on the top oscillator and square on the bottom. The waves never look perfect, but they sound so good that the oscillator has a cult following. People clone it left and right. The above 'scope pics are from the prototype of my clone.
Here you will find some scope shots from an actual vintage Buchla 258C:
Looking good. Sounding good. Feeling good.