Olegtron 4060, originally released in 2013, has been updated to a MK2-version. The semi-decennial celebratory release, altough wearing a new colorful plumage, is pretty much the same machine inside. This means that the tutorials and demos will serve to the users of the 500+ original units, as well as users of the new one. Many improvements have been made, though - thanks to feedback from users of the original version. Some requested features could not be included in the new design, but let's see if a MK3 version will emerge one day! Here is the list of new features:
So, what is Olegtron 4060? It's a compact oscillator / frequency divider box capable of creating signals and sequences through a revolutionary programming method: sticking electronic components to it’s patchboard! The device can be used as a standalone sound generator or as a control voltage (CV) signal generator to a wide variety of machines, such as modular synthesizers. When used as a CV-generator 4060 can easily deliver complex results that would normally need a large system.
Learning the 4060 is easy, but there is a lot to master. Using it doesn’t require any previous electronics skills, but experimenting with different electronic components helps you get the idea how they work, and your programming can become more systematic. The provided resistors and small capacitors are color coded for clearness.
The name of the device comes from CD4060, which is an integrated circuit, a "chip". It belongs to a series of CMOS logic chips called 4000Band interfaces with other chips of the series seamlessly. The series dates back to the sixties, but is still relevant in sound electronics and DIY. The CD4060 contains an oscillator with adjustable frequency and a frequency divider, that outputs 10 different subfrequencies.
Olegtron 4060 is based on an RC-oscillator example from the CD4060 datasheet, with the addition of a current limiting potentiometer that kind of simulates a weak battery. The rest is mostly user interface design, highlighting of course the innovative patchboard that makes a good playground for experimenting.
Olegtron 4060 MK2 ships with a bag of components to get started with. All you need is a 9v battery or a 9 volt wall wart, and something that connects to a 3,5mm headphone jack.