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date: 23 August 2019

Moog, Robert A(rthur)locked

  • Mark D. Porcaro

Extract

(b New York, NY, May 23, 1934; d Asheville, NC, Aug 21, 2005). American designer of electronic instruments. He became interested in electronics during his teens after encountering the theremin. While in high school he provided schematics and descriptions of his own theremin for Electronics World, a hobbyist magazine. After graduating in 1952 he started the R.A. Moog Co. with his father’s help to create and sell mail-order theremin kits from his home. Moog studied physics at Queens College, New York, electrical engineering at Columbia University, and graduated in 1965 with a PhD in engineering physics from Cornell University.

In 1964 Moog worked with the composer Herb Deutsch to create a monophonic synthesizer consisting of a variety of modules of voltage-controlled oscillators, amplifiers, envelope generators, and filters linked together by patch chords and controlled by a keyboard. The Moog synthesizer was the first to use Vladimir Ussachevsky’s envelope generator—known as an attack, decay, sustain, and release envelope—which could shape the timbre of a pitch by modifying its amplitude over time. Moog demonstrated his new instrument at a convention that year for the Audio Engineering Society, where he also took the first orders for his new instrument....

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The New Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments