Chris Garyet testing his voltage-controlled wah circuit Office: Centergy 5212 (but I'm almost never there)
Phone: 404-385-2548 (but I almost never answer it)
E-mail: (by far the best way to reach me; please include "EMS" somewhere in the subject of class-related e-mail so I can find it quickly)
Course website:
Prerequisites: ECE3040 and ECE3041 (with concurrency allowed, i.e. you can be taking ECE3041 this semester and be OK). Basically, I need some familiarity with op amps, diodes, and transistors, and I need to make sure that you have had some experience using a scope by the time you will to use one in EMS. (Oscilloscopes are introduced pretty early in ECE3041, which is what makes the "concurrency" part OK)
Website for previous offering: EMS (Spring 2008) - will help give you a feel for what the class is like

The photo: Chris Garyet testing his voltage-contolled "wah" circuit (from Spring 2006)

(Note: I often abbreviate the class title as "EMS." This usage of "EMS" should not be confused with "EMS" as in Electronic Music Studios, the makers of many classic synthesizers such as the Synthis.)

Grading: Grades will be based on a series of written homeworks and possibly a few simple lab assignments, an in-class quiz given about 2/3 of the way through the semester that will be weighted the same as a homework, and the quality of a final project in which you will design and build a module for a modular synthesizer. I consider the project to be the most important thing in the class; hence, your course grade will max out at whatever your project grade is, e.g., if you do B work on the homeworks, etc., but turn in an A project, you might get an A for the class, or you might get a B; but if you do A work on everything else but turn in B level project, your grade won't be an A.

Aaron's SDIY Pages



Dear readers from outside the class: If you find these lectures useful, please consider making a small donation (maybe $25 or thereabouts, although any amount is appreciated) to the Georgia Tech Foundation earmarked to go towards my synthesizer research; the funds will go towards parts and equipment for student projects. Here are instructions on how to donate.

Since this is a lecture/lab class, I will only lecture for 2/3 of the class periods, and that lecturing will be "front loaded," i.e. I will lecture for the first 2/3 of the class, and the last 1/3 of the class you will be just working on your final projects, with me dropping by the lab to help out as much as I can.

If you look at the lectures from the Spring 2008 version of the course, you will get a pretty good idea of what we will cover in the future.


We will draw material from numerous sources: book, articles, patents, and particularly schematics and descriptions posted on websites. Think of google as the main class text. Here's some good ones: