13   The Universal LFO

A low-frequency oscillator (LFO) is a piece of equipment used to modulate the sounds created by an electronic instrument. Depending on what it’s modulating, an LFO can add warbles, wobbles, vibrato, tremolo, and a variety of swelling, pulsing, or sweeping effects to your electronic instrument’s repertoire.

An oscillator is anything that goes back and forth between two points or states, like a fan that swings from right to left, a metronome ticking back and forth, or a vibrating guitar string. The Droid Voicebox (Project 6) and the Single-Chip Space Invader Synth (Project 15) both get their voices from electronic oscillators running at relatively high frequencies, in roughly the same range as a guitar string or the column ...

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