Few people have heard of it, yet many consider John Blankenbaker's KENBAK-1 to be the first commercial personal computer.

Koss introduced these headphones over 40 years ago, and they remain affordable favorites to this day.

PAiA: Affordable DIY Synthesizers

Somehow I've forgotten to mention the wonderful DIY devices from PAiA Corporation. Company founder John Simonton is often credited with creating the world's first programmable drum machine - the PAiA Programmable Drum Set. Its distinctive analog sound underpinned Peter Gabriel's Games Without Frontiers and Biko, among countless others. Although Simonton passed away several years ago, the company is still going strong.

PAiA fatman

The PAiA Fatman analog monosynth continues PAiA's long tradition of bringing affordable analog synthesis to the masses. This kit-based instrument is offered in rack-mount or table top versions for under $250. Over the years, it has earned the honor of becoming the world’s most modded synth, with dozens of useful tweaks available online for intrepid builders, including VCO hard sync and a subharmonic generator. Build one and you'll quickly discover that nothing beats a front panel filled with knobs. Don't despair if you're not the DIY type - they frequently appear on eBay.

Paia 9700

Way back in the mid-1970s, PAiA offered a series of monstrous analog modular synthesizer kits at then-unheard of prices. The modern descendant of these ancient beasts is the 9700 analog modular system. Unlike the massive and temperamental instruments of decades past, the 9700 combines multiple sound elements into each module. The result is a surprisingly compact and affordable system starting at under $600.

Explore the PAiA product catalog


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