1959 RCA Mark 2 Synth

The RCA mark 2 was a revolutionary synth. It was built by Milton Babbitt and cost $500,000 to build. It had an additional 24 oscillators and took up ten 19" racks.

external image rca2.jpg

It used a roll of paper with holes punched in it as a type of sheet music to create sound. It was revolutionary in the sense that it had never been done before. It sounds horrible though.
Its more or less one of those things that you listen to and say "Wow it really works cool" not "wow that sounds great.". Because it sounds like crap. It was really interesting though.
I always thought that electronic music like this really came form the 80 not the forties, fifties and sixties. The RCA Mark 2 resides in the computer music centre in Columbia University.