Thursday, June 20, 2013

Garfield Electronics Doctor Flick, Clock Delay, Modulator and Timebase Meter "The Time Machines" ad, 1984

Garfield Electronics Doctor Flick, Clock Delay, Modulator and Timebase Meter "The Time Machines" full page black & white advertisement from page 21 in the July 1984 issue of Keyboard Magazine.

Hot on the heels of the last Garfield advertisement for the Mini Doc is this awesome ad for four new products from the company.
  • The Doctor Flick
  • The Clock Delay
  • The Modulator
  • The Timebase Meter
In the previous Garfield advertisement for the Mini Doc, the artwork was strictly decorative in nature. All readers got out of the artwork was basically a really nice illustration of a bunch of different gear looking angrily at each other. The artwork didn't even include the Mini Doc itself - a rarity in the synth-art work.  Its great stuff, don't get me wrong, it just didn't provide any other purpose than to give a single salt-shake of context to the ad.

But in this latest advertisement, the artwork not only includes imagery of each device, but the drawings also give readers the benefit of some clear indication as to the functionality of each device.

And that's a good thing too, because although the ad-copy tries its best to describe each device and its very specific purpose, unfortunately with only one page of ad-space readers are bound to be left a little confused. But that artwork does a pretty good job of filling in the gaps.
The imagery for the Doctor Flick shows the device dancing in unison with other gear. The device allows sequencers and drum machines all to simultaneously sync to click tracks.

The Clock Delay imagery details the device as a traffic cop, a good illustration for a device that helps "fine tune" the feel of the sync time between two pieces of gear by nudging the timing forward or backwards to create a laid-back or pushed feel.

The artist chose to illustrate the more complicated Modulator as an orchestra conductor. This more complicated device has a sync'd programmable trigger to control arpeggiators, gates and drum machine triggers as well as a triggered rhythm envelope to modulate synthesizer VCOs, VCFs and VCAs in sync with the timing of the music.

And finally, the drawing of the Timebase Meter has the device holding the sync cords of a number of other pieces of gear while looking at his watch. This device allows Dr. Flick to adjust to any time rate, and when used with the Clock Delay it indicates when two pieces of gear are perfectly aligned.

All four devices seem to be much more rare than the Doctor Click and Mini Doc devices - both in auctions and online in general. But I did manage to find a few good references. 

Although the Dr. Flick does seem to be a rare beast online, I did find one 2008 MATRIXSYNTH auction post for the device that provides a lot more detail. it even includes a photo of the top of the rack that includes some basic operating instructions and reference information on different devices clock rates. Nice.

The Clock Delay also appeared in a 2012 MATRIXSYNTH auction post that provides photos of the top of the rack with some basic operating instructions. And if that's not enough for you, it also appeared in the Spec Sheet section of the December 1984 issue of Keyboard. Both provide intimate details that could never have made it in to the limited space available in the ad-copy.
"Garfield Delay. The stereo Clock Delay provides a means to compensate for rhythmic offsets between various makes of sequencers, drum machines, arpeggiators, and synthesizers.  the offsets are typically due to the differing response times of various instruments to incoming clock signals, and cause the "feel" between instruments playing together to be "out of the groove". Each channel provides 24 milliseconds of delay, selectable in 2-millisecond steps with a continuously variable fine-tune control for adjusting the feel. The channels provide click, clock and trigger output pulses with rising or falling edge polarity to meet the clocking requirements of all instruments. The rising and falling edges are cascadable for delays of up to 48 milliseconds. The unit is designed to allow you to adjust the rhythmic feel so that it can be pushed, laid-back, or on top of the beat, as desired.  The clock Delay works as an accessory to synchronization systems base around Doctor Click, Mini Doc or Doctor Flick rhythm controllers.  Price is $495.00. Garfield Electronics, Box 1941, Burbank, CA 91507."
The Modulator seems to be more rare online, but luckily for readers of the blog the device appeared in the October 1984 issue of Keyboard. Its description really helps fill out some of the details that an illustration and a few sentences of ad-copy ever could:
"Garfield Rhythm Sequencer. The Modulator is a live-performance-oriented rhythm sequencer that features a programmable trigger, which can be used to control arpeggiators, gate external devices, and trigger external drum machines; and a rhythm envelope, which can be used to control VCAs, VCFs, and VCOs on external synthesizers in rhythms locked to the beat of the system. The trigger can be programmed in 3/4, 12/8 or 4/4 time, in one- or two-measure patterns. It can be synced to the clock or sync output of the sequencers and drum macines. The envelope features variable attach, decay, pulse-width and level controls, and can be triggered either from the programmable trigger or from an external source. When multiple synthesizer overdubs are made with the rhythm envelope, all modulation waveforms rhythmically mesh with each other and the tempo of the music. Price is $495.00. Garfield Electronics, Box 1941, Burbank, CA 91507."
Unfortunately a quick Google search for information on the Timebase Meter didn't bring up much. I'll dig a bit further and see if anything hits my radar. I'd really like to know more about that one. 

Before I end the post, I'd just like to point out one of the other reasons I love this advertisement - retail prices! Not all companies do it, especially as the prices start going above the two grand mark. But Garfield provides prices for all four: Dr. Flick - $1195.00; Click Delay: $495.00; Modulator: $495.00; Timebase Meter: $395.00.

I want them all.  :)

1 comment:

soiledspot said...

thanks for the information. your efforts are much appreciated.
would you happen to know where I may find a service manual for the Doctor Click unit ?

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