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synthesizer

[sin-thuh-sahy-zer] /ˈsɪn θəˌsaɪ zər/
noun
1.
a person or thing that synthesizes.
2.
any of various electronic, sometimes portable consoles or modules, usually computerized, for creating, modifying, and combining tones or reproducing the sounds of musical instruments by controlling voltage patterns, operated by means of keyboards, joysticks, sliders, or knobs.
Origin
1865-1870
1865-70; 1905-10, for def 2; synthesize + -er1
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for synthesizer
  • Unfortunately, it has a synthesizer instead of an accordion.
  • The researchers used the tones not as they were played for a recording or a synthesizer.
  • There are many special machines, such as the harmonic synthesizer which predicts the tides.
  • Better still, the app actually plays the song thanks to a built-in multi-track synthesizer.
  • He speaks by way of a computer and speech synthesizer attached to his wheelchair.
  • These can be read as text on the pager or heard through a voice synthesizer.
  • The luminous eyes stop scanning the faces around him to concentrate on the screen linked to his speech synthesizer.
  • Spoken language through a voice synthesizer is coming soon.
  • Then you take this output and connect it to a speech synthesizer.
  • In his day he was a great and brilliant synthesizer.
British Dictionary definitions for synthesizer

synthesizer

/ˈsɪnθɪˌsaɪzə/
noun
1.
an electrophonic instrument, usually operated by means of a keyboard and pedals, in which sounds are produced by voltage-controlled oscillators, filters, and amplifiers, with an envelope generator module that controls attack, decay, sustain, and release
2.
a person or thing that synthesizes
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for synthesizer
v.

1869, agent noun from synthesize. As a type of musical instrument, from 1909; the electronic version is from 1950s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for synthesizer

music synthesizer

machine that electronically generates and modifies sounds, frequently with the use of a digital computer. Synthesizers are used for the composition of electronic music and in live performance

Learn more about music synthesizer with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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