Rutt-etra Video SynthesizeR - ( 1972)
-William Etra's contact info: 640 Jones Road, Englewood, NJ 07631, USA, Tel: 201 567 - 3169 , Fax: 201 567 - 1638 , EMail:

-Thanks much to both Bill Etra & Steve Rutt for their extensive help on providing me with pictures and background for this section!

The Rutt-Etra video synthesizer was co-invented by Steve Rutt & Bill Etra. It essentially was an analog computer for video raster manipulation.

The Rutt/Etra Scan processor
prototype. (1972)
And a fixed image from
a video tape recording
produced thereby
[ Vasulka 1992 ].
Nam June Paik seen in this 1975 picture in front
of a Rutt/Etra Video Synthesizer.
A 1975 snapshot of some of the RE's output.
Steve Rutt
Bill Etra is the one on the right in this
picture from 1970

Check out the following abstract video examples of the RE vsynth, in REAL VIDEO format, produced sometime between 1970 & 1974.

What it does:
-Full Clip
-Brief Clip

Abstractions on a bed sheet , shows full digital control linked to computer sound generation ! (dedicated to Stan Van)
-Full Clip
-Brief Clip

Z axis modulation (and I hope a sense of humor about sexuality) it was banned from WNET TV .
-Full Clip
-Brief Clip

-video artist, Gary Hill

Comments on unit: 8brain thinks the Rutt-Etra is a bizarre machine to say the least. Like tuning in broadcasts from another galaxy, another time, another dimension. Plenty of fun running that stuff through his old Amiga/Live combo.

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