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In the 1960s and early ’70s, a number of companies in the U.S. sold electronic kits for consumers to construct, thus saving them money. For musicians, many of the most popular kits came from a company called PAIA Electronics, the brainchild of a man named John Simonton. From simple wah pedals and rotary speaker effects to modular synthesizers (priced at a whopping $139, or you could add a keyboard for an additional $61), the company had a wide array of instruments and effects that were simple enough to build that most electronic hobbyists able to handle a soldering iron could put them together. Most of the products the company offered went out of production in the mid-1980s.

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