Leah Greenblatt
July 06, 2009 AT 12:00 PM EDT

You can usually count on PBS’s long-running science-and-other-wonders show NOVA for in-depth examinations of Eurasian spider monkeys, Mayan heiroglyphs, deep-space dark matter, and other National Geographic-type topics. 

This past week, however, the show took a sharp turn at T-Pain Avenue, examining the origins and operation of the popular pitch-correction software Auto-Tune. And while it’s not exactly Jay-Z running it HOVA-style, it’s still pretty interesting. Watch below, and learn, among other things, the work that went into Cher’s immortal robo-diva chorus for her 1998 hit “Believe”:

Tell me, Music Mixers, is Auto-Tune a fun studio toy and an artist’s prerogative to use as they wish, or is it a pox on current pop music?

More from EW’s Music Mix:
Admit it: You are (I am?) excited about the new Blake Lewis CD!
Whitney Houston’s new single ‘I Didn’t Know My Own Strength’: Will it be a hit?
Michael Jackson’s musical legacy: Tell us how you remember him

Salt n Pepa’s Pepa and TLC’s Chili enter the celebreality fray
Mariah Carey as Eminem: Yes, that’s really her

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