Theremin discussion

New Moog theremin

Check out the Clair de Lune performance, it’s stunning.

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Preorder price seems to be $1499 US. This looks like a logical progression from the analog Etherwave and the digital Theremini. It has an outboard pitch antenna reminiscent of the most beautiful theremin ever, the Etherwave Pro.

I’m going to have a moan here, though.

I wish they’d gone for the gorgeous organic bow-fronted cabinet look of the Etherwave Pro, but disappointingly they’ve opted for an ugly panel that makes it look like lab equipment. You could stick a Pro among the strings in a symphony orchestra and it wouldn’t look out of place. This new design has as much character as a multimeter.

Etherwave Pro:

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Claravox Centennial:

Aesthetics aside this sounds really great. I imagine there will be some third party kits to replace the garish front panel with a walnut fascia.

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I think they both look pretty in their own way. I do like the new tripod stand which seems a much better arrangement than a wavey Mic stand. I think I’ll hunt out an old wood tripod for my etherwave plus.

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I use a camera tripod inherited from my father. It works well with the big heavy Theremini as well as much lighter devices like the Arduino-based OpenTheremin. You need a small, inexpensive adapter for Moog stuff which doesn’t seem to agree with our European fixing threads.

I’d be scared to rely on my mike stand. Tripods are much more sturdy.

The tripod also serves to remind me to keep other kit away from the antennae.

Incidentally the Theremini is ostensibly designed to work on a desktop, though I doubt anybody would expect to get a reliable performance from that. I think it’s just one of those features that are there because clever consumer product engineers know it will remove a little of the friction between the product and the novice player the Theremini is squarely aimed at. 99.9% of potential Theremin buyers are novices and I have to admit the adjustable quantisation and wide range of patches make the Theremini much more consumer-friendly, while at the same time the Theremin mode makes it easy for more seriously interested novices to learn how to play any Theremin properly. Win-win!

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STOP TRYING TO GET ME TO BUY A THEREMIN I just bought a scope jeez

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OpenTheremin is a kit. You like DIY, don’t you?

Just solder it and add an Arduino Uno. €79. Fully functioning digital theremin with an open source sound engine you can reprogram yourself.

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You’re peddling gateway drugs now?

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You could write your own quantiser. It’s easy to add a CV out or a MIDI shield.

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They look so good nestling among other instruments … the plus version here has cv and gate too… it IS a birthday you want to celebrate :smiley:

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Always fancied the ‘two am radio’ idea that’s been around for ages but I’ve not seen an am radio in a junk shop in years.

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I see a little Korg ribbon controller there. What’s the big keyboard in the foreground?

It’s my old stage piano. A Yamaha P150. I love it!
The korg was a gift from my daughter and is due for surgery any day now thanks in part to mods posted here.

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You could drive the doctored Korg Monotron from the CV out of your Etherwave Plus.

Doesn’t that Etherwave model have a trigger setting too? I think I’ve seen that done, though there are more reliable ways to generate a trigger.

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My etherwave has cv for pitch, volume and gate only. I suppose a trigger would be possible but I’d do it outside as every Moog I meddle with ends up sick.
Moog outputs can be overly “hot”. Beware :slight_smile:

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I have always wanted a theramin! I can see why you like the curved version, definitely does look more like an “instrument.” But I do think the new one has more character than a multimeter (hahaha)

Did you build the arduino theremin @Bitnik? How does it hold up to the real thing?

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It’s pretty good, though purists won’t like it because it doesn’t use the classic heterodyne oscillator design. Instead it has a wave table oscillator on the Arduino.

Here’s a really talented thereminist using an OpenTheremin to play Ave Maria. Note the perfect theremin timbre, which is a property of the instrument rather than the player. But you need to really practice to play a theremin that well. The dynamics are in the way he moves his left hand. The way he picks the notes by adjusting his right hand in both position and shape exploits the linearity of the right antenna.

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If Theremin had access to arduino there would be no heterodyne design. Values of components and waves they produce are a distraction. Woo woo orange caps that channel the ghost of Hendrix and hipsters shunning anything digital.
The open theremin is a superb sounding and very playable instrument. Want it to sound better? Run it through a modular synth. Enjoy

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I think this is where I point out to people trying to parse Sandy’s first sentence, that Theremin is the name of the instrument and the surname of the inventor. Well it’s a sort of garbled romanisation of the name Термéн.

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And I was venting at 3 in the morning against “purists”. Apologies to all

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I don’t think you’ll find many here who disagree. I think the Ave Maria video is itself a good rebuttal to the purists. An eight bit computer drives a serial 12-bit DAC. All the rest is electronics to sample and filter the antenna current.

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