Percussa AudioCubes Review

AudiocubesDavid Battino over at EM has published a review of the Percussa AudioCubes, the exotic, illuminated music controller and audio processors.

Boutique instruments naturally cost more, but you usually pay more for anything unique. Consider, too, that AudioCubes look striking, work with popular software, and offer enormous potential for customization. Inventor Bert Schiettecatte fairly bubbles with ideas, and his Max-based development system allows him (and savvy users) to implement new features quickly.

However, the construction of the cubes is flimsy. They just feel cheap, with sharp edges, creaking joints, and a wiggly top panel. On the other side of the die, so to speak, the type of DIY performer who’d be most attracted to AudioCubes would probably enjoy repackaging their electronics into custom housings. The circuit board’s design should make that relatively easy.

At present, AudioCubes shine as a cool-looking device for experimentation and live performance. Only you can say whether that novelty justifies the boutique price; the results will depend on your creativity.

The AudioCubes are gorgeous and are interesting to watch in use. However, they, like the Monome, Tenori-On and many other new music interfaces, are, in many ways, very limited instruments.

None offer the immediacy or expressiveness of one of the earliest electronic instruments, the theremin.

It would be easy to consider these instruments as expensive musical light shows, but that would be missing out on what makes them interesting – the open-ended nature of their capabilities. Each of these new instruments, is a new world for you to experiment with, explore and be inspired by.

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