At Superbooth 17, we talked with Yuji Yamada, who was showing his ‘Reface Robot’ – a robotic synth-tweaking machine that can change all the parameters on a Yamaha Reface synth at the same time.
The Reface Robot consists of two main components: robotic arms that move the sliders on the Reface keyboard; and a separate controller section. The controller has three rows of knobs – with a set of knobs for each of the keyboard’s controls:
- The top knob controls selects between manual control or automatic LFO-control of the keyboard’s sliders;
- The middle knob controls the LFO speed; and
- The bottom row controls the position of the keyboard’s slider in manual mode and the amplitude of the modulation in automatic mode.
The results are glitchy and strange – which seems to be what Yamada was going for. Like circuit-benders, Yamada is ‘misusing’ a keyboard to make it create results that the original designer didn’t anticipate.
Check it out and let us know what you think!