Developer Matt Heins has announced the Hackme Vector – a new way to interact with a modular synthesizer that’s a bit like a theremin on steroids.
Vector is a three dimensional control interface designed for Eurorack modular system. It senses the location of a hand over its face and outputs a signal proportional to position for each axis: x (left and right), y (up and down), and z (in and out).
Vector works by generating an electrical field and sensing changes in it causes by the proximity of your hand. Think of it as a smartphone screen with an added dimension of depth four to five inches from the surface. The system uses six electrodes to form the active sensing area. The sensing electrodes are part of the circuit board which lays just behind the piece of acrylic.
This allows you to control three things at one time, like turning three knobs all at once by moving your hand through the air. You could control the amplitude of a sound with the x axis, the pitch with the y axis, and the modulation of that sound with the z axis.
Developer Tyler Freeman has introduced DrumPants – an inexpensive wearable MIDI controller that you can put in your pants.
We featured a lot of creative MIDI controllers on Synthtopia recently, but DrumPants spank the competition in the ‘wear it in your pants’ department.
DrumPants have the advantage of being both inexpensive (pricing starts at $89) and being wearable (in your pants). DrumPants comes with 100+ built-in sounds, including drums, percussion, synthesizers, guitars and pianos. And it can also be used to send MIDI or OSC, turning your body into a mobile MIDI controller.
While DrumPants were designed to be an ‘industrial quality wearable musical instrument’, fun is also a top priority.
“It’s a wearable music kit, so you can make sounds – in your pants!” notes Freeman.
And, if you’re worried about unsightly MIDI bulge, DrumPants don’t even have to be worn in your pants. They’re flexible and can can attach to your body or clothes in a variety of ways:
Sunday Synth Jam: The following video captures a raw and uncut live improvisation, via Tyler of Perplex On, with an iPad running Samplr, a toy music box, Ableton Push, NI Maschine and a Leap Motion Sensor. Continue reading →
Sunday Synth Jam: In this video, Sally Sparks demonstrates the expressive possibilities of the Haken Continuum. Sparks improvises on the Continuum, played through an Eventide H9 Reverb. Continue reading →
Reader Geert Bevin – who’s known to many readers for his performances on the Eigenharp and his gestural music control application GECO – recently spoke at TEDxTartu in Estonia. In his TEDx talk, Bevin argues that we’re entering a new age for digital musicians, driven by several trends:
Cheap and powerful computers
New controllers with revolutionary sensors
New synthesis engines with per-note expression
“This talk is essentially the summary of what I’ve been working on for the past four years at Eigenlabs,” explains Bevin, “with my GECO Leap Motion software and by collaborating with Roger Linn, Steinberg, Moog and Wolfgang Palm.” Continue reading →