The MacBeth Touch Keyboard Stereo Synthesizer (Sneak Preview)

Saturday Synth Porn: This unique instrument is a prototype, created by Ken MacBeth, of a new Touch Keyboard Stereo Synthesizer. 

He shared this image of the prototype, along with these comments, at his Facebook page:

Whilst the Micromac- D is in production- I’ve been concentrating on another ambitious project- a touch keyboard stereo synthesizer!

I have now etched both the control (lower) pcb and the ‘touch plate’ front panel! This is how the synths I do start out. This is a prium product with some rather unique features- but basically 4 Oscillators, 2 Noise Generators, 1 LFO, a Dual State Variable Filter, 4 Envelope Generators, 2 VCAs (Stereo) and a stereo ‘tape delay synthesizer. It’s been a long term development over years. The micromac series have been designed for those who wish for the vintage ‘moog-like’ sound- this is a completely different design!

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The Waldorf Zarenbourg Electric Piano

waldorf-zarenbourg-electric-piano

2010 NAMM Show: Waldorf is showing the Zarenbourg electric piano styled keyboard instrument.

According to Waldorf, the Zarenbourg is for “keyboardists who want to spank the plank”.

We’re thinking that something may be lost may be lost in translation on that – but if do happen to be a plank-spanking keyboardist – this thing is it. Continue reading

First Look: The Metasonix Vacuum Tube Drum Machine

Flickr Video

Eric Barbour of Metasonix demonstrates a prototype vacuum tube drum machine at Robotspeak in San Francisco.

Flickr Video

Check out BeerNotBombs’ Flickr set for more photos and videos from the event.

So – what do you think Barbour should call his vacuum tube drum machine?

After the AssBlaster & the Butt Probe, the obvious name for a Metasonix vacuum tube drum machine would probably be the Butt Kicker. If you’ve got a better idea for what to name this thing or other thoughts on the idea of a vacuum tube drum machine, leave a comment below!

The Beilfuss Step Synthesizer

beilfuss-step-synthesizer

One of the first images of the Beilfuss Step Synthesizer – a new synth design from the Beilfuss Synthesizer Company, described as “the world’s first step synthesizer”:

INTRODUCING THE WORLD’S FIRST STEP SYNTHESIZER

This thought-through system is the optimization of flexibility with controllability for keyboard. The step synthesizer brings new, never before heard, electronic sounds to music.

Unlike any analog or digital synthesizer’s controls, the patented tone control consists of sixteen steps simply outlining the waveform as set by the Signal Controls you see at the left of the control panel. Similarly, the envelope and filter contour transients and their time intervals are also set by the Signal Controls for rhythms or extended notes. You may easily add prompted, parallel voicings, combining settings of both sides for complex notes.There are 32 controls and 142 pushbuttons for direct programming. Dedicated LED pushbuttons always read out their side of the full eight octave, split keyboard. Five octaves of transposition are possible.

More images on Flickr. The images are of a prototype, as shown by Beilfuss Synthesizer Co. President Keith Williams at the SEAMUS 2009 National Conference held at Sweetwater Sound in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

If you’ve had a chance to check out the Beilfuss Step Synth, or if you have additional information on it, leave a comment with your thoughts!