Electro-Acoustic Research Intros Modular Synth Line

EAR LogoElectro-Acoustic Research (EAR), a consortium of modular synth designers, has announced a new line of modular synthesizer gear. The modules will be available in MOTM-compatible and Doepfer-compatible formats.

EAR describes their modules as “bent” and “not plain vanilla”.

EAR features the work of two established modular synth designers, Mike Brown of Livewire and Peter Grenader of Plan B. EAR has also announced that it will be the exclusive manufacturer of Tony Allgood’s Oakley Sound Systems designs in MOTM and Deopfer formats.


“Electro-Acoustic Research had been in the discussion stages for some time,” notes Grenader. “It wasn’t until a few months ago, however, that the principles started meeting, gathering plans and putting wheels into motion. It was formed as a means of combining manufacturing and marketing costs while sharing technologies and design efforts under a common sales umbrella.”

Initial plans centered around Plan B and Livewire products. However, when Tony Allgood announced that he was retiring his modular line, EAR contacted him to talk about keeping these instruments going. It turned out to be perfect timing.

“Oakley is a solid line and we feel strongly about ensuring their continued availability,” says Grenader. “We feel fortunate to be able to help make this happen.”

EAR Goals

“Our goals are simple,” says Grenader. “To develop unique and innovative musical instruments that meet the demands of the modern modular synthesist. Everyone involved with EAR is a musician or composer and we are all actively pursuing on our own musical projects. This synergy fuels our product development – we understand the needs of 21st century modular synthesis because we live it.”

In order to meet these goals, EAR is manufacturing a variety of unique modules. Grenader also notes that, in addition to the modules announced, EAR has more in the planning stages.

“There are a few interesting control voltage devices on the drawing table, some of which will utilize small microprocessors as their engines. On this list is an extremely interesting chaos generator, a DC pattern sampler and a touch plate control surface.”

These modules have been announced:

dual cyclotronLivewire Designs:

  • The Dual Cyclotron, right
  • The FrequenSteiner Filter

Oakley Designs:

  • Wavefolder
  • Octal Resonantor
  • State Variable Filter

Plan B

  • Model 12 State Variable Vactrol Filter
  • Model 13 Dual Timbral Gates
  • Model 15 Complex VCO
  • Model 17 Triple Event Timer
  • Model 18 Stereo Output Mixer Sub System:
  • Model 18 Stereo Mixer
  • Model 18A Expander (VC level/pan)
  • Model 18B Balanced Stereo Outputs
  • Model 21 21A MIlton Controller Series

Orders will be accepted once the modules are ready to ship. More information on the modules is available via the EAR site.

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