CLIP has introduced a new and improved Photon Smasher, a microphone which allows you “listen to light”.
The Photon Smasher uses a solar cell as a microphone, allowing you to “hear” light within the visible and infrared wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum. The microphone enables you to uncover a secret soundscape otherwise hidden in plain sight, where flashing bicycle lights become drum machines and pulsing arcade lights transform into synthesizers.
The microphone was initially developed through workshops with young people at CLIPs weekly sound and music club in Colchester, followed by further experiments, installations, and performances from a wide range of artists including; Loula Yorke, Alissa DeRubeis and CLIP co-founder Frazer Merrick.
Building upon the success of the first version, the updated model is now entirely passive, with a 3.5mm line level mono output, so you can slip it into a portable field recording kit for electromagnetic field recording, or to insert into a modular synth system for controlling sound with light.
“The Photon Smasher is an embodiment of our mission to encourage people to get curious with sound,” says CLIP Co-founder Frazer Merrick, “and explore the world around with through sound.”
Pricing and Availability:
The Photon Smasher is available for £50.00 directly from the CLIP website, with all profits supporting their work as a social enterprise.
10 thoughts on “Photon Smasher Microphone Lets You ‘Listen To Light’”
Checked out the website to learn more. Very cool.
Always looking for new sound sources. Looks fun.
For the price and the potential audio sonic adventures
it might bring, I will buy it.
I grabbed it too – I want to mess with it as a live instrument – probably with live looping to see what I can do
Perfect for use with a Soma Ether or 2 🙂 Automatic purchase here 🙂
Not very useful right now in Ukraine… Fuck this war.
Didn’t someone else make a similar product, maybe about 5-10 years ago?
There have been projects like this since the dawn of hobby electronics and the advent of cheap LDRs.
Yes. The Bleep Labs Thingamagoop. It was my entry into th hardware synth world and I still lovebit today.
VOSIS Pro, iOS app, simpler but still fun ?
Personally, I think the concept is pretty interesting. More importantly, I’d like to know more about the “young people at CLIPs weekly sound and music club”. When I looked at the article, the first thing I thought of was that it was something I might have designed when I was in grade school, if the technology was available. Clearly, somebody in that “young people” group was thinking out of the box and would be a great find for a technology company smart enough to hire him or her.
I think I will buy 2 of them. Imagine how this technology would sound in stereo, each one looking at the same visuals but with a variable offset..