Moog Theremini

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fac
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Post by fac »

Yeah, yeah, and drum machines have no soul.

I had to sell my Etherwave a few months ago. I'm going to replace it with a Theremini.
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Post by _seph »

I didn't give this any attention thinking that it was simply an entry level alternate to the Etherwave, which I've had since the Big Briar days ...but this is very cool. For $299 I'm in.
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Post by NYMo »

This is a no brainer for me...Ive never played one before...looking forward to it. (wont exactly blend into my studio though :hihi: )

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Post by theremin »

I am surprised at the modular system of the moog Theremini player ERI of Tokyo.

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Post by southphillysynths »

My dad got super excited about this and said he'd go halves on it :goo:

I would like to have cv out for pitch and cv out for both antenna, I feel like that will be labeled on the circuit board though for DIY people. Like the volcas,there might be env out, cv out etc. labeled on the board, whoever gets one first check!!
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Post by mckenic »

Love The Jetsons kitchen utensil look and once its out in the wild and I see a few videos of people uploading their Animoog patches to it (I hope, I hope!)... this will be my 1st Theremin(i)!

(Well I do have an unused Gekken red one that is wont to remove eyes when the cat bats the fish-hook antenna!)
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Post by legionhwp »

Has it been confirmed you can actually upload 100% new animoog patches to this? I was under the impression some parameters are editable and it uses the animoog sound engine but that is a VERY different thing than saying you can make a patch on animoog on your ipad and transfer a completely different sound to the Theremini and save your 100% homemade sound as a permanent preset.

If so, well, I was going to get one soon anyway. I'll get one sooner if you can do this :party:

Any confirmation or info either way greatly appreciated.

As for the angry Thereminists I just don't get that. The "autotune" clearly steps so it certainly is possible to "play a wrong note" and IMO it sounds horrible if you do with this. Plus you can turn that off and have it play 100% like a "real" theremin. What's not to like?

Waiting to get my hands on one before judging any other features but again the built in reverb and delay only seem like huge pluses to me (and they can also be turned off so no interference for a purist there imo).
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Post by h4ndcrafted »

Cv out would of been awesome ! I hope somebody works a mod.




Nevermind, seems it has for pitch.
Last edited by h4ndcrafted on Fri May 30, 2014 10:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by h4ndcrafted »

southphillysynths wrote:My dad got super excited about this and said he'd go halves on it :goo:

I would like to have cv out for pitch and cv out for both antenna, I feel like that will be labeled on the circuit board though for DIY people. Like the volcas,there might be env out, cv out etc. labeled on the board, whoever gets one first check!!
'For live performance and gestural control, the rear panel features two line level audio outputs, a pitch CV output with selectable range, and a mini USB jack for MIDI I/O and connectivity'
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Post by _seph »

legionhwp wrote:Has it been confirmed you can actually upload 100% new animoog patches to this?

If so, well, I was going to get one soon anyway. I'll get one sooner if you can do this :party: ...
Agreed. This would be a massive selling point. Animoog is still one of my favorite apps and being able to edit/upload sounds from the iPad or iPhone would be a fantastic feature.
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Post by GovernorSilver »

h4ndcrafted wrote:
southphillysynths wrote:My dad got super excited about this and said he'd go halves on it :goo:

I would like to have cv out for pitch and cv out for both antenna, I feel like that will be labeled on the circuit board though for DIY people. Like the volcas,there might be env out, cv out etc. labeled on the board, whoever gets one first check!!
'For live performance and gestural control, the rear panel features two line level audio outputs, a pitch CV output with selectable range, and a mini USB jack for MIDI I/O and connectivity'
I'm with the other guy - a 2nd CV out via a mod would make Theremini more interesting.
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Post by h4ndcrafted »

Oh absolutely ! I didn't think had cv out at all for a while.
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Post by sloth713 »

I have had my etherwave theremin modded to have the 2 CV and gate outputs. I personally find the gate output more useful than the second CV output so I would rather the theremini have a CV and gate outputs than just 2 CV outputs.

Though it is awesome that the theremini will be able to be a midi controller.
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Post by sloth713 »

Mine is suppose to be arriving on Monday so i will give you my half assed review on Tuesday.

Also the other week ask Moog about if the the CV output is quantized when the pitch correction is on and they responded:

"The CV is unipolar(0-5V) and it will output a smooth continuous voltage when pitch correction is turned off, and it will output a stepped voltage when the pitch correction is turned up. However, this stepped voltage is not currently scaled at 1V/Oct."


Hopefully in an OS update they will scale the at least the 100% pitch correction output to 1V/Oct.
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Post by sloth713 »

Ok here is my first impression review/ramblings.

Looks:
It looks better in person than it does in pictures. I am not a huge fan of the aesthetic but it by no mean offensive to the eyes. I just wont leave it out on display like my cherry wood etherwave theremin. Also they used a 3/8" mic stand mount I wish they would have used a 5/8" mount instead.

Sounds:
First the bad news the traditional theremin sound is no where near as good as an etherwave theremin. If you want a traditional sounding theremin look else where. Now the good news the overall sound of the unit is great. The overall sound is pretty digital but nice and smooth. I think the fact that it sounds digital is great so don't take the word digital as a bad thing. The built in speaker sounds pretty darn good but the thermini really shines when you hook it up to good speakers. About half the presets are super cheesey but fun while the other half are useful. I would really like to tweak the presets and sounds so hopefully they will release the editor software soon.

Interface:
The built in tuner is great, every theremin should have one. Note that you should let the unit warm up for a few minutes so the analogue circuits settle down and the turner becomes a lot more stable and useful. The self calibration mode is nice and easy but I miss the ability to change interaction range of the antennas instantly with a knob twist. What is really annoying is that you can only adjust the volume of the internal speaker from the front panel, If you have it hooked up to speakers you have to menu dive to adjust the volume. The delay effect is mediocre but fun, if i want delay I will run this through my MF-104m. I hope in future firmware updates they will include other effects than just delay. The pitch correction is nice especially if want that quantized scale sound. The influence of the pitch correction is fairly tweakable and will be nice for night that I want to play my theremin tipsy :guinness:

CV output:
The CV output is awesome mainly because you can select the voltage range 0-5V to interface with your Moog stuff or 0-10V to interface with your eurorack. Also you can select if the cv output comes from the pitch or volume antenna. Also as I said in my last post it can put out quantized cv but the it is not on the 1V/Oct scale. Finally the Theremin cannot be used as a midi controller like previously though, hopefully they will make this a feature on a future firmware update.

Overall:
The Theremini is just plain fun. It can be used as a serious instrument but it really sines when you and your non theremin playing friends are just looking for fun. The sounds are for the most part great, but I wish the sounds were tweakable from the front panel (this is pretty much a preset machine). The interface is descent and usable but could be improved. The delay effect is kinda a joke. The CV output is super useful and implemented well (yay 0-10V). If you want a fun machine or a "beater" theremin for friends and gigging get the Theremini without hesitation. If you are a theremin and/or analogue snob this probably not for you (but don't discount it until you use it).
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Post by BadBadger »

Nice review, sloth713!

After reading your review, particularly your statement that MIDI control of other instruments isn't available, I finally read the PDF manual. The MIDI implementation section suggests that this is true. However, I have read specific statements from Moog that MIDI control is a feature. Frankly, if true, I find it absolutely ridiculous that they would release the instrument with such an important feature not available until some future update. And if, as is stated on Moog's site, MIDI In isn't even implemented, yet, then it would appear that there is no practical use for having MIDI at all at this time.

And there is the glaring fact that the CV out isn't V/oct. WTF?

This seems stunningly half-assed and half-baked. It sounds like a fun instrument, but I'm tired of being an early adopter/guinea pig for technology companies, so until these features are available, I'll just have to keep my wallet firmly sealed between my studio chair and butt cheek.
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Post by legionhwp »

Great review but I'm confused by this:
sloth713 wrote: Finally the Theremin cannot be used as a midi controller like previously though, hopefully they will make this a feature on a future firmware update.
If it can't be used as a midi controller what, exactly is the midi interface for? I'd guess patch storage but that doesn't seem to be implemented either. :hmm:

Didn't Moog specifically say this would be used as a midi (note on/off) controller when it was first announced? Perhaps that was all wishful thinking on our part?).

I'm not bummed by the lack of scaled CV (seriously I'm not that good a thereminist) but midi out to run my other wildass modules and synths is a big deal. There are some listing saying "not implemented yet" so perhaps this will be updated soon. If so, I'll def give it a whirl. In the meantime thanks for this detailed review.
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Post by FredJM »

digitalganesha wrote:I was mistaken, the Theremin DOES seem to have a traditional analog oscillator along with the wavetables. Awesome!
Sorry - It doesnt have ANY analogue audio source at all.. In fact, the heterodyning produced by the oscillators isnt (as I understand it anyway) even at the audio frequency - its merely used as a way to derive data for the digital engine.

Again, as I understand it, there isnt even a way to tap an audio signal from the heterodyning (mixer) even if one was to get inside it.

:cry: :cry:
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Post by FredJM »

legionhwp wrote:
If it can't be used as a midi controller what, exactly is the midi interface for?
It can be fed with MIDI CC messages to modify parameters and..

It can output MIDI CC (high or low resolution) for pitch and volume.

What it cannot do (yet) is output note data.

The problem with CC data for pitch is that there arent that many synths you can drive with it.. But really, note-on/off data can never do justice to a theremin -

A software synth accepting CC would probably be the best / easiest route to exploit the thereminis potential.
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Post by FredJM »

Lots of ambiguity seems to exist about the CV output and perhaps even the MIDI CC output

http://www.thereminworld.com/Forums/T/2 ... iew?Page=8
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Post by johnwynberg »

sloth713 wrote:Ok here is my first impression review/ramblings.

Looks:
It looks better in person than it does in pictures. I am not a huge fan of the aesthetic but it by no mean offensive to the eyes. I just wont leave it out on display like my cherry wood etherwave theremin. Also they used a 3/8" mic stand mount I wish they would have used a 5/8" mount instead.

Sounds:
First the bad news the traditional theremin sound is no where near as good as an etherwave theremin. If you want a traditional sounding theremin look else where. Now the good news the overall sound of the unit is great. The overall sound is pretty digital but nice and smooth. I think the fact that it sounds digital is great so don't take the word digital as a bad thing. The built in speaker sounds pretty darn good but the thermini really shines when you hook it up to good speakers. About half the presets are super cheesey but fun while the other half are useful. I would really like to tweak the presets and sounds so hopefully they will release the editor software soon.

Interface:
The built in tuner is great, every theremin should have one. Note that you should let the unit warm up for a few minutes so the analogue circuits settle down and the turner becomes a lot more stable and useful. The self calibration mode is nice and easy but I miss the ability to change interaction range of the antennas instantly with a knob twist. What is really annoying is that you can only adjust the volume of the internal speaker from the front panel, If you have it hooked up to speakers you have to menu dive to adjust the volume. The delay effect is mediocre but fun, if i want delay I will run this through my MF-104m. I hope in future firmware updates they will include other effects than just delay. The pitch correction is nice especially if want that quantized scale sound. The influence of the pitch correction is fairly tweakable and will be nice for night that I want to play my theremin tipsy :guinness:

CV output:
The CV output is awesome mainly because you can select the voltage range 0-5V to interface with your Moog stuff or 0-10V to interface with your eurorack. Also you can select if the cv output comes from the pitch or volume antenna. Also as I said in my last post it can put out quantized cv but the it is not on the 1V/Oct scale. Finally the Theremin cannot be used as a midi controller like previously though, hopefully they will make this a feature on a future firmware update.

Overall:
The Theremini is just plain fun. It can be used as a serious instrument but it really sines when you and your non theremin playing friends are just looking for fun. The sounds are for the most part great, but I wish the sounds were tweakable from the front panel (this is pretty much a preset machine). The interface is descent and usable but could be improved. The delay effect is kinda a joke. The CV output is super useful and implemented well (yay 0-10V). If you want a fun machine or a "beater" theremin for friends and gigging get the Theremini without hesitation. If you are a theremin and/or analogue snob this probably not for you (but don't discount it until you use it).
Excellent review. I got my Theremini a couple of days ago, and I completely agree with everything you wrote. Some of the presets, with the little speaker, are like meh... Then last night I connected it to a Subphatty, and that was amazing, to filter the sound of the Theremini, and control pitch (also controlling the filter with an expression pedal). Shame it doesn't have a second CV output, to control volume, but I can live without it. I also hooked it to Braids, with interesting results, but need to think more how to integrate the sound of the Theremini to whatever I'm driving with the CV out. I haven't tried the MIDI yet, but I assume that at least I should be able to control two parameters with it. Will see.
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Post by Audiohub »

Both antennas are transmitted over Midi channel 1 as continuous controllers, and you can chose which controllers you want them to be. Check out page 18 of the manual.
If you set the volume antenna to CC7, it will transmit volume to most Midi synths.
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Post by johnwynberg »

Audiohub wrote:Both antennas are transmitted over Midi channel 1 as continuous controllers, and you can chose which controllers you want them to be. Check out page 18 of the manual.
If you set the volume antenna to CC7, it will transmit volume to most Midi synths.
Yes, that's what I thought. What I had not considered is that I could control the volume of the SubPhatty through MIDI and pitch through CV, or both through MIDI. If only I could find a USB type B to mini B cable...
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Post by johnwynberg »

I can't get the Theremini to MIDI talk to the SubPhatty, can't understand why. Has anyone had any success? I've tested the Theremini MIDI out, and it is ok, I can get it to send MIDI out to PC without problems. SubPhatty is also receiving MIDI through channel 1, through the MIDI in and the USB port. Since there does not seem to exist a Type B to Mini-B USB cable, to connect them directly, I had to buy an adaptor. The adaptor is working fine. But when I connect the Theremini to the SubPhatty, nothing happens. I even tried to connect them through an Oplab, also unsuccessfully. Next, I'll try through Ableton Live, just for the sake of seeing if it's possible, but if that's the only way, I think I'll use the CV out only.
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Patch Editor

Post by ka010 »

Hey guys,

I've been working on a midi controller and patch editor for iPad. It's almost ready so if anyone's interested in beta testing feel free to pm. Aside from that all feedback is welcome.

Here's what it can do: http://numericalaudio.com/theremidi
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