Build This Ray Gun Synth That Generates Wonderfully Retro PewPew Sounds

Usually, if you're building your own synthesizer, you have aspirations of composing the next great techno track. But this kit—available from the Maker SHED for just $20—lets you build a wonderful toy ray gun that generates electronic "pewpew" sound effects. And, instead of just cycling through various sounds like you… » 11/28/13 9:00pm 11/28/13 9:00pm

Discover Musical Instruments Everywhere With This Tiny Synthesizer

London-based duo Dentaku have made digital instruments out of beer bottles, text messages, and color-sensing robots. But, for their latest trick, Yuri Suzuki and Mark McKeague want to let you make music. Meet Ototo, a tiny synthesizer that lets you make almost anything—from oranges to origami—into an instrument. » 10/31/13 11:20am 10/31/13 11:20am

These Prodigious Synthesizers Make Music Using 300-Year-Old Rules

It’s been almost three centuries since Bach wrote The Well-Tempered Clavier, a simple set of compositions that became definitive in music theory. J.S. probably would’ve been surprised—but delighted—by the work of Luisa Pereira, who has translated some of his rules into the most modern form imaginable: The sequencer. » 10/10/13 7:01pm 10/10/13 7:01pm

All the Most Awesome Blinky Lights and Gnarly Sounds From NAMM 2013

NAMM is the musical instrument industry's annual woohoo of a trade show where all the big names show off the fancy new wares they want the musicians of the world to embrace. But if you don't actually go to the show, the best part is watching demo videos full of crazy sound and batshit blinking lights. Here's our… » 1/25/13 1:00pm 1/25/13 1:00pm

Korg MS-20 Mini: A 1970's Patchable Synthesizer Shrunken Down and…

From 1978 to 1983, Korg produced the MS-20, a two-oscillator analog synth that was patchable with 1/4-inch cables a lot like a custom modular synth setup (See the original below). People liked it because of its smooth sound and because the patch panel allowed you a limited degree of customizability without needing to… » 1/24/13 1:00pm 1/24/13 1:00pm

Herbie Hancock Blows School Kids' Minds with the Awesome Power of…

Legendary jazz keyboardist Herbie Hancock stops by Sesame Street explain the inner workings of the state-of-the-art (in 1983, at least) Fairlight CMI synthesizer and it's monochrome touchscreen monitor to a bunch of seven year-olds. Among them, a girl that would one day play Will Smith's cousin on The Fresh Prince… » 10/23/12 12:07pm 10/23/12 12:07pm

Google's Rad Synth Doodle Explained By Moog Music Chief Engineer

We first got a look at the Google Doodle celebrating Robert Moog's 78th birthday on Google.jp yesterday, and now it's live in the US. Synthtastic! But, uh, how do all of those knobs and sliders work? Here's an excellent explainer on how to play the synth by Moog Music Chief Engineer Cyril Lance. Hint: Start out by… » 5/23/12 9:49am 5/23/12 9:49am