littleBits' Tiny Toy Synth Kit Now Works With MIDI and USB

Launched in late 2013, the littleBits Synth Kit lets you snap together the different components of a synthesizer into an extremely minimal modular instrument. Today, littleBits is adding three new modulates to its lineup, allowing its toy synth to connect with other musical tools like, uh, your computer. » 3/31/15 12:05pm Yesterday 12:05pm

Listening to a Vintage Synth Next to Its Reboot Is Just So Satisfying

Last year, Korg set out to recreate the Arp Odyssey, a legendary synth that went out of production back in 1981. How does the result sound? Pretty darn good! » 2/27/15 1:30pm 2/27/15 1:30pm

Listen to the Gnarly Churn of $10,000 Worth of Moog Synthesizer

Earlier this month, Moog announced that it would be reissuing an extremely limited number of rebooted instruments from the company's extinct line of crazy modulars from the 1970s. You'll probably never actually get to play one, but at the very least you can revel in the magnificent demo in the video above. » 2/02/15 4:30pm 2/02/15 4:30pm

Moog's Gigantic Modular Synthesizers Are Getting a New Lease on Life

Moog's newly announced modular synthesizers aren't really new at all. They're recreated versions of giant hardware the company originally released in 1973. This is big news—like literally, the synths are huge. » 1/19/15 11:55am 1/19/15 11:55am

Steve McQueen and Analog Synths Make a Music Video I Can't Stop Watching

There are few things I love in life more than Steve McQueen movies. And there's nothing else out there that sounds like analog synthesizer music. So when my Giz coworker Andrew Liszewski turned me on to this TRS-80 music video combining the two, I couldn't take my eyes or ears off it. » 10/04/14 8:00pm 10/04/14 8:00pm

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

Watch a DIY Synthesizer Get Built From Scratch in this Absurd Timelapse

Building a synthesizer is a lot of work. It seems pretty safe to assume, but if you had any doubts, just watch this one come together from scratch like the behemoth of circuit boards it is. » 9/30/13 11:02am 9/30/13 11:02am

Trent Reznor Explains Just How Far Electronic Music Has Come

Nine Inch Nails frontman and music genius Trent Reznor gave a fantastic interview to the Fader, and it sums up just about everything about the state of electronic music and how we listen to it. » 9/26/13 1:00pm 9/26/13 1:00pm

Remember Paul Vo? He's the genius who invented a little black box that makes acoustic guitars sound otherworldly by changing the physics of how strings vibrate? Well his Kickstarter succeeded, and 100 units of the Vo-96 Acoustic Synthesizer are on sale now. » 6/13/13 5:15pm 6/13/13 5:15pm

Watch In Awe as This Euro Dude Tries to Explain Modular Synthesizers

Meet Austrian-bred (but German-born) producer, composer and musician Patrick Pulsinger. He is a huge but really awesome nerd when it comes to modular synthesizers, and here he is, trying to explain how it all works to a room full of interested people. » 5/09/13 5:56pm 5/09/13 5:56pm

Teeny Tiny Analog Synthesizers Are the Most Adorable Way to Lay Down…

Well, these new itty-bitty analog synthesizers from Korg are just so cute I want to gobble them up. And from the demo video above, it sounds like the three Volca series keyboards are lovely little groove machines you might want to use, too. » 4/10/13 12:00pm 4/10/13 12:00pm

Well Hello, Creamsicle Colored Synthesizer

Usually, we don't get too worked up about new color options on gear because it's a gimmick. It's usually a gimmick. It's not every day someone shows me a synthesizer the color of a delicious Creamsicle. » 3/14/13 10:21am 3/14/13 10:21am

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

This Incredible Analog Synth Google Doodle Celebrates Pioneer Robert…

Google just turned its Doodle in Japan into a fully functioning analog synth attached to an old-fashioned reel-to-reel tape machine. Right now, it's tomorrow in Japan, and tomorrow is Robert Moog's birthday. OH MY GOD, this is incredible. There goes my day. » 5/22/12 2:55pm 5/22/12 2:55pm

Can't Afford the Synthesizer of Your Dreams? Draw It Instead

You spend days at work in the studio, cranking out track after track with your trusty MIDI controller. On a whim, you decide you're tired of using it, so you wad it up into a ball, throw it away, and draw a new one. Wait, what? Yeah, SketchSynth will someday make this a reality. » 5/18/12 10:00am 5/18/12 10:00am