Tone Lab – a completely different spin on modular synthesizers
Modular synthesizer can be daunting for first time users, Tone Lab aims to create a much more user-friendly approach.
The core concept behind Tone Lab is to maintain the creativity and playfulness of modular synthesizers, while offering a different way to create the sounds.
Tone Lab has done away with the conventional keyboard you would expect to see on a synthesizer, in favour of a series of dials used to select specific chords. The synthesizer uses a series of tiles stacked up in various configurations to generate the sound, you’re then able to control each specific effect tile’s parameters using the control sliders on the interface.
The system uses various effect tiles such as Arpeggiators, Sine, Square and Sawtooth oscillators to generate the initial sound and filters, reverbs and delays to further effect the signal. Stack them up in various configurations to create sounds in an intuitive new way. No need for complicated routing or any extra software, simply build up your sound like Lego blocks.
Available to the public yet?
Tone Lab is still in its early development and planning stage, so it is yet to hit the market.
It is a project by independent developer and designer Colin Hearon who was awarded first place “Best in Show” at the Ohio State University’s 2018 Design Exhibition – so hopefully if we show the project enough love it may come into fruition.
I would certainly love to see this available in music stores as it poses itself as an awesome tool for beginners to learn about the fundamentals of sound design, in a creative intuitive environment – that doesn’t involve hours of staring at a screen.
To find out more about how the Tone Lab project came to be.
Visit Colin Hearon’s website