User Tools

Site Tools



Back to music..

About Theremin Development

From Lydia Kavina:

  • Very important that a good theremin engineer should be a good theremin player.
  • Theremin can be sensitive to the size of the person, it affects the tuning of an instrument.
  • Stability important - different voices, imitating other instruments and singing voices, and original theremin voice. These may be needed to be tailored to different ways of playing.

Thierry, developer of Open Theremin

  • Many theremin circuits published in electronic magazines, and forums, many are well thought from point of view of engineer, but are useless for a musician.
  • We have a more limited market than a violin, which is available in many sizes. So for Theremin, a modular approach is appropriate

Eric Holloway is developer of D—Lev, and FPGA solution for Theremin.

  • He started on Theremin world 10 years, and has been working on it for 8 years, but very heavily for 4 years.
  • Built 10 kits perhaps, and several prototypes. Is having trouble to find the FPGA board that he uses, and the price has increased.
  • Very little analog in the D-lev. Doing everything numerically, and he hit on a very linear solution.
  • Jeff demonstrated Silent Night played on D-Lev during Lydia Kavina Christmas Party on 2021/12/26

Discussing Design of D-Lev

  • Lydia - D-Lev is similar to a Open Theremin type project.

Models and Brands Of Theremins

  • Moog
    • Etherwave
    • Claravox - $1499
      • Have some volume problems, and it may be temperature related, appears volume diminishes at higher temperatures.
    • Theremini - $399
      • Very sensitive to environment, might not work in all locations as a main theremin, good to have a backup.
  • RCA - One of the earliest brands of Theremin
  • Zep Burns
    • B3 Pro Theremin
    • B3 Deluxe Theremin
    • B3 Theremin
    • Zep Theremin
    • Handheld Theremin - Battery powered
  • Hobbs


  • Open Theremin
    • Version 4 - comes with Arduino integrated. Observation: Many musicians like the Open Theremin, but were not comfortable with soldering or buying separate Arduino, or uploading firmware, etc.
      • If very cold, it can need 20 minutes to properly warm up
      • Not yet comparable to professional instruments, but improvements are ongoing.
      • Linearity is good, and it is very light weight
      • New wave table files can be created and added to Open Theremin.
      • No editor to create custom timbres.
    • Version 5 - will have more dynamic on the fly timbre choices
  • D-Lev

Standard Pieces To Learn On Theremin

  • Lydia Kavina comment: Harmonies with violin have overtones, but Theremins don’t have the same overtones, and the melodies are much more difficult.
  • Christmas
    • Silent Night
    • Dutch Christmas Song

Theremins and Cats

music/theremin/start.txt · Last modified: 2022/04/26 15:56 by thegarnet