Articles / Gear

iThereal Theremin App for iPhone and iPad

Zero Crossing iThereal Virtual Theremin

App developer Zero Crossing released their new virtual theremin app iThereal for iPhone and iPad today.  

Unlike similar apps, iThereal can serve as a MIDI instrument over Inter-App Audio, allowing you to control instruments in Garageband, for example.

Setting up iThereal to play is simple. Just pinch/zoom along the bottom bar to set the pitch range, then slide left/right to set the starting note.  Then, to play, just tap the screen and slide your finger left/right for pitch and up/down for volume.  Alternatively, you can set iThereal to be controlled by the gyroscope, allowing control of pitch and volume simply by tilting the device.

At $2.99, iThereal is a fun toy for the theremin-curious, but it probably won't cure your craving for a real theremin.  A few tweaks on our wish list would improve playability.  For starters, manipulating the pitch range at the bottom of the screen is a bit difficult for large fingers on the iPhone screen.  Finally, the MIDI signal sent by iThereal is only 7-bit, so your pitch slides will be a little "chirpy" if you have a wide pitch range set.  It would be great if it sent 14-bit MIDI control changes.  

Let's hope Zero Crossing has more updates in the near future.  In the meantime, give it a try, and feel free to post links to your iThereal creations in SoundCloud in the comments below.

iThereal is available for iPhone and iPad in the iTunes App Store: iThereal - Zero Crossing (iTunes)