Moog Etherwave?

Posted: 9/20/2006 12:36:15 PM

Joined: 4/28/2005

Is the Etherwave Standard adequate for a "gigging thereminist", who plays either alone (with pre-recorded accompanyment) or in a duet with a piano or guitar player? Looking at various web sites, it seems that most gigging thereminists use Etherwave Pro or older Ethervox theremins. Or, is the Etherwave Standard essentially a student-type instrument...something you get to learn the ropes?

Perhaps put another way....who are some gigging thereminists who are use the Etherwave Standard as their main box?


Posted: 9/20/2006 1:14:48 PM

From: Undisclosed location without Dick Cheney

Joined: 2/21/2005

Look, there were only 48 Ethervoxes made, total. The Etherwave Pro is a relatively new instrument, it's only been around for a couple of years. Prior to its appearance on the market, aside from the 48 lucky people with Ethervoxes, a "pro" thereminist looking to buy a new instrument had few choices... they could spend a large amount of money to buy an instrument directly from a very small manufacturer such as a Tvox Tour or a Wavefront (both of which are reputedly excellent, but many people feel uncomfortable spending large money on a relative unknown), or they could buy an Etherwave.

If you're asking if the Etherwave can be played to a professional standard, yes, it can be and has been. If you're asking if it can sound as good as a pro model, that's strictly a matter of taste - in my opinion it can, but my opinion is meaningless to you in that regard.

If you're asking if it's durable enough to be taken to gigs, yes, it is. Its cabinet is nice thick wood. The only problem I've had with mine is that the screws that hold the control panel in place kept falling out so I replaced them with nuts and bolts, which has worked fine, and apparently that's a unique problem because I've never heard of anyone else having that problem with their Etherwave. It's also nicely portable - I bought the Moog gig bag, and I can just sling it over my shoulder and take it anywhere, it's light and small enough to be quite convenient.

Seriously, I suggest you buy Peter Pringle's instructional DVD from He demonstrates a number of instruments including his (older, built from a kit) Etherwave.

Also you might find it comforting to look at ebay and see what Etherwaves are selling for - they retain a lot of value, so when I bought mine I kept in mind that if I didn't like it I could always sell it and get most of my money back.
Posted: 9/20/2006 4:35:44 PM

From: Croxley Green, Hertfordshire, UK

Joined: 10/5/2005

[i]Perhaps put another way....who are some gigging thereminists who are use the Etherwave Standard as their main box?[/i]

The very talented multi-instrumentalist Chris Conway ( has posted in these forums previously noting that he has both a standard etherwave and a pro, and that he uses his standard for touring.

Posted: 1/9/2007 1:09:32 PM

From: Springfield VA

Joined: 1/9/2007

I was able to get wonderful low notes with a Theremaniacs single antenna e-bay theremin from almost 2 feet away. (You might need it adjusted if you are only getting 6 inches usable play range) That's the main advantage of the single antenna (other than cheapness) it's greater play range. I gave it as a gift a few years ago. It did play better at my house in the country than it did in Queens with all the NYC interference. I would suggest the battery version over the wall wart version to better decouple the instrument from the noisy power supply and stray radio waves. The Batteries last a long time, the wall wart only causes problems. Otherwise I was very happy with the tone and playability of the Theremaniacs. I am considering the big step-up to the Etherwave Pro in the next few months though. That's how I came across this post.

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