Assembling the Moog Etherwave Theremin Kit

Posted: 11/9/2006 11:16:06 AM

From: Croxley Green, Hertfordshire, UK

Joined: 10/5/2005

Hi Buddy,

Way to go! It's more than I could do.

Your volume woes...

It could be an unsuitable amplifier. I just tried it on my unsuitable amplifier (a Fender 15R - intended for guitars - you really want one suitable for keyboards) and it does restrict the volume control as you describe.

Other symptoms are a very faint bleed-through - even with my hand right inside the volume loop I can hear a very faint ghost tone when I wave my other hand around the volume antenna, and a very distorted tone, increasingly distorted at higher volumes - turn the waveform knob fully clockwise and the brightness knob fully anticlockwise, the tone should be fairly soft and flute-like and not change as you increase the volume.

You could try plugging the etherwave into something with a line level input for comparison - the aux-in sockets on your hi-fi, for example, or the audio-in on your PC (but in either instance RTFM first to make sure it is line-level - and do not try plugging it into the microphone input on anything!)

If this is the problem, there is a modification you can make in the Customising section of the manual that came with the kit to lower the output level - just swapping one resistor for a higher value one.

Alternatively you can do as I did and buy a cheap low impedance inline volume pedal and feed the etherwave output through it (even swapping a single resistor is not an option for clumsy me, and this way you can remove the pedal if you want to swap from your amp to your PC for recording purposes, for instance. Also it will let you use cheap guitar effects pedals if that is your thing!)

Or it might be that you just need to adjust some of the trim pots or coils inside the machine. If they are anywhere as sensitive as the coils in my Kees Enkelaar theremin they are very sensitive indeed, and even the tiniest fraction of a turn can have a major effect. Check the manual.

Hope this helps.
Posted: 11/9/2006 1:00:07 PM

From: Kansas City MO

Joined: 10/24/2006

[b]Thanks for the support guys[/b], I’m still in the updating stages putting this “write-up” together and the pics are in my laptop so I’ll have to wait to get home to put those up.

[b]Kevin[/b], it’ll be a few more days before I get it stained but I would like for you to check it out. Especially with my volume control problem, I want to try it on one of your amps.

[b]Gordon[/b], thanks for experimenting on your other amp. I’m hoping it’s the amp. Its just a cheapo no-name.
I did go by radio shack and got a cable. I told the guy what I was trying to do and he came back with it. I don’t remember what it said on the package (I left it at the wifes house, but it said something about 90db drop)
Anyway if I use that cable I don’t get any sound at all.
So I’m going strait to the amp.

I don’t have anything with a aux in…

Well… (the smoke is starting to come out of my head)

Is the AUX IN on a VCR a line level?
Cause I’ve got this with some pretty good speakers in it
go down to the 4th post in the thread.

do you think that might work?
Posted: 11/9/2006 3:34:08 PM

From: Croxley Green, Hertfordshire, UK

Joined: 10/5/2005

Could be line level, but if you blow up your VCR don't blame me. Read the manual. If you haven't got it, check the manufacturer's website - lots of companies have downloadable pdf manuals these days.

(And just to clarify, it's not my [i]other[/i] amp, it's my amp that worked just fine for my other theremin. I got the volume pedal about a day after I got my etherwave to solve the problem I described above.)

Neat TV by the way. Does your video collection include Lara Croft, Final Fantasy and Resident Evil by any chance?
Posted: 11/9/2006 8:35:23 PM

From: Kansas City MO

Joined: 10/24/2006

ok here's the pics,
unfortuanlly you have to start at the bottom and work your way up.
BTW there is one wire that is hooked up incorrectly. luckily i thought "that doesn't make any sense" and looked in to it somemore.

now i HAVE to go out to the garage.

and [b]Gordon[/b] it did play through the VCR although it was very quiet, but the volume seemed to be a lot more flexible.

i guess i'll have to do the mod of changing the resistor, but i'll probably keep both of them in there with a micro switch to go back and forth as needed... you know, when i have my first concert. ;)
Posted: 11/9/2006 8:59:18 PM

From: Kansas City MO

Joined: 10/24/2006

[i]Neat TV by the way. Does your video collection include Lara Croft, Final Fantasy and Resident Evil by any chance?[/i]

thanks. of course the joysticks and buttons work.

one out of 3 but that's only cause milla jovovich is painfully sexy, she actually put out an album that i own and i like most if not all of the songs on it.

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