Amp for EM Theremin

Posted: 2/9/2008 7:29:38 PM

Joined: 9/25/2007


If I plan on buying a small, inexpensive amp to use with my EM Theremin, what type and size should I buy? Will I need a keyboard amp, or will a practice guitar amp work?

I've almost got the whole thing assembled! -I'll let you all know how it works.

Posted: 2/9/2008 7:51:56 PM

From: Colmar, France

Joined: 12/31/2007

A guitar amp will not work, since its non-linear frequency response will give you too much bass and not enough treble.

You should take a keyboard amp, which is linear, or the Moog TB15, which has been designed to work with theremins.
Posted: 2/9/2008 9:56:46 PM

Joined: 9/25/2007


Is this the same thing: ? /dp/B000UE92ZK/ref=sr_1_2/104-4422373-8478354?ie=UTF8&s=musical-instruments&qid=

Posted: 2/10/2008 12:04:20 AM
Jeff S

From: N.E. Ohio

Joined: 2/14/2005

"A guitar amp will not work..."

Pardon me, but I beg to differ.

A guitar amp will work, although it may not be ideal. I'm sure many people, including myself, use a guitar amp.

To use a guitar amp, it's best to keep the gain all the way down and the volume level very low. I would think any guitar amp worth its salt would have at least basic tone controls. Many people may already own a guitar amp, which can be used to keep the initial investment down at a comfortable level.

As with all things, the preferred tone of a theremin (and its amp) is subjective and will vary from one person to the next. Not everyone would find a piercing top end desirable. The only way to know what YOU prefer would be to try various amps and determine what YOU like.

The EM theremin appears to be nearly identical to the standard Etherwave. I think it would be safe to assume the modification to accommodate its use with a guitar amp, as described in the Hot-Rodding Manual, would probably be the same.
Posted: 2/10/2008 5:46:05 AM

From: Colmar, France

Joined: 12/31/2007

@Jeff S:

You are right, perhaps (my English is very bad) I did not say what I wanted to say.

Any guitar amp will naturally work, but it will not be ideal since its input sensitivity is too high, the theremin's output level will probably overdrive it. Out of that, a guitar amp has to amplify low tones more than the higher ones, in order to re-linearize the magnetic pickup of the guitar.

So, at a really low volume setting and playing around with the tone controls, you may get a satisfying result. One may also modify the theremin's output to adapt it to the guitar amp.

In either case, the easiest, but not the cheapest way to get good results, will be the use of a amplifier which is designed for.

@therem13: Yes this amazon product is, what I spoke about.
Posted: 2/10/2008 8:03:15 AM

From: Dublin, Ireland

Joined: 7/25/2007

I am using a very old Polytone mini brute, which gives a lovely tone. I do need to keep the volume down, but the tone is really nice - like a valve amp, but a lot easier to lug around (the same reason I bought it for my guitar. I had an old Vox amp, but it weighed a ton...)
Posted: 2/10/2008 4:26:46 PM

Joined: 9/25/2007

What's a good microphone stand to use with the Atlas mounting flange?
Posted: 2/11/2008 10:06:36 PM

Joined: 9/25/2007

How does this amp compare to the amazon one?

Posted: 2/12/2008 7:27:29 AM
Jon B

From: Somerville, MA

Joined: 8/11/2005

I'm pretty sure those are the same amps. Moog Music has only ever offered the one "theremin" amp.

But, really, your best bet is to bring your theremin down to your local music store and try out a few different amps to see what you like. As a previous poster said, it's very subjective.

You must be logged in to post a reply. Please log in or register for a new account.