Standards for theremin reviews

Posted: 1/23/2006 8:56:29 AM

From: Sammamish, Washington

Joined: 2/13/2005

I've recently received a new TAK Labs e-Winds S theremin to review, and it made me think...

We need to define some standards for theremin reviews. I'd like to get input from the theremin community on what types of metrics & ratings you'd like to see in theremin reviews so we can make sure we're comparing apples to apples (or be certain we're not).

To get the ball rolling, here are some seed ideas:

[b]Linearity[/b] - standard process for measuring pitch response linearity

[b]Drift[/b] - measuring pitch drift as the instrument "warms up"

[b]Pitch Range[/b] - lowest/highest note achievable

[b]Timbre[/b] - Might be subjective as far as "classic" vs. "non-standard" tonal quality, but we should define some standards for how to review this. For exmaple, show a picture and supply a sound clip of the waveform at various settings, specific notes, etc. Also, what knobs/controls/settings are provided to adjust the sound?

[b]Portability[/b] - How easy is the unit to break down / set up? Does it come with a gig bag or is one available? What type of stand does it require?

[b]Special Features[/b] - e.g. MIDI or CV input/output, pitch range selection knobs, the TVox Tour's cool volume response setting button, etc.

I'm looking forward to your ideas!
Posted: 1/23/2006 9:51:36 AM
Marble Field

From: Athens, Greece

Joined: 5/23/2005

I'd think that musicality is an important aspect of the pitch range. For example, the Etherwave Standard does indeed produce five octaves, but the top octave is practically useless for music making. It's "thin", poor on sub-harmonics etc. This is an aspect with non electronic instruments as well. Not every instrument sounds nice in its entire pitch range. They all have rich and poor tonal areas... So it would be nice to know which are the "strong" areas of each theremin...

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