Music Thing Modular - Mikrophonie v3

Product information "Music Thing Modular - Mikrophonie v3"
New and improved version of the classic Mikrophonie contact microphone module. This version incorporates the features of the (now discontinued) Mutable Ears module but allows you to push the preamp into dirtier territory. The kit also includes a choice of 2 x frontpanels allowing the builder to choose whether to have the scratchplate at the top or bottom of the panel.

Tom Whitwell the designer of Mikrophonie describes the original  thus:

“Mikrophonie is a microphone preamp with a piezo contact mic built into the panel.

It is an easy way to bring environmental noise and feedback into a modular system, inspired by the early days of electroacoustic music in Paris and Cologne, and by the contact microphone and phonograph cartridge experiments of John Cage, Gordon Mumma, Robert Ashley and Nicholas Collins. Here is a wonderful film from 1966 of Stockhausen & Co performing Mikrophonie 1.

The panel scratchpad has quite a nice rough texture – rubbing it with a finger or a plectrum creates quite a wide range of sounds. The back of the panel is plated and grounded for shielding; the peizo microphone can either be soldered directly to the copper or stuck on with epoxy glue.”

This new version of Mikrophonie improves the amplifier circuit and adds the following features from the Ears version by Emilie Gillet

• An envelope follower, translating the decaying amplitude profile of a tap into an envelope CV.
• A gate detector, translating taps into gate signals.
• The envelope follower and gate detector can process external signals as well as the built in contact mic.

• High quality Audio Amp with extended gain range over Ears.
• External input bypassing the built-in contact microphone.
• Envelope follower with 3 preset attack and release times (adjustable by jumper).
• Gate detector with 3 preset sensitivity levels (adjustable by jumper) and +8V gate output.
• Three indicator LEDs for amplifier clipping, envelope follower level and gate detector activity.

This kit contains all parts to build the module, right down to the power cable and the screws. Internal contact mic is included.

The module will work with a range of external contact mics including  DIYed creations made from inexpensive piezo transducers, and off the shelf contact mics. We recommend to use it with LeafAudio's contact mics which are known to be very good.

SMD-Kit-1. This is a Do-It-Yourself kit, not an assembled module. The kit includes all parts to build the module. All SMD parts are pre-soldered, only trough-hole parts to solder. For build guide, more info, videos etc. please check the buttons below.
Current draw +12 V [mA]: 20
DIY Level: Easy
Depth [mm]: 25
Width [HP]: 4
Format: 3U
Panel / Color: Black FR4
Manufacturer "Music Thing Modular"
Eurorack Modular Synth format. They are designed in Herne Hill, London by Tom Whitwell. I’m a former journalist and magazine editor (Mixmag & The Face). In the noughties I ran the Music Thing blog, before working at The Times. Got into DIY electronics after attending a workshop with Tom Bugs, reading Handmade Electronic Music, playing with Arduino and building guitar pedals. Contacting me directly is rarely a quick way to get help with a project or a technical problem. GitHub issue lists are a good place to start (Turing Machine, Radio Music), a search of MW DIY will often find answers, as will looking at the Facebook Synth DIY group. You can read more about Music Thing Modular and open source in this article: Why Open Source Music Hardware works for Music Thing Modular.

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