Sunday, September 07, 2008

Taking the Electribe ES-1 further

From changing the colour of the LEDs lighting the buttons to adding switches in order to make old functions new again, owners of the original Korg Electribes seem to be taking matters into their own hands. Though the internal components are fare more tightly integrated than in the great circuit bending and user-modded machines of the past, such as the SK-1 and the famous Roland x0x line, today's ever more tech-savvy end users are nonetheless finding ways to creatively modify these increasingly cheap little boxes. Noticing this, I've decided to consolidate a few of the more interesting and successful user mods I've seen floating around the net, as well as inluding links to some useful tools and such for the models I talk about.

Of course, modifying any of these while they are still new and under warranty will void said warranty, but you already knew that, right?

The above video shows what happens when someone decides that Korg's sense of design just isn't up to snuff with their own refined sense of aesthetics. Blue LEDs and a sweet paint job on the case are obviously the answer! It might not change the way the instrument sounds, but it's a start.

Another useful and increasingly popular modification is the addition of a battery pack, detailed in a nice PDF file and AVI video in the file section of the Electribe Yahoo group, where you can find all sorts of other useful utilities as well, such as the blank pattern/sample template in Zip format, and the pitch knob map. (You'll have to sign in with a Yahoo ID to see.) For those wanting to dive in a little further, there is also a Max/MSP editor for the ES-1 as well.


Digital Tools said...

Hi, I am from Digital Tools and wrote the max/MSP patch. Or to be more precise: figured out the hack.
It is not exactly an editor for max, but with that patch you are able to extend the external functionality of the Electribe (this brilliant, brilliant piece of hardware).
You can patch any button, knob and controller to any max/MSP related data. In other words: you can control everything!

Billymachine said...

That's awesome!
thanks for the ideas