Soma Laboratory - Flux

I love what Vlad is doing over at Soma, so news he is working on a new expressive instrument is fantastic news…

this is pre-release still, but already evokes memories of Theremin and the Ondes Martenot.
it’ll be interesting to see if that just this ‘engine’, or more generally this will be the feel.

no news yet on pricing or release date…

from soma website


There you have it: a Polyphonic Theremin

yeah, it’s looking special…esp. as Vlad has proven he can create instruments with character.
(imagine an orchestra made up of Soma instruments :love_letter: )

I wonder how many magnets it will support, its shown as duophonic, but I wonder if with multiple players you could get some more voices…though, I think it’ll excel as a monophonic instrument, and thats cool, we need these too.

what I love about this video (and Vlad’s in general) is his discussion about design principles, one of my favourite parts… always inspiring outside of the product he is showing.
(Vlad has a real knack of talking with vision, without sounding pretentious…a very down to earth visionary, seemingly not needing to feed marketing nor his ego - love it)


Looks amazing, and based on a little time playing the Terra at SB this year, I’d imagine it’s backed up with a decent synth engine.

I was really excited to see this too. I feel like I need to make my Wiggler synth as fast as I can before Vlad snatches up all the good expressive synth ideas!

I wonder if bumps or depressions could be designed into the case that you could rest your thumb on for more tactile position feedback. I would also like to put that right hand magnet on a ring around my finger to sort of forget that I’m holding it.

Something I noticed thinking through my own expressive synth designs is that the synthesizer. With both Terra and Flux, Soma has decided to take a more abstract route and only give the player macro controls. There is less focus on sound design and more focus on expression. IMO that’s similar to the experience with acoustic instruments.

I see no reason why not, but it would restrict the range in the Z-axis (distance to controller), which is used by both hands.

That seems to be a common request. The comment I’ve read is that the controller also recognises which pole of the magnet is closest to the instrument, and while a ring wouldn’t prevent that it might be less intuitive? If there’s any controls on the instrument that you might want to adjust without activating the control, then it’s probably easier/quicker to put down the rod than take off a ring.

Looks and sounds amazing, but all I see is blood.

i’ve considered a couple of designs for the magnet. One a ring with sideways disk that sits between your fingers you turn with your thumb to adjust the pole, like a continuous pitchwheel. It could have slight detents to hold it in position once set, or maybe just finger pressure would be enough.

The other form is stylus or baton, which could be held more easily than jamming them in your fist like he has in the video. Then, you appear more to be conducting than slow-motion fist-bumping ;-).