Moognify II from Combo Square on Vimeo.

Here’s an antidote to the trend toward virtual knobs, touchscreens, and mobility: a big-ass, tangible knob bigger than your head.

That may be a slightly impractical idea, but behind it is something absolutely practical: a simple, open source OpenSoundControl to Control Voltage interface. Unlike MIDI’s standard Control Change messages, OSC is capable of expressing quantities in a way that may be easily translated to the accuracy of CV. And once you’re in the realm of analog voltage, you can do all the things voltage does – including, as the creators do in their videos, interfacing with vintage gear.

The project, built by Eddy Depoorter and Charles Hannotte, is built largely on the Arduino project. Artists, engineers, and improvisers, the duo is based in Lille in the north of France, and they’re gradually making headway on this stuff. Check out progress on these two blogs, each written in both French and English:

Definitely looks like a project to watch. Who says digital and voltage can’t coexist?

Bonus video below: SH-101 plus singing.

Roland is singing from Combo Square on Vimeo.

  • lol! That was an amazing way to start the day 🙂

  • coooool ,so this is actualy tweakingknob, jjjajajaj

  • sgnelson

    The OSC to CV project is nice, but Greg Surges has already created a kit that does OSC to CV (with a Teensy 2.0, which is similar to Arduino, can use the Arduino software, and the USB-Octomod can use an Arduino if you don't want to use the Teensy 2.0, but the Teensy has USB to serial hardware built on it, it's smaller and cheaper than Arduino.) with 8 outputs, called USB-Octomod. It's primarily aimed at Modular synths, but of course can be used with any synth that uses standard +-5v CV.

    More information at his website:

    But he already has PCB's and Kits for sale, so that's a bonus.

    Also, worth mentioning are MOTU's Volta which can use most of the MOTU (DC coupled) interfaces to create CV, and Expert Sleepers Silent Way, which uses normal but easily modified cables and most normal recording interfaces with audio outs to create CV's. Both worth a look for anyone that needs Computer controlled CV's.

  • @sgnelson: Ah, very cool — and I love the Teensy. Another reason to post this stuff and learn what's out there. I expect part of why they did this, even with other options, is it's a good way to learn. Not too complex to do, lots of fun.

  • Damon

    What's that guy's studio gonna look like when he builds a dial for every one of his Moog settings?

    "Um, can you excuse me for a moment. I have to go over there and adjust the filter."

  • Thats one big-ass knob :))

    @Damon: "Help me turn this knob, will ya?" haha

  • I love the big knob – it sounds bigger 'cause it is bigger!

    The philosophy of eleven.

  • gbsr

    i wanna see them making a modular that size.
    could you imagine patching up a patch?
    freaking workout, that is.

  • strunkdts

    its not how big ya knob is, its how you use it.