The tiny, 80 Euro, 8-bit Kastle synth from Bastl just got better. A 1.5 revision updates the case, sound, and features.

First off, in addition to batteries, you can now run on micro USB power.

The case is updated, too. It’s fiberglass instead of acrylic for added durability, and has a slick black matte finish, plus better patch points.

And then there’s sound. Bastl Instruments say they’ve done a total rework on the sound engine, improving smoothness, ranges, and anti-aliasing performance.

Two sound engines running in parallel deliver three new modes: formant synthesis, noise mode, and tonal mode. Plus there are the existing phase modulation, phase distortion, and track & hold modulation, each with new improvements.

Formants: Inspired by the 1865 Helmholz synthesizer, you get combinations of harmonics / vowel sounds.

Noise: This glitchy mode comes from granular playback of a piece of code that’s run from the sound chip – basically an edgy ultra-digital glitched-out wavetable/granular source.

Demo here:


I’ll be in Brno, CZ Friday and Saturday this week and catching up with team Bastl, if you’ve got questions for them.

  • Quentin Leonetti

    I think I will wait for the DIY kit, but I’ll definitely get some of these 🙂 Already have the first one and their mixer, all of them together will be fun 🙂

  • chaircrusher

    So now I can sell my original Kastle as Vintage?

  • marco satiwan

    Please ask for some more thyme demos. The few they have are great! =

    P.S. sorry we go off on a wrong start before Peter. It was my first comment but I have been a long time reader. I was a little jaded and drunk 😉

  • Foosnark

    I have bones to pick with Bastl’s customer service, so if I were going I know what I’d be asking about.

    More relevant to the Kastle: What are the chances we’ll see the oscillator heart of the Kastle in a Eurorack format, with 1V/OCT tracking? That would get my attention, especially with the sonic improvements they’ve made. As it is, my current Kastle is something that sleeps in a drawer except for a few minutes at a time every few months or so.

  • -88-

    the little shit can throw in the trash 😀

  • Excited for a new Microgranny!

  • Martin Wheeler

    I really like the Bastl crew and their whole approach … but … they sometimes need to be a bit more serious at actually doing what they say they are going to do. When they brought out their servo, solenoid, dc motor eurorack modules they said that they were currently testing a range of motors and would publish a list of easily obtainable things that worked well and where to buy them, and then start selling some sort of extension packs of motors etc to make it easier for people to get up and running. That was over 2 years ago and still hasn’t happened … and so there are several people with a bunch of those modules and still nothing that works well with them. They really should address this ASAP. They could take a lead from Koma who brought out their Field Kit and the very reasonably priced expansion pack with motors and sensors etc to go with it. I mean OK I appreciate the anarchic Bastl spirit, but hey … ! Also tell them to hurry up and get the SoftPop out to dealers so I can buy one !

  • dinesh shanz

    Xender download is an application developed to connect two or more smartphones to share photos, music, video, movie, documents and other such media.

  • Polite Society

    Please give everyone at Bastl hugs from me. They are all good++