littleBits Jams

If you follow me on twitter this will be no surprise, but I am completely obsessed with the littleBits modular electronics system, especially the synth bits that came from their collaboration with Korg which are geared especially towards music-making.

I bought my first Synth Kit in April 2014 and fell in love with it. It took less than three weeks for me to order extensions (because let’s face it, the base kit is pretty limitative) and ended up building an obscenely huge collection of modules over the summer.

I even gave a talk in Mexico City about littleBits (among other things) during DevHR, a local technology and games conference. (you can read the slides here)

I’ve been doing a lot of “jams”, basically just toying with modules until I got something that was good enough to show.
I learned a lot about how synths work, circuit design and signal processing by doing them, and it’s great to be able to play with something that does not involve a computer once in a while.

Initially I just posted Instagram or Vine videos of them, but recently I’ve bought myself an USB sound card and am posting them to SoundCloud so they got a bit more long-form.

The constraints for what I consider to be a “jam” :

  • Don’t work on it for more than 2 or 3 hours (usually closer to an hour)
  • Record everything live, no post-processing other than trimming the ends, and fading them in or out

And the beauty of an analog system is that I’d have a really hard time reproducing an earlier jam, so once it’s unhooked and put aside, it’s gone. All I have from it is the recording. I tend to try something specific when starting a new jam, too, so there’s no point to repeat myself.

Here’s a collection of the longer (1 to 3 minutes) jams I’ve recorded. I’ll update as I post more.

I plan to gather the best of them when I got enough to call it an album, get it somewhat mastered and release it somewhere. Stay tuned, if you enjoy that type of thing!

P.S. If you’re interested in the earlier stuff, here’s a chronological list of every littleBits audio recording I’ve posted outside of SoundCloud (I = Instagram, V = Vine, YT = YouTube, hover for description) : V, I, V, I, I, V, I, I, V, I, I, I, V, V, I, I, V, V, YT, V, V, V, V, V, V, V

2 thoughts on “littleBits Jams”

    1. Let’s see…

      – 1x Synth Kit
      – 1x “Touch It” bundle (bend sensor, toggle switch, slide switch, button)
      – 1x XOR
      – 4x Latch
      – 2x Fork
      – 3x Inverter
      – 1x Branch
      – 2x Filter
      – 4x Mix
      – 3x Micro Sequencer
      – 2x Oscillator
      – 1x Pulse
      – 3x Envelope
      – 4x Wire
      – 1x Pressure Sensor
      – 2x Split
      – 1x Arduino
      – 2x Slide Dimmer
      – 2x Dimmer
      – 1x Light Sensor
      – 1x Proto Module
      – 1x Threshold
      – 1x Delay
      – 1x Microphone

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