2016’s Revamped Music Box
As we have know them growing up, a music box is a one-way system. They play their designated track over and over and over again. The more you wind, the same tune plays.
But now something much more exciting is on the scene. A Swedish designer has used the mechanics behind the music box to create a digital music-making masterpiece.
How It Works
The traditional music box works with one rotating cylinder. It is covered in pins which trigger sounds when they hit the prongs of a comb. Axel Bluhme’s invention, the XOXX Composer, works in much the same way. It features one rotating cylinder, but on it there are eight magnetic discs. Using dedicated software, the user can assign a different digital sound to each disc. This means you can play around with eight sound samples at once. You place small magnetic balls onto the rotating discs which complete a full circuit every second, and as the balls move past a sensor, a beat is triggered. The more balls you place on one plate, the more times that beat plays per second.
The aim of the instrument is to demonstrate rhythm in reality. It brings to life the hidden digital processes of looping, sequencing and sampling.
The music box is MIDI compatible and can be connected to many different instruments and computers.
You can’t get your hands on one just yet – but if you sign up to their mailing list you’ll hear when they’re available.