Electric motors used as a sound source for bizarre organ
Moscow-based media artist Dmitry Morozov has created some cool instruments over the years, including a machine that turned cable twists into eerie music and a synthesizer powered by his own blood. His latest project is a strange electromechanical organ called the motorgan that uses three different-sized DC motors to generate synth-like sounds.
The motorgan – motor and organ, geddit? – is designed around an Arduino Mega brain, two cooling fans from computers and a geared electric motor. A 24-key touch keyboard is split into three zones, one for each motor, and how fast the motor whirs away is determined by voltage changes.
Each key can be tuned using a voltmeter and 24 potentiometers, opening up numerous tune creation possibilities, with electromagnetic fluctuations produced by the motors being picked up by a single coil guitar pickup and the signal output via a 0.25-inch audio jack. There are steel pipes to the rear, but they appear to be just for decoration.
Morozov admits that the motorgan isn't the easiest of instruments to play, but synth-like chords and polyphonic progressions can be heard in the video demo below.
Source: Dmitry Morozov