I recently attended the fantastic Wuthering Bytes festival over here in the UK. Over an evening meal a few hardware hacker types were discussing cool projects and I was introduced to E-ther. E-ther is a fabulously well-thought-out MIDI controller that can use gesture control like the Theremin, as well as many other features!
Powered via a micro USB, this pocket-sized device can output MIDI over USB or TRS. In turn, you can find readily available TRS to traditional MIDI DIN5 cables should you need them, allowing you to use this controller with all your classic or modern MIDI gear.
E-ther uses distance sensors rather than light-based sensors so it’s easy to use in any lighting conditions, from dark booming nightclubs to outdoor summer concerts! Of course, the MIDI output can be used with any MIDI sound source you have access to, be it hardware modules or straight into your favourite DAW. You can also optionally add an audio output by adding a Pimoroni picoaudio. This widely available module allows the E-ther to output a pure sine wave turning it into a classic theremin that fits in your pocket.
There is a great video walkthrough on the product page, but you can also hear the E-ther in a popular BBC advert. This advert promoting BBC as an education tool has aired extensively in the UK. Check out the theremin sounds on this video before heading over to the project page!