Luminth Kickstarter Launches Thursday, May 16, 2013

Luminth-with-MacBook

The Luminth is a minimalist USB control peripheral. To use the Luminth, simply click, turn, and push+turn. The Luminth changes color with the music.

Luminth Orbiter is a generative music software application. Make dramatic changes to the music with a single click. Dive deeper to make refined, subtle adjustments. Or, let Orbiter work autonomously to create music that morphs over time.

The Luminth is the best way to control Luminth Orbiter software, but Orbiter is fully functional with or without the Luminth.

The Luminth and Luminth Orbiter will be available for purchase at 12:01AM EST on Thursday, May 16. Check nthsynth.com on Thursday for a link to the Kickstarter project page and purchasing information.

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NTH Enclosure Discount for September

Our friend Alex Traxler from Griffen Hollow Studio cut the NTH enclosures for our production run, and has offered his services to NTH users looking for custom acrylic or wooden cuts.  For the month of September, he is offering the following discounted prices:

  • Acrylic enclosure – $75
  • Wood enclosure – $125

Alex is a fine craftsman and made us the white oak enclosure seen below.  You can contact him here.

Final Push to Shipping

We thought you might be interested in seeing some images from our final testing, assembly, and packaging procedures. Please check out the photo spread below for a glimpse of the final production process.

NOTE #1: We still have not received international shipping funds from some backers. We cannot ship your reward to you without these funds. Please PayPal your payment to avoid shipping delays.

NOTE #2: We still have not received backer survey responses, including shipping addresses and phone numbers, from some people. We cannot ship your reward if we do not have this information. Please respond to your backer survey as soon as possible to avoid shipping delays.

Thanks again to everyone for your patience and for your support of the NTH!

Manufacturing update, enclosures complete, and more …

Hello Everyone,

Good news:  the rocker switches shipped on May 16. Our PCB assembler received the complete parts kit for NTH production on May 22. This means that we should receive the assembled PCBs in the last week of June. We are ecstatic to advance to this stage of production.

In other project news:

– We have chosen the Creative Commons Attribution license for the NTH design source. This is a very permissive license that allows anyone to build an NTH or derivative design either for personal use or for profit.

– The final batch of acrylic panels has been completed by Griffen Hollow Studio. Alex at Griffen Hollow provided us with the special oak-panel NTH enclosure shown below. If anyone is looking for a unique enclosure to personalize their NTH, Alex provides an excellent service, and is well-versed with the design.

– After extensive consideration, we have decided to create a Google Group to serve as a discussion community for NTH users. It is not the sexiest option, but it provides a good mixture of universality and (we hope) low maintenance requirements.

– The silkscreens for the NTH t-shirts have been tested and are ready to go. We are using black American Apparel tees. We’ll be offering a choice of sizes XS-XL when the backer surveys are sent.

– Backer surveys will be issued sometime in the next two weeks. We need your prompt response to deliver your rewards.

Important note to backers residing outside the USA:  If your pledge did not include the extra shipping costs for your pledge level, we will not be able to ship your reward until we have received the addtional funds. Please take a moment to review your reward description. If you still need to send the additional funds, please PayPal them to us at nthsynth@gmail.com.

Thanks for reading.

Production Prototypes Complete. Rocker Switches Backordered.

Yesterday we received two “first article” production NTH PCBs from Screaming Circuits.  These are the first NTH PCBs not hand-assembled by us.  The boards look and work great.  This is an important step because it validates our BOM and proves the ability of the assembler to manufacture the board to our spec.

Acrylic panels for the production enclosures are being produced in batches.  Approximately 35% of the panels are complete.  Here is a video of the two first article NTHs in production enclosures alongside the two previous prototypes.  We’re having a bit of fun chaining together all 4 NTHs to create a synced “NTH ensemble”.

We have completed our order of electronic components for bulk production.  In our possession are six boxes full of ICs, switches, pots, sliders and other parts in an assortment of reels, tapes, trays and bags.

We have received all of the production components except for, unfortunately, the rocker switches used in the design (NKK G12KP-YA).  The orginal April ship date provided by the distributor has been pushed back to June 25th.  We have contacted the switch manufacturer about the situation.  Since there is no stock available within North America, we have no choice but to wait for a shipment from the factory in Japan.

If we are lucky, the switches will be shipped sooner than the estimated date.  (We’ll keep our fingers crossed.)  In the meantime, we are planning to do whatever we can to minimize the impact of the switch backorder.  We may have the contract assembly done without the rocker switches.  Then we can complete the boards ourselves, immediately after the switches are delivered.

We are about to place the bulk order for production PCBs.  But because everything is gated by the availability of the rocker switches, we may not be able to begin shipping NTHs until late June or early July.  We appreciate your understanding and patience.  We will do our best to answer your questions and will post new information as the situation develops.

Thanks for reading.  You can find us here at nthsynth.comFacebookTwitter, and Tumblr.

NTHSynth LLC, PCB and Enclosure Production

Hello Everyone,

Some progress of note since the last update:

  • Articles of organization were filed on March 20 and we are now operating as NTHSynth LLC.
  • We have placed the order for the “first article” of PCB production.  Once we receive and verify it, we’ll continue with the bulk order.
  • Screaming Circuits is our PCB assembler.  We have been in contact with the Screaming Circuits marketing manager and are hoping to get some photos of the work in process so that we can share them with you.
  • A local supplier has been identified for the acrylic panels that form the NTH enclosure.  We have placed an order for the first batch.  When we get them, we’ll take some snapshots of the glassy goodness and put them up on Tumblr.
  • We are starting to update the website to reflect the new business and make room for future projects.
  • Based on the lead times involved, we are unlikely to meet our delivery goal of May.  The lead time for the first article is about 3 weeks, and for bulk production, about 7 weeks.  Assuming that the PCBs are delivered with no issues, we’ll be assembling & shipping rewards in early June.  We are working to deliver the NTH as quickly as possible.  Sorry for the delay and thank you for your patience as we navigate the manufacturing process.

As always, we look forward to interacting with you.  The best place to reach us is here at nthsynth.com.  You can also find us at FacebookTwitter, and Tumblr.  Thanks for reading!

Enclosures and Business Organization

Hi Everyone,

We have spent the week evaluating suppliers for the NTH production enclosures, t-shirts, and flash drives and have found good options for each.

For those that will be creating their own NTH enclosure, we recommend Ponoko.  Ponoko accepts the Adobe Illustrator file format, which is the native design format for the NTH enclosure.  Here’s a bamboo NTH enclosure that we purchased in order to evaluate the Ponoko laser cutting service:

In other news, we have received the Kickstarter funds from Amazon Payments.  We will be forming an LLC early next week and will then begin with circuit board and enclosure production.

More news coming soon.  Thanks for reading!