Altoid tin Theremin

Posted: 4/23/2008 3:11:05 PM

From: San Diego

Joined: 4/23/2008

I am wanting to build several theremins maby 1 clasic tub and a more modern one. also i wos wondering if anyone has managed to shoehorn a theremin in to some altoid tins.

1 for the Theremin parts and 1 for a amp circuit and connect a pieazo to te top of teh amp tin to make a speaker. would this even work?

Posted: 4/23/2008 3:28:56 PM

From: San Diego

Joined: 4/23/2008

also, what would be a good first kit or plans to start with?
Posted: 5/27/2008 11:25:14 PM

From: New Orleans

Joined: 5/1/2008

I haven't built one of these but I have seen the kit on and off ebay for a few years. I will include the link to the sale (don't know if this is prohibited, I am not the seller nor do I know the seller, I am including just as an example)
I am also pasting the description since the sale will end at some point and I hope this to stay relevant. Don't know how a purist would feel about this, but it seems to have some real sonic possibility. Cheers!
OPTICAL THERMIN Sci-Fi Sound Effect Kit !!
( Assembled Kit Shown Above )

Produce all kinds of weird sound effects & music with this small,
simple to build Theremin Kit. Very Cool.

Utilizes 2 light sensors: one controls the frequency and the other modulates (varies) the sound.
Simple one IC circuit with built in speaker and an RCA jack so you can send the sound to your amplifier if desired. Add reverb, delay, or other FX for enhanced sound !!

Simply use your hands to produce some of the strangest, spookiest sounds you'll ever want to hear! The amount of light falling on the sensors can be easily altered though the use of your hands so it can be played similar to a traditional theremin. It can also be played using a dimmable or movable light source for a similar effect.!

Operates from one 9V battery (not included), which makes it very portable.

No need for 110v outlets or extension cords !!

Complete with all parts, PC board and assembly instructions.

This kit requires very basic soldering of components to the PC board.
It sells for around $25, I would like to know if anyone else has played one of these or something similar and what their experience was.
Posted: 6/13/2008 10:05:16 PM

From: Glasgow UK

Joined: 4/10/2006

did someone say altoids tin theremin?
How about a SOLAR POWERED altoids tin theremin?
Just finished it this week:
Posted: 6/14/2008 10:31:15 AM

From: Richmond Hill, Georgia

Joined: 9/18/2005

Someone around here must be a ham besides me, as that crowd's been using Altoids tins for radios too!
Posted: 6/15/2008 7:01:55 PM

From: Eastleigh, Hampshire, U.K. ................................... Fred Mundell. ................................... Electronics Engineer. (Primarily Analogue) .. CV Synths 1974-1980 .. Theremin developer 2007 to present .. soon to be Developing / Trading as . ...................................

Joined: 12/7/2007

Congratulations on an incredibly simple, clever little circuit! Using a 1381 as an oscillator.. what an idea! ... This circuit must be one of the most economic, int term of power consumption, that I have ever seen.
Posted: 6/16/2008 8:53:29 AM

From: Kingston, NY

Joined: 2/13/2005

Thanks MarbleMad!

He's posted photos and complete details on the site metioned above: clockrobot (

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