Soma Laboratory ENNER, analog Synthesizer with novel hands-on control

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Soma Laboratory ENNER is a novel analog Synthesizer where the sound patching, designing and performing is under your fingertips.

Russia, the country of special synthesizers. Unique, with a lot of character and always a bit crazy. Alisa, Polivoks, Formanta,… just to name a few of these vintage synth beads. The star of the new Russian Synthesizer scene is among others Vlad Kreimer and his team of Soma Laboratory. They carry on all the charm and particularities that we love about vintage Soviet synthesizers.

The LYRA-8 and Pulsar 32 alone are synths that will become classics like the Polivoks. However, Vlad and his team do not rest on their successes, they are constantly working on new innovative instruments/effects in their Soma Laboratory. One of them is Enner, which is now finished after 2 years of development. They created Enner together with the Danish sound artist SiSTOR aka Dalin Waldo.

Soma Labs Enner

Soma Labs Enner

Enner is Vlad Kreimer’s latest work and is as special as his developments before. In 2019 Soma Laboratory showed us a first teaser that promised a synth that will use the artist’s body for the main sound processing. They have now finalized this idea and packaged it into a very eye-catching instrument.

At its core, Enner is an analog Synthesizer that does not produce its sound by pressing a key on a keyboard. It creates and outputs sounds in relationship with the human body. Thus, you hands become the central part of the circuitry. Touching different contact pads with different parts of your fingers and palms with different amounts of pressure, letting signals pass through your body defining a wide range of parameters.

Vlad says:

Human skin has much more complex electric properties than we think. Our skin provides not just resistance but also some capacitive properties and even nonlinear dependence of conductivity from current, its direction and time during which the current was applied. All of this affects the sound, making you the key part of the synthesis process.

Soma Labs Enner

Another key point of the idea are the pots that are metallic and also function as inputs or outputs. With a press of a finger you can not only influence the parameters but also patch the audio signals. So Vlad removes the machine-like operation and humanizes the patching workflow by handing the task over to your hands. Very exciting concept and so it goes on. The synth engine is also tempting.

ENNER Synth Engine

The ENNER sound engine consists of 7 parts, that work together like a modular synth. They have inputs & outputs and are internally patchable using your hands. So a very hands-on in a new, innovative way. ENNER features:

  • field of stereo filters controllable via the touch pads (triangle). Made for deeply, rich, filtering effects in the stereo image.
  • modulated stereo delay with two touch pads designed to explore many facets of a stereo delay. (triangle)
  • five-voice Synthesizer with tune control per voice, option to pitch all voice simulaneously, and different I/O (voice, mods, and ring modulator) (right side) 
  • Synthesizer for rhythmical clicks, basses, and octave tones based on a six-times by two divided master generator.
  • built-in piezo pickup that captures the sound from the case itself (clicks, scratches with your fingers), metallic spring even from your voice.
  • noise pad outputs a static pink noise (bottom of the triangle) 
  • external in lets you send an external audio signal to ENNER and process it through the array of filters, delay…

ENNER is capable of generating bits, pads, FX, noises, clicks, glitches, and more. A very crazy experimental synth as I would say.

First Impression

If Mr. Spock (Star Trek) were interested in the arts of Russian synthesizers developers, he would say “fascinating” about the latest work by Vlad Kreimer. I would agree with him. Soma Laboratory ENNER is, for me, an innovative analog synth that takes hands-on control to the next level. It tightens the relationship between the musician and instrument even more closely. Very very fascinating and tempting.

Soma Laboratory ENNER is manufactured only in the Russian production division. The price of ENNER will be 440€ (without VAT, shipping, customers, money transfer expenses). According to the developer, it will have an estimated final price of 530€ (Central Europe), and $635 USD (depends on the exchange rate).

More information here: Soma Labs 

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