The Spectral Cluster SC-17 (2022)

Spectral Cluster SC-17

The Spectral Cluster SC-17 is a custom-built tone exciter intended for electro-acoustic application. It spans over 17 string courses and its design can be adapted to be used on most key- and actionless piano frames, as well as grand pianos that are straight-stringed.

The Spectral Cluster provides flexibility by allowing the composer and
player to individually control each string course. Each of the 17
individual tone exciters and inducers can be regulated for sensitivity,
gain and physical height, which grants the composer and player the
ability to combine the Spectral Cluster with prepared strings to broaden
the timbral repertoire of the stringed instrument being used together
with the SC.

The SC-17 is physically divided into two cases which are wired together: the exciter case and the inducer case. The inducer case lays in the vicinity of the mid-point of each string course, where it picks up the vibration of the strings and sends an amplified signal of this vibration to the exciter array. The exciter case sits close to the bridge and houses the exciters that cause the strings to vibrate though electromagnetic induction.

Current production time: ca. 3-4 weeks.

If you wish to know more, I would gladly provide more information regarding the SC-17. Feel free to contact me any time.

When it comes to amplitude, tests have shown that the range of the SC
can overwhelm the stringed instrument producing dynamics that are above
fortissimo, which can shadow and even eclipse quieter dynamics played at
the same time by the player. This can easily be adjusted to suit the
needs of the player and the stringed instrument used.

In its current version, the SC-17 is designed to gravitate towards the lower harmonics that each string can provide, but still has a good response when the player manipulates the string to bring higher-order harmonics.

The current version of the Spectral Cluster is presently being tested by its owner: composer Marina Khorkova, who kindly provides her first-hand experience in using the SC-17 and passes on valuable feedback that helps to constantly improve the design.

Check out her amazing work!