A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:
Proof of Concept
Explorations that test ideas and functionality.
Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.
Looks like the final product, but is not functional.
Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.
Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.
We love synthesizers and we’re passionate about making them great sounding and above all - accessible.
To us, analog is about texture, it’s about depth of emotion - it’s the beauty in imperfection.
Those are human values, they're timeless, they enrich our everyday experiences.
That is why we've developed RAVEN, a 100% analog, semi-modular, synthesizer voice.
RAVEN is the synthesizer we’ve always dreamed of making from day one.
Building on a legacy of years of technological research, design and manufacturing as well as the tremendous success of our previous modular line, TheBateleur, we had quite a few challenges to face during the creation process.
The system-architectural idea was about going back to the basics of subtractive synthesis. We wanted to capture the raw, non-linearity and honesty of a 100% analog circuit.
The main engineering challenge of RAVEN was consolidating a highly complex conglomerate of modular, discrete designs into a slim 3U/42HP (Eurorack) form-factor resulting in a uniquely sounding subtractive, semi-modular, high-performance, musical instrument.
RAVEN is comprised of:
Dual, wide-range Voltage Controlled Oscillators.
The original TheBateleur (Ⓡ pending) Voltage Controlled Filter.
Two Voltage Controlled Amplifier outputs - A high-performance THAT2162 BlackmerⓇ VCA and an Optocoupler VCA reminiscent of legendary West-Coast designs.
RAVEN combines the simplicity of a performance-friendly, semi-modular synthesizer voice with fully-modular, infinitely flexible, workflow possibilities by assigning Control Voltage I/O’s at (almost) every point in the signal workflow. Each modular component can be seen as a standalone, self-sufficient entity. The VCF can be bypassed to allow for a VCO (I+II Sum) to VCA operation and thus used as a standalone VCF or third voice in self-oscillation, perfectly tracking 1V/Oct by choice.
1V/Oct (Pitch tracking) relative and absolute options for both oscillators and VCF.
FM (Linear Frequency Modulation) per VCO.
PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) per VCO.
SYNC per VCO.
Crossfader between VCO’s.
External Audio Signal Input.
VCF CV Input.
VCA CV Input.
Individual Waveform outs for each VCO (Saw, Triangle, Pulse / Square).
Clean Out (Linear THAT2162 BlackmerⓇ VCA).
Opto Out (Optocoupler VCA, West-Coast style response).
Waveform selection toggle per VCO.
PW position for VCO II.
PWM amount either individually for VCO I or normalized for both.
FM amount either individually for VCO I or normalized for both.
Coarse Tune for VCO I (relative or absolute via jumper).
We believe that capturing the creative spark in the right moment, should be an immediate, accessible and intuitive experience. And we create the tools for those moments.
RAVEN is about the symbiosis with the individual. Our goal was to make a musical instrument that responds to your touch in a consistent and affirmative way, yet does not restrict the unique sonic-character and the vibrancy of the synthesizers color palette.
Making music should be a fun and playful process. We believe in a hands-on, ears-first approach. Like with any instrument, it’s about understanding the fundamentals.
On the surface there is very little complexity, every tweak is perceivable change. It should adapt to how you do things - not the other way round.
A good design can go a long way in helping you do that, a great design will make it joyful and performance friendly.
We have one of the most supportive distribution partners in the business with ALEX4 Distribution GmbH in Berlin. So why would we deliberately take the risk of pre-financing the entire development and pre-production instead of opting for a safer, slower route? The answer is: mutual benefit.
A smart partner understands that in the long run, we all benefit from scaling up the manufacturing-standard goals as well as widening the awareness and reach to make great musical instruments more accessible, more affordable and more human.
Reduction of the purchase cost for campaign backers by skipping distribution and retail chains - meaning: best price and early shipping through sufficient backing.
Highest possible build, manufacturing and packaging quality through scaling-up of production quantities and conversely reduction of cost-per-unit.
Widening awareness for the brand values we care deeply about such as disabilities, marginalization, accessibility and social impact of musical education by cooperation with NGOs and institutions as well as making accessible educational material for wide public use and workshop implementation.
That’s why we see YOU dear backer, as our mutual partner.
We’ve prepared some amazing rewards for you for supporting us on this journey to make a unique-sounding, expressive, musical instrument come to life. With the final MSRP set at € 949,- and scheduled to hit stores not earlier than end of 2019, you’re guaranteed to save big and get it earlier than anyone else, regardless of pledge choice.
Without further ado, the RAVEN itself. You will have two color-options for the Panel to choose from:
Simply specify your choice upon order, or send us an email after placing an order.
Backer Categories and Estimated Shipping Times
We’ve prepared three categories of production-batches for you to choose from when deciding to get a RAVEN:
Early Adopters - over 30% Off MSRP! First to adopt, first to enjoy! This is the 1st batch we will manufacture (very limited quantity), and we’ll begin dispatching as early as March 2019.
Early Birds - over 40% Off MSRP! The early bird catches the worm!
This is the 2nd batch we will manufacture (larger batch than 1st, but still limited quantity), and we’ll begin dispatching as early as June 2019.
Smart Saver - over 50% Off MSRP!
Sensational pricing for smart savers!
This is the 3rd and final batch we will manufacture, it will take longer to produce, and we’ll begin dispatching as early as October 2019.
RAVEN and TheBateleur bundles
Additionally we've prepared some exclusive bundle options for the RAVEN, namely three modules from our TheBateleur modular line which are guaranteed to play very well together.
TheBateleur POWER/MIDI is a clean, mobile, modular power source with 16-bit precision MIDI-CV conversion in a slim (4HP/3U) format.
TheBateleur ENVELOPE/GENERATOR is a multi mode, highly musical and responsive Envelope Generator in a slim (4HP/3U) format.
TheBateleurMIXER/NOISE is a highly versatile, analog, 4-to-1 summing mixer with a transistor-based noise source in a slim (6HP/3U) format.
We have some exclusive, stunning T-Shirt designs for you with Illustrations by Miroslava Rudášová.
All Unisex T-Shirts are 100% Premium Cotton, Ring Spun and available in:
four sizes: Small, Medium, Large and XL
three colors: White, Light Grey and Dark Grey
three Illustrations:“POWER/MIDI”, “ENVELOPE GENERATOR” and “MIXER/NOISE”.
aka Merch Pack
All T-Shirts are also available in combination with a beautiful, natural linen Drawstring Bag with three Illustration options:
“POWER/MIDI”, “ENVELOPE GENERATOR” and “MIXER/NOISE”.
Simply specify your choice upon order, by specifying the following:
T-Shirt: Illustration Name, Size, Color (f.e. “POWER/MIDI”, XL, Light Grey) . Bag: Illustration Name (f.e. “ENVELOPE/GENERATOR”).
Or send us an email after placing an order.
Merch Pack options also exist in combination with Early Adopter, Early Bird and Smart Saver bundles (see "Pledges" section).
1 x RAVEN, 100% analog, semi-modular synthesizer voice (42HP/3U).
1 x Eurorack Modular Power Connector (16 PIN Flatribbon).
4 x 3.5mm Mono cables (CV/AUDIO).
We've prepared some exclusive, 24hr availability, limited quantity options for Black Friday (November 23rd, 2018). These options will be activated (and be visible) on Friday, Nov 23rd at 6PM CET and remain active for exactly 24 hours.
First up, RAVEN black & lilac at > 45% Off MSRP including a limited edition "TheBateleur TWINS", 100% Premium Cotton T-Shirt.
This option will ship after the initial, 2nd batch fulfillment as early as August 2019.
Second, we've got the positively lowest priced way to get a, RAVEN black & lilac, EVER at > 55% Off MSRP. This option will ship after the last, 3rd batch fulfillment as early as November 2019.
Black Friday Exclusive, ultra-limited T-Shirt design for you with Illustrations by Miroslava Rudášová.
All Unisex T-Shirts are 100% Premium Cotton, Ring Spun and available in:
four sizes: Small, Medium, Large and XL. Simply specify your size choice upon order.
Finally, a cult-classic, TheBateleur42hp System. Limited 5pcs (!) run, exclusively assembled for this Campaign. With 50 units ever shipped and largely sold-out, this is a true collectors item. The system ships with a USB power-supply for TheBateleur POWER/MIDI, cables and the Black Friday Exclusive "TheBateleur TWINS" T-shirt as well as a TheBateleur Drawstring Bag.
TheBateleur 42hp System can be shipped immediately after the campaign, in time for the holiday season!
You can choose T-shirt size and Bag Illustration upon order or simply send us a message.
02/18 - The Idea of RAVEN is born.
05/18 - Proof of Concept.
07/18 - Design Prototype.
08/18 - Negotiations with production facilities and supply chain partners as well as distribution channels.
Designed, manufactured, hand-assembled and hand-calibrated to the highest quality specifications in Vienna, Austria.
Each and every single product deserves and gets the same love and treatment, from the very first sketch on paper to the final bow on the packaged box, it’s our privilege and duty to be able devote time to the finer details until the lines blur and the experience is seamless.
We are Engineers, Designers, Architects, Illustrators, Sculptors, Developers, Composers, DJs, VJs, Performers and perpetually curious kids who are deeply in love with the Arts & Technology.
We come from diverse backgrounds, but we share the same vision.
We are birdkids
Risks and challenges
One of the biggest challenges when it comes to a major manufacturing production is logistics of the supply chain. Years of experience in the field will show you that all abides Murphy’s Law ("Anything that can go wrong will go wrong").
Can one be ready? The answer is unequivocally - yes.
The name of the game is - process implementation. Things will go wrong (f.e. lead times not fulfilled by component manufacturers, package delayed at the border etc...).
If you have a well documented process for supply procedure, you’ll surely have a plan B and plan C to fall back on - meaning: alternative sourcing on standby, replacement parts and ideally fully itemized partkeeping which anticipates possible EOL components in the earliest design stage.
Having said that, the main risks are always the things that you cannot anticipate. For us those would be failure on multiple chains of the supply chain at the same time due to geopolitical circumstances (electronics manufacturing is tightly linked to component sourcing across multiple borders), as well as delays in production due to machine malfunction.
Thus we spend a large chunk of our time, protocolling and streamlining processes.
We’re deliberately conservative about setting shipping deadlines and would rather judiciously implement a larger safety buffer to anticipate possible risks down the line.
Ultimately, as with anything else at birdkids, we believe in a systematic approach to problem solving at every stage of the design. We believe that achieving full potential requires the right environment, the right mindset and the right tools - we create those tools.
We see ourselves, ultimately, as enabling those who go the extra mile for something remarkable - aspiring to witness a miracle, those who dare to dream and in turn
inspire us to make that dream a reality.
Get RAVEN from the 1st batch including a TheBateleur POWER/MIDI, TheBateleur ENVELOPE/GENERATOR and TheBateleur MIXER/NOISE, delivered and installed in your studio anywhere in the EU/UK including a personal workshop and exclusive goodie-bag.
Get RAVEN from the 1st batch including a TheBateleur POWER/MIDI, TheBateleur ENVELOPE/GENERATOR and TheBateleur MIXER/NOISE, delivered and installed in your studio anywhere in US/Canada including a personal workshop and exclusive goodie-bag.
Get RAVEN from the 2nd batch for a sensational 40% Off MSRP in a bundle with a TheBateleur 42hp System from an exclusive (5 pcs!) run including a limited edition, 100% Premium Cotton, Ring Spun T-Shirt and a Premium Drawstring Bag with Illustrations by Miroslava Rudášová.
Get RAVEN from the 2nd batch for a sensational 40% Off MSRP in a bundle with a TheBateleur POWER/MIDI, TheBateleur ENVELOPE/GENERATOR & TheBateleur MIXER/NOISE as well as a complete TheBateleur 42hp System from an exclusive (5 pcs!) run.
Join the team in Vienna for final assembly, calibration and walk-through of your own Early Adopter prototype of RAVEN, followed by a dinner at skopik+lohn and a stay in a 4-star hotel in the heart of the city.
A final production unit will follow the prototype up in March, and you get to keep the exclusive, hand-built prototype as well.
* Two RAVEN units (hand-built final prototype and final production unit).
* Workshop and Meet the Team.
* Dinner at skopik + lohn.
* One-night stay in a 4-star Hotel in the heart of Vienna.
Get four RAVEN units from the 2nd batch for a sensational 40% Off MSRP in a bundle with a TheBateleur POWER/MIDI, TheBateleur ENVELOPE/GENERATOR & TheBateleur MIXER/NOISE as well as a complete TheBateleur 42hp System from an exclusive (5 pcs!) run.