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The SoL Ocarina - Weirdest... Ocarina... Ever!
Topic Started: 6 Mar 2017, 03:24 AM (5,953 Views)
BigC
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When you're STL, You're STL 4 Life!!!

https://www.songbirdocarina.com/collections/one-of-a-kind-ocarinas/products/sol-synesthesia-the-ocarina-of-light

This is the weirdest concept of an ocarina I've ever seen in my life! :giveup:
Edited by BigC, 6 Mar 2017, 03:26 AM.
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jordan.1210
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Transverse Ocarinist x 3
I got to play one and watch Mr. SOngbird play it when I visited Songbird Ocarina last month!
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BigC
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When you're STL, You're STL 4 Life!!!

What you think of it? I think it looks rushed like the Star Key was. Plus the description is too weird in my opinion.
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Jubal
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Tree Hugger - Food is your right

I prefer it to pop culture marketing gimmicks.
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LifeLightXY
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procrastinator
I think it looks fantastic!
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jordan.1210
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Transverse Ocarinist x 3
I really enjoyed playing it! The sound was very calm yet full. I thought the overall experience of playing something and having a visual feedback is very interesting and something that you don't really see in instruments, especially ocarinas. I don't know why you think they seem rushed since if you've been there you can see a lot of effort going into these instruments. Like Jubal, I think something like this, different yet new, is refreshing rather than taking every pop culture reference and trying to design something for it.
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WinterdrivE
Inline Ocarinist x 3
I think the concept and the lights are really cool, actually. I'm curious as to how it actually works. i.e., how it changes colors and lights up. I'd totally love to play one or at least see it in person, but I can only imagine the price would be waaaayyy too much for me.

Also agree with Jubal. Yeah its a little out there, but I'll take it over the spirit cleansing voodoo marketing any day. I actually like how they incorporated the design and the name into so many aspects of the ocarina, like how its keyed in G/Sol to match the name.
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jordan.1210
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Transverse Ocarinist x 3
Last time I saw they were sold was for $199
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Mark Chan
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BigC
6 Mar 2017, 04:02 AM
I think it looks rushed like the Star Key was.
What do you think is rushed about it?
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Vendace
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Double Ocarinist
I don't think this ocarina actually could have been rushed. If it was, it wouldn't have worked or wouldn't have sounded right on finish. I'm personally very impressed they mananged to fit electronics in, still make it look good, and not mess up the sound in any way.

I have actually been debating hard with myself about buying one. I am really impressed and absolutely want one, but I don't know if I can spare the $199.
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Wollemi Pine
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Triple-Double Ocarinist

Is there a price on it?
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Achint
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Fat Mouse >^_^<

Can the lights/batteries be replaced over time? Seems like it should be an obvious yes, but you never know.

But yes, I agree. Nothing about this seems rushed. I mean, it's not even being sold yet and limited prototypes to select individuals is the only thing that's going to be available. It says on the page it's a passion project and might never even hit markets. They're clearly taking their time.
Edited by Achint, 6 Mar 2017, 04:46 PM.
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CFWhitman
Initiate
Well, it's certainly less silly to me than the "healing" marketing gimmicks. and I can see a bit of novelty appeal to it.

However, I still have very little interest. I generally buy ocarinas for their sound, playability. durability, and portability. I try to add something I don't already have. The lights are a distraction from the music, especially if I am playing in a group among other instruments. Also, this kind of thing could add to the impression that ocarinas are "toy" instruments. So, while I wouldn't mind having one as a novelty, I have other ocarinas that are much higher on my list to buy.
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Vendace
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Double Ocarinist
CFWhitman
6 Mar 2017, 05:16 PM
Well, it's certainly less silly to me than the "healing" marketing gimmicks. and I can see a bit of novelty appeal to it.

However, I still have very little interest. I generally buy ocarinas for their sound, playability. durability, and portability. I try to add something I don't already have. The lights are a distraction from the music, especially if I am playing in a group among other instruments. Also, this kind of thing could add to the impression that ocarinas are "toy" instruments. So, while I wouldn't mind having one as a novelty, I have other ocarinas that are much higher on my list to buy.
I see where you're coming from. This instrument is not one I would play in a group. However, I do think that it gives itself a certain appeal and presentation all on its own as a solo instrument. I find that the way it lights up seems to draw me in to the music more than distract me.


Wollemi, The next available ones will be $199, and then the ones after than $249. then the final few will be auctioned.


I wish I knew about replacing the rechargeable batteries though, that's a pretty important feature.
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Zero Tolerance
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Tamer of beasts, Anything on Ocarina-ist and TON Secret Santa Organizer!
Unfortunately I must sit neutral on all sides after reading everyone's opinions.

I DO agree that it's pretty bizarre looking and also a wee bit of a rush job BUT If it has solid acoustic engendering behind it, then this simply comes down to a case of "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" even if it sounds good, not everyone's going to like how it looks.

I definitely think this is a cut above the Star Key as far as gimmicky hooliganism is concerned but by that same token, I do agree it's a bit on the odd side to look at as well as trying to read their description.

It's interesting in terms of the idea but until more is more is known about it,
My opinion is: Yes, it's weird looking but I like weird. Perhaps not THIS level of weird but I sadly agree on all front. It's weird, it's not weird, it's a rush job and not a rush job. If it sounds better than the star key I think most people will get past the odd design.

God Bless. :)
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Kae
Transverse Ocarinist x 5
I think most of his descriptions for the ocarinas are little on the weird side to be honest, but I thought I heard or read somewhere that he has been researching and working on this ocarina for years so I don't see how it could be rushed. Not to mention as stated before it hasn't even officially been released yet. Just a couple of prototypes so it seems kind of like it is in beta testing now. Where it goes from here as far as actually selling it depends on how well it does. Some people might find the lights to be a distraction but they can also be used as a tool for practicing to play in tune. I think it is a great idea that it widens the range of possibilities and people that can play (Hearing impaired can play for example). It's not going to be for everyone, but the possibilities are there.
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Kitten Forest
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Double Ocarinist x 2
Songbird makes many unique ocarinas, and I think it's a really neat and innovative idea, even from the standpoint of knowing if you're on key based on the colour. If the price wasn't so high I'd consider getting one. The alto G range is nice with the lower tone. No one has given me any details on what the electronics inside are actually like, so that makes me a bit unsure on its quality.
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Mark Chan
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Kae
6 Mar 2017, 11:52 PM
but I thought I heard or read somewhere that he has been researching and working on this ocarina for years so I don't see how it could be rushed.
Three years and thousands of man hours later.
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acox
Andy Cox
Rocco, for sure
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Durian Songbird
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Ocarina Maker

Hello fellow ocarinaists, it's been awhile since I have posted here. I see there are some questions regarding the SoL ocarina, so I'd like to help shed some light on the subject.

First I agree with Charles about the rush. I have been rushing to complete this piece for more than 3 years. Through about 5 different form factors, each requiring their own molds. Many different fipple styles. And thousands of iterations adjusting the programming parameters like transition fades, rgb values, and of course internal contour to allow for optimal acoustics. I am experiencing such a rush for this ocarina that even through all this work, I am amped and literally rush to my workshop every day to keep working on it.

Regarding the battery situation, we are using a 250mah li-ion battery. My engineer informs me that you could play for 6 hours every day for 8.5 years before any noticeable decrease in battery function. Be that as it may, I am offering a free battery replacement if it fails in the first year, and then after that offer battery replacement service for a nominal fee (like $20).

We use wireless qi charging, so you just place the SoL on the base and it recharges. No plugs, buttons, wire, switches, or knobs.

There is a microphone inside, listening to what you play, and telling the microprocessor which color to trigger on the LED. The responsiveness is extremely fast.

Regarding the fipple style, I would characterize it as a cross between a Muse and a Maparam, if any you remember Maparams or are lucky enough to own one. (Mines been glued back together like 3 times)

Regarding the experience, I can tell you from my experience with it that it has added to the way I express and explore musical phrases. I literally think in color now. I've created colored tabs to go with it, and now I can read the tabs quicker by seeing the color than by noticing the configuration of dots. Of course standard music notation is superior, but since I switch keys of ocarina so often, it's nice not having to transpose in my head all the time. I'm just not that smart.

Well that's all I have time for now. If you have further questions, post them here and I will check back in a day or two.

Stay tuned!
Durian Songbird
Maker
Songbird Ocarina
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Mark Chan
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Wireless charging is pretty cool. Good to know they are rechargeable.
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Achint
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Fat Mouse >^_^<

That actually sounds really cool. Thanks for the info Durian!

I'd actually be pretty interested in owning one. It does seem fascinating, if a little gimmicky.
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Kae
Transverse Ocarinist x 5
Since it uses a microphone how accurately does the light respond in loud environments?
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Mark Chan
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Tomorrow, 1 hour from now (11AM PST), 20 will be up for sale on the website.

edited: Tomorrow, not today.
Edited by Mark Chan, 9 Mar 2017, 07:07 PM.
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Durian Songbird
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Ocarina Maker

Kae, it responds really well in loud environments. I have been on the dance floor of a very noisy club with thumping music and the SoL lights are not inadvertently triggered. Even in such a loud environment, once I actually play it, it lights up just fine. We have spent quite a bit of time fine tuning the mic sensitivity levels and choosing just the right microphone to achieve this.
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jordan.1210
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Transverse Ocarinist x 3
And just like that (an hour ago) another 20 SOLs are released into the wild
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Kae
Transverse Ocarinist x 5
That is amazing. I have a lot of excitement for this ocarina, even if I never manage to get one.
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jordan.1210
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Transverse Ocarinist x 3
There's still a chance to get one. There's another 20 going on March 17 and a future auction
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Kae
Transverse Ocarinist x 5
Sadly it is still way too short notice for me to get $250 together. :(
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Kitten Forest
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Double Ocarinist x 2
I got one on Friday, and I'm so excited to play it when it comes! It's a unique idea that will truly be an interesting experience.
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Stephen Bobchin
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Close the World, Open the Next

I've been interested in getting one of these since I first saw the teasers for them, but there seems to be an issue with the email alert system. The concept seems unique, and I know Durian's commitment to his ocarina's quality. (The star key was never intended for or marketed towards ocarinists, especially this community.)
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jordan.1210
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Transverse Ocarinist x 3
For some reason there's one SoL available on Songbird's website right now for $299 if anyone wants it
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Mystic_Ocarina
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Double Ocarinist
The ocarina design is pretty for me, but the way is more a toy that a real instrument....
And of course you are paying about 70-100 Usd for the real isntrument, the other 200 usd.... yes, for a mechanism for kids..
I will pay at most 120 for that thing... NOT MORE :/

EDITED:
I forget to ask something...
Why NEVER show a photo of the back? Is very AWFULL to eyes? Hahaha.
Edited by Mystic_Ocarina, 14 Mar 2017, 11:36 PM.
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Kitten Forest
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Double Ocarinist x 2
Although I did order one, I don't think it would be worth over $300 Canadian. Of course I'll see when I get it, but I still don't think I'd pay that much for an alto ocarina.
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Mystic_Ocarina
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Double Ocarinist
Please someone post a photo of the back of the Ocarina? Im.... really CURIOUS...
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Kae
Transverse Ocarinist x 5
I wouldn't say it is a mechanism for kids. I'm sure kids would also enjoy it but the light has more use than just entertaining looks and just because it lights up it doesn't mean it is a toy. It is still just as much an instrument as every other ocarina they sell. It just happens to have an extra function. I really don't understand this mindset people seem to have that if a child likes it then it shouldn't be for adults.
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Shinobinlove
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Music Ninja
Welp, couldn't resist. I bought the rogue one available. As soon as I snapped it up the site said they were out again, so there really was only one. Weird, but whatever. I got my hands on one.
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Mystic_Ocarina
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Double Ocarinist
Not going to offend but... are all you, Tonians Millionaires? I mean, every extrange, expensive ocarina that is made, all of you purchase it, maybe only if that ocarina is pretty extrange... Because If a real SERIOUSLY company of ocarina maker makes an amazing ocarina, ANY of you buy it.
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Vendace
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Double Ocarinist
Mystic_Ocarina
15 Mar 2017, 01:59 AM
Not going to offend but... are all you, Tonians Millionaires? I mean, every extrange, expensive ocarina that is made, all of you purchase it, maybe only if that ocarina is pretty extrange... Because If a real SERIOUSLY company of ocarina maker makes an amazing ocarina, ANY of you buy it.
I'm certainly not.(I'm a student on top of everything else) I wanted a Sol but didn't buy one because I lack the funds.
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Mystic_Ocarina
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Double Ocarinist
Vendace
15 Mar 2017, 02:24 AM
Mystic_Ocarina
15 Mar 2017, 01:59 AM
Not going to offend but... are all you, Tonians Millionaires? I mean, every extrange, expensive ocarina that is made, all of you purchase it, maybe only if that ocarina is pretty extrange... Because If a real SERIOUSLY company of ocarina maker makes an amazing ocarina, ANY of you buy it.
I'm certainly not.(I'm a student on top of everything else) I wanted a Sol but didn't buy one because I lack the funds.
I'm happy to hear not all of you buy, ( i mean, i never understand where get that amounts of money, ocarinas are not expensive at all, but "special ones" .... are... "POCKET BREAKERS" XD
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BigC
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When you're STL, You're STL 4 Life!!!

I still wouldn't buy it because of not only the high price, but since I have epilepsy and stuff like that CAN cause a seizure, so if it did go into full production, i would highly reccomend putting a warning label on something like that.
Edited by BigC, 15 Mar 2017, 02:43 AM.
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Jubal
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Tree Hugger - Food is your right

Not everyone's financial situation is the same. What is expensive to you may not be for someone else. I don't see why that's a bad thing. They're not spending your money.
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Kae
Transverse Ocarinist x 5
I'm not offended but I don't think you should assume anyones finances. If I were rich I would have more than two usable ocarinas.
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Shinobinlove
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Music Ninja
I am an adult with disposable income. I also have not bought an ocarina since 2010. Get a grip.
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acyriala
Pendant Ocarinist x 3
I think it's kind of a selection bias to say everyone on this forum is always buying every new ocarina that's coming out. There's 20,000 registered users and only a handful of people buy when a new ocarina comes out each time. If I went into a guitar forum, I wouldn't assume everyone's buying a Gibson every time a new model comes out, it's just that the forum has a large enough sample pool to have a conversation about that product. I think it's good that this forum is big enough that people who do buy new ocarina models can share firsthand information about those new products for prospective buyers and people coming in from the internet looking to make more informed purchases. With all of these forum posts, I've had a much better purchasing experience because I have a better idea of what I can expect when I buy a specific ocarina.
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