Axoloti Core

I mentioned Axoloti in another post, but thought perhaps its worthy of a topic in its own right…

Im an active contributor and keen fan of Axoloti (but not financially connected) and think perhaps others here might not have heard of it but might find it useful

basic info is here:

its an open source hardware and software platform , often liken to the nord modular, but costs 65 euro!
has software patcher, but the patches run completely on the hardware, without the necessity for a computer. the patcher, is like Reaktor, Max/Msp, in that its objects are linked by wires, and if your a programmer you can also create custom objects in C.

whats it used for?
well I think its like a swiss army knife … obviously it can do sound synthesis, as a synth or fx, but also its got midi, through DIN , USB host and device, so can be a great midi tool, either for routing or midi fx… others use it as a sequencer/drum machine.
its also got full hardware breakout, so many people are connecting it to things.

the community plays a large part in pushing axoloti forward, and helping other users, this makes it good place to learn about patching -
you’ll also find there some example projects , and also details on the community library, where patches and object are shared. (getting pretty big now)

its all created by one (clever) guy, Johannes Taelman, who is also very active in the community…
currently its sold out, but it will be in stock again soon
(Thonk may have them in stock, if you want to buy with the music thing control board, which is a fun addition :slight_smile: )

Johannes is currently developing a ‘control board’ which will allow hands on control through a display, knobs and buttons… more info will be available soon :wink:

sorry, long post, but its quite hard to describe axoloti in a few words, as its hard to pigeon hole it, its different things to different people.

I love my axo boards… its a great environment to experiment with, made by a one man company, so hasn’t had a lot of exposure.

any other axoloti users here?


Its really a fantastic piece of kit! I’m using mine as a second, ultra fancy oscillator for a minibrute.
also love that it can be battery powered which opens up a whole lot of fun possibilities.
three cheers for johannes!


ooh, you have the music thing modular kit… Ive ordered mine now they are back in stock.
it will be my first ‘hardware’ project… its funny how axoloti has tempted me down that route, never considered diy building before.

( I do need to get some junk pcb’s to practice my soldering skills first, don’t want to destroy my axoloti :))

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I build mine yesterday. it is a good first soldering project and shouldn’t be too difficult with a decent iron.

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I bought one recently but i didn’t have time to power it on !


I got one this year as well! I’m still getting my feet wet but I’ve been really impressed with it so far. Just built a makeshift case and a couple simple patches I’ve been using to test a sequencer I’m working on. Definitely will end up in my live rig!

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I love my Axoloti! I too have the MTM addition and he did a splendid job with it.


Wow, i just spent one hour or so with it.
First of all, installation is very easy and takes 5 minutes.
Making a sound after 1 minute patching.
All the examples and tutorials work, nothing is missing.
I am so impressed so far.


Love it. Had mine since December.

My only complaint about the MTM controller is that it doesn’t have any noise filtering for the controls. I usually end up putting one-pole filters or slew on each pot digitally to remove some of it.

EDIT: Use the “smooth” object:

By the way, just saw this

How does this compare to axoloti or aleph or any other product you’d know in that category. It feels like something at the junction of both but doesn’t look as simple and open as the first, and as slick and beautiful as the second.

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Zynthian looks very interesting, especially as I already have a PI2 and HIBerry DAC+ :slight_smile:

it appears to be based on a PI2 (or 3), and appears to glue a few existing open source pieces together, which is cool, as this is tricky in itself. looks like a a nice PI solution.
its seem to be aimed as a more ‘out of the box’ instrument, i.e. providing some ‘standard’ linux synths/samplers rather than patching synths.

(axoloti is a virtual modular synth environment, so you make your own synths, midi router, sequencer or whatever)

implementation wise…

its a different approach to axoloti which runs a real time os (chibios) which is very light, and has very low latency, which you cannot achieve with linux systems (*) . the other issue with PI systems are they are relatively slow to start up , and the SD cards do fail.

on the flip side a PI has a lot more cpu power, and is obviously a general purpose OS…
(there is a more detailed comparison on the axoloti site)

theres another solution that is somewhere between the axoloti and PI :
Bela ( , I’ve got a couple of these on there way to me too… Bela is a a cape for a Beagle Bone Black, but this runs a hard real time linux kernel called Xenomai, and the cape provides audio processing in that real time context.

Bela, I think, is more aimed at ‘instrument makers’ but does interface with PD via Heavy or C++.

Bela’s site also has a good comparison of alternatives, including contrasting axoloti.

Its great to see a few different alternatives coming along, as these devices are great little portable musical devices… Im getting quite a collection now :slight_smile:


This looks cool! I couldn’t find any mention of post-kickstarter plans… do you know if they plan to make the kit generally available after they’ve mailed them out to supporters?

I don’t know but I just noticed they have a new forum. Looks like they’re shipping to backers sometime this week. Should be interesting!


yeah, its perhaps worth pointing out with bela, you do have to be careful what code gets executed if you want to keep the kernel in realtime mode… you can’t just execute arbitrary code, and expect real time to continue.
e.g. in the other thread, there was talk of a monome, but using usb lib, will drop it out.

Im going to be playing a bit with this, when my Bela arrives … and seeing how this can be avoided. for use with my Soundplane.

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That’s great. I’ll be eager to follow along to learn more about real-time Linux for audio. To be an instrument, the bela needs some kind of input, in any event!

woah, the axoloti also has a script object with a nice little editor that even auto closes brackets :sweat_smile:

also very impressed with the thing so far!

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built my AxoControl from MTM today, first soldering project, and worked first time :slight_smile:

its whetted my appetite creating some DIY instruments based around Axoloti and Bela, going to be a lot of fun.

The AxoControl is nice, really compact thing, to have 6 knobs, a joystick and 4 buttons… think it will allow Axoloti to be an interesting fx device… or even a simple midi controller.

only one thing I need to resolve, there are just not enough hours in the day to explore these things… guess I can’t blame MTM or Axoloti for that.


Axoloti on Raspberry Pi


I love it. I did this :slight_smile:

(I don’t know if embeds work with instagram, anyway this is the link )

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