Category Archive: news

  1. New User Forum

    We’ve moved!

    Bigger, better, and with a much better view: the new Rebel Technology forum is here!

    The old OWL forum has been entirely migrated to a new, much improved platform based on Discourse. Find the new community website here:

    For existing hoxtonowl users, you will be able to log in with your old username.


    If you have any problems with the migration please visit this thread on the old forum, or email us: info at rebeltech dot org

  2. New Tutorials including Max MSP on the OWL!

    We’ve been putting together lots of new tutorials.

    As you might’ve read, you can now get Cycling 74’s Max MSP software running on the OWL via Gen. Here’s an introduction:

    OWL Max Tutorial 1: Getting Started

    And here’s how to build a great-sounding stereo tape delay with a low pass filter:

    OWL Max Tutorial 2: Delay

    We’ve also made a tutorial showing you how to make a simple FM Synth in Pure Data. If you’ve not tried FM Synthesis yet, you should have a go:

    OWL Pure Data Tutorial 4: FM Synthesis

    We’re keeping the videos in a YouTube playlist. Get in touch to request new tutorial topics, and let us know if you’re using Max MSP / Gen on your OWL!

  3. OWL pedal, Spring and Guitar Pickup

    An awesome bit of experimentation by OWL pedal user Jóhannes Gunnar Þorsteinsson. Great for sound design and electro-acoustic music. NB: the video starts really quiet!


  4. OWL Modular DivKid Video

    Excellent video blogger and Eurorack connoisseur Ben Hex, aka DivKid, has made a brilliant video showcasing a whole bunch of OWL patches on the OWL Modular. Check it out!

  5. OWL Modular Announced

    Is it a bird? Is it a plane? It’s the OWL Modular! Coming to shops on 1 August 2015.

    The OWL Modular is our Eurorack version of the OpenWareLaboratory. Fully compatible with OWL Pedal patches, the Modular adds Control Voltage and trigger inputs and outputs, allowing you to modulate and sequence any parameter.

    OWL Modular

    Check out the teaser video below:

  6. New firmware Release: Rev004.005

    We are happy to announce a new firmware release for the OWL, Rev004.005! Lots of new patches…
    The new release is available through OwlNest now, or you can download the binary from GitHub.

    It improves the quality of Delay patches, with a reworked Simple Delay Patch, and an additional Filtered Delay Patch.

    Also it includes a great collection of stereo patches by Oli Larkin (who recently released the Virtual CZ, check it out!). List below:
    – reworked DroneBox, now stereo
    – Dual Frequency Shifter
    – Stereo Frequency Shifter
    – Dual Pitch Shifter
    – XFM Synth
    – Blipper
    – ThruZeroFlanger

    We also started to port some effects from the ArtyFX Library, Bitta and Vidha.

    Also, Giulio Moro and Dave Moffat have contributed with some cool patches: OverOverDrive, ToneFilter, PlateVerb and Compressor.

    Let us know through the forums / twitter what you think of these new effects, and please share any audio / video / patches with us!

    We also hope you like the new website and patches page, there is still a lot coming in the new year…

    the OWL team

  7. Two OWLs and a 909

    What happens if you put two OWL pedals, a Roland TR-909 drum machine and one half of electronic duo Nummer together in a studio?
    Look no further than this video to find out!

  8. Demo Videos

    We’ve made a few videos showing off some of the new patches and functionality. Enjoy!

  9. OwlNest Rev04.004b

    We’re pleased to present Rev04.004b of the OwlNest, with updates to support new features in the latest OWL firmware. The new release is available for download from GitHub.

    Remote Control

    You can now switch the OWL pedal into remote control mode from the OwlNest. This lets you change parameter values by sending MIDI Control Change messages to the device. The MIDI messages can come from any DAW, another MIDI device, or even a web browser using the new Web MIDI API.

    The new OwlNest has a button to enable Remote Control on the device. When set, this also enables the GUI knobs, letting you control the OWL directly from the OwlNest.

    OwlNest Screenshot Remote Control

    The parameters are mapped out to MIDI CC values 20 to 24, representing knobs A, B, C, D and the expression pedal input E. The full set of MIDI mappings is available in the source file OpenWareMidiControl.h. Remote control can be switched with CC 27 (127 for on, 0 for off). Remote control is always off when the pedal boots.

    Single Mode

    The Patch API now includes methods to get and set the status of the pushbutton. This means that you can write patches that uses the button for anything you like: looping, tap-tempo, triggers.

    As you know, the pushbutton is usually mapped to swapping between the Red and Green patch slot. If you select Patch Mode: Single, then only the Green patch will be active, and in full control of the button.

    Screenshot from 2014-07-09 17:33:58

    We have developed a patch which demonstrates the API, called Karplus Strong. The patch uses the button to trigger sounds, by synthesising a string being strummed. The LED changes to red for the duration of the note. To try it out, simply load the Karplus Strong patch in the Green slot, and remember to enable Single mode!

  10. New Firmware Release: Rev04.004

    It’s been a little while since our last release and we’ve had lots of contributions since then. We’ve wrapped them all up in this mega-firmware, which also comes with some fancy new features!

    The release comprises a record 56 patches. Contributions from the FAUST project means we have lots of great Guitarix effects. There are also many updates to previously released patches: check out the re-vamped Ring Modulator, and new additions such as the Moog Drive, Digital Mayhem, Reverse Reverb and Psyche Filter.

    The full list of patches is listed on the wiki. It includes numbers showing the approximate number of ARM CPU cycles per sample, and the memory used by each patch. This gives an indication of what patches are likely to run well in parallel or series.

    The total number of cycles per sample shouldn’t exceed 3500, and the total number of bytes available is 1Mb (which is precisely 1048576 bytes).

    These two bits of information can now be gleaned at runtime from the device by clicking ‘Device Info’ in the OwlNest. Along with the firmware version it will show two numbers, e.g.: “OWL Rev04-004 (1661 | 67320)”.

    OwlNest Rev04.004 Screenshot

    In my case, this shows that the currently active patch, DroneBox, is using slightly less than half of the available 3500 cycles. If the mode is set to parallel or series, then this will indicate the total time (in cycles) for both patches. The memory always shows the total for both the red and green slots. With DroneBox and FreeVerb selected, I’m using 65Kb of RAM.

    To get the latest version, simply spark up the OwlNest, go to Tools / Download Firmware From Server and select Rev04-004. Or get it from GitHub.

    There’s a couple more new features, which we will tell you more about tomorrow when we release binaries of the updated OwlNest!

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