Story behind Boonar Tube Deluxe Project 3/3

Story behind Boonar Tube Deluxe Project 3/3

It’s time to wrap up the story behind Boonar Tube Deluxe with the most anticipated chapter.  As you could read in the previous post, after I was finally satisfied with the design—at least in terms of sound—we sent the prototype to David Gilmour for final testing. Since the scheduled testing coincided with David’s new album recording, Phil and David were quite busy, and it took them a bit longer to fully check the prototype in the studio environment. We exchanged a couple of calls, and they provided me with valuable feedback on what needed to be fixed.

To start with, both Phil and David weren't happy about the small screen fonts, which they found hard to read. Since it was the beta version of the GUI uploaded, it was only functional enough to work with; the release version was yet to be designed.

Also, what David found frustrating was the absence of a preset edit function. At one point, I had considered that the easiest way to exit the preset mode was to move any control, whether a pot or a switch, for the unit to automatically return to live mode. What Phil explained to me was that the whole preset option wouldn't be useful without the ability to edit presets on the fly. After reconsidering the concept, I realized his point made perfect sense, so I set about redesigning the preset logic.

The biggest issue David had, which made me think more deeply, was related to the sound. He thought the "modulation" under the Drum Age pot didn't sound as natural as in the Binson Echorec 2 (and on his original Boonar in the studio). The original Binson Echorec 2 has quite complex modulation that develops over years of use, it's not a simple sine wave mod usually found on delay pedals. A substantial number of factors contribute to the final effect, and all of them must be modeled correctly to be perceived as natural sounding. I knew exactly what he was referring to, so I returned to the workshop, remeasured everything on my Echorec 2 T7E, reexamined, and edited the DSP code accordingly. I'm pretty sure that most musicians would never notice it soundwise, but that tiny adjustment made an overral difference to a keen ear. I was once again amazed at how good David's hearing is and how extensive his knowledge of the Binson Echorec is. There is a reason why he has a reputation as one of the foremost connoisseurs of this iconic device, after all.

After sorting all this out, I implemented the final version of the user interface and coded a small part of the firmware to enable future updates to the device over USB, which put the last piece of the puzzle in place.

Reflecting on it with a cup of coffee in hand, it still seemed unreal to have a fully finished, years long project on the desk in front of me, ready to be released.

At the end of the story, we would like to thank everyone who has supported us throughout this journey, waited patiently, and never lost hope that Boonar Tube Deluxe would see the light of day. We truly hope you will find it exciting and inspiring, just like the original Italian Binson Echorec was.

Preorders with all information and detailed instructions will open on Sunday, June 23rd, at 6:00 PM CET on our website.


Names Binson® and Echorec® are registered trademarks of their respective owners

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