Delta Sound Labs - Saber, Origami and Mobula DIY Builds
Delta Sound Labs have been around awhile, but they were not really known for DIY Kits. Their eurorack modules (the Saber, Mobula and Origami) were all available as fully assembled modules which could be ordered at various locations on the web.
We longed for the Delta Sound Labs (DSL) modules shortly after watching a couple of videos about the filters. Since we are DIY guys, we were ecstatic when Delta Sound Labs announced DIY kits in June of 2019.
For our first “builds” of 2020, we took on the three DSL modules in one fail swoop. Each module has its own build video and we encourage you to take the time to watch the videos if you are interested in purchasing one of the kits.
There are some pro’s and con’s about their kits which don’t make or break the builds, but its information one needs to know. Now, let’s get on with the builds.
Saber: Oberheim Inspired SEM Filter
According to Delta Sound Labs, the Saber is a reimagined variation of the pioneering 1970’s era SEM filter by Tom Oberheim. A truly classic audio filter that was reworked as a compact and 100% skiff-friendly 8HP module.
Build Details: The DSL Saber was our first of the 3 modular builds and it was pretty quick to complete. The only negative thing about the build is that there was no documentation or BOM included with the kit itself. Our kit was also missing a power ribbon cable which we don’t know if this is on purpose or if it was just forgotten while packing. As you can see from the video below, the build only a few jacks, trim pots and pots. That was it.. pretty quick and easy.
Saber Specifications and Purchasing Info
Fully Assembled: 150$
DIY Partial Kit: 119$
Origami: Buchla Easel Inspired Wavefolder
The Origami … oh how we love wavefolders. The Delta Sound Labs Origami was the companies first module. It is to be noted that the Origami is based on the circuit found in the 1973 Buchla Easel, (i.e. it has some amazing capabilities).
Build Details: To sum things up, this build was even easier than the Sabre!. Kit contents included two potentiometers, three jacks and a power header. Again, this kit did not contain a BOM or power cables which was disappointing. (We were lucky that we had a few laying around the shop leftover from other builds).
Origami Specifications and Purchasing Info
Fully Assembled: 120$
DIY Partial Kit: 99$
Mobula: ARP Inspired Ring Modulator
Lastly, we moved onto the Mobula; an ARP Inspired Ring Modulator. The Mobula is described by Delta Sound Labs as “our faithful take on the classic ARP 2600 ring modulator model 4014. This particular processor is renowned the world over for its clean sounding ring modulation effect. Due to its unconventional circuit design, where the positive and negative parts of the signal split between two two-quadrant multipliers, it achieves what is referred to as a four quadrant multiplication.”
What does all this mean you ask? How was the build you ask?
Well, lets talk about that…
The Mobula is a ring modulator as mentioned previously. It can process both CV (control voltage) and audio signals with the simple flip of a switch because it is “DC-Coupled” and it has the ability to switch between the two with ease.
Build Details: This kit was the biggest disappointment in that yet again, it contained no power ribbon cables, no BOM and was lacking 3.5mm jacks. Luckily we had several extra Thonk jacks sitting around in our surplus and were able to complete the build to no issue. As you can see from the build video (like the other kits), the kit takes less than an hour to tidy up.
Mobula Specifications and Purchasing Info
Fully Assembled: 150$
DIY Partial Kit:119$
Our Final Thoughts . . .
Pros: Delta Sound Labs has some amazing modules for the Eurorack system. Their tone and abilities are uncanny. Their design is sleek and modern. This goes for both the overall packaging of the DIY kits (using little black plastic outer bags) to the panels themselves. DSLs use of simple graphics on a black matte panel is aesthetically pleasing to the eye. However, the matte coating on the aluminum panels is sensitive to scratching. To combat this, we clear coated the panels and then baked them on low in the oven for around 30 min.
Cons: All three modules were lacking a power cable. All three modules modules were lacking a BOM. The Mobula was missing the 3.5mm jacks it needed to complete the build. We had to scour the internet to find the BOMs for each module. Without a BOM to reference, we resorted to a video of a build, so that we could pause it and see what went where. This isn’t a good thing for the novice builder or someone new to DIY (which we are not).
Full Disclosure about the kits . . .
Our partial DIY kits were Christmas presents from loved ones. We didn’t have an opportunity to reach out to Delta Sound Labs to experience their customer service. Being that they are a smaller company, we are sure that they would have taken good care of us. We will be curious about building other modules in the future.
In conclusion, we enjoyed the partial builds from DSL even factoring in the “cons”. The Sabre, Origami and Mobula are all three priced very reasonable and you should definitely pick one or all three whenever you have the chance.
If you have questions about the build process or suggestions/feedback about this article, feel free to let us know by contacting us We look forward to hearing from you!
Until the next build …