In the past months I’ve been building the old Mutable Instruments desktop synths as a warmup before I start on a small all-DIY eurorack modular. Being a traditional instrument builder by profession, and owning a small CNC router+laser engraver, I decided to create laser engraved walnut cases for both synths.
I did the Shruthi XT first, and it went through a couple of iterations, first with a PCB panel from a group buy, and then a laser engraved walnut panel because I found the black PCB panel really ugly. The engraved graphics were a direct adaption of the original panel graphics, which turned out to be a bit of a pain to get good results with from my machine.
I then moved onto the Ambika and created a much improved case with custom graphics. I messed up the LED holes trying to do a fancy effect where the LEDs would shine through a 0.1mm layer of wood very carefully milled away, but the LEDs weren’t bright enough so I ended up drilling the holes through, unfortunately a bit lobsided. Other than that, I’m delighted with how the case came out, especially the clear acrylic back allowing me to admire my soldering and Olivier’s amazing electronics design any time (that’s half the fun of DIY projects after all!)
Here’s a close-up of the front panel graphics. Creating monochrome visual representations of the various menu options was an interesting challenge. I’m happy with all of them other than the filter and clock settings pages.
I open-sourced the design files required to make both of these cases, and wrote very brief assembly guides. If anyone actually wants to try building these, let me know and I can add more detailed assembly instructions.
Hope you like the photos!