The Ritmobox is a no‑nonsense drum machine with a solid analogue sound.
Back in the July 2020 issue of SOS, I reviewed the AVP Synth ADS‑7 MkII, a no‑nonsense Russian analogue drum machine which won me over with its raw sounds and old‑school approach. The Ritmobox is a slimmer version of the ADS‑7 MkII. A few nips and tucks have been made, but the basic premise remains the same — rough and rugged analogue drums, a simple but effective sequencer, individual outputs and rock‑solid build quality.
The Ritmobox’s front panel layout is simple. There is one knob per function, plus a series of buttons for programming the sequencer. There are five voices comprising three flexible ‘generators’ plus open and closed hi‑hats. Round the back are MIDI In and Out on five‑pin DIN connectors, 12V AC power supply socket, (mono) mix and headphone outputs on quarter‑inch sockets, and five individual 3.5mm audio outputs.
The main synthesis voice available is the Generator. There are three to play with and each has nine parameters plus a level control. The circuit has two parts, an oscillator and a noise generator, which can be mixed together. The oscillator is a fixed waveform which is somewhere between a sawtooth and a triangle. It can be tuned from sub‑sonic frequencies through to around 650Hz and you can sweep the pitch of the oscillator for classic kick drum pitch drops. For extra tonal variation, there is also basic FM, with a second lower‑frequency oscillator acting as the modulator. Most of the range of this second oscillator is low frequency, so lots of wibbles and wobbles emerge,...