The Mute 4.0 portable synth is “printed circuit board meets album cover”

Mute has confirmed its latest synth, the Mute 4.0, which has been created in collaboration with Dirty Electronics. This follows the releases of the first Mute Synth and Mute Synth 2; we’re not sure what happened to the Mute Synth 3.

Anyway, this is a portable, barebones digital/analogue instrument that’s designed for sonic experimentation and described as “printed circuit board meets album cover”. It’s handheld, battery-powered and portable, though you might want to get some kind of case to protect its rather exposed componentry.

As well as a digital wavetable synthesizer and analogue noise circuit, you also get a programmable sequencer for putting your noises into some kind of order. There are inputs, too, so you can bring external sounds to the party as well.

Other features include programmable control voltages, the option to cut-up loops, a bandpass/lowpass filter and an LFO. It can be synced to external gear and, as you might have guessed, it’s hackable.

The Mute 4.0 synth is available for pre-order now priced at £89. It’ll ship on 7 December, and you can find out more on the Mute website.

Mute Synth 4 features

  • Two inputs/sound sources - mixer
  • Sequencer (programmable)
  • Programmable control voltages (x5) +5v
  • Cut-up - brassage (programmable)
  • On-board wavetable synth (select sounds and algorithms)
  • Feedback/noise circuit
  • Filter (VCF) - bandpass/lowpass + resonance
  • Portamento
  • LFO
  • Touch and knob/pot controls 
  • External sync
  • Battery powered (9v)
  • Headphone/line out
  • Hackable
  • Expandable - chip releases
  • Artwork PCB
Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.