About Absolute Deviation...

Who is Absolute Deviation?

Absolute Deviation was founded by long-time Buchla technician and musician, Joel Davel. Joel has worked for Don Buchla since 1993. In Don's words: "Coordinating hardware development and helping with sound design, Joel Davel contributed his talents to just about every aspect of the project, including printed circuit design, beta testing, and sound design." Joel is a percussionist. The flexibility of the Marimba Lumina has allowed him to make the instrument his primary tool of expression. It only makes sense for Joel to continue supporting his own primary instrument. See www.JoelDavel.com for more info or follow him on Facebook

Who do I contact to Get A Marimba Lumina?

Contact joel (at) absolutedeviation.com. (Recent customers have included Jon Fishman of Phish.) See the "NEWS" link for current pricing and availability. Please provide complete contact information if interested.

Note: Unlike the Buchla Lightning, 200e series and the Music Easel, the Marimba Lumina is not a product of Buchla Electronic Musical Instruments. See Buchla.com for those

Example Videos

Videos of demos of Marimba Lumina as used with Kontakt and Ableton Live can be seen on Joel's YouTube channel.. These will be updated regularly.


The Marimba Lumina recieved an Electronic Musician 2001 Editors Choice award.

What is the history of the marimba Lumina?

Don Buchla is the designer of the Marimba Lumina in collaboration with a team of Joel Davel and Mark Goldstein (with software contributions from Chuck Carlson.) Don had his hand in every aspect of the project. Don Buchla is the only maker of unusual and innovative controllers that has had the guts to fly in the face of market forces, and make what he wants. He is one of the few with the physics background to understand what is necessary to make them work too. With Don at the helm. Joel and Mark dedicated hours of voluntary work to realize the Marimba Lumina Gold. Recoginizing Don Buchla's brilliant work, Nearfield Systems Inc. created Nearfield Multimedia to support development of the Marimba Lumina 3.5 and 2.5 into a robust professional instrument they could sell to consumers. Unfortunately, the financial returns were not as robust as they hoped and it didn't make good business sense to continue production on a large scale. They support this endeavor. Nearfield Systems continues to be a successful company in the field of antenna measurements. Joel continued to work with Don Buchla.