5th Annual Moog Circuit Bending Challenge

Moog Music was born when a young Bob Moog started tinkering with electronic circuitry. As a boy, Moog built small radios, amps, and Theremins in his basement workshop with his father. The rest, as you know, is history.

Circuit-bending is a chance art form pioneered by Reed Ghazala in 1966. It combines art, sonic artistry and creativity. By altering the internal circuitry of electronic devices such as keyboards, drum machines, and children's toys, circuit benders are able to produce new sounds not intended in the original design. Moogfest is proud to continue Reed's tradition of chance electronic design via our yearly circuit-bending contest.

This Year's Contest

In celebration of this creative curiosity that fueled a young Bob Moog and all of those that follow in his footsteps, Moog is sponsoring its 5th Annual Circuit Bending Contest.

This year, Moog’s circuit bending contest is challenging entrants to take a battery powered device and circuit bend it into an instrument capable of creating new and unique sounds for a total budget of $70 or less.

Entrants will create and post videos on YouTube featuring their completed instruments and documenting the process of their creation. Moog will select three finalists and invite them to showcase their creations at Moogfest in May of 2016 where judges will decide a winner of the contest.

2014 Finalists

Last year's Circuit Bending Challenge produced some of the most innovative instruments to date. We received so many amazing builds that we had to expand our finalist lineup to include the top 5 entries.

The 2014 Finalist’s Videos are viewable here:

Contest Rules

Contestants will circuit bend an existing device to create a unique musical instrument that can be easily recreated by others while following these guidelines:

● The device you bend must be battery operated with a power no greater than 9 volts.

● Project must be completed for a total cost of $70 or less. This includes the device you bend, and all parts you use to bend it.

● You’ll need to create a Bill of Materials, Build Instructions, and Photos sequencing the build step by step.

Once you’ve created your instrument, create and upload a video to YouTube and title it "Moog Circuit Bending Challenge 2016." Send an email with the subject Moog Circuit Bending Challenge 2016 to [email protected] with your Build Of Materials, Photos, and the YouTube link to your entry. Your video will be evaluated by Moog and its staff, and three finalists will be chosen. Audio quality and concise editing will be taken into consideration. The better you document, the better we can judge. All entries must be uploaded by MIDNIGHT EST on March 27th, 2016.

The three finalists chosen by Moog on March 28th, 2016 will receive (2) passes to Moogfest 2016, as well as a Moog merch package.

A winner will be chosen on the basis of reliable functionality, creativity, craftsmanship, artistic appearance, overall sound, and the popularity of the device with the public. The winner will be chosen on the final day of Moogfest 2016. Official rules can be found here.


Grand Prize: Moog Sub 37

2nd Place: Moog Sub Phatty

3rd Place: Moog MInitaur


Ryan Germick, Google

John Paul Titlow, Fast Company

Amos Gaynes, Moog

Andy Hughes, Moog

Chris Wilson, Google

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