Detailed workshop schedule available on workshops page HERE

Friday, Sept. 7

7:00pm to 11:00pm

Opening Reception
Sapphire Pavilion
Studio Dummies
Nick Kwas (Not Kwas)
Andre Cholmondeley vs Suit & Tie Guy

Visuals by
Erogenous Tones

Saturday, Sept. 8

10:00am - 6:00pm


Informative Workshops
Copper, Maize/Sage

DIY Workshops
Sienna I & II (Lower Level)

Sienna III & IV (Lower Level)

6:30pm - 9:00pm

Knobcon Banquet
Sapphire Pavilion
6:30 Cocktails, 7:00 Dinner

Gil Trythall Keynote Address

Knobcon Supper Club All-Stars
featuring Ed & Judy Howard and Cory Flanigan


Knobcon Big Room
Sienna III & IV
Glacial 23
Conrad Keely
Nasty Nachos (WMD)
Ian Jorgensen (Synthstrom)
Spooky Action At A Distance

LED Wall with Visuals by
Christopher Konopka
Lars Larsen
Karl Erickson
Eric Souther
Shawna Lee
Kit Young

International Players Club
Sapphire Pavilion
Hosted by Matt Baxley

Sunday, Sept. 9

10:00am - 5:00pm


Informative Workshops
Copper, Maize/Sage

DIY Workshops
Sienna I & II (Lower Level)

Sienna III & IV (Lower Level)

Join us for Great Build Workshops

Learn the basics of soldering, or take your hobby to the next level!



Build a Business Card Oscillator!

Hosted by Division 6
Sunday, Sept 9 at 11am
Difficulty: Medium

The Business Card Oscillator is an oscillator that’s the size of a business card.  It’s the perfect companion to the Business Card Sequencer, or you can hook it to any of your other synth gear.  It’s got plenty of controls and features, so you can even plug in some headphones and play it by itself.


  • Tune it up with Coarse Tune, Fine Tune, and Scale controls
  • Multiple wave shapes
  • Glide
  • 2 LFOs that can be routed to pitch or amplitude
  • Sample and Hold
  • AD Envelope Generator
  • Filter
  • Volume Control


  • Power (3.5mm, center-positive, 7-15VDC)
  • CV
  • Gate


  • Audio (will drive headphones or other synthesizers)


Scott from Division 6 will walk you through building and testing the oscillator kit.  All parts and tools will be provided.

The kit isn’t a very complicated build.  It’s a little small/packed, but if you’ve ever soldered anything before you shouldn’t have too much problem.  Even if you have never soldered before, there will be some stunt boards available to practice on first.

This build is for both adults and kids who can safely wield a soldering iron.

You will need to purchase the $35.00 kit from Division 6 HERE.

Some kits may be available for purchase on-site, however, you can secure your place in the workshop by pre-ordering your kit.



Knobcon Workshops



Schedule subject to change.


Synthesis 101   11:00am (Maize/Sage)

No matter how experienced you are with analogue synthesis, you're sure to benefit from Michael Boddicker's approach to the fundamentals of electronic sound.


Novation Peak: A Synth for the Modern Music Maker   12:00pm (Copper)

Novation Technology Evangelist Enrique Martinez will talk through the features and technology that define Peak: an 8 voice polyphonic synthesizer. Peak has the immense flexibility for sound design you can find on a digital synthesizer, while retaining the warmth and nuance of an analog synthesizer.


Wave Replacement Synthesis   1:00pm (Maize/Sage)

Jon Sonnenberg demonstrates the fundamentals of chaining and wave replacement synthesis - a form of analog synthesis where segments of waveforms are used to create a composite waveform using standard analog synthesizer modules and concepts.


Conceptual Models for Modular Video Synthesis   2:00pm (Copper)

Lars Larsen (LZX Industries) offers a historical primer of modular video synth systems (Sandin IP, EMS Spectre, broadcast switchers, etc) and the audio modulars they were inspired by, including discussion on how LZX has tackled the same design challenges, inevitably switching the conceptual model to video rate waveshaping as a primary technique.


Hammond Organ: What's it all about?   3:00pm (Maize/Sage)

Join Ray Gerlich (Hammond USA technical department manager) and Suit & Tie Guy for a brief history of America's oldest electronic music instrument company and how their signature instrument functions.


Responsive Sequencing   4:00pm (Copper)

Matt Ward and Phin Head (dBs Music) outline methods they’ve derived to create patches whose accompanying voices respond and re-compose in real time to performance changes.


The Littoral Myth: Dismantling a Coastal Metaphor   5:00pm (Maize/Sage)

Marc Doty, the undisputed king of YouTube synthesizer videos, presents an exploration of the history how Buchla and Moog realized the modern synthesizer for Electronic Music, and how that realization differs from portrayals in current popular synthesizer culture.



Modular Synthesis: Patch, Tweak, & Share   11:00am (Maize/Sage)

Chris Meyer and Kim Bjørn have just finished the first new book on modular synthesis in decades: Patch & Tweak. Chris will give the inside scoop on the book, focusing on the universal patch language they evolved from previously-abandoned attempts in the 60s and 70s.


Modular for the Masses   12:00pm (Copper)

Yes, you too can build a sophisticated, radically personalized synthesizer with old pallets, paper bags and tin cans. Let your imagination — not your budget — be your limitation. Hosted by Juanito Moore (@juanitohm).


Dr. Gilbert Trythall: Ask Me Anything   1:00pm (Maize/Sage)

From country Moog records to electronic music textbooks, music educator, author, musician, and Knobcon guest of honor Gil Trythall answers your questions. Moderated by Suit & Tie Guy.


Surfin Kangaroo MIDI-controlled Panning   2:00pm (Copper)

Wolfgang Michalowicz presents and discusses an expandable MIDI-controlled panning system for post-production and installation applications. Marsupial surfboards, VCAs, and MIDI ... you're not going to want to miss this!


Achieving Spacial Consistency in Track Placement   3:00pm (Maize/Sage)

William Beith, Chicago’s very own plate reverb craftsman, will help you remove the mud from your mixes by demonstrating how to focus on the relationship between electronic music tracks and creating an unified acoustic environment for them.


Premiering at Knobcon

Showing throughout the weekend between workshops in both lecture halls.

Photo Credit: Alex Nirta (@alexnirta)

Synthesize - A short film about our connection to living and breathing synthesizers. (

Synthesize is a fictional story about a Ukrainian musician who travels to Canada to meet the one repairman she believes can resurrect her beloved father’s synthesizer, a Polivoks.


BUILD WORKSHOPS - Saturday and Sunday

Click images to learn more about each workshop and how to reserve your participation.

Learn to solder!

2 Hours (beginner)

Keven Kalay from Żłob Modular will teach you basic soldering techniques and lead you through building a passive mixer or attenuator module.


Build a WiiChuck Interface Module!

2 Hours (beginner/intermediate)

Mickey Delp of Delptronics will guide you through the process of building the WiiChuck module, helping you along the way. You are guaranteed to leave with a working module!


Build a business card oscillator!

2 Hours (beginner/intermediate)

Scott Rise from Division 6 will walk you through building and testing the oscillator kit. This build is for both adults and kids who can safely wield a soldering iron.


Build a Dual Vactrol Gate module!

2 Hours (intermediate)

Logan Erickson of Low Gain Electronics and Modular Addict will guide you through the process of building the module, helping you along the way.


Exhibitor Registration 

Exhibitor Opportunities

Exhibit Tables 

Pay the fee and use the space as you see fit. No extra fees if you want to sell merchandise. Each table location has power provided at floor level.

Deluxe Exhibit Tables  SOLD OUT

Put your display on the main drag. Prominent display locations with room to sit behind, two chairs and pipe/drape backdrop. Power provided at floor level.

10’x10’ Booth SOLD OUT

For those wanting a larger, more formal footprint. Booths have power, 2 tables and chairs if needed.

Deluxe Booth  SOLD OUT

Larger, prominent corner location with nearly double the square footage of a standard booth. Reserved for Gold Sponsors only, let us know if you're interested.

Location Choice!

New for this year, choose your location during the registration process! Take a precursory look at the floorpan below to get an idea of what this year's event will look like.

Private Showroom 

Make a statement by having an entire room dedicated to your company. Requires Gold Level sponsorship of the event. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. us for details.

Paid Programming Room 

New for this year, is a second lecture hall dedicated to product announcements and sales presentations. Reserve your time-slot today, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. us for details.

Build Workshop

A great opportunity for those focused on synth DIY. If you would like to host a build workshop, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. us for details.

Knobcon Reveals and Exclusives

Commit to reveal new product or consider creating something exclusively for Knobcon. Reveals and exclusives will help drive people to the event and to your booth! We will feature all exclusives on the website and social media posts.

Commemorative Trade Show Bags

Messenger bags are back! The first 1000 people who check in at the event will receive a Knobcon bag full of swag. What is in that bag is up to you! Have your literature/giveaways pre-inserted into the bags for a small fee, or for free by becoming an event sponsor. Items will need to be shipped to an outside location for arrival no later than September 1.

Door Prizes

We are happy to accept donations of door prizes for the banquet. We will post these prizes on the website and in social media prior to the event. Winners will be drawn at random from the pre-registrations for the banquet and awards will be distributed during the event.


Sponsor Registration

Sponsorship Opportunities

Become a Knobcon sponsor and help underwrite the cost of the event from top to bottom. In addition to the perks listed below, sponsors have the added bonus of choosing their table/booth locations prior to the event.

Sponsor registration is open through August 15. Fees are collected at time of registration.


Gold Sponsorship

Prominent Logo on Event Shirt and Sponsor Banners
Logo on Trade Show Bag
1 Item in Trade Show Bag
$100 Exhibit Credit*
4 Event Admissions


Silver Sponsorship

Logo on Event Shirt & Sponsor Banners
1 Item in Trade Show Bag
$50 Exhibit Credit*
2 Event Admission


Sponsorship, Exhibit Registration and Event Admission are separate transactions.

After successfully purchasing your sponsorship, we will contact you requesting additional information and will issue coupon codes for the exhibit credit and event admissions.

Note - If you wish to reserve your exhibitor space immediately, you can proceed to the Exhibitors event and reserve your space. We can apply the credits (minus the fees) as a charge-back to your card. This can take up to a week to process.


2018 Floor Plan

 Floor Plan

The Fine Print


Friday 4-7pm - Exhibitor Set-Up
Saturday 10am-6pm - Exhibits Open
Sunday 10am-5pm - Exhibits Open
Sunday 5-7pm - Exhibitor Tear-Down


A $50 refundable good faith deposit is required for all Knobcon exhibitors. This deposit is added to your online registration and will be refunded via check beginning at 5pm on Sunday. Failure to follow these guidelines could mean forfeiture of deposit. Checks will be made payable to the primary exhibitor on this registration.


Set up is to be completed by 7pm on Friday. During this time the exhibit halls will be accessible by exhibitors only. Once you have completed your set-up, please be courteous and leave the exhibit hall to allow others to finish.

Table and Booth locations will only be pre-assigned for our event sponsors and are otherwise first-come, first-served at set-up. Table fees for exhibitors are collected during online event registration.


Exhibits must be in working order for the duration of the exhibit hours. This does not mean that exhibits must be occupied by a person, but that cases should be open and systems powered up for attendees to explore. Outside of exhibit hours, the doors to the exhibit halls will be locked. This also means that the room will be inaccessible until exhibits open the following day, so plan accordingly.


In past years, we have had exhibitors begin packing up early which starts a chain-reaction in the exhibit halls. Not only does this disrupt traffic flow, we feel is is not fair to the attendees who have paid admission. Packing up and leaving before scheduled tear-down on Sunday will mean forfeiture of deposit.


  • Exhibit tables are 72"x30" and will be covered with cloth.
  • Deluxe Table locations have 2 chairs, standard tables do not.
  • Standard Booths are 10'x10' and will have 2 covered tables and 2 chairs. Tables and chairs can be removed during setup if needed.
  • Power is provided at floor level, please bring your own power strips and extension cords.

Hotel Shipping Policy

Special arrangements must be made for receiving any equipment, goods, displays or other materials, which will be sent, delivered or brought into the Hotel.

Any materials sent to the Hotel will be subject to the following incoming and outgoing charges:

Incoming Outgoing Type
$2.00 $2.00 Envelope/Letters
$10.00 $10.00 Box (small 1-20 lbs.)
$15.00 $15.00 Box (medium 21-60 lbs.)
$20.00 $20.00 Box (large 61-101+ lbs.)
$100.00 $100.00 Pallet

All packages and shipments must have information on the package label located below.

PLEASE bring your tracking numbers with you to assist our staff in locating your boxes in our package room or to track any boxes that might not have arrived by exhibit set up time.

Incoming packages will not be accepted any earlier than 72 business hours/ (3) days prior to the start of your meeting.

Please number all boxes (Example: Box 1 of 2 and Box 2 of 2).

All outgoing packages must be packed and clearly labeled prior to shipping.

Any materials being sent to the Hotel must be marked as follows:

  1. Hold for Arrival - Attn: Guest's Name, Knobcon, Sept 7-9
  2. Complete return address
  3. Hyatt Convention Services Manager
  4. Number of Boxes (Example: Box 1 of 2 and Box 2 of 2)
  5. Address Package to Hotel as follows:

1800 East Golf Road
Schaumburg, IL 60173


The secret cave with all the hidden knowledge! (aka: frequently asked questions)

We get plenty of emails asking some of the same questions, so we've put together this handy FAQ page. If for some reason you don't find the answer to your question here, send us an email and we'll be happy to sort you out.

Knobcon party with live music and a cash bar.

Your admission fee gets you into the entire 2 1/2 day event, beginning with the party on Friday night, so plan to arrive early! After a day of traveling and setting up, unwind with a few drinks and see some unique gear-centric performances. It's a great opportunity to catch up with old friends and make some new ones.

Those wishing only to attend the party on Friday night must still purchase a pass for the event. 

Doors open at 6 pm, music starts at 7pm and runs until 11pm or so. Schedule TBD.





Studio Dummies

Nik Kwas (Not Kwas)


Andre Cholmondeley vs Suit & Tie Guy






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Synthesizers, Workshops, Synthesizers, Performances and more Synthesizers!

Friday night is a party!

Hang out with other knobcon attendees, have a drink and catch gear-centric performances.

Gear, Gear, Gear!

Get your hands on amazing vintage pieces and the latest and greatest boxes. Monosynths, polysynths, modular and more will all be there.

Meet The Makers

Many boutique manufacturers will be on hand demonstrating and even selling the gear they produce.   

Exclusive Print Sponsor


Feedback from previous Knobcons

As expected, a spectacular event

Learned a lot, laughed a ton, listened to good music, met great people and bought too much new gear. I have no complaints at all!


The whole thing was extremely enjoyable

I made more friends last weekend than I have in years that are in to the same stuff as me. Cheers to everyone involved in planning it!


Had a great time!

Even though I did not know anyone there, I was made to feel welcome and part of the gang.


Thanks for the awesome time everyone!

I saw tons of amazing things for the first time and met tons of cool people, not a bad one in the bunch!


Had a great time!

Learned a lot about modular synths and other gear. Enjoyed the "low-key" relaxed environment and the Knobcon staffers were helpful and very professional. Hope to make it back next year.


Knobcon was amazing!

Loved getting to try out the new and old gear. Everyone there was super cool, and I will definitely be back next year.

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