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Syensqo’s Ixef® PARA resin selected to manufacture Artiphon’s intuitive Chorda instrument

The sensing technology of the hand-held musical device requires a perfect tactile experience and aesthetics the product is able to provide.

Syensqo’s Ixef® PARA resin selected to manufacture Artiphon’s intuitive Chorda instrument
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Syensqo has announced that Nashville-based Artiphon company has chosen Ixef® polyarylamide (PARA) resin for molding the housing and keypad of Chorda, a novel electronic musical instrument. The unique capacitive sensor board of the device required a material capable of matching the tactile nature of the keypad, while also providing the long-term durability and aesthetics expected from a high-quality hand-held instrument.

Chorda features an advanced synth and sample engine, plus an enhanced interface with a 12-key bridge that utilizes capacitive sensing technology for diverse finger interactions.

Hand-held devices operated by touch and under frequent wear and tear conditions need high strength, rigidity and dimensional stability if they are meant to last for a long life without losing their functionality and appeal,” says Federico Baruffi, Global Marketing Manager, Specialty Polymers, at Syensqo. “Our Ixef® PARA resin gave Artiphon the perfect combination of high surface quality, scratch and warpage resistance along with the right haptic feel to support the intuitive approach of the smart electronic instrument.”

The natural Ixef® grade selected for Chorda exhibits a superior flexural modulus compared to other non-glass filled plastics, preventing the long housing parts from bending when the instrument is played and still allowing the capacitive keypad to respond with immediate sensitivity to the taps, swipes and strums of users. When molded thinly, Ixef® also offers partial translucency, allowing LED indicators to be visible and can easily be colored in dark or bright shades. Its excellent flowability ensures proper mold fill over long flow paths and delivers flawless surfaces as molded.

Chorda instrument using Syensqo's Ixef PARA resin with glass fibre reinforcement
Photo: Artiphon

Adam McHeffey, Chief Marketing Officer at Artiphon, states: “We created Chorda with three core values in mind: approachability, multiplicity, and immediacy. At the same time, the long-lasting design of this sensory music instrument prompted us to look for a cost-efficient plastic material with the right balance of ruggedness and high quality to maximize the pleasure of play for many years. Syensqo’s Ixef® material proved to offer the best property profile for all this to work.”

With housings molded in black, white or blue colored Ixef® PARA, the first Chorda musical instruments were commercialized world-wide in November 2023.

As Syensqo presents it, Ixef® compounds typically contain 50-60% glass fibre reinforcement, giving them remarkable strength and rigidity. It is an extremely high-flow resin so it can readily fill walls as thin as 0.5 mm, even with glass loadings as high as 60%.

Cover photo: Artiphon – The Chorda instrument, a novel intuitive synth, looper and MIDI polyphonic expression (MPE) controller.

More information www.syensqo.com