Color Horizons


Color Horizons is an app I have dreamed of creating for a few years now. It is built with React. From the General section of the About page:

Color Horizons is a microtonal-capable scale generator and synthesizer.

It is designed specifically to enable the user to instantly calculate how the notes of all modes of any scale that it can generate compare against 12 tone equal temperament, the harmonic series, and more.

The user can immediately play these scales in the browser using the QWERTY keyboard or their device’s touchscreen and then can export those scales as .scl files that can be used to retune other synthesizers.

From the Mission / Intentions section of the About page:

Color Horizons is developed by Jon Lervold.

I sincerely believe that microtonality is not just a musical niche for iconoclasts, but that in time it will someday become the next frontier of popular music.

There is an incredible wealth of musical expression that is inaccessible utilizing only 12 Tone Equal Temperament (12TET). Technology has reached a point where any musical tuning system imaginable can be tested instantly. The problem now is not necessarily the construction of microtonal-capable instruments, but the lack of proliferation of this knowledge. Whatever the reasons may be, at the moment this field remains esoteric. Many newcomers find it difficult to even know where to begin.

My goal with this application is to become an active participant in spreading knowledge of these fruitful tonal possibilities to other musicians. Color Horizons is a tool for helping explore musical realms near and far from 12TET. What tonal colors are available off in the distance? Let’s find out.

It is my deep wish that this tool can help inspire and facilitate musical creation!

Microtonal music is certainly currently a niche field, so Color Horizons is intended to be an educational resource as well. If you click the “More Info” button on the top right, and then click “Key Concepts”, there is a writeup that discusses everything necessary to understand what is going on with the app. Additionally, each scale generation method has an “info” button next to it that will show how that specific tool operates.

Color Horizons is a project that I will continue to actively develop as I learn more about microtonal music and tuning theory. Plans for later versions include non-octave scale generation methods and graphical representations of each scale and its modes.