XQP Audio is a two-man audio company designing new, unique audio gear for the 500-series. Unlike other people I've interviewed, they don't make DIY kits, but they do run their business with more than a hint of DIY ethos--building units by hand, posting schematics on their website, and generally being openhanded with info about their circuits. When I called XQP out of the blue, Product Specialist Dane Tate made good on their slogan "Nice guys. Yes we are." by sending me a Disruptor to try out and walking me through the circuit in the video below. I learned a ton about vactrols, asymmetrical distortion, and how optical compression works. Hope you enjoy our geeky banter! Audio Samples: The following are samples of the 545 Optical Disruptor processing various instruments. Just as Dane says in the interview, this thing is great at making synths more lifelike. All of the samples are in the order of: 1) Clean, original audio 2) Medium disruption 3) All the way up!