Game Boy Advance MIDI interface

gba midi

[Avelino Herrera Morales] wrote in to tell us about his Game Boy Advance MIDI project. It’s pretty neat since it only takes two resistors and a link cable to use. The link cable has a slotted connector so you can use a chunk of protoboard to connect to the pins. He has software the does all of the MIDI packet generation. As an example, he uses the GBA to control a Chameleon synthesizer.


  1. anon says:

    the midi sub-culture confuses me, but a hack is a hack



  3. omg im dumbbbbb says:


  4. ArAgost says:

    Great project. Now what I’d LOVE to see is a nintendo DS hacked to be a Kaoss-like 2d touch MIDI controller :)

  5. A similar DS hack would be sweet… It’s amazing all the unique uses people come up with for the GBAs. I have a friend how uses one to tune the computer in his car!

    on another note, doesn’t anyone moderate the comments?

  6. Wesley says:

    This is great, but I would love to see some really practical applications for the Gameboy. Like say… a music player or a way to use the screen as a screen for composite video. (So like when you have a DVD player but no TV, you can be all like “Oh, welllllll… let me just pull out my Gamebay here… asnd get this adapter…” Or some application that monitors sound or somthing. By the way, that guy must be like a junkie when it comes to synths with a Fantom and a Chameleon in a rack. Come one… who gets a rack? Cool folks.

  7. Wesley says:

    aragoast- that would be soooo sweet, because Kaosses are so exspensive. (well so is a ds if you don’t have one…)

  8. Danny says:

    Wesley – they already have those things for the GBA. Google for “GSM Player” and “MusicPlayer Advance” if you want music players for the GBA. It’s not quite powerful enough to playback mp3 though, so it has to be converted into a different format first.

    There’s also software called Meteo that will convert a video into a .gba rom file.

    Of course, for those, you’ll need some sort of flash cartridge for the GBA. Still, it’s possible.

    In addition, the thing you were mentioning about using the GBA as a screen for other stuff can be done with the GBA TV Tuner. It can pick up analog TV signals off the air, but there’s also a coaxial jack for input. I’m not sure if a DVD player would have a coaxial output, but I’m sure there would be a way to get it working somehow.

    Once you get the DVD-player-to-GBA working, if you need to share the audio with others, get something like the Boostaroo portable headphone amplifier/splitter. Radio Shack also has their own generic version which is the same thing really. They sell for $20-25

    It’s all possible. Expensive, and perhaps not quite worth the cost considering the quality you’ll get, but possible.

  9. Since I got some questions about it this is the Automotive computer tuner I was talking about

    it’s made by DTEC and they make a few modules, but the main one is a fuel/boost controller for Subarus.

  10. g0d says:

    if you’re looking for cool GBA addons check out

    they have digital audio players, digital cameras, multimedia players, all for the GBA

    i got the Advanced Music Player from future shop for $20 clearance.. it was a b*tch to get working but it does work

    but the multimedia players that use SD cards or the digital camera are alot cooler..

  11. Bill says:

    Looking to unlock Bluecharts Americas V6 – Any help

  12. Bill says:

    Looking to unlock Bluecharts Americas V6 – Any help

  13. strider_mt2k says:

    Please never stop hacking the GBA!
    These are some of my favorite hacks to read about.

  14. g0d says:

    if ur looking for cheap GBA gear check out zellers or any of those types of stores, walmart, w.e. cuz i went there on the weekend and they had madd stuff for cheap/clearance

    i got a 20 hour addon battery pack that only cost me 20bucks.. now all i need is one of those media player roms and a 1 or 2 gb sdcard and i’m on my way to a more than half decent media player

    oh the possibilities

  15. Tarnation says:

    from what i can tell, this is strictly a way to use midi out data from the GBA. i want to be able to send the GBA midi IN data, so i can use its built-in audio engine with a simple midi controller keyboard. has anyone been able to accomplish this? if so show me the way. that is what i really want to do…

  16. dave says:

    the coolest GBA SP hack ever would probably be adding an SD Card reader built-in, and booting a mini copy of a linux distro that will have a minimal gui support, that is burnt into a rom chip in the GBA, then having the ability to use the SD card as memory source for the mini linux running..

    its probably a dream, to have a small, minimal, graphical linux distro running on a GBA-SP device, with a built-in sd card reader so we could slide a 1gb sd card in and use it as the available memory.

    i wish someday, someone will maybe get into this :)

    oh well…hehhe…


  17. jay says:

    im a if you wanna say noob. well…………i actually know less than a noob but anywayz iz anyone willing to be down and teach me some stuff i need help i wanna learn these hacks and stuff there freshness you can talk to me on yahoo messenger if you do hit me up just say im from the hackaday web and ya wanna help i would be greatly appreciated for anyones help thank you very much

  18. magicman says:

    ummm im trying to hack a game boy advance sp i need help please can you give me the link on were to go to download the thing for it

  19. magicman says:

    ummm im trying to hack a game boy advance sp i need help please can you give me the link on were to go to download the thing for it email me if you know how at

  20. magicman says:

    trying to hack a game boy advance sp i need help please can you give me the link on were to go to download the thing for it email me if you know how at

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