8-bit MIDI synthesizer

[Derek Enos’] toils are starting to yield results. He’s been working on an 8-bit synthesizer that is MIDI controlled which he calls the deMIDulator. As he demonstrates after the break, the device has sine and square wave functions that produce quite a pleasing sound. But it also offers the option to record your own samples which are then modified based on the MIDI commands coming in from your device of choice. In this case he’s using a Rock Band 3 keyboard (or keytar if you will) in a much more creative way than its originally intended purpose.

For now we’ll have to be content with the demo video and a list of features as there are no other details. But open sourcing the code and hardware information are on his to-do list.

14 thoughts on “8-bit MIDI synthesizer

  1. Nice job! Just one comment on the video… it’s mixed badly in that your voice is channel R and the audio is channel L.

    It’s awkward with headphones… and the range goes from very low to “yank the headphones off” loud.

    In the scheme of things, the video is almost unimportant, but just FYI. :-)

  2. Thanks for the feedback!

    Raith: The PIC18 microcontroller architecture is natively 8-bit so it’s easy to synthesize sound in this resolution. With the PIC’s ADC I can sample audio with up to 10-bit resolution but am just ignoring the two least significant bits.

    Scott: Yeah, sorry about the channel separation. I agree that headphones are a bit awkward.

  3. FYI, Derek used to work with me at Harmonix and is the guy responsible for the MIDI implementation on the Rock Band keytar used in the demo video.

  4. this is my sample this is my gun,
    this is for music this is for fun.

    loving the racing theme. would love to get hold of one if you decide to mass produce them.

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