Noise Box Synth Lays Down Some Beats


[Tim] sent us his Noise Box Synth. The box is a sixteen step synthesizer that can generate sine, square, triangle, and sawtooth waves as well as a collection of sound effects (video after the break). The hardware is simple; an Arduino, four potentiometers, four buttons, a switch, a speaker, and some LEDs. This was a gift for a three-year-old but we’d be just as happy unwrapping it ourselves. We didn’t find a schematic but all of the connections and hardware can be extrapolated from the source code.

Arduino sometimes gets a bad name around here. This project, [Tim’s] first that uses Arduino, proves that the accessibility of the platform makes it possible to jump directly into the deep end. Catch the video after the break.[youtube=]

16 thoughts on “Noise Box Synth Lays Down Some Beats

  1. That’s…interesting. For the non-musically inclined would someone mind explaining what the purpose of this device is? It seemed to just make rhythmic beeps and boops then at the end it sounded like the sound FX from Microsoft pinball that ships with windows. What is the purpose?

  2. Not HIS 3 year old I bet. Bloody hell, if my mate handed this over to my kid as a gift, it would very quickly “develop” a fault.

    The bit I do like is the finished product, that is, he made an effort to make a case, proper UI etc.

  3. arduino does get a bad name around here. I’ve been following this blog for some time now, and it’s true, there has been an explosion in the amount of arduino-related hacks on the site.

    However, I don’t think it’s evidence of the site “going south” but rather proof of what has been happening with Arduino, hacking, and many peoples’ relationship with technology in general.

    Sure, many of the arduino ‘hacks’ may not be nearly as sophisticated as some, but I think more importantly, there has been an enormous increase in the number of people getting started, gaining the ability to dig beneath the surface of devices… They may not all be electrical engineers, but IMO that in itself is a fantastic thing.

    We need a culture of people who aren’t afraid of building their own, of nulling their warranties, &tc. And I’m glad that this site continues to showcase what’s out there rather than simply catering to the elite.

    Hacking shouldn’t be the act of trying to outdo one another with our technical capacity in a giant ego battle. I look forward to a people who don’t need technology spoon-fed to them, and to a people who don’t lord their capacities over one another, but that try to help bring everyone else along, if they so desire. Arduino’s open-source hardware/software ethos, coupled with an attempt to simplify microcontroller coding (sure, by concealing some complexities) is a step in the right direction.

  4. @smrl

    I totally agree with you, but I also understand the people in the comments. For example: The matchbox as a switch article was just to laugh your ass off! If hackaday would have put more effort in finding out what it was for, I think the reactions would have been much different.

  5. @smrl
    but the problem that those lame hacks get here. for example on some music blog you will not see links to “Dog valse” or “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”. So why in electronic community such “dog valses” should be acceptable ?

  6. @therian

    Reason being is because so many people HAVE done twinkle twinkle, but if it were an elitist profession that few dabbled with and even fewer were good; then an explosion of lets say different uses of the ewi synth; some would make it through.

    I personally find it good that this site does show some more amateur jobs; it gives them time to percolate out some seriously interesting ones; while giving rising amateurs incentive to keep doing what they do.

  7. @Alan
    Im not for elite hacks only, im for bobby style hacks from people who feel comfortable with electronic not from those who on basic learning curve

    By the way why there is no RF hacks here (not ready made RF solutions) analog receivers/tranceivers. Personally I think it most exiting part of hobby electronics

  8. It’s not the Arduino getting a bad name here, because it’s a well designed platform that deserves its success, but how every other platform is being often ignored to make room for projects using it. What can be done with an Arduino board can be done with a generic ATMega MCU board, a PIC one or a handful of other architectures.

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