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Netherlands

First off: I want to know what your ideal chiptune hardware synth would look like.

Hopefully this got you interested and now for the reason why I want to know. As of yet I am a graduated industrial designer with a passion for music technology. I am currently in the process of designing a hardware chiptune synthesizer and I would love the input of an experienced chiptune community.

As I am in the early stages of my design process I would love to have some input. To give a bit of direction; My basis for the design would be the the NES sound and use these limitations and specifically the work arounds of these limitations, in my (sound) design. I have been in discord with my self if  I should design for a more simple design that aims at providing a basic mono synth that is able to create melodies, melodical sounds and arpegiated chords or that I should design a more extensive (poly) synth which would be able to provide both melodical as well as percussive sounds and functionality.

I would love to hear your motivated opinions both on what you want in your workflow of music creation and what you would love to have as a live instrument for performance.

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perth, WA

gameboy + LSDJ does pretty good as far as workflow/functionality/cost is concerned. if you can design an instrument that surpasses in one or more of those areas, i'll buy one.

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i reckon a keyboard and autoaccompaniment so you can just turn the thing on and make a chiptune

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theres not many chiptune ```setups''' that are any good for improvisation so i think that would be a cool niche that you could target instead of just making some box you plug a midi cable into and then it goes bloop

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Seattle, WA

4 Track looper, 1 for each channel

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UK, Leicester
sandneil wrote:

theres not many chiptune ```setups''' that are any good for improvisation so i think that would be a cool niche that you could target instead of just making some box you plug a midi cable into and then it goes bloop

This, it also has to have loads of twisty things and buttons and possibly lights

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Gosford, Australia

DIN sync pls (24ppq)

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if you could make an NES groove station that would be sweet. if it was made like in the elektron style of machines like the analog 4 and analog rytm you would have a solid live performance tool.

A hardware 16 step system with parameter locking, LFOs for the pulse triangle and noise channels for pitch/dutycycle/amplitude, envelopes for pitch and amplitude , and mono mode where you could combine the 2 or even 3 channels for detuning/thickening/multiple layered sounds, channel seperation stereo mod on the chip for seperate processing and routing, and finally importable samples for durms etc. add midi in/out and you would be done and have a live beast for jamming with. 


Another route is to build it like a monophonic synth that could stack all 5 layers of pulse/tri/noise/dpmc. Add Lfo's and envelopes to control parameters and add midi control.

I personally am way more into the groove box idea.

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wedanced wrote:

if you could make an NES groove station that would be sweet. if it was made like in the elektron style of machines like the analog 4 and analog rytm you would have a solid live performance tool.

A hardware 16 step system with parameter locking, LFOs for the pulse triangle and noise channels for pitch/dutycycle/amplitude, envelopes for pitch and amplitude , and mono mode where you could combine the 2 or even 3 channels for detuning/thickening/multiple layered sounds, channel seperation stereo mod on the chip for seperate processing and routing, and finally importable samples for durms etc. add midi in/out and you would be done and have a live beast for jamming with. 


Another route is to build it like a monophonic synth that could stack all 5 layers of pulse/tri/noise/dpmc. Add Lfo's and envelopes to control parameters and add midi control.

I personally am way more into the groove box idea.


this this this this this

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sandneil wrote:

theres not many chiptune ```setups''' that are any good for improvisation so i think that would be a cool niche that you could target instead of just making some box you plug a midi cable into and then it goes bloop


also this is very very true

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IL, US

+1 for electribe style groove box.. that would be fun.. preferably with midi i/o

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make an analog keyboard synth that has a built-in screen which displays a tracker interface. the tracker would work directly with the synth's sound chip. you could use the device as a stand-alone synth if you wanted, but also as a self-contained tracking station. the synth would have on-board knobs and switches for live manipulation of various parameters (timbre, volume control for each channel). you could playback a pre-written tracker file while improvising along with it on the keyboard : )

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Netherlands

Thanks for all the replies guys, I heard some good ideas. Initially I was leaning more towards somekind of cheap small chiptune synthesizer, which could be used for playing melodies and samples. However I can see the groovebox idea is also really in favour I also love the live tracker idea of defPremium, a sort of mix between live performance and direct pre written track manipulation.
I will get back to the drawing board and if I have enough time this week I will post the initial concept ideas.

Again thanks for the input

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Netherlands

And of course more input is still welcome!

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Maybe you can make a chipboard for this project?
http://nerdsynth.com/

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STARDRAIN, CA

honestly, for me, somethig thats super minimal but capable of a wide range of sounds within limitations and full song tracking. like my ideal chip hardware has one synth channel similar to the gameboys WAV or commodore64 synth and then one noise channel thats capable of sounding like commodore or gameboy. NOT NES. nes is only capable of very weak sounding blips and reqlly whimpy noise channel sounds. i guess a sampler would be cool but you can get that abywhere. a rad synth with even just two channels or one channel would honestly change my life. and if the noise channel is as Versatile or more versatile than a gameboys, holy fucking fuck would that be fantastic. me and shitbird did a split where we just used the wav and noi channels on lsdj and always kinda wiShed there was a rad synth like THAT. something i can express maximalistic minimalism on. but thats probably just me idk