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Pianocade: Super Mega Synthesizer Arcade Controller Combo


The Pianocade is the embodiment of chiptune music. It’s a synthesizer that looks and works like an arcade controller, down to the analog joystick and token buttons.

pianocade chiptune synthesizer

But the Pianocade’s gamer theme isn’t just skin deep. It’s open source, hacker-friendly synthesizer board is based on the NES and Game Boy sound hardware, so it makes the monophonic pings and blips out of the box. Here’s a demo of the Pianocade’s features:

And here’s the Pianocade being used by Shaun Hatton aka Megashaun to play live:

Portmanteau Devices is selling one- and two-octave variants of the Pianocade; the former costs about $250 (USD) and the latter is about $350. You can also pre-order just the electronics for about $100.

Portmanteau Devices said that they will try to make the Pianocade also work as a USB game controller out of the box, but that’s not their priority right now. They did say that they might release a firmware update later on if they can’t do it by the time the device is released. Perhaps one of you clever hackers will even do the job for them.

[via Engadget]

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