Chiptunes are all the rage these days, and they’re usually created by programming the sound chips from vintage video game consoles or retro computers. Some musicians will even play chiptunes in real time with a MIDI setup. But, it’s rare to see an actual chiptune instrument, because there is incongruity between the analog nature of conventional instruments and the digital nature of sound chips. Luckily, ARISTIDES Alexandre didn’t let that phase him when he converted his Game Boy into a MIDI Ukulele.
Alexandre, who is a Paris-based electrical engineer, is no stranger to instruments, and has built amps, carbon fiber guitars, and more over the years. In this case, the idea was to build an instrument that was both acoustic and digital. Alexandre had an original Nintendo Game Boy, and decided that it would make a good Ukulele. That seems appropriate when you consider the small size, and the four strings make sense given that the Game Boy’s sound chip has four channels.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.