This video, via Greig (Theremin Hero), captures an 8-bit NES Keytar performance of the Game Of Thrones theme – with MIDI-controlled lasers.
Greig’s NESKeytar is a cross between an original Nintendo console, a Guitar Hero controller and a miniature toy keyboard. The hybrid instrument fully utilities the NES sound chip to produce lo-fi arpeggios, heard in this tribute to the theme of Game of Thrones. Continue reading →
Ninstrument’s Chris Blarsky contacted us to let us know about the new MCTRL – a MIDI-controlled NES Gamepad.
Why would you want a MIDI-controlled NES Gamepad?
There are many homebrew audio/video titles for the NES that can’t easily be synced with a traditional DAW or MIDI keyboard/device. The MCTRL (pronounced M-CONTROL) incorporates MIDI In, Thru & Out – making it easy to integrate the NES into your MIDI setup.
Chip Maestro - a new project to develop a NES MIDI Synthesizer Cartridge – is fully funded and under development.
Here’s how developer Jarek Lupinski describes the project:
I am prototyping, designing and assembling a special cartridge called Chip Maestro which can be used in any Nintendo Entertainment System. This cartridge will accept a MIDI input from any instrument, and by passing the MIDI notes through the NES, the cartridge will make the NES synthesize 8-bits of awesome in true NES squarewavey goodness.
See the video for more details!
The project has 260 backers and has raised $15,045 of a $1,150 goal, demonstrating that there’s a lot of interest in a NES MIDI Synth.
The Chip Maestro is still under development. You can follow development at Lupinski’s Kickstarter site.
Developer Jarek Lupinski is working on a new NES cartridge, Chip Maestro, that turns a Nintendo Entertainment System into a MIDI synthesizer.
Here’s what he has to say about Chip Maestro:
The cartridge will accept a MIDI input from any instrument, and by passing the MIDI notes through the NES, the cartridge will make the NES synthesize 8-bits of awesome in true NES squarewavey goodness. See the video for more details!
Most chiptune artists today use ‘software synths’ to try and recreate the sound we grew to love. By providing artists with a low-cost and easy to use hardware solution, they can use a real NES to compose their music, and even play it live on stage! And if you don’t have a MIDI instrument, don’t worry; you can use your PC with an inexpensive USB-MIDI converter, or create your own instrument using Arduinos or other microcontrollers that can output MIDI, so you can turn anything into an 8-bit instrument!
Lupinski is currently raising funds to produce the cartridge at Kickstarter.