Free ROM Turns Your Vintage NES Into A MIDI Synthesizer

SynthNes is a free ROM that runs on an Everdrive N8 Pro flashcart, and a companion PC app that transforms your vintage NES into a MIDI-capable synthesizer.

Features:

  • Control all five NES audio channels via MIDI or included virtual keyboard
  • Expandable by connecting more NES’s
  • Easy to use PC interface
  • PDF manual
  • Modulation
  • Automation
  • Presets
  • Polyphonic operation
  • Unison mode
  • Animated graphics
  • Hidden surprises

Pricing and Availability

The ROM is available now as a free download. Donations to help support future development are welcome by the developer.

Note: If you need a hardware solution for the NES, you may want to check out Super MIDI Pak.

17 thoughts on “Free ROM Turns Your Vintage NES Into A MIDI Synthesizer

  1. Says I need the .NET framework installed to run the app. I was going to try to run it through Mesen since I don’t have a NES, but on second look, idk if it’s capable of running that way.

    1. you not only need an NES but a pro version of the everdrive, it connects to the computer (or midi host) via the usb on the everdrive.

      Clearly someone had a everdrive pro laying around, but It still perplexes me that someone would go through the trouble of programing this, and not go the extra mile to just make their own cart, and some extra cash. The everdrive pro costs $170 bucks so there is plenty of room to price it slightly more reasonably. Physical things are cool.

      1. Hello! I am the developer of SynthNes. The “extra mile” of designing and producing your own cart is more like an extra ultra marathon and requires a different skill set than programming. Not to mention the current chip shortage would make production a nightmare…

        SynthNes was programmed 100% for fun and I figured maybe someone else out there would have fun with it, too.

        1. Do you realize that if the developer had created their own hardware, everyone would complain that it didn’t use the readily available everDrive, lol!

      2. This is comparable to LSDJ on Gameboy where you need to buy a flashcart to use it. To create a solid cart you need to invest a lot of time and money. Plus you need to support it afterward. There is certainly a market for this seeing how the MIDINes and the Chip Maestro’s cart are sold out everywhere but it must be a small market seeing how even those were not re-manufactured.

  2. I don’t understand people that do like this kind of sound…uhm music?….im even wondering if it can be called music… Probably ‘a feel back to those days’…

      1. Sorry, i was playin a Juno 106 those days and later Yamaha fm synths. To busy for ping pong sounds, those that gets Sheldon Cooper exited…

    1. It is a musical instrument. I could make an instrument out of spoons, glass bottles, or car engines if I chose to. Somebody has to make the effort to simplify the execution of playing something as an instrument.

    1. Haha, exactly

      I really hate it when people deride other’s taste in music by declaring arrogantly that it’s “not music” man GTFOH

      If it’s Paul McCartney, I apologize… anyone else can f off tho

  3. It’s basically folk music for a certain demographic. If you’re 30ish your first favorite song was almost certainly a Video Game song.

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