WilliamK
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2012 8:54 pm
Location: Brazil
Contact: Website

RPi Synth?

Thu Aug 02, 2012 8:57 pm

Just wondering if it would be possible to create a Synth using the RPi? What's the latency under linux? Or should I go for the baremetal code? (if so, no idea on how to handle things out) :-(

Just wondering how the RPi can handle audio, MIDI, etc ...

Thanks.

PS: I have done some Arduino projects, the latest one is a MIDI Drum Machine: www.Beat707.com and I was the header coder for www.Wusik.com (funder too)

CopperPhil
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2012 4:37 pm
Location: Brussels
Contact: Website

Re: RPi Synth?

Fri Aug 03, 2012 2:42 am

Hi!

Juce (http://www.rawmaterialsoftware.com) is a wonderful framework for making multimedia applications, especially music oriented. It is multiplatform, I'm using it on Mac, PC and iOS, exactly the same source code (c++), the wizard provided with Juce (introjucer) can be used to setup project files automatically for each platform.

Juce is also compatible Linux and Android (never tried till now), I've read recently in their forum that some people are using it on RaspberryPi.

So, this framework provide you with an efficient way to generate/process audio.

then, I'm working on porting CopperLan to the RaspberryPI. Do you know CopperLan? take a look on my youtube Channel (search CopperPhil) or my facebook page (search CopperLan on FB) to get an overview. It's a high resolution, very low latency, ethernet based, zero config communication framework designed for command & control, backward compatible with MIDI but far much powerful than this simple protocol.

I'm going on holidays in a few days, but I expect to be able to deliver CopperLan for Raspberry package + SDK + sample code end of August.

Using Juce and CopperLan (both free for non commercial development) seems to me a good solution to build quickly a very powerful synth controllable very simply from anywhere on the network.

Let me know if you have any question :-)
-- CopperPhil --

danboid
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:07 pm

Re: RPi Synth?

Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:13 pm

WillK:

If you haven't done so already, you should read my recent (and first) thread posted in this forum which pretty comprehensively addresses your questions albeit using a Pandaboard instead of an RPi but its still 'how to create electronic music under ARM Linux':

http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewt ... 38&t=12920

TAL-Noisemaker is easily the best FOSS synth IMO but you should also check out Yoshimi / zynaddsubfx, PHASEX, Bristol and Whysynth which all have their plus points such as Bristol being the only one of those thats fully usable via the terminal which makes it one of the only choices for blind/braille terminal users.

Those are the highlights of the more user friendly Linux synths but if you're more techie you'll also want to try PD Extended, Supercollider and Processing.

gritz
Posts: 449
Joined: Sat Jan 28, 2012 2:33 am

Re: RPi Synth?

Mon Aug 06, 2012 1:56 am

If the o.p is the William K. I'm thinking of then he's no slouch at coding soft synths and messing with hardware (I own his Wusik VST). It looks like more immediate concerns are how to get MIDI in and audio out in a timely manner and whether a vanilla Linux install is capable of coping with low latency i/o on this platform and maybe how best to utilise the hardware.

Interesting questions. One possibility may be to eschew USB i/o and pump MIDI in via GPIO and use PWM for audio and cv out in conjunction with an analogue board with VCA and VCF and wavetables / samples. There are AVR based synths that do this already of course, but if the Pi had a bolt on touch screen interface...

In my experience anything that bypasses the whole ALSA trainwreck is probably a good thing...

Anyway, hello William! :D

WilliamK
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2012 8:54 pm
Location: Brazil
Contact: Website

Re: RPi Synth?

Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:00 pm

Yup, that's me, crazy Willy from Wusik.com and Beat707.com ;-)

So far this is mostly a hobby, so I can't put too much time on this. But I see your idea of just using the GPIO ports and PWM for output. I did that on the Beat707 BeatVox drum-player.

Baggypants
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue May 08, 2012 10:46 pm

Re: RPi Synth?

Tue Aug 07, 2012 7:54 am

I've set up my rpi with fluidsynth and an Alesis Q49 usb keyboard and it works pretty well.

quick details over here http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewt ... 08#p141908

I've not got Bristol to work on Alsa only though. for some reason it can't open the device.

jembe
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:52 am
Location: Arusha, Tanzania

Re: RPi Synth?

Mon Feb 03, 2014 9:31 am

WilliamK wrote:Yup, that's me, crazy Willy from Wusik.com and Beat707.com ;-)

So far this is mostly a hobby, so I can't put too much time on this. But I see your idea of just using the GPIO ports and PWM for output. I did that on the Beat707 BeatVox drum-player.
I am really interested in the idea of making a synth. Where can I find information on how to use PWM output to make audio.

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