Electronic Musical Instrument

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Lazányi János Gyula
Department of Measurement and Information Systems

Synthesizers play a major role in today's pop music. These musical instruments previously had a unique sound. Today, the manufacturers try to achieve more and more accurate real-time simulation of acoustic instruments, although they previously tried to produce more ethereal sounds.

In the 1980s a new musical style appeared, which was based on the computers' and videogames' musical abilities of that time. This was the Chiptune. The specialty of this style is that music is composed using primitive waveforms, and despite the use of simple instruments, the result is quite enjoyable. This style would have remained underground, if it hadn't been taken up by the pop music, where is mainly used as a background effect.

The artists use 8-bit computers or videogames to compose chip tunes, or -- as an other option -- they use homebrew hardware or software to imitate the sound of the computers of the 1980s.

The document shows the construction progress of a MIDI controllable chiptune synthesizer from concept to hardware and embedded software.


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