Legend of Arduboy: Chiptune and the Arduboy

While the discussion of music for the Arduboy comes up from time to time in the community section, one frontier we have not discussed much is the rich community of chiptuners out there who are starting to phreak on the Arduboy.

The Twitter account for Arduboy, @ArduboyTweets, is fairly new, but in the short time since Arduboy has been learning to use the Twitters, the hashtag #Arduboy has had some great videos come up. One that is too good to not post is by FineFin, check it out!


##FineFin on Twitter

The author of the video above can be found on twitter at, https://twitter.com/finefingames.

Music Tracker on the Arduboy

@JO3RI has worked with @TEAMarg to create the first music tracker for the Arduboy.

Check it out using the links below.


Browse, favorite, clone and fork this momentous creation on Github at https://github.com/TEAMarg/demoScene.


The Pocket Operator

The two devices you see being used with the Arduboy in the video are called Pocket Operators.

Pocket Operators are high quality audio generators with keyed input similar to what you would find on a drum machine.

Here is the tagline about the product from the company:

Pocket Operators

pocket operators are small, ultra portable music devices,
with studio quality sound and the flexibility to make music on the go.
affordable for everyone and compatible with all other music gear.

for an impossibly cheap price of $ 59.


I have a pocket operator PO-20 arcade, I’m trying to do the same if my child leaves me between bottles and diapers do not have time to investigate. video user could also put a potentiometer and an output jack to the arduboy. The problem, besides that the synthesizer is not very friendly yet, is that OPERATORS POCKET TEENAGE ENGINEERING, like the KORG overturns use a special synchronization signal called analog pulse synchronization. It is an old and rudimentary but very practical technology, I think it would be a plus that this signal is implemented as it could be interesting.

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Yeah, I saw they have a DAC. Maybe I will buy one. If you are saying them have a timing pulse for quantization, then we can totally work that into the Arduboy, with a mod or something, or serial cable if the latency is low enough. Getting your music on time with a click track is pretty crucial to making music, so this is a great tip.

In fact, I would say, that if you can’t communicate the click track between the Arduboy and other units, it will never be the music making machine it was meant to be!

Also, I dub this feature, the Arduboy Heartbeat!

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the click or signal, whether it is midi, as if it is analog, it would be great … many people for many years playing with their Nanoloop and LSDJ … a tracker for arduboy is proved necessary and could attract much public but without SYNC everything is impossible …
both people: Teenage enginering with their PO, as well as the people of NEXT THING.co with its POCKET CHIP (I have a requested) with SunVox are reliving my desire for music.

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I agree about getting the feels back on music with these smaller, modifiable devices. I have an Akai MPC1000 and find the Arduboy :100: times more interesting, it would be cool to get some midi i/o to the Arduboy. Even if it’s in a separate “DJ booth” the Arduboy sits in, but has the circuits needed to do the i/o.

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I would love to see a tracker for Arduboy… ArduLSDj! I don’t know anything about midi or programming Arduino, so some sort of native tracker would be ideal (for me). I’m wondering how many channels there are to work with? I had thought there were only 2, but some of these demos are 4 (?)

Worried that saving/transferring songs would be an issue(?)

We definitely need some kind(s) of synth/sequencer/tracker, etc for the Arduboy!!!

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Stumbled upon this old thread while getting caught up w/ the community here…FYI it seems we may be getting close to ArduLSDJ:


:grin: Another Pocket Operator (and OP-1!) owner here btw…can’t get enough of these simple LCD/OLED devices…! :grin:

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There is hot topic right now what to do for the music/sound and how to integrate it into our library.

The issue is that if we add something more complicated and “better” sounding, then it will conflict with the easy to program and implement code we have now.

But that’s maybe not an issue because nobody has really seen fit to use what we have right now either.


Syncing the PO via clock signal - check :white_check_mark: