0 comments on “What’s the strangest place you’ve used your PDA to make music?”

What’s the strangest place you’ve used your PDA to make music?

I’m sure that plently of people have made music on trains and buses and coaches and even on the toilet! But where’s the strangest place you’ve made some music?

0 comments on “Traxxpad review”

Traxxpad review

If you were considering TraxxPad for the PSP, read this review before you do. It certainly goes into plenty of depth. Well worth a read.

0 comments on “Soldering Ironcam …”

Soldering Ironcam …

You may remeber that I posted a while back on a project that a reader was working on to build a synth running Hedgehog and Egg. Well, the synth is still being built, and now has a soldering ironcam so you can watch the work as it happens, I know I will.

0 comments on “Tenori-On launch”

Tenori-On launch

I expect that many of you got the same email about the TENORI-ON launch. For those who didn’t, here’s the details …

“Futuresonic is to co-present the worldwide launch of the TENORI-ON by Toshio Iwai and Yamaha.

TENORI-ON is a unique AV instrument – a cross between intuitive performance instrument and art object. Toshio Iwai’s TENORI-ON show at Futuresonic 2006 was an undisputed highlight of the festival, and the positive audience response in the UK led Yahama to stage the worldwide launch in London and Manchester. The TENORI-ON has been showcased and refined at major music events and media art festivals; Sonar (Spain), Futuresonic (UK), Ars Electronica (Austria), SIGGRAPH (USA) and Art Futura (Spain), with the first fully realised live show produced by Futuresonic in Manchester as a part of Futuresonic 2006. Toshio Iwai will be joined by Robert Lippok, Capracara and Secondo on 4th September at Phonica in London and by Robert Lippok, Secondo and Graham Massey on 5th September at Mint Lounge in Manchester.


Event info ..


Robert Lippok (Domino/To Rococo Rot)
Toshio Iwai (Media Artist)
Secondo (Dreck Records)
Capracara (Soul Jazz)

Phonica Records / Vinyl Factory, London
Admission Free – Please arrive early to avoid disappointment!


Robert Lippok (Domino/To Rococo Rot)
Toshio Iwai (Media Artist)
Secondo (Dreck Records)
Graham Massey (808 State/Toolshed)

Mint Lounge, Oldham Street, Manchester
Admission Free – Please arrive early to avoid disappointment!”

It does sound very interesting. I’d love to have a play with one.

0 comments on “Update on pD Pod”

Update on pD Pod

Thanks to theologiae for posting this comment …

“t’s theologiae again. i go 1st gen ipod tonight and put linux on it as soon as i came home. but i’ve had a lot of problems getting pd to work. i get a error message when i try and launch the test files. i posted something in the ipod/linux forum, so i’ll see if there is a fix to my problem.
but i’m close to getting this set up. i’m glad to have found you blog, once i get it going, i’m going to love it”

Looking forward to hearing about how you get on, please keep in touch.

1 comment on “Another video from Palm Sounds”

Another video from Palm Sounds

Another video made on holiday. This one’s a bit more sedate.

0 comments on “Pacemaker, where is it?”

Pacemaker, where is it?

After all the attention it got at Sonar, where is it, all the news has dried up completely…

2 comments on “The Basics: Devices”

The Basics: Devices

If you are new to handhelds completely you probably have an advantage as you may not have bought a device at all as yet. If you have a device already then you know where you stand and can get a clear idea of what is available to you.

There are two main types of device. Those running a Palm operating system, and those running Windows Mobile. There are one or two others which I’ll mention at the end, but only leave out as they don’t have the range of software that is available on the Palm and Windows Mobile platforms.

Essentially your choice of device or platform will govern what is available to you in terms of music software for your PDA.

Palm Devices
If you go for a Palm device you are in many ways restricted in the types of device that are available. In fact, all you can really by are the devices from Palm. Although you might think that this is limiting (and in some ways it is), there are still a number of good devices available from Palm. The newest are the Treo smartphones, which are very good in their own way. However, you should be careful as a number of the newer ones come in Windows Mobile flavours too. The Palm TX is very good (or so I am told) although the audio is apparently a little hissy. Don’t be tempted by the forthcoming Palm Foleo device. Currently non of music applications that run on the palm operating system will run on the Foleo. If this situation changes then I will write about it on the blog.

If you are interested in buying second hand Palm devices then there are many more opportunities. Possibly the best palm device for making music is the Palm Tungsten T3. This device has a 400mhz processor and 64mb of storage RAM and a 10mb dynamic heap, which is exceptionally useful for loading samples. The T3 is arguably the palm device best suited to music making. However, there are other devices that are very handy too such as the Zire 72 the T5, and the Lifedrive.

One very important thing when choosing a device make sure it runs Palm’s operating system 5 or above. It your device runs anything less than this, you are going to be fairly disappointed in the options available to you in terms of software.

Windows Mobile
With Windows Mobile or Pocket PC devices there are far more choices in terms of hardware, as there have been lots and lots of device manufacturers. Because of this it is quite difficult to give you specific advice for each manufacturer or range of devices, so I’m going to stick to some principles and tell you my experience with Windows Mobile.

In general if you are looking for a Windows Mobile device you need to think about three things:

1. Processor speed. I would aim to go over 400mhz, the faster the better.
2. Memory. Again, more is better. You need plenty for storage and for running music applications which are very memory hungry on the whole.
3. Operating system version. Ideally you want either Windows Mobile 5 or Pocket PC 2003, nothing before this is possible.
Ok. Having given you some basic principles. Here’s my experience of the platform.

I first used Pocket PC with an HP Jornada 568 which I bought on eBay. It was a great device. I ran applications like Syntrax and Griff and it performed very well. The Pocket PC OS was ok to use, but it has issues, I guess like all operating systems. In Pocket PC / WM5 apps don’t close, they stay open until you run out of memory, which isn’t too clever. Also the way in which memory is split Is a bit strange.

I’ve recently upgraded my old Jornada to a Dell Axim. This Is another great device and some of my issues with the Pocket PC OS have been dealt with, and others haven’t.

The one great thing about Windows Mobile over Palm is that using the StyleTap emulator you can run palm applications on a Pocket PC. The same is not true the other way around.

Now, at the beginning of this post I said I’d talk about other PDAs which can be used. The two types I wanted to talk about were the Sony Clie devices, and also the Zarus.

Sony discontinued the Clie some time ago, and so these devices can only be bought on ebay. Some of the clies are very nice indeed. There were a number of different ranges, but the later ones ran Palm’s OS5, and some also had a built in Yamaha sound chip allowing them to play MIDI sounds directly.

In terms of the Zarus, I only know of one music application and that is PDa, PureData anywhere. Apart from this I know very little about the platform. At some point (when I’ve got the money) I will get myself one and find out more about the platform.

Anyway, I hope this has been useful and gives you some help in which type of device to look into. Remember, it is alway worth doing your own research, but if you want to ask any questions, please email me at palm dot sounds at mac dot com.

0 comments on “Another TuneStudio picture”

Another TuneStudio picture

… found on flickr, but when is it coming though? Belkin had said summer 2007 and that’s fast slipping away, so will they make the deadline?

1 comment on “The Basics Series”

The Basics Series

Here are all of the posts in the basics series so far….

The Basics: Devices

Here are the ones coming soon …



External Hardware


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