“A very quick test of two USB MIDI keys into a Raspberry Pi Model A (emulating a Pi Zero, overclocked to 1GHz) via a powered USB hub.
The 1GHz configuration leaves massive amounts of CPU and memory bandwidth headroom, even with 8 synths running.”
A few thoughts:
I’ve been wondering a bit more about synthesis on the Pi since the Pi.Zero came out and subsequently having a little conversation on twitter with Erik (maker of the awesome nils effects app) about using it for synthesis. There are Pd distributions for the Pi, and for £4 ($8) for a Pi.Zero it could make the basis of an interesting device for synthesis.
Perhaps it’s something to look into next year, or, at the very least, when it is actually possible to get your hands on a Pi.Zero.
“A walkthrough of the demos provided on the Synth Collection evaluation SD card. Virtually no edits, so lots of delays. Grab a drink before you watch. I break out of each demo with control-C otherwise the video would be half an hour long.
All demos are running on a Pi Model B+ overclocked to 1GHz to match the performance of Raspberry Pi Zero. The worst-case load is during ‘Never Turn Your Back on Mother Earth’ at the end of the sawtooth solo, where CPU usage (measured by top -H) peaked at around 58%.
Sound was captured directly out of the IQaudIO DAC+ into a Behringer UCA202, so it’s a stereo image and representative quality of how this thing really sounds, and a bit of the iPod mic signal was left in there (which picked up the MiniRig, driven by the IQaudIO headphone out) – the sound of typing is so exciting, don’t you think?!
So think about this for a second – a micro SD card, 8G, is £1.99 and a Raspberry Pi Zero is £4. For a hardware investment of 5.99 plus an old USB hub you have hanging around the place, you get 8 glorious synthesizers. The value proposition is pretty remarkable. And you don’t even need a MIDI keyboard, you can author complete tracks within the sequencer and preview them, and drag them to the gig. Perfect if you intend doing a cover of Baba O’Riley or Won’t Get Fooled Again at short notice!”