12-Arduino Orchestra plays the Star Wars fanfare
In the early days of the music synthesizer, some designers who wanted polyphony in their instruments simply built multiple tone generators for as many notes as they wanted to play. [Kevin] took the same approach with his Arduino orchestra, and proceeded to play him the closing number of Star Wars: A New Hope.
The build consists of twelve Arduino Nanos, each wired to the power supply, a speaker, and the same MIDI cable. The MIDI cable carries the note data for each Arduino on a separate MIDI channel, allowing each to play their own role in the orchestra. [Kevin] then proceeded to arrange the Star Wars music into a MIDI file suitable for Arduinos, setting approximately six high part voices and six low voices. Arduinos play the received notes using the simple tone () function. The result is a very chiptune take on the ending of the fourth episode of the world’s most famous space opera.
It might not be clean, tidy, or efficient, but it sure is fun. Twelve Arduinos beeping with their flashing LEDs and cute little speakers are quite the topic of conversation. It’s a similar approach to the Flopotron, which plays more notes by adding more floppy drives. We have also seen the same with SEGA sound chips. Video after the break.