Grey-haired boffins insert synthesizer music chip into human hand

By Dave

Grey-haired boffins insert synthesizer music chip into human hand

Grey-haired boffins insert synthesizer-playing chip into human hand

Who says you can’t do creative work once you get the wrong side of 60 years old? Certainly not Tony Keane and Dave Litten

But you don’t believe everything you read on the internet – Do You?

Of course not.

We did not read up on “How to be a Surgeon in under 7 days” either!

But what Tony and I have done, is use our combined electronics and music expertise to create the world’s first (music) polyphonic synthesizer on a chip – the SONAC Poly. That’s it above laying on top of my hand.

It connects to any MIDI controller or keyboard – so no need to buy yet another one.

Of course you will want to hook your SONAC wizardry up to a suitable panel of controls and mount them all in a suitable enclosure – but that’s the fun bit – right?

SONAC Poly panel suggestion

We figured that since there are 56 million websites on Google for the phrases, How to construct a synthesizer, with Best cheap polyphonic synth and How to build a polyphonic synthesizer adding another 5 million websites to the mix …

… then why hasn’t anyone thought of a creating a single chip on a four-inch square circuit board that does just that?
… And charge just 200 bucks for the privilege.

So, We Did. And it Works.

Yay to Tony and me!

Grey-haired boffins insert synthesizer-playing chip into human hand

Aimed squarely at the home hobbyist and folks with electronic construction skills, we expect to launch in 2023 while working hard at creating the accompanying Constructors Guide, setting up a states-side manufacturing facility (we already found one), writing free open source code, and tweaking our still ‘under construction’ website –

Big shout out to the uber-talents of my smart nephew Nick Litten for the latter.

Our SONAC Poly is also designed for those who prefer DIY synthesizer raspberry pi and DIY synthesizer Arduino – in fact anyone who is passionate for DIY synthesizers

Life In Spain

Don’t let anyone tell you the Spanish folks are workshy. The reason that idea got around, is that us Brits don’t understand the wonderful Spanish culture (until we get to live here). Tony by the way, lives in Rochester New York state.

Sure, Spanish workers don’t seem to wear watches or look at them – I have learned “Let’s meet up at 10 AM” probably means some time north of noon. And don’t accept quotes for work on an hourly basis – rather, ask for a fixed price.

When I pop into my local village of Pego, it is buzzing with Spanish tradesmen at 8:00 AM in the local bars – all drinking strong coffee accompanied by shots (chupito) of local brandy, smoking cigarettes while yarning to their buddies or on their smartphones.

As 9:00 AM gets closer they all skedaddle off to their work assignments – and they get straight to it – non-stop.

Come 2:00 AM they are off for their afternoon siesta with their whole family (yes, all schoolkids come home for ‘around the table’ lunch – TV dinners not allowed). Nice to see.

When 16:00 rolls around, they are back to work until it gets dark (anywhere between 6 o’clock to 9 o’clock at night)

Oh yes, and all my Spanish friends always have the time to stop and yarn.

Older folks take a chair onto the pavement outside their house and yarn with neighbours and any passers-by, I can’t imagine that from the last town I lived in England – back then, nobody seemed to have the time for others, or even knew who their neighbours were …

Probably the reason I still live in wonderful Spain after two decades.


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