Unboxing a DIY Synth Music Kit | Peep This #17

Unboxing a DIY Synth Music Kit | Peep This #17


Today, Joey and I are going to
look at what’s inside this box. But we’re also going to be
using another one of our senses. We’re going to listen to
what’s inside this box. [FINGERS TAPPING] Let’s peep this. [MUSIC PLAYING] Here we have– Hmm! –the LittleBits Synth Kit. So this is a kit to make
your own synthesizer. If you’re familiar
with our LittleBits kit that we already sell at
Vat19, it’s kind of a– Modular. Yeah, invention kit. Yeah. There’s these little
circuit boards that you can easily
snap together and create all kinds of cool stuff. So this is by the same
people, LittleBits. But it’s specifically a kit
to make a synthesizer, which sounds awesome. Oh, and it looks like
LittleBits teamed up with Korg to produce this kit,
which if you are a musician– You know Korg. –you know Korg. They’re legit. So here are our 12 bits. You’ve got power and
an included battery. A keyboard. A microsequencer. Two oscillators. Filter. Envelope. Random. Delay, delay, delay, delay. [LAUGHTER] Mix. Split. And a speaker. [IMITATES BASS] This whole kit is designed to be
super easy to use straight out of the box. And so you don’t have to
be an expert or a musician or know anything about
synthesizers or circuit boards or anything like that. Anybody can pull
these little bits out and snap them together
with the magnets. Yeah, and just kind of– Yeah, and start just creating
your own fun sounds and music. So let’s get started
with something simple. I’m just going to
take the power, hook that up to an
oscillator, and then hook that up to the speaker. OK, so we’re kind of
building a chain, right? It starts with power. Yeah, and then you go
from left to right. So let’s just turn this on. Turn the volume up a little bit. Turn the oscillator. [WARBLING] Nice. And you adjust the pitch. So you’ve got volume pitch. [WARBLING] Then you can change the
wave from square to soft. You’re actually changing
the shape of the waveform. You can hear the difference. [MELODIC WARBLING] Yeah. Let’s add some more
to our circuit here. And they give you suggestions of
different instruments to build, different sounds you can make. We’re going to
stick the keyboard. Looks like that. Stick that on after the power. Then hook an oscillator
to get that waveform. [MELODIC TONES] Oh! Suddenly music. So the keyboard bit has
all kinds of buttons on it for different pitches. Yeah. So it’s monophonic, right? It only plays one
pitch at a time. But you can adjust the tune. [HIGH-PITCHED WHINING] Oh. OK. So you kind of just
experiment, you know? You throw on– That sounded like some
club music or something. [BEATBOXING ALONG TO FUNKY
TONES] We need a big drop. Oh! Wait for the drop! [BEATBOXES] [LAUGHTER] So that’s just the
basic keyboard. Let’s get into something
that’s slightly more advanced. OK, so I just added
the delay bit. [LOW-PITCHED WARBLING] Oh, OK. So the delay takes the
signal that you sent it, and then it repeats it. So we’ve got time and feedback. Time is kind of like the
distance between the delay. And then feedback is how
long that echo plays out, so. [ECHOING TONE] It’s kind of a
short, quick delay. Then it fades out slowly. [SLOWER ECHO] [DISTORTED ECHO] Slow it down. Nice. Change the pitch. [BUZZING] So I just added the filter bit. That lets you kind of– [WAVERING TONE] [INAUDIBLE] sound a little
bit, give it a little more of a dark,
less attack-y sound. You can get crazy. You just kind of make your
own sounds from any sequence. And you can put these in any
sequence you want, really. What’s cool about
the synthesizer is it’s not really
one instrument. It’s kind of like
a modular system that allows you to make any
kind of sounds you want, really. And you just are
manipulating frequencies. This is kind of cool. We’ve got a bunch of different
projects laid out in the manual here. Oh, nice. There’s one called
percussion party. Oh. So this is more up your alley. This is up my alley. I’ll let you take this one. So we need power. We got the microsequencer,
which is right there. So the whole thing goes
power, sequencer, splits to random filter, envelope. The other side of the splitter’s
coming into the envelope and then out to the speaker. [BRUSHING NOISE] Oh. All right, we got a
little something going. So the sequencer’s going– [SNAPS FINGERS] It’s actually going– [CLAPPING ALONG] Mm-hmm. And then it’s only
playing two of those four. 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2. But it’s going on two and four. 2, 4, 2, 4, 2, 4. All right, here’s our filter. [CHOPPY WARBLING] So that kind of gets you
the sound of the percussion instrument. So you make it kind
of like deep and dark. You can go bright. And get some tone in there. That’s kind of
like a small snare. So that’s like a– [RHYTHMIC HISSING] Now we can just play
around the beats. So now– [RHYTHMIC CLICKING] Got a little gallop. All I’m doing is
twisting these knobs to add in more or less
beats in a sequence. I have a idea. Let’s add in some delay. [PERCUSSIVE MELODY] Nice. Just a little bit U2-esque. It is. A little edge. So that’s pretty sweet. It is really cool. Last but not least– The synthesizer with the works. It’s the grand finale. Keyboard, split, oscillators. Split back down to mix. Oh, OK. And that goes to the envelope. That goes to filter. And delay. OK. Kick on the power. Let’s do it. [MELODIC NOTES RESONATING] That’s a cool sound. It’s kind of like a harp. Yeah. [HIGH-PITCHED ECHO] There’s a sound. So I’m messing with the filters. I’m messing with the
frequencies here. You go this way, and it
sounds more like a harpsichord or something. You turn it down. Somewhere in there, it sounds
a little smoother, kind of like a harp. It’s almost percussive. It’s got a little
bit of a tone in it. I’m going to let you
run the keyboard, because I want to play with
some of these other switches. Sounds good. [ACCORDION-LIKE NOTES] That’s cool. It sounds like, even though
it’s one key, it’s a chord. [PLAYING NOTES] It’s like a robot
falling off a cliff. [PLAYING NOTES] Just going off script here. Going off script. Putting a sequencer in the mix. Yeah, I put the sequencer, then
random, and then the oscillator at random voltage. So it should be kind of– [QUIRKY SYNTHESIZER NOTES] (ROBOT VOICE) It
is the year 2000. LittleBits Synth Kit also
great to annoy your parents. [NOTES PLAYING, SPUTTERING] Sounds like a fart. [CHUCKLES, SPUTTERS LIPS] I have no idea what’s
going to happen here. [LOW SYNTHESIZER NOTES] It’s getting out of control. Oh no. [NOTES STOP] [LAUGHTER] So many different sounds and– Yeah, it’s like create
your own instrument. Yeah, so you could make
a drum, like you did. Or you could make– A keyboard, yeah. Keyboard, a guitar sound. We kind of got that harpsichord
thing going at one point. So how are we going to make
a commercial for this thing. I think we need a
little synth band. You be on drums. And I could rock
something, like keyboards. Everybody has their own– yeah. Make your own instrument. And then make a cardboard
shape, like a guitar– Yeah, yeah. –or something, and
then put these on there. Then you could play
it in a different way than on just your desktop. Dim the lights. Yeah. Get some party lights in there. Little fog. Yeah, and be the colors guy. You could pop out. Colors guy can come in, yeah. Colors! Yeah, Joey and I have been
making music in a band together for, well,
since like seventh grade playing all kinds of
instruments, guitar and drums primarily. But I mean, we’ve built
a recording studio. So we’ve learned a lot of
this stuff in a computer. But to actually be able to get
your hands on these little bits and connect them
together and see what a filter does or
an oscillator does, it’s a really cool
way to learn it. It’s definitely fun
to start with a book if you don’t know
what you’re doing, but then to just go crazy
and have fun with it. We have a character,
DJ Chicken Skratch. Mm. DJ Chicken Skratch
is Vat19’s house DJ. He’s downstairs pumping
some tunes right now. House as in, like– Yeah yeah. [BEATBOXING] In-house, not house music. Right, exactly. Another cool thing, it’s
got a headphone out, so you don’t have to annoy
everybody that you’re around if you’re– Oh. You’re just kind
of figuring it out, and you’re making
these squealy noises. I was wondering about that. Plug your headphones in. And I guess you could go
into a recording software. Yeah, that’s true. If you’ve got some
recording software, you could play out a part and
then play your other parts and mix it all in. If you have GarageBand
or something like that on your computer,
you can record multitrack and really take it
to the next level. Seriously. That might be
something we could do, like record a song made from
the LittleBits Synth Kit. I’m not saying full-on
music video, but– I like this idea. I like the DJ Chicken Skratch. I think he could maybe put
something together for us. Yeah, I think it would
be cool to show people how you could really
take this to the max and make it a real song. [MUSIC – “TWINKLE, TWINKLE,
LITTLE STAR”] [WAVERING ECHO] Nice. Boom! That’s how you play “Twinkle,
Twinkle, Little Star.” We want to hear
some of your ideas, maybe songs that you’d want to
hear us play in the commercial. We want to give you your very
own LittleBits Synth Kit. So if you want to win your
very own LittleBits Synth Kit, check the description below. And all the details are there. It’s easy. Hey, look. Vat19 just uploaded
another video. Oh. You know what? I’m going to check that out. He’s subscribed. I am subscribed. You should subscribe
to Vat19 so you know when we make another video. That’s right. It’s free. Why not? Yeah, why not? All right, Jon. Play us out. [PLAYS VAT19 JINGLE] [IMITATES CLICK] [LAUGHTER] (SINGING) Vat19.com. [CLICK] [MUSIC PLAYING]

100 comments

  1. it's a modular synthesis system! Andrew Huang would love tweaking with this. If people think this is expensive well find some other modular synthesizer or a normal synthesizer that's cheaper than this. pretty much nothing. plus music equipment is already expensive. you might think a synth is cheap. welp. you are wrong. it's nice to see an affordable modular synthesizer.

  2. When I think of little bits I immediately think of that commercial in rick and morty for little bits restaurant where all the food is tiny

  3. Does this have a minijack output? if so, would love to get one of these to sample and put together a track … I have advanced HW synths but this would be an awesome introduction to electronic music production and synthesis for my 11 year old

  4. What other songs should we have tried playing on the synth?
    Have you seen our own music videos? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRcCWIuvDis&list=PL8EC9A07FF11A393E

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