Merry Zynthians and Happy New Image – Newsletter #2, December 2016

Greetings from the sunny BCN, where today the rain fall over and tomorrow the air will smell clean and healthy 🙂

It’s been a hard month preparing the new SD image, but finally it’s here. Its name is Gorgona!

If you already have a Zynthian Box,  i’m pretty sure you would like to try Gorgona right now. You can choose between two different versions, compiled for RBPi3 and RBPi2:



The only difference between Gorgona and Gorgonilla versions is the amount of soundfonts (SFZ and SF2 files) included in the data directory. All the rest is the same.

New features and improvements:

  • MOD Plugin Host & User Interface: mod-host + mod-ui
    This is the  main dish of this release. MOD Devices team have developed this amazing software for the ModDuo and they have shared their work with all the world, releasing it under GPL.  So, thanks a lot, MOD’s team! You are really great! And also thanks to Holger Wirtz, for his great contribution making MOD’s software to work in zynthian! (2017-05-18 => and of course, thanks to all the brave coders that have created and debugged all the codebase that uses zynthian project 😉
  • A lot of LV2 plugins:
    • Dexed, an amazing Yamaha DX7 emulator that can import DX7 SysEx files. Thanks to Holger Wirtz by creating this native port to LV2.
    • MDA EPiano,  sounds like a true Fender Rhodes. Waaarm!
    • MDA JX10, a Roland JX10 emulator with a lot of mind-boggling presets.
    • TAL Noize Mak3r, a true ears-breaker with really fat sounds.
    • and many more …
  • Refactorized GUI, that scales to any screen size and uses customizable fonts and colors.
  • Default Snapshot: you can save a default snapshot that will be loaded at startup.
  • Audio Test function, available in the admin menu.
  • MIDI Test function,  available in the admin menu (if you want to hear something, you have to load some synth before!)
  • Improved Network Info function, available in the admin menu.
  • Improved initialization system, using systemd units
  • Auto-Expand SD partition on first startup, to fit the whole size of the SD card.
  • Zynthian Setup Script:  Now you can build your own image from scratch using the setup script. If you are interested, read this post in the forum.
  • And a lot of little improvements and fixes…

Accessing the MOD User Interface

You can access the MOD web interface following the next steps:

  1. Connect your Zynthian Box to your local network (or directly to your computer) using an ethernet cable.
  2. Load the mod-ui synth engine.
  3. Point your browser to: http://zynthian.local:8888
  4. Enjoy!

If you your browser can’t find the zynthian.local address, probably you are using a windows version that doesn’t support the link-local feature and you can’t connect your zynthian box directly to your computer. Don’t worry. You can connect it to your local network and obtain its IP address by using the Network Info option in the admin menu.

You will find more info about the new SD image Gorgona in this forum post.

Erratum from the previous newsletter #1:

In the last newsletter, be made a mistake and we would like to amend it. We set that mod-host software has been created by Filipe Coelho (falkTX) and that’s is not true. Mod-host & mod-ui have been created by MOD Devices, the company that develops the ModDuo. Filipe Coelho is part of the MOD’s team and collaborate in the development of this 2 pieces of software, among others. Sorry for the mistake.

Zynthian Kits

From October, with the incoming of the new serigraphied aluminum case,  we’ve upgraded the kits available to people who want to build his own Zynthian Box. Now we offer bundle-all kits that include all the needed parts, and also pre-soldered versions.

Aluminum Case Kit
Aluminum Case Kit

If you are interested in getting a building kit, you will find more information in this forum post.

Next Steps

The development never ends! We have a long list of things to do for improving Zynthian: better architecture, enhanced usability and, of course,  new and crazy features! These are some of the next ones:

Zynthian Configuration Webtool

This tool will allow you to configure your zynthian box using a simple web interface. You could configure easily things like:

  • system and wifi passwords
  • wiring layout
  • soundcard model
  • GUI fonts and colors
  • rename snapshots
  • etc.
PureData, CSound, SuperCollider

We are working in a new engine that will allow to load in your Zynthian Box sound patches from different languages and tools: PureData, CSound and SuperCollider will be some of the supported formats.

And that’s all by now … enjoy!!

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