New Zynthian Kit v4

Were you awaiting for it?

  • More CPU power than ever: Designed for the Raspberry Pi 4
  • Zynductor Passive Cooling: 100% silent!
  • 4 x extra push buttons, totally assignable to functions or programs.
  • 2 x Balanced Audio Inputs with adjustable gain (-12db to 32dB)
  • Very easy to mount! You don’t need to solder anything. Just plug the wires and tighten the screws. So easy that your grandma could do it for you!!

It’s been a really strange and busy year, but finally, despite all the potholes on the road, we are proud to present the new Zynthian Kit v4. It keeps all the good things from the v3, but integrates the RBPi4, what increases the zynthian’s processing power to the next level.

The RBPi4 allows to run all the synth-engines without reaching the limits. No more “clicks” (XRuns) when playing Pianoteq, OBXd or ZynAddSubFX. You can also play simultaneously more layers, what is great for sequencing, and this comes just in time to start enjoying the new integrated step sequencer, the ZynStep, developed by our much beloved Mr. @riban.

But this CPU power has a price to pay: increased heat dissipation. This has supposed a design challenge as we didn’t want a noisy and unreliable fan inside the zynthian case, so we decided to design a solution that allowed to evacuate the heat generated by the CPU towards the aluminum case. We were quite space-constrained and initially doubted about the efficiency of this solution, but after some tests, the Zynductor emerged as a well-enough solution, and we are really satisfied because it’s cheap, silent, reliable and decrease the CPU temperature by 10ºC, what it’s enough for almost every use case.

The second more remarkable improvement of the kit v4 is the 4 push buttons added on the top. This was a risky last-minute change, but we decided to do it because of several reasons:

  • We are increasingly constrained when designing new functionality because of the lack of more actuators.
  • We already had implemented the software part, including the configuration tool that allows assigning the switches to any UI action or MIDI message.
  • We already had the required I/O pins on the Zynscreen, so we just needed to add the conductive-switch footprints on the PCB and design and manufacture a small silicone keypad. A funny task for spending our time on April-May 2020. We like risky challenges.

Apart from this 2 big improvements, the v4 adds a second balanced audio input, what perfectly fits the last improvements on audio routing that allow to create separated FX chains for every input. And of course, this also adds completeness, giving equilibrium and symmetry to the zynthian’s case backside 😉

For the rest, the v4 is almost the same than the kit v3:

  • Zynaptik module for MIDI IN/THRU/OUT and extended I/O
  • Zynscreen v1.5 touch display & control interface
  • 4 x incremental rotary encoders with switch
  • Hifiberry DAC+ADC PRO
  • Black-anodized Aluminum Case
  • High quality connectors
  • etc.

Take a look to the v3 release post for more details.

Are you interested on buying the new zynthian kit v4? Just click the button and visit the …


Enjoy!

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