We are proud of announcing the arrival of the long-awaited Zynthian Kit V5, the latest creation from ZynthianLabs.
It’s been a long journey and certainly i could tell a good story about the development of V5, its roots, epiphanies, setbacks and sorrows, but i better leave this for a next entry and put the focus in the device itself, the V5.
We could say that the V5 is more of the same thing, but it doesn’t sound very appetizing, right? Although it’s not false at all: more design, more display, more buttons, more connectivity, more power, more usability, more quality, more integration. More can be really much more.
We strongly recommend you to download and burn the new SD image. Trying to upgrade from previous stable versions is a long and error prone process so we have decided to block it to avoid people’s complains. Old stable versions can’t be upgraded!
Regarding changes, the biggest one is the new mixer screen that totally replaces the old layer list screen, but the list of improvements and fixes is huge. These are the more important ones:
We just released a new version of the zynaptik module:
and this time it comes in 3 flavours:
MIDI: 3 x MIDI ports (IN/THRU/OUT). Nothing more. It’s the right choice for people buying v4 kits that already include the Zynscreen display and don’t need the extended options.
Standard: adds 16 x GPIO (MCP23017) and include 4 x JST-SH connectors for connecting the official v4 controllers (encoders with switches). With this, now you can build your custom zynthian using v4 parts and the display you like more. The 40 pin “zynaptik” connector is also there, 100% compatible with versions 1 & 2, so you can use the GPIO ports as you like: connecting the zynface module, adding custom switches, etc.
Extended: adds 4 x analog inputs (ADS1115) & 4 x analog outputs (MCP4728) that can be used for CV/Gate, etc. The “extended” version is similar to the older zynaptik-2 module, but adding 4 x JST-SH connectors for the encoders.
I’m really proud to present the new Kit V3, a big step forward for the Zynthian project because of several reasons:
Pre-built: It’s completely pre-built using SMD technology, so you don’t need to solder anything. Just plug the wires and tighten the screws.
Zynscreen: The new official display has been specially designed for zynthian and integrates the controller interface, what simplify the assembling process.
Zynaptik: The new zynaptik circuit integrates the 3 standard MIDI ports (IN/OUT/THRU) and some new optional features.
Audio Input: The Hifiberry DAC+ ADC is the new official soundcard and integrates audio input, allowing to use zynthian as a powerful FX processor or stompbox.
We have a dream. We want to empower musicians with upgradable and easy-to-maintain machines that can be used on stage and studio. Open machines that can be used for “normal” tasks, as playing and composing, but also can be extended and hacked for going beyond that, for exploring new spaces.
WARNING:HifiBerry as recently changed the specification for the DAC+ADC. It seems that the balanced input is not working as expected and it’s been removed from the specs. The new HifiBerry DAC+ADC PRO includes a true balanced input among many other improvements.
We are very proud to present the Zynthian Kit V2+, the new official flagship, featuring the amazing Hifiberry DAC+ADC as soundcard.
As you may note, the “ADC” (Analog/Digital Converter) in the soundcard’s name announces the difference: the new official kit now has audio input and yes, this makes a big difference!
A few months ago, we started the integration of a new engine in zynthian. This time it was something special as it was the first zynthian engine integrated by somebody else (Mr. Holger Wirtz, aka @C0d3man) and it wasn’t a free software engine, but a commercial product, with a privative license. Somebody could think that this is not well aligned with the spirit of zynthian project, so … why to do it?
I’ve been working in a new engine that allows to launch LV2-plugins as standalone layers. For doing that, i’ve used (and extended!) Jalv, from David Robillard, one of the creators of LV2 plugin specification. In his words:
“Jalv is a simple but fully featured LV2 host for Jack. It runs LV2 plugins and exposes their ports as Jack ports, essentially making any LV2 plugin function as a Jack application.”
Summer is a relaxed period and i love to dedicate some time to mind-expanding tasks. Integrating Aeolus, a “pipe organ emulator that should be good enough to make an organist enjoy playing it”, has been a very pleasant task and have given to me the oportunity of learning a little bit about these amazing machines that Pipe Organs are and its history. And of course, it’s a very good add for Zynthian 😉