Game Boy Drum Machine

You know how drummers tap desks, objects, and anything around them incessantly, often unaware of the fact that they’re doing it, until people get annoyed? Well, now you don’t need a drummer around: you can program a Game Boy to do the same thing.

Jowan Sebastian has built a brilliant, elegant application for Game Boys called kBANG. Wire up a Game Boy to other objects — like solenoids, simple mechanical devices that can perform a tapping action — and you’ve got a real-world drum machine. Enough glitchy beats: physical objects become percussion.

kBANG: Game Boy Drum Machine

Here it is in action:

If you want to try this yourself, he has posted a ROM, but you’ll be on your own building the interface.

Related:
music albums and synths on Game Boy, a tracker-style music app for Nintendo DS, and, very much along these lines, how to build a mechanical “sequencer” controlled by Game Boy.

Thanks to Pedro Marques for the heads-up!

  • http://www.chrispthompson.com Chris

    <blockquote cite="drummers tap desks, objects, and anything around them incessantly, often unaware of the fact that they’re doing it, until people get annoyed?">

    As I read this, I was drumming loudly with two fingers on my laptop, completely unaware that I was doing it. Sort of a revelation… no wonder my CD drive is busted!

    My mom used to like, literally kick me out of the volvo.

  • Michael Una

    I want to see this guy "play" a full drum kit with his game boy. That would be spectacular.