Headless basic MOD-UI Zynthian


Just thought I’d tell you all about my experiments last night.

So I purchased a 4in-4out USB midi box to help organise my little darlings - I was using the Zynthian as a sort of USB midi-hub previously. Now, I wanted to offload the Midi routing so that any CPU/synth issues on the “voiced” Zynthian wouldn’t affect the overall Midi for the rest of the gang.

So, along with my midi box there’s a second Raspberry Pi with the Zynthian image. No encoders, no screen, no soundcard - just the pi USB’d into the midi box. The Pi is wireless, and using the snapshots I’ve set up a simple MOD-UI that starts up with all the midi ins/outs mapped at startup, and my midi USB controllers all going into the Pi.

It’s simple and effective, really nice being able to log on using the MOD-UI web tool, manage the midi patching, then just let the Pi midi router do it’s thing quietly in the background.

Great stuff!


Great setup, my friend :wink:
Please, send us some nice recordings when available … :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:


“TU QUOQUE, BRUTE, FILI MI!!” :rofl::rofl::rofl:


Dead right let’s have recordings or I will come round and explain my views on the future of zynthian and brexit …

And don’t think I wouldn’t. :roll_eyes:


:scream: :scream: :scream: :scream: :scream:


Well, under threat of nuking Oxfordshire from orbit (well, it is the only way to be sure) and a visit from Wyleu, I’ll see what I can do tonight… :rofl:


Wyleu recently seen consulting trainline for the Oxfordshire service . . . .



Ok, now I understand why you chose your avatar picture.


Ohhh!! Damn @wyleu!! Go out from me!!



Ok, so you might notice a lack of an actual Zynthian playing in this here little bloopy couple of bars…

I realised that to hook up the “voice zynthian” I now needed real DIN midi ports - which I hadn’t wired up because I was happy with the USB up until now.

So I had a look at the little optocoupler board I got, and while trying to figure out how I’d wire the thing up, I realised that the ones I got (817’s, I believe) can only do up to 4KHz, and I believe that’s way too low for the midi signal we’re doing, so I could’t wire up the midi connectors as I wanted to tonight.

BUT. I did play around with my Micromonsta, Axoloti, Atmegatron (currently flashed to a Duotron), and the Digitakt controlling the lot.

So, Axoloti doing a simple arpeggio, Micromonsta on the 2 note “chords”, the digitakt throwing some delayed noises for some rhythm, and the Duotron glitching out in there too.

I have an NDLR on it’s way, for chords and arpeggios. There’s probably much simpler and “normal” ways of setting up what I’m doing, and probably much more sensible ways, but, well, this is the rabbit hole (warren/kingdom/universe) I’ve fallen down into.

Remember to wave on your way down guys!


It’s an unfortunate modern trend, to categorize, but I suppose that’s the way we are in this decade. This sounds like Vangelis , which is high praise.
Do you try for long atmospheric sections and if so how do you start and stop the process? I’ve found that is often the hardest part of finding a good cerebral piece is deciding how to build to it and then how to exit it at the end without resorting to the inevitable fade?


In all honesty I’m only just getting to grips with putting stuff together - though I’ve had “ideas” in my head for a long, long time.

Most of the stuff I’ve been doing recently is just a couple of bars repeating, with not much in the name of progression or structure. That’s because the Digitakt (my main sequencer at the moment) doesn’t have a song mode, only “chained” bars that are lost on reboot.

It’s a great rhythm machine and sampler, but a track composer it is not.

I do have the Yamaha QY300 (which I’ve now upgraded with a decent backlit screen and USB floppy emulator (fnaar) - once I’m up to speed on programming that I think it will be the main sequencer, and should be able to control the digitakt through program/bank changes, and the rest through basic Midi.

I do also have a NDLR on it’s way, which will give me easier access to chords and arpeggios, I hope. Not entirely sure how that will fit into the midi network, but I see it as sitting inbetween the QY300 and the rest of the troupe, takingnotes/chords and mangling them for the boxes to perform.

It’s all learning/fun innit?

Here’s a bonus 5 minute track of me noodling with the (fantastic sounding) MicroMonsta and one of it’s arpeggio patches:


Yes anything I feel I’ve done that is vaguely successful as a piece has been driven by musical and emotional ideas rather than OOOh look new technology. . . .

In truth I tend to start with a guitar and tend to use synth’s et all for atmospheres and effects . . .


Hehehe, I’ve fallen down the “GAS” hole quite completely, and it’s a bit difficult (and always has been) for me to separate what I want vs what I need, and it’s even more difficult given that I don’t really know what my end goal is, other than to make noise!

I think I’ve got what I want for now in any case, and I’ll be very happy once the NDLR turns up too.

I’ve always been a guitar player too, been playing since I was 17-ish, but had a long hiatus in my early 30’s due to reasons. I have a nice little collection of electric/acoustic/bass and a travel-electric guitar, but they’ve not been seeing much use since I started on this electronic route. It’ll all get incorporated/used in the end…