Zynthian blamed for plagiarism?

Did you hear the rumours ?
According to a few tweets here and there, it appears that it is not impossible that Zynthian would be a counterfeit…
They say that, back in the 1960s, a similar machine was available, for children use…
Sure, it only had 2 encoders for control, no input-output, the screen was much larger, and its sound library was rather limited, but still…

This was called Telecran, in France, and Etch a Sketch other countries, and I remember I was lucky enough to have one…

I exhumed it from my parents attic, and here it is : Mon 1er Zynthian
And I confirm that the sound library was very poor…
You could have some basic percussion sound when hitting the control surface, and some maracas-like sound when shaking the machine, which was usually done while holding it upside-down…

To know more about this Zynthianosaur :

Ok… I know… But is today not April 1st ?


Oh this is a pretty wild co-incidence as I was working on this and was going to announce it today!


eh eh !!! good one !! :wink:
Excellent, should I say…
Looks very close to the original image I found and tweaked…

Did you make your drawing using the encoders ?


OK! I must confess that i’m working in a similar feature too. It’s a rare path cross, really …
The sketch feature i’m working on combine the encoders control with the FFT of the output using a complex AI algorithm.

In this photo you can see the result of a Jam session, where i was playing a bizarre version of the “Cow & Chicken” theme while my precious young daughter managed the encoders:

Interesting, don’t you think?



Well, As it’s post noon here in the UK I should confess I used Google Image Search to create the image and feh to display it on the zynth. April fool! :laughing:

I did get my son trying the encoders to draw a picture though :laughing:

1 Like

BTW, the tablecloth is a Xmas gift from @C0d3man :blush:



@Baggypants your post means that it would be possible to have Zynthian display images while we play ?
The harmonic grid of the song we are playing, for exemple ?
That would be great… even though the screen might be a little small fior a complete score… but simply the chord sequence would be fine…

1 Like

As well as for the original. Perfect circle, sun and house being two separate topological elements… :thinking:


1 Like

I was messing around with the UI this morning, trying to replace the record icon in the corner…
:face_with_monocle: :wink: :rofl:


Feature request: a menu option to send the sample directly to discourse. :rofl:

1 Like

I would be lying to say I hadn’t thought of this but it seemed a bit cheeky. . . . :smiley:


That really was a good one, and when I stopped laughing it got me thinking. Here’s a video of a PD patch that sort of reminds me of the Etch A Sketch. It’s running on Zynthian with RPI4. Also works on a RPI3 but it has sluggish reaction to the controls. I did have to install the ‘else’ external on the zynthian to make this run. You can not draw objects, but you can change the shape, size and behavior of the butterfly and the mushrooms. This patch was created a few years back by Jerobeam Fenderson. Once I put on some finishing touches for the Zynthian I will post the patch.

The Zynthian really is a “Swiss Army Knife”


Here’s the patch as promised. You will probably need to install the ‘else’ externals on the zynthian to make the images render properly. The Puredata Load Meter shows around 45% cpu load when this patch is running on the RPI4. This could cause some synth layers to perform poorly if they are running at the same time. This patch will output audio, but video and audio from this patch don’t play together very well on the RPI. There is a volume control to allow you to turn the sound down to zero. This patch when running on a Zynthian is intended to be a visual toy rather than a musical tool. Credit for this patch goes to it’s creator Jerobeam Fenderson. For further info see the readme file included in the zip file. All I did was add controls and make a few modifications to make it work on the Zynthian. I also shortened the original name to Butterfly.

Butterfly.zip (15.9 KB)


This thread is a perfect example of what I love about this community and project: it started off as a prank thread and appears to be leading to feature enhancements! Well done! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: :gift_heart:


Ah ah ah ah !!! Excellent !!
Honnestly, when I read the title, I was almost panicking, thinking that somebody was trolling the forum :rofl: