New pocket-sized music machine: The GP32

Marc writes from Belgium: "I wanted to tell you about a project I am doing. It is still beta but it is functional and kind of a porta-musical breaktrough so :) I am currently developing a tracker for GP32, the open Korean console. It is inspired from a very famous gameboy tracker - lsdj - and provides an ultra portable sample based music notepad. Plans for the future include supporting other platforms (PSP,GP2x) and add midi support to transform it into a very tiny portable sequencer. The home page for the project is"
I'd never heard of the GP32, but here's a Kotaku report. You can pick them up on UK eBay for around £70-120.

It's not a new console, they came out in late 2002. I had a GP32 for ages, they are ace (though this music software wasn't around at the time, it could emulate LSDJ or Nanoloop.) They are really amazing little machines. I sold mine for the money and still regret it.

However, the same company Gamepark is bringing out a new handheld, hopefully next month, called GP2X (referred to in that quote). It has a dual CPU and runs on Linux, so it should be fairly interesting...
Great scoop, Tom!

You'll see still more of this soon, too, I think -- look for lots of new Linux-based phones, as well, even from the likes of Motorola.

This looks like a brilliant project, but I'd personally rather get something other than a tracker -- the point of LSDJ ultimately has more to do with the sound quality of the Game Boy chips than the interface. I'd like to see new experimental visual interfaces.

Er, better get working on my doctoral dissertation work then, eh?
peter, it's true that LSDJ gives you tighter control of the gameboy's sound chip than any other program, and it's true that it's based on tracker programs.

however, isn't your average tracker. It has a few unique attributes that set it apart:

- non-linear sequencing: users can DJ their patterns in a LIVE mode, something PC users weren't able to get their hands on until ableton hit the scene (yeah i know it could be worked out in other programs =)
- all editing (including pattern lengths, instrument settings, and channel muting) can be done while the sequencer is playing ... resulting in a program that feels more like an instrument than a tracker.
- thought has gone into the design and implementation on a handheld console. with only a d-pad and 4 buttons, a user can quickly perform any task quite quickly. i never fail to see protools/cubase users jaws drop when i lay down drum patterns with a quick series of key combos.

all in all i'd say LSDj very experimental/cutting edge! it's the best sequencer i've used, hands down ... on hardware (i've got a few dedicated sequencers), on a pc (i've tried the big boys and the weirdos), or anywhere!
This isn't all that striking. Take a look at Bhajis Loops and Microbe at Chocopoolp Software. They'll run fine on a Palm Zire 72, currently £115 at Argos. Also on the Zodiac if you got one before Tapwave went bust, though they don't use the enhanced sound chip.
this sound really really cool. I was checking out the lsdj stuff i googled up. it sounds like a lot of fun. sadly, the cartridge is out of production and hard to find. from there i found out about nanoloop, but it is out of pro too for the gb. hey Tom, how about a round up of pocket-sized music machines?
bhaji is cool, it's got a different paradigm--maybe easier for people who are used to cubase and who aren't looking for a DEEP live mode. it also lacks midi sequenceing ... i've talked to oliver who programs it about implementing some midi functionality and am almost done with the hardware for it, but he hasn't writen me back in a while.

i'm interested in them all ... portable music is so much fun! i got into lsdj out of frusteration with my yamaha qy10 sequencer =)
"hey Tom, how about a round up of pocket-sized music machines?"

Like this one?
Does anyone know where to find an lsdj cartridge?
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