DIY mini-mellotron sampling keyboard

Music Technology

Gijs Gieskes’ Motor Keys instrument produces some beautiful sounds. Reminiscent of the legendary Mellotron tape sampling keyboard, the project uses the popular ATMega168 chip and a modest part count. PCB image and source code is available on Gijs’ site. [via Synthtopia]

For a similar project using multiple cassette players, check out Bre and Eric’s walkman mellotron –

Make a mellotron out of walkmans – Weekend Projects Podcast

6 thoughts on “DIY mini-mellotron sampling keyboard

  1. borgie says:

    What a great idea! I’m going to pick up a few old Walkmans at the flea market next time I’m there.

    I’m no EE, but I think the schematic for the Arduino-controlled circuit (2:57 in the vid) is incorrect. The Arduino should be connected to the base of the NPN transistor, not the collector like the schematic shows. Also, the base shouldn’t be connected to ground, just the Ardy. Right? Or am I missing something here?

  2. Collin Cunningham says:

    @borgie – off the top of my head, I’d agree. I haven’t made one my self yet tho so can’t say if Bre and Eric were up to any sneaky techniques

  3. davydka says:

    I was making some tape loops like this, and I found that the erase head causes a little gap between when you start and stop recording. Has anyone found a way around this? Can you just rip out the erase head?

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