Arcade16 - when music lover meets making spirit

Designed and developped in Hacedores Makerspace

Music & sound devices

Arcade16 is a beatbox for finger drumming. It is a squared box composed of 16 buttons connected to a MIDI Controller with an Arduino. You can connect it to your computer via USB to used it with electronic music software such as Ableton or Puredata. It gives anyone access to a custom and accessible music instrument.

Technologies used

Vinyl cutting Electronics Music & sound devices

Can you present your project?

“I am not a maker”. Despite my lack of making experience, Antonio Quirarte hired me to be part of the educational team. My musical talent, entrepreneurship and educator experience convinced him and he offered me a deal I couldn’t refuse : to teach workshops while learning making. I got on board because I was interested about the new educational approach offered by the space. However, my involvement increased when Antonio gave me the challenge to design attractive and easy workshop for children to make them produce their own musical instrument. I was specialized in electro music for the past years so it was the opportunity to make a low budget but professional beatbox, usually very expensive on the market.

How the workshop was useful for you?

It opened a new world to me. It gave me confidence and support to learn how to use machines and find solutions that fit my crazy ideas. I could rely on the team to help me acquired new knowledge and to develop my test & learn spirit. 6 months later, I met the wife of G Martell school director during a workshop organized in Hacedores makerspace. She hired me to become director of the school music makerspace.

What’s your greatest failure(s) & lesson(s) so far?

Managing my time to make was the most difficult part of the project. I had to accept that failing was part of the learning and making process. I didn’t want to spend weeks to achieve my project. I rather prefer playing music. Eventually, it took me 2 years and I made 100 versions to achieve it. My mindset changed when I took advantage of the failures by documenting and sharing what I learnt with the community. Feedbacks of makers and musicians gave me the willing to carry on and it made me realize the path taken. Now, it is my turn to help students and musician to make their ideas becoming true.

What’s the project’s greatest success so far?

Through this project, I start making students and teachers aware of a new educational approach. I show them the opportunities of open source and I try to make them reinvent their way of learning and playing music. Make them start making and sharing knowledge was not easy. I used my social skills and passion to build a maker community and to create the trigger by demonstration and adaptation. They progressively come to my course to build or repair their instrument or to the makerspace to get advices. This is a my greatest success.

What’s your vision for the project & next steps?

After 2 years, I just shared all the documentation and tutorial of the project online. My objective is to make it accessible to everyone. I want to put more online open source tutorials and documentation for making new music instruments. I would like to spend more quality time to help the musician community by focusing on specific questions and to need to save time for playing music 🙂

How can anyone interested can contribute to the project?

Don’t hesitate to give me feedback and to contribute to the open source documentation. I need passionate people to help me develop community wise about maker mouvement and music. Small donation or material, such as Arduino (even broken) are also appreciated.

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