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littleBits Electronics Synth Kit Review

Our public library has a bunch of kid electronic projects that they loan out, so recently I got my hands on the littleBits Electronics Synth Kit.

As a kit, it was very well built and surprisingly easy to figure out — I actually worked through all the exercises in the book during Alexander’s nap time, which says a lot about the usability and accessibility of the kit and its accompanying pamphlet.

As it stands, the kit itself comes with several modules which are nicely packaged:

kit1

After reading the instruction guide, I was able to quickly make a working keyboard synthesizer — there was an sheet music score corresponding to ‘Mary Had a Little Land’, which I successfully completed:

kit2

After working through a few more filters and modules, the last module used a complex setup to create a full-fledged synthesizer with echos, filters, and mixed harmonies.

kit3

All in all, it was pretty cool to play with this kit and learn more about the synthesizer mechanics. However, I think the the replay value of this kit is relatively lacking, and don’t think I would use it again after working through all the exercises. I also think that it is pretty overpriced at $149, when similar Arudino kits are less than half that. While I personally didn’t think the kit was worth it, it did encourage me to perhaps check out Make Magazine and perhaps scratch a coding/robotics itch that has always been there. Cheers to more projects in the future!

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