NAMM 2018 first look video: The Blipblox makes synthesis child’s play, but could keep you entertained as well

NAMM 2018: Playtime Engineering’s Blipblox could well be that rare thing - a child-friendly electronic instrument that actually feels like a proper synth. In fact, although you might buy it for your kids, you may end up playing with it yourself.

The Blipblox definitely has a ‘my first synth’ appearance: there are colourful knobs and buttons; the plastic casing is designed to be durable and splash resistant; and a multi-colour LED light show is synced to the music. However, it features a proprietary algorithm that enables you to synthesize unique waveforms, so there’s a real sound design element to this, too, and it’s designed to encourage experimentation.

Spec-wise, there are eight ‘unique oscillator modulation schemes’, a low-pass filter, two EGs, two LFOs and a 3-in/3-out modulation matrix. You can switch to Performance mode when you want to do some ‘proper’ music production, and there’s even a MIDI input for a keyboard.  

That said, even young kids should enjoy the Blipblox. There’s a built-in sequencer with hundreds of pre-loaded melodies, and an integrated drum machine. Other features include a battery power option, a built-in speaker and an audio output.

The Blipblox will be making its debut at the NAMM Show, and we took the opportunity to test it out. A price and release date are to be confirmed, but you can sign up for updates on the Playtime Engineering website.

Check out our constantly updated NAMM hub for more news and on-the-spot video from Anaheim

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.