Move over, Nintendo DS. You may win on quantity and you certainly have some interesting apps, but when it comes to hardcore, deep apps with rich sounds and capabilities, the PSP has turned into a mobile music creation powerhouse. And if you think mobile music production is a novelty or a toy or only for chipmusic fans, take a good long look at PSPSEQ and Little Piggy. These are serious, grown-up trackers that can put your current computer workstation to shame. (And yes, when it comes to accurate timing, I’m afraid that includes the app-of-the-week Ableton Live.)
Two big developments: a Little Piggy port (video above) and growing PSPSEQ documentation (video playlist below).
This Little Piggy Went to PSP
“Little Piggy”, aka LGPT, aka Little GP Tracker (which awesomely also stands for Laser Gated and Pumped Thyristor) is making its way to the PSP. Originally built for the Linux GamePark platform, creator nostromo got this LSDJ-inspired tracker working in basic form on PSP in just a weekend and an evening.
Grab the beta at:
LGPT is inspired by LSDJ on the Game Boy, but brings some twists of its own – and is nice and easy to see on a bright PSP screen. Now, LSDJ still has its place, thanks to the unique sound of the chip on the vintage Game Boy and the absurd cheapness of those machines, but it’s still good news.
PSPSEQ is already mature, but it tends to baffle newcomers. And creator Ethan Bordeaux has enough DSP technique in his head that you really want to know every little detail of the software he created. He’s working on copious tutorials. They already cover basic workflow, though the real gems should be once he gets into synth editing – PSPSEQ’s synthesis capabilities can rival a lot of desktop soft synths, and you can get into tweaking sounds instantly – no messy, gimicky UI getting in your way.
I’ve got a playlist below. I’m also working on a more compact guide to getting you up and running quickly – once I digest all the work Ethan has already done.
Updated: Watch on your PSP. Ethan sends along a video with direct-downloadable tutorial videos that should play nicely on a PSP. (Ethan recommends the homebrew video player PSPlayer, or you can try a conversion utility like the free PSP Player. Of course, you can’t watch and use at the same time, so you may wind up loading these elsewhere.)
http://dspmusic.org/psp/pspseq301_videos/ [easy on that link – only download if you really need it; i.e., have a PSP and PSPSEQ running on it!]
Both apps are free, though you will need a hacked PSP as with any PSP homebrew. I’ll keep dreaming of officially-sanctioned online distribution, in the meantime.
Next stop: we need a hardware MIDI hack for the PSP.