Piano's Silhouette MP3 player concept
Designer Jia Peng has proposed a roll-out, 48-key piano keyboard be incorporated into his Piano's Silhouette MP3 player
So what can you do these days to make the humble MP3 player a little more interesting? Surely just about every design variation imaginable has been tried. Well, not quite. Designer Jia Peng has proposed a whole new level of player interaction by including a roll-out, 48-key piano keyboard in his Piano's Silhouette MP3 player concept.
It may be a very niche market, but there have got to be some budding pianists out there who would like the convenience of carrying around a portable piano keyboard that neatly tucks away inside an MP3 player, haven't there? Of course the roll-out soft plastic piano keyboard has been around for a while now, but it's still an entertaining party piece as well as a seriously portable learning aid for a would-be Pete Johnson, Oscar Peterson or Maria Yudina.
Incorporating such a piano into a 4.72 x 1.77 MP3 player not only gives users some ivory-tickling tactile interaction in the privacy of their own earphones, but also allows them to enjoy some inspiration tunes too, and possibly even audio piano lessons. Being a concept piece of course, the designer hasn't gone into much detail about things like storage capacity and supported file formats, but there is a bright LCD screen, controls for playback and track selection, an audio jack at one end and a mini-USB at the other.
Personally, I've always wanted to learn piano, so I'd be interested in giving this a whirl. Its rather large dimensions, however, would make it a touch less portable than, say, an iPod Nano.
Via Yanko Design
About the Author
While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.
All articles by Paul Ridden
It\'s a good idea, except roll-up keyboards have limitations that can be really annoying. (You have to have a flat surface, keys can go bad, wires can be damaged, not much tactile feedback, etc) A better idea perhaps, would be to have an MP3 player with maybe an octave or two of narrow, plastic, normal keyboard keys. I personally (as a piano player) would buy the latter, but probably not the former, because you could use it while being in any position (standing, sitting, jogging), you could use it as you would a thumb keyboard, and it could fit in your pocket easier. Basically, it would be a harmonica-sized piano.
Also, it would be cool to be able to use sound files on the MP3 player as piano samples (so you could use your own voice, or any other sound file as the sound the keys make).
I think it would be neat to have a choice of listening to music or play/practice ones piano.
Over 160,000 people receive our email newsletter
See the stories that matter in your inbox every morning