How often have you said to yourself “If only there was some way I could use a small stylus to create odd rap beats using samples from known beatboxers along with with the sounds of drum and bass?” If you’re like me, every day. Thankfully, there’s the Stylophone Beatbox.
First, a sample of what you can really do with this thing if you try.
Now that your mind has been well and fully blown, let’s talk about the product itself. Invented in 1967 by Brian Jarvis, the original Stylophone was an early analog electronic keyboard. You could slide a stylus over a set of metallic leads therby creating the sounds you may have heard on “Space Oddity” by David Bowie and “Pocket Calculator” by Kraftwerk. So far so good.
Well, the Beatbox is slightly different. This $25 device has a circular pad and black plastic stylus. You tap individiual spots on the pad to trigger sounds and there are three voices – one a set of beatboxes by MC Zani and then a drum voice and a bass note voice. You can change the pitch with a dial on the bottom and there is an MP3-line-in and a headphone/line out. You can record and play back beats by tapping one of the two spots on the device.
The Beatbox has an internal speaker but it sounds much better through the line out. Sadly, I didn’t have the wherewithal to record it directly so here’s my out attempts at making some hot beatz.
You obviously need to know how to hold a beat to make this thing do anything at all, so that’s one consideration. Otherwise it’s a fun little toy for budding hip hop producers and those who which to cause a huge racket in their homes or offices.