Enter computer hardware Nirvana with the Floppotron

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Prepare yourself, either to be amazed or to be horrified at what Paweł Zadrożniak has done to a scanner or two, a whole bunch of floppy drives, and some hard drives. The end result of this musical instrument, which Zadrożniak calls the Floppotron, is a computer-created cover version of one of grunge’s most iconic songs: Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit.

It’s really an impressive achievement, if you’re not the sort to be bothered by the clattering of a hard drive that is most definitely… dare we say, stuffed? We’ve dealt with enough dying computers to have PTSD flashbacks but convincing this collection of ageing computer hardware to coax out this particular tune is enough to make us forgive the Floppotron for the facial tics.

The Floppotron’s setup uses 64 floppy disc drives, 8 hard drives and 2 scanners to reproduce music. A microcontroller setup allows columns of 8 floppy drives to act as “…one voice with envelope simulation – the higher the volume, the more drives are playing” while the whole arrangement is controlled by an application written in Python 2.3. For a more complete rundown of what Zadrożniak’s creation entailed, hit up his website.

Source: Paweł Zadrożniak (YouTube)

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