πTAR

(THE KEYTAR CYBERDECK)

By Ralnarene

A Raspberry Pi build inside a Keytar case, hence the name πTar (pronounced pie-tar).

I started with a Rock Band 3 keytar controller at a thrift store, which seemed the perfect portable size.

After about a year of 3D modelling, 3D printing, sanding, painting, soldering, modifying the case, etc, I think I can finally say I've gotten it to a "completed" state. Here it is:  

First off, if it's a pewter-colored piece that isn't immediately identifiable, it's just a greeblie of some sort. The pi and the screen are located in that box at the top of the pi. The angled piece next to the box is the wiring interface, allowing the wires to pass into the case in a slightly more protected fashion.  To the right of that are the power switch and SD card reader.

On the far right end is a general interface dock. It includes a USB 3.0 hub, SD card reader, micro-SD card reader, and audio jacks in two different sizes. The larger audio jack is for use with a belt-amp that I use as the speaker (it's a keytar, after all). The nub in the lower left of the image is one of the connectors for the shoulder strap.

Taking up the majority of the real-estate on the πTar is a keyboard, situated where the original piano keyboard used to be.

The keyboard is slotted into a tray that folds out. There is a window latch on the far left end to hold the tray shut when needed, and a cog built into the design for grip to lift the tray out. The window latch always seems to surprise people.

The fold out tray also allows access to some of the guts of the πTar.

The system runs off of a power bank and some custom cabling to allow for all the electronics to work. The interior also acts as storage for some accessories such as some backup SD cards, a flash drive, stylus, and a charging cable for the power bank.  

Here's the back of the deck, stickered in rebellious fashion, in imitation of a lot of instrument cases I remember seeing in high school. I figured I could work some of my fandoms into this, mostly with a rebellious theme.

Regardless of the keytar theme, I think this is a form factor that would work pretty well for a Gibsonian cyberdeck. It's easy to carry and has plenty of connection points. 

You can find a more information regarding the build on my blog at:

https://technomancers-sanctum.blog/keytar-cyberdeck/