Japan’s PikoPiko Factory heads to Kickstarter with its Sequential-inspired Profree-4 mini synth

Based on the original voice circuitry of the Sequential Prophet-5, in a battery-powered miniature form.

Open Source hardware Synthsizer Profree 4

Photo: PikoPiko Factory via Youtube

The open-source Prophet-inspired analogue polysynth Profree-4 now has a Kickstarter campaign.

The two-person instrument developer, PikoPiko Factory, have finally released the mini battery-powered Prophet 5 open source clone after first announcing its development in 2020.

The Profree-4 is an analogue polysynth based on the original voice circuitry of the Sequential Prophet-5. Using the voice circuitry of the famous machine, the new machine features a mini-keyboard, MIDI on-board, and built in speakers.

While there are numerous similarities between the Profree-4 and the Prophet 5, there are some differences. The Profree-4 boasts a 37-note keyboard, and can also be used as a Prophet keytar.

More information about the synth can be found in the video below:

PikoPiko’s development team, Barbara Asuka and engineer Synth-Senpai have teased the release for a couple of years, and have announced that “We will not keep the Profree-4 development results to ourselves. The technology of that great machine should be known and passed on to the world”

The need to share it throughout the world is clear through the Profree-4’s Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0. International licence.; it essentially means anyone can produce it and sell it.

Despite the excitement of the new release, PikoPiko has noted the challenges that the team are facing, regarding the global shortage of semiconductors due to the effects of the pandemic. They have stated that while there will be maximum effort to ensure all of the necessary parts are sources, there is no guarantee that they will be found, which might impact circuit design, and delays in delivery.

The PikoPiko Factory Profree-4 is available now for preorder on Kickstarter, or you can simply just support the project by buying a t-shirt.

You can get the PCB set for ¥100,000, the complete assembly kit for ¥700,000, or an assembled unit for ¥1.200.000 plus shipping and import taxes.

For more information, you can visit the product page on Kickstarter.com

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