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Create Music Instinctively with the Pocket-sized Electronic Instrument ScuffN

ScuffN

Music, how many ways can we create it? ScuffN is something we think you’ve always wanted to be able to do, but never knew was possible.  We’ve been working on this new electronic “instrument” for more than a year now and are extremely excited to be able to finally share it with you!

Moment of Inspiration

The idea for scuffN hit me one night as I was driving along listening to some music. I was really getting into the distortion and beats of a song when I realized that I had been subconsciously conducting the music. I had been moving my arm around as though I was spontaneously creating the music with my motions. Then I thought, “Wouldn’t it be cool if I could actually do that?”

Final Version, ear buds not included
Final Version, ear buds not included

How ScuffN Works

At the heart of scuffN is the powerful eight core Parallax Propeller chip, a tiny motion sensor that you wear, and a SD card to which you can load your audio samples (or just use the preloaded ones).  To play scuffN you just move the motion sensor in a particular direction that corresponds to an audio sample.  You can create and load your own custom audio samples after converting them to a .wav file.  (If you need help with converting files, a detailed set of instructions on how to do this using free software will be here on our website www.scuffN.com.) 

ScuffN: Augmented Musical Reality- Extended Demo & Explanation Video
ScuffN: Augmented Musical Reality- Extended Demo & Explanation Video

To further customize scuffN you can easily adjust the sensitivity of the motion sensor.  This is particularly useful if you’re using your head to play or you just don’t want to have to move your hand too much.  There is a button on the sensor that allows you to switch between set of audio files.  Each set contains 4 audio samples. 

What makes scuffN really interesting is that you can have more than one playing at the same time for an enhanced experience.  You could have a sensor on each hand and one on each foot (4 scuffNs) or any combination you can think of based on how many scuffNs you have.

Kickstarter and ScuffN

Our project is on Kickstarter to get enough backers to make 300 scuffNs, release them into the market, and find out what you will do with them. We believe scuffN is a unique new technology that people will enjoy and we are excited to see what kind of creative music you make with them. After developing several prototypes and completing extensive testing over the last year, we have the first consumer-ready version done. This version is smaller than the earlier prototypes and uses high quality, super flexible wire for the sensor.  Basically, it is smaller and easier to use.  Research and Development is finished for now, let the scuffN begin!

Manufacturing

We currently have the equipment and experience to manufacture and assemble all of the scuffNs in house.  The scuffN cases and sensor holders (such as rings or holders you can sew into clothing) will be manufactured on our shiny new MakerBot 3D printer. By producing them ourselves we’ll be able to deliver the highest quality product at the lowest prices with the fastest turnaround. 

Printing scuffN case lid on 3d printer
Printing scuffN case lid on 3d printer

Rewards

There are basically two types of rewards, 1) scuffNs that include an SD card and batteries, and 2) scuffNs that come without them.  We figured that some people already have their own SD cards and would rather save money by using those rather than buying another one.  An SD card that is 100MB or larger should have no problem holding the audio samples that you want to play. The SD cards included with option 1 (as listed above) will probably be 2GB or more just because it is hard to find ones that are smaller.

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

One potential challenge is the turnaround time of getting the rewards to backers by December. The risk is that a component might not be stocked in sufficient quantities at a supplier and we would have to wait for more of those components to be manufactured. We’ve mitigated this risk by using standard components and identified several alternate components that we could get from a wide variety of suppliers.

FAQ

  • ScuffN has a 3.5mm audio jack that you can use to plug in your headphones/earbuds/speakers. The audio jack is the same size as the iPhones, iPods, iPads, ect. ScuffN does not have a built in speaker.

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  • Each scuffN has one sensor.

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  • There’s a number of different ways that you can hear both/multiple scuffNs at the same time.

    The easiest is to plug each scuffN into a different speaker. I have a couple of old computer speakers that work great for this.

    If you want to be mobile while scuffN you could use two sets of earbuds and just put one in each ear.

    It the one video of my friend we have the left scuffN plugged into the left channel of a small audio recorder and the right scuffN plugged into the right channel of the recorder. His headphones are then plugged into the stereo output of the audio recorder. That’s how we recorded the sound for the video and how he was able to hear both at the same time. This method requires another piece of equipment (the audio recorder), but it has the added benefit of recording the music on-the-go.

    Lastly, if you have the audio equipment that allows for multi-channel input, you can just jack each one into it.

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  • No, but I think that would be one of the coolest things ever! Send us pictures or better yet a video and we’ll get you hooked up!

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    Thank You! You will receive regular backer updates and bragging rights that you believed in this revolutionary new musical instrument from the beginning!

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    Early Adopter Special! Receive one scuffN instrument, SD card with pre-loaded sound clips and batteries, so you can get scuffN right out of the box. (Please add $10 for International Shipping)

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    Basic Setup: Receive one scuffN instrument. SD card and batteries not included. Download the sound clips to your own SD card from our website for free. (Please add $10 for International Shipping)

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    Get scuffN right out of the box! Receive one scuffN instrument, SD card with pre-loaded sound clips, and batteries.(Please add $10 for International Shipping)

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    Dual Basic Setup: Receive two scuffN instruments. SD cards and batteries not included. Download the sound clips to your own SD cards from our website for free. (Please add $10 for International Shipping)

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    Dual Everything Setup: Get scuffN right out of the box (well, except for yourself)! Have a scuffN for each hand just like in the video. Receive two scuffN instruments, two SD cards with pre-loaded sound clips and batteries. (Please add $10 for International Shipping)

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    Holiday Bundle: Want to make sure everyone in the family gets scuffN together? Well, at least 4 of your favorite family members or friends can...This bundle includes 4 scuffN instruments, 4 SD cards with pre-loaded sound clips and batteries. (Please add $10 for International Shipping)

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- (30 days)