Euro-Play - Fix und Foxi Musik Band, Music Band (monophonic squarewave toy keyboard with blip rhythms)

Fix und Foxi Musik Band

This simple red toy keyboard made by Euro-Play has monophonic squarewave piano sound and very weird and broken sounding blip rhythms. Unfortunately it reacts only on slow key presses, which prevents fast keyboard play. Also a cyan version of this instrument with pink sharp keys was made.

This one is an eBay picture; my specimen is missing the box and also the speaker grill here is re-drawn since it was invisible on the photo.

main features:

On the back of the instrument is a sticker with "BRAND: EURO-PLAY", "Made in China" and "ART NO.: 69/00530". The case was apparently initially designed for a more complex instrument, because under the "Fix&Foxi" comic strip sticker are unpunched outlines for buttons and knobs visible, those this keyboard doesn't have. Also on the back is an unused area for headphone or mains adapter jacks.


The 2 lowest keys are fake; the leftmost white key steps through the 4 rhythm speeds and the leftmost black key through 3 rhythms and rhythm off. To the right next to the keyboard stands "DYNAMIC MUSIC" and a sort-of morse code table explaining the 3 available rhythms. But the rhythms sound not like morse code (short, long beeps) but consist of 2 squarewave blips (low & high, 1 octave distance) and thus resemble much the ball blip noises of a historical TV-Tennis (Pong imitation) videogame with "AY-3-8500" CPU.

This instrument sounds so bizarre - its almost absurd. Its squarewave piano sound turns the louder, the faster a single key trill is played (likely by the increasing envelope capacitor charge). Unfortunately only a single key can be trilled fast because the CPU polls the keyboard with only about 8 Hz, which makes fast keyboard play impossible because it ignores too fast key presses. This extremely limits playability. After the decay phase the note ends with a popping noise and particularly with low batteries all notes howl a little (falling pitch envelope). Also the rhythm blips start with a pop noise. When rhythm is on, during a note the rhythm fades quieter and slower and its "pop" component disappears, thus only quiet blips remain until the note has reached its end. During pauses the rhythm returns to full volume.

Music Band

(eBay photo of my specimen)

This simple Euro-Play toy keyboard has only 12 flat keys (no sharps) but features the same sound and blip rhythm. Both seem to be the same hardware class.

A similar strange howling toy keyboard is the great Bontempi - Disney Band.

 removal of these screws voids warranty...    
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