D1867G based keyboard hacks

modding the small keyboards to add functionality

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There are about 6 keyboard types that have the same chip. There's a separate line for the tones and one for the drums, before they meet in the mixer and get blasted through the speaker. It has an LCD controller, ADSR mode, works as a calculator..

The following keyboards feature the D1867G chip:

  • VL-Tone V1 (owning 2)
  • VL-Tone V10
  • PT-1 comes in 8 different colors, one is hot pink (owning a beige one :( )
  • PT-10 owning a red and a beige one
  • PT-12
  • PT-22 with two speakers
  • EP-10 'Muppet Babies'
  • CK-10 with integrated Radio

The Casio PT-10 is a cute little monophonic + drums keyboard with no headphone jack. It has a speaker and comes with the lovely drums that TRIO used in their famous "da-da-da" song.

I have one and will be careful to modify it in a most case-friendly way.

Step one: add a switch to the speaker and get the signal out on a 3.5mm socket. 

Step two: replace internal pitch knob and get the signal out.

The inspiration to look for the separate lines I got from this page. My board is different though, the chip is SMD and not through hole.

seems to be the same board here:

The Casio PT-10 uses the same chip as the more known Casio VL-Tone VL-1, it's the D1867G. This is also in some other keyboards, you can find more info here:

  • Repairing the LCD of a Casio VL-Tone VL-1

    davedarko07/25/2021 at 19:45 0 comments

    This is a super clickbaity title, since I don't have anything to show yet. But I will set my case of why I think it's doable. First off something weird that you might miss when taking it apart: the black cover has a polarising filter glued to it, which you need to see any change on the LCD. The cable that is connecting the PCB and the LCD will most likely not stick to your LCD anymore. In the picture below you can see the shadow thrown by the sticky glue that was supposed to hold the cable to the contacts on the LCD between the glue. There's a frame holding the display in place.

    With a bit of help by WD-40 you can sulk the glue and later remove the residue with a q-tip. The WD-40 needs to be removed as well, best to use some alcohol I guess. In the picture below you can see the pads on glass very nicely. Now you can't solder to these pads, but you might know that zebra silicone strips exist, that only conduct in one direction. 

    Down below you can see a piece of the cable that I've cut with some scissors. It has 29 tracks / wires and the display is grouped in segment triplets - so there are 3 x 26 = 78 segments on that LCD. Since these pins are also on any other Keyboard and there's a segment that blinks in the speed of the rhythm, this is of interest to people that want to modify their D1867G based keyboard.

    I've ordered five zebra strip with the length of 5cm for less than 10 Euros. With the right size, the help of some 3D printing and a small PCB design this should be fixable. PCB is designed and ordered.

  • need to work on the pinout of the chip

    davedarko07/17/2021 at 20:40 0 comments

    here's a good starting point in form of a video

  • single channels

    davedarko12/17/2020 at 21:41 0 comments

    The tone / notes are mixed with the drums together and amplified, put through the speaker. Before that you can grab them from pin 12 (voice) and 13(drums). There might be an envelope channel on pin 11 - at least that;s what was said in one of the very well produced "keen on keys" videos. 

  • Adding an octave switch

    davedarko12/17/2020 at 21:31 0 comments

    This is 3 pictures of the PCB of a VL-Tone VL-1 patched together to one. After a shoutout on twitter people were taking apart their VL-1s for me and took pictures, what a great thing! The main connections for the switch are on the bottom.

    The PT-10 that I own has the same chip in the same case, so I wanted to see if I can add something to the keyboard, that wasn't there before. Wait, did I hack something?

    Counting from the bottom left, pin 8, 9 and 10 are the octave switches, connected through a diode and a 3 way switch to the very last pin. You (sadly) have to cut where the unicorn is pointing to, but it's reversible if you really need to do that. 

    Next up should be tracing the ADSR switch, to get a new instrument out of it. At one point I need to see if I can connect an LED display to replace the LCD. 

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cuvtixo wrote 07/25/2021 at 19:53 point

Hi! This is kindof a big ask, but can you change the "keyboard" in the name to something more specific to musical instruments? Maybe the picture as well? This emoji-like horn and drums are too abstract, don't show up very well against the bright, saturated blues and greens of  the pcb, and anyways its relatively easy to make a keyboard make "drum" sounds (horn could be translated as "beep noise") Even the first sentence of the Description is ambiguous "There are about 6 keyboard types that have the same chip." I was wondering at that point if it referred to 6 modern Qwerty keyboards or Qwerty keyboard tech back through PChistory. After the realization that this is what I called "synthesizer" in the 80s, I was actually shocked to see "rubber domes" that are just like modern PC keyboards. Didn't know they made them that way! 

  Are you sure? yes | no

davedarko wrote 07/25/2021 at 21:37 point

Welcome to hackaday I guess. This project is an alive one, there will be several changes made in time or I might lose interest and never look at it again.

The chip inside the keyboard has two separate audio channels, a rhythm channel, hence the drums and a voice channel, hence the trumpet. The emojis where what I had on hand when "documenting" the pins at that time with my cellphone. I am planning to design a footprint for said chip and needed to mark my findings for the pinout.

I don't think I have ever seen a "musical" keyboard with mechanical switches though. So you did at least take something from this project then, although the confusion?

  Are you sure? yes | no

davedarko wrote 07/25/2021 at 22:00 point

I changed the picture, that should clear things up

  Are you sure? yes | no

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