Since you can now pick up a set of chumby guts without bothering with the standard casing, the real fun for the platform is in fashioning a unique housing for the internet-connected widget display. That can be as basic as the cardboard box the components come with, or you can go the route of one particular Etsy seller and put together a somewhat Steampunk-esque retro enclosure.
Called the Chumbophone, as far as we can tell the various brass horns, controls and other appendages are all decorative rather than functional. The only real controls are the power button, the front panel key and the chumby’s 3.5-inch 320 x 240 touchscreen, which is still enough to browse various web widgets, control music – either streaming or local – and do everything else that makes chumby so appealing.
Of course, custom cases don’t generally come cheap, and the Chumbophone is no different. Asking price is $375, while buying a bare-bones chumby kit of your own would regularly set you back $139. It’s up to you whether you reckon $236 is reasonable for all the wood, brass and hard-work that’s gone into making it.