We’ve seen a lot of the Monome, a USB based controller often used as a sampler, here at Hack a Day. This is one of the more creative hacks. [brothernigel] took a Monome 40h kit and fit it inside the case of a vintage radio. The faceplate was a custom order to fit his purposes and incorporates the original radio frequency display. The USB port was well placed in the side of the wooden housing. For extra “soul”, pen and ink art adorns the insides. His work log gallery takes you through the process from start to finish.
We never noticed before, but the Monome makes a great vintage-looking-electronics project. All the lighted buttons are straight out of a ’60s military command center.
The monome was spotted being used in a performance by Imogen Heap on Late Night with David Letterman. Imogen uses the monome 256 model connected to a laptop sitting on the piano. In her performance she uses a combination of live samples and pre-recorded loops proving how great this product is in the hands of an accomplished artist.
Although not identified by name (or function), Letterman does notice the monome at the end of the performance. To see this kind of exposure for an innovative open source product is wonderful. Check out the Letterman clip as well as a monome bonus after the break. Continue reading “Monome Mainstream: Performance On Letterman”
Create Digital Music has a great post on [Luca De Rosso]’s OTTO. Built as part of his masters’ thesis, it’s a unique tangible music interface. You load a sample into the software which displays it on the instrument surface. The user can then manipulate the sample using various hardware inputs while watching the LED representation. The device uses just one Arduino for the display and inputs. It works with Max/MSP and is designed to give the performer only the information they truly need. You can find more pictures of the device on Flickr and a picture of the guts on CDM. Embedded below is the ‘Getting Started’ video that shows it in use.
Continue reading “OTTO, Beat Slicing Interface”
[Mike] really liked the thought of the Monome, especially the green aspect of their construction. He felt he could take it a step further. After 40 years of electronics tinkering, he had quite a spare parts box. He constructed his monome clone from stuff he just had laying around. All of his pieces were either rejected samples from his company or outdated parts destined for the trash bin. Great job [Mike]. If you are planning to build one and don’t have the buttons laying around, you can get a more typical monome look and feel by going with the sparkfun RGB pads, like we did back in March.
We touched on harmonic table MIDI controllers when [aris] was building one. [Ken Rushton] has one of C-Thru’s commercial keypads, the AXiS-49, and disassembled the device to show how it works. A PIC18F2450 microcontroller provides the USB interface and is connected to a dsPIC33FJ128GP310 digital signal controller which decodes the keypresses. The membrane buttons are made with two concentric graphite disks that touch gold contacts. The microcontroller measures the time between the two points contacting to determine the button velocity. monome button clones also use circular contact pads, but cannot calculate velocity because they only have one element.
SparkFun has been selling button pad parts for some time and we used them in our RGB door lock project. A excellent part, but you needed to implement your own interface to use the boards. SparkFun has just released two additional versions to make it easier on builders. The first is their Button Pad Controller USB. It has a 4×4 grid of buttons lit by RGB LEDs and a USB interface. This board can be expanded using the Button Pad Controller SPI. The SPI bus means it should be easy to add the button pad to embedded projects. This newest release puts you much closer to building your own RGB monome clone or other custom controller than ever before. The unit pictured above is their own project and they have no plans on selling anything like it.
At first glance, this may look like a retro styled monome, but it is actually quite different. Merging a Project64 key pad and a Voice Shield for Arduino, [Spikenzie] has made a sound effects box. Each button triggers a unique sound that is stored in the Voice Shield. Of coarse, it will be like a game of memory trying to remember what sound is where. You can see a demo video here.