Okay, that’s my hand. But my feet are eager to stomp on this, too.

People looked at me funny when I told them the most promising gear I saw at the NAMM show was a foot controller.

Well, not just any foot controller. First off, the design and build quality are really exceptional, even in the pre-production model, as you’d hope from a premium-priced Moog box. But it’s brains, not beauty, that set it apart. The MP- 201 is a controller that finally gives your feet some intelligence.

Here’s Amos from Moog Music taking us through the MP-201 — including a peek at what’s coming between now and when the unit ships in the spring. And Amos is worth listening to, as he’s one of the folks working on presets for the unit.


NAMM08: Moog Multi Pedal Preview from cdm tv on Vimeo.

My first impressions of why it’s cool:

It triggers anything: Simultaneous control voltage, MIDI, and MIDI over USB means you can easily control analog hardware, digital hardware, and computers.

It does a whole lot: Four momentary footswitches and a pedal may not seem like much, but the MP-201 can transmit four channels simultaneously, and perform tasks like tap tempo.

It has built-in LFO functions with user-programmed rate, amount, and different waveforms (triangle, square, sawtooth, ramp, and sample-and-hold)

It’s adjustable and programmable: calibrate the footswitch, edit the settings, do SysEx dumps, adjust the lights, etc.

There is more I want to know — sure, there’s a quad-channel mode, but does that mean the footswitches are relegated exclusively to turning channels off and on? And just how programmable is it in terms of MIDI? And it’s not cheap: US$500, its expected price, makes it more expensive than Roland and Yamaha foot controllers with more input.

On the other hand, think about this: the Moog foot pedal promises to be more compact, better built, better looking, more programmable, and more connected than any of its competitors. Even if you don’t have analog gear to take advantage of CV, that could make it appealing even as a laptop controller. And unlike most other foot controllers, it gives you lots of capability without having a giant piece of gear at your feet — the main problem with the stompbox-style competitors.

Moog hopes you will connect this to a row of Moogerfoogers, for a kind of pricey Moog Multi-Effects Suite — like an integrated software bundle, only, you know, in hardware. But I think it could appeal even to people with other analog gear.

I can’t wait for it to come out. It’s making me try to think of ways to acquire something with control voltage inputs. But even with just a laptop, if could be interesting.

  • dead_red_eyes

    Damn that's sexy.

  • http://www.proemland.com proem

    hmmm,…

    i've been looking for a foot controller.

    this just might be the one.

  • http://www.creativebump.com Myles de Bastion

    ZZZZZzzz…..

  • http://perhapsidid.wordpress.com kyleklip

    Neat interactions with the Moogerfoogers.

  • bliss

    Yep, this was the coolest piece that I've heard about from this years NAMM.

  • Motion

    Fantastic!…but I can't help think how wild this would be with another pedal on the left hand side for pedaling.

  • http://www.heatseeker.it motor

    If it's Moog the build quality it's good by definition, but I fear the display it's to small to be read on the stage at your feet; besides a lot of data processing could be directly done on the laptops, apart maybe the CV control.

    I prefer several pedals / switch, without reassigning the controls during the shows.

  • llamastorm

    I can't believe they didn't put in a second pedal, really. That would have been perfect.

  • http://celibacyclub.com celibacyclub

    "while your feet are controlling the universe"

    this actually looks much more interesting than i thought it might be.

  • http://www.andivax.com andi vax

    hmmm..

    behringer fcb1010 – 200$

    yamaha mfc10 – 300$

    if you like moog – you will buy moog.

    only for moog fans, i think.

  • http://jackit.sf.net/ Paul Davis

    other than the incredibly hard to grasp manual (at least for audio tech geeks like me), its really hard for me to imagine how to improve on the behringer fcb1010. not only that, its one of the few pieces of gear that behringer makes which is not a direct copy of someone else's design. live looping, DAW control, FX modulation … the thing is just fantastic! would i like a big extruded air-craft quality aluminum pedal? hell yeah. but i'll happily take the lower cost of the fcb1010 and spend the rest on ice cream, because the pedals i have (2 of them!) aren't breaking any time soon.

  • http://www.createdigitalmusic.com Peter Kirn

    Well, nothing against the Behringer or Yamaha pieces in this case, but I don't think there's a direct comparison. The larger pedalboards can actually be less convenient onstage. The build quality on this pedal is really superior — I've tried each of the units in question. (And the foot pedal is sort of the point.) And the Yamaha and Behringer units certainly don't have internal LFOs or control voltage outs or simultaneous four-channel sends … or even onboard USB. Even assuming you ignore the CV aspect, you could use a *single* Moog unit with some clever programming to control both MIDI and computer stuff at the same time, but doing different things — meaning effectively you DO have two units, in the space of one. (or up to four, if you really make use of the channel sends)

    That's not to say the Behringers and Yamahas won't work out for some people. But clearly there's an application of the Moog that goes beyond the others.

    I'll reserve my final judgment until I have a finished, non-prototype unit to play around with, but that at least has the potential of being improvement. I'd buy it with or without a Moog logo if it can deliver. (and it really does feel a whole lot better.)

    Yeah, if you've got a pedalboard already, you're probably going to keep that. But if you haven't bought one, I would try to avoid buying one before April, at least to give this a shot. And foot control is the last place I expected to see innovation. That alone is good news.

  • SLEW

    haha

  • teej

    damn, this would be a badass buddy for my Odyssey MK1

    boner!

  • steve codling

    I agree with Paul and Peter… I love my Behringer (although the manual is hideous and without the user group I would never have even understood how to use the thing) in my studio, but I'm not sure I'd feel comfortable onstage with it… Moog's build quality and the though that's gone into it is clearly superior, but for my little home studio to control software and trigger samples and change patches, the behringer is awesome!!!!

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