It’s still anyone’s guess exactly what fruit parent technology maker Stantum may soon ship, but the JazzMutant Lemur touchscreen is getting a component update soon. Nat Lecaude points to a quiet MySpace post from JazzMutant with the details of a coming manufacturing change.

“…the next batch of Lemur will feature the latest generation of our multi-touch technology: better optical performances, higher precision, greater accuracy and responsiveness. It will be clearer and have brighter colors. We plan on launching the new Lemur in early October, and of course we will keep you updated as we get closer to launch date. We once again thank you for your patience, and look forward to sharing the excitement early October!”

It’s actually quite remarkable to me that JazzMutant remains alone in this market – and with Stantum focused on the mass market, that could be the case in the future, too. The issue is that doing multi-touch well still costs some money. There are basic implementations on computers that are cheaper, but that restricts you to a few computer models, because slapping multitouch overlays on displays remains pricey. So HP can get a few computers to the mass market, but not without cutting some corners and not even on that company’s full range. The iPhone has brilliant multi-touch control, but a mobile form factor makes this much easier.

I’ve got some videos demonstrating what’s possible with the Lemur coming soon, as well as some notes on how the software has evolved since I first saw it in its initial release. Even if you don’t want or can’t afford a Lemur, it’s a fascinating demonstration of interaction design and OSC, with lessons (inspiring and tough alike) for other interfaces.

Photo by Rainer Knobloch for CDM.

  • http://www.derrick-s.com Derrick S

    Who needs an expensive Lemur when you can get the big thing, Software Producers now just will have to make MultiTouch Versions of their Software/Sequenzers

    <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xO1rDezfzY&eurl=http%3A%2F%2 Fwww.technoboard.at%2Findex.php%3Fshowtopic%3D49353%26st%3D0&feature=player_embedded” target=”_blank”>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xO1rDezfzY&eu…” target=”_blank”>Fwww.technoboard.at%2Findex.php%3Fshowtopic%3D49353%26st%3D0&feature=player_embedded

    Touch Screen specifictaions:

    Touch technology: Optical Imaging (no special surface coatings)

    Touch method: Finger, gloved hand or any other pointer. Stylus minimum radius 2 mm

    Touch activation force: No pressure required

    Touch accuracy: ± 2 mm (for 40" screen) over 90% of the touch sensitive area, USB reported touch resolution 32767 x 32767

    Touch durability: Unlimited

    Touch response time: 9 ms to 22 ms depending on configuration, typical response time 14 ms

    Environment Operating temperature: 0°C to 55° Storage temperature: -25°C to 85°C

    Operating humidity: 10% to 90% RH, non-condensating Storage humidity: 10% to 90% RH, non-condensating

    Power supply 2nd gen: USB from powered hub, enumeration requests 350 mA

    Power supply 1st gen: 12v AC adaptor

    Calibration Four-point driverless calibration (requires no software), automatic landscape/portrait orientation detection.

    Mac OSX and Linux applications need to use the external calibration button to initiate calibration

    ESD Per EN 61000-4-2 1995: Level 4, contact discharge 8 kV, air discharge 15 kV on USB connector pins

    EMC EN55022, EN55024, CISPR 22, CISPR 24

    Interface USB 1.1 (full speed), HID compliant, plug-and-play compatible

    Operating systems Windows XP, 2000, Vista, Mac OSX, Linux (requires drivers)

    Connection options Standard: USB Series A plug and Neltron 4-way connector on separate flying leads. Includes a small external

    Software: No software required, works with Windows native HID mouse driver

    Touch+ software provides additional utilities

    Warranty 1 year parts and labour

    Video Display specifications:

    LCD Panel

    31.5" viewable wide color LCD TV

    Aspect Ratio 16:9 Wide Screen

    Brightness 500 cd/m2

    Contrast 2500:1

    Response Time 6 ms

    Viewing Angle 178 L/R, 178 Up/Down

    Backlight Lamp life > 50,000 hrs

    Video Functions

    De-interlace – 3D

    Noise Reducing Core Technology : 3D Digital

    Comb Filter, Digital Noise Reduction

    Aspect ratio : Normal, Wide, Zoom

    Gamma Fixed Gamma

    Lamp adjustment : Yes

    Picture mode : Custom / Standard / Mild / Vivid /

    Video adjustment : Contrast / Brightness /

    Sharpness / Saturation / Tint

    Color temp. adjust : Cool / Normal / Warm

    Picture Enhancement : Enhanced Color Management

    Connections Port

    HDMI 1

    VGA

    VGA input support :

    - Native resolution : 1920 x 1080

    - VGA Max. resolution : 1920 x 1080

    Power:

    Power Source Input : 90-264AVC, 50/60Hz, 2.4A max

    Power Consumption : 180W

    Preis 2.495 $

    1.754 €

    more infos: http://dawtouch.com/aboutus.aspx

  • http://www.beansandbacon.com franz

    Thats why they are not updating the dexter. hope they will not drop support for the "old" hardware

  • http://myspace.com/mrgasparov Pedro Mendes

    @Derrick

    Actually i think that that is a very wrong approach to the incorporation of touch/multitouch in a creative (i.e. music/video) working or performance environment. Interaction design plays a very big part in the usability of a novel interface and normal desktop apps are just NOT designed to be used with touchscreens… plus, they really take no advantage of the full capabilities of a multitouch interface. Even if the industry starts designing for touch, think about it performance wise: would you be limited to using a specific manufacturer platform? how would you change between various instruments/effects? and what about controlling more than one vst or external gear at a time?

    Furthermore, the separation of processing and control is key in modern day performance, since people use, more and more, very complex digital setups and they actually only use a couple of params from each sound source/effect.

    I honestly think you should rethink your product, and the lemur is a VERY good example of how to do it properly.

    Pedro.

  • JohnG

    I think the biggest advances in this area will come when we get cheap multi-touch screens. Sure it's great that one company can do hardware + software, but this technology won't even come close to reaching its potential until development is opened up to the masses.

  • http://www.tonvibration.de tonvibration

    @ Pedro: you´re so rigth!

    @ Derrick: you´re so wrong!

    First, I guess that thing will cost 3500 Dollar (see Video min 2:57), what is even more than a Lemur.

    Second, for the moment it is Singeltouch – but it will understand Windows7 "multi"touch, which is nothing more than Dualtouch (as you could read in their own FAQs http://dawtouch.com/support.aspx)

    So this by far is no match for a Lemur (lmao).

    I use a Lemur now for about 15 month. While I first unpacked my Lemur, I also thougth "damn, is it small" But after some time I figured out that it perfectly fits to the performance space of two hands (and of course you can switch to several interfaces).

    While playing with the Lemur I use up to 4 fingers quite regulary – so dual touch migth not be enough.

    And most of all – it is the possibility to create your own interfaces on the Lemur which makes it so great. Touchscreen without a nice, individual interface, that can react to actions, is like buying a Porsche and not driving it but watching it in the garage…

    BTW: I uploaded my first Max-sequencer for the Lemur yesterday http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qv0lo4Qrzzc

    (well, this is done in Max because of complexity, but all other modules you see on my videochannel are done on the Lemur and its editor only)

    I know (and understand), people say it is much money for a "midicontroller", but a Lemur is a lot more than a midicontroller….

  • newmiracle

    I know it's not likely, and I know that the Lemur is worth a high price- but I would love a price drop. This thing is so awesome, but at $2k it's just gear porn for me. The fodder of many a musical daydream.

    I mean, wow. 2000 duckets. Maybe keep the price but bundle in Max/MSP with it? Something, anything! But I suppose they're catering to a niche, and no one else has really stepped up to the plate. I too, thought that touch screen lappies were gonna make this thing obsolete. Hasn't really panned out yet.

    All I can hope for is the price of multitouch technology being cheaper knocking at least a few hundo off this bad boy. Then I can at least start considering to lie to myself about actually purchasing one, maybe, one day.

    OR

    Apple's 10 inch tablet comes out and someone makes a Lemur-killing app. Maybe? A man can dream…

  • http://www.derrick-s.com Derrick S

    Frist of all its NOT my Product :-)

    But i think this is the way to go for Producing and the next ntep Software Companys are going to make as they allready did for iPhone making Touch Software

    This Touch Widescreen LCD is one Step in the right direction to my opinion

  • matt

    if ever apple comes out with an 800$ tablet…

  • http://www.derrick-s.com Derrick S

    The point is it doesn´t matter which Company produces a Touchmonitor/screen and which size

    and you can use such a monitor for what ever software which supports touch, if its music, graphics, games….

    for my uses i would rather buy a big touchscreen like the above postet, or a laptop witch touchscreen for liveuse WHEN the Software is done

    imagine Ableton Live Touch, Cubase Touch, Logic Touch, Your Favourite Plugins Touch……

    it´s only a matter of time

  • Ernie Jackson

    But what about the "faulty screen panel bubble thingy replacement program?"

  • Mark

    Has anyone used the HP touchsmart to make music? I feel like they probably have enough sensitivity to be used with a live sequencer program or some DJ software..

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

    Well, you know CDM regularly covers other "touch" technology and specifically trends in commercial touchscreens. But for instance bazz's video assumes that you want to carry around a back-projected setup — *definitely* not always the case. So I still say, much to my surprise, four years later Lemur remains more or less alone in their category.

    I do like the ability to have a multitouch screen that can display whatever software you want, though. I really want to test those HPs for that reason. I'd be willing to sacrifice some performance, even, to get it…

  • apalomba

    I can't wait for the Apple Tablets to show up.

    That should take the wind out of Jazz Mutant's

    sail.

  • Jake

    I think that instead of rewritting current apps for multitouch, surely the solution would be to have some sort of controller app that runs in the foreground and outputs control messages to live for instance running in the background.

  • derrick

    shure could also be don with an update, but you know i guess you know how software companys nowadays are selling updates as full new versions…but thats a different story *g*

  • tobamai

    I agree with Jake in that there's little reason to make a specific and separate version of a software suite (like ableton live) just to support multitouch. It makes much more sense to just run a specialized interface as the front end for midi control. The bugs you'd introduce and the software development to support another version would sidetrack the entire suite and the changes that would have to be made to the suite's interface would be drastic (think of all the small precise controls you only occasionally use).

    I like the underlying idea of what Derrick is suggesting, buy a large touch screen and pair it with whatever software you like. But I would never consider using a suite's mouse interface with a touchscreen and interoperability really is the reason we have MIDI.

    Touchscreens might be the flavor of the month (year?) for digital musicians. They look really cool/high-tech/flashy and they have promising features, but they'll never entirely replace my control surface. I have an Elo mono-touch screen that I bought specifically to try touch interfaces. It's really cool to be able to build whatever interface you want, but the best reason to use one is that you can interact with controls that give you feedback (for example, faders dynamically labeled with FX parameter names) I have no doubt that a multi-touch screen would be a little cooler too.

    But there are some drawbacks that are often glazed over. First, I never realized how often I'll use a control without looking at it. I'll reach over and tweak a knob or hit a button without looking away from what I'm actually focused on. I know where it's at without looking but having something tactile lets me know I got it. Second, I'll lightly rest my finger on a button before I need to hit it in time, without sensing pressure a touchscreen doesn't accommodate this. Having something tactile is much more satisfying and intuitive to work with in most cases.

  • patchmein

    Multi-touch needs to be integrated into other hardware devices, rather than being a device onto itself, to really take off. That's when the technology might be seen less as a novelty or luxury interface and instead as a replacement for other tools we currently use but know we can use far better.

    As much as I want it to, the Lemur isn't going to replace my DAW controller, anytime soon. But integrate it into a Mackie or Euphonix controller (or better than their lame attempts thus far), and it'll get manageable functionality. I'd be all over it.

  • mfw

    <blockquote cite="But there are some drawbacks that are often glazed over. First, I never realized how often I’ll use a control without looking at it. I’ll reach over and tweak a knob or hit a button without looking away from what I’m actually focused on. I know where it’s at without looking but having something tactile lets me know I got it. Second, I’ll lightly rest my finger on a button before I need to hit it in time, without sensing pressure a touchscreen doesn’t accommodate this. Having something tactile is much more satisfying and intuitive to work with in most cases.">

    totally agree – multitouchscreens are great as performance interfaces for visual-feedback-oriented max/msp patches etc – stuff like leafcutter john's wonderful forester etc would be killer with mulitouchscreen – but when i see vids of people mixing with lemur faders etc – ???? why would you choose NOT to have the tactile feedback of real ones -? … horses for courses

    I remember seeing something a while back that had a biggish screen with real knobs seemingly poking right through it – in fact laid on top – so, assuming you program your virtual instrument/fx interfaces to correspond to the position of the knobs, you have the best of both worlds … i thought this was an interesting idea … can't seem to find it anywhere now … did i dream it ???

  • mfw

    oops – i think i screwed up the quoting ther – i mean i totally agree with tobamai's last para ! sorry

  • http://www.derrick-s.com Derrick S

    this one is also very interesting and shows how far you could go with a touchmonitor, it even has real encoders built in it

    The Dragon Midi Controller

    that´s what i call a porn-controller :-) wonder if it ever gets in production

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKSXPsLJ6f8

  • vanceg

    Just to save folks some speculation and time – It appears that the only change to the "new" Lemur will be a replacement part/version of the overlay which covers the screen. From the Jazz Mutant forum:

    JazzMutant’s groundbreaking products Lemur and Dexter have been in short supply over the past couple months, due to a combination of unprecedented success and a complex touch panel bubbling issue which limited our output capability.

    The company has decided not to compromise on quality. Despite assembly improvement and quality control enhancements, the last batch of touch panels have failed to meet our standards. As a result, we decided not to resume the production of the Lemur at the moment. In order to avoid this issue in the future, we are now completely redesigning the touch panel component of the Lemur.

    The upside of all this is that the next batch of Lemur will feature the latest generation of our multi-touch technology: better optical performances, higher precision, greater accuracy and responsiveness. It will be clearer and have brighter colors.

    We plan on launching the new multi-touch in October, and of course we will keep you updated as we get closer to launch date. We once again thank you for your patience, and look forward to sharing the excitement in October !

    and

    The size of the display remains the same. We're "only" talking about upgrading the touch-panel here, that is, the resistive matrix / plastic sheet on top of the display. This also involves upgrading or re-programming the related electronic components.

    This looks like good news for some Lemur owners and future Lemur owners…but not really grounds for wild speculation (though, I wouldn't want to discourage wild speculation!)

  • mfw

    yeah Derrick, thats exactly what i was talking about – the thing at 3.30 on ..

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKSXPsLJ6f8

    if something like that could be semi-standardised and plug makers were to build alternative virtual interfaces for that standard, then that would be a big jump forward from anything existing today … but seeing how hard it is to get any agreement on any kind of standards, i'm not hlding my breath

    thanks for the link Derrick, i was pretty sure that i hadn't hallucinated that …

  • mfw

    holding

  • Pedro Mendes

    Hi all!

    First of all sorry Derrick S for my emotional reply! I feel very strongly about this kind of thing because i work everyday designing apps for multitouch tables and walls.

    It's really interesting to see each persons thoughts on touch/multitouch interfaces. How opinions differ as to either it should be a dedicated interface or integrated with DAW, VSTs.

    I think stuff like steinberg's cubase controller app for iPhone is a really interesting step forward. It's not a replacement for their standard mouse interface, but it adds value and possibilities to an existing platform.

    And i really don't think that there is a need for specialized hardware device with proprietary software. Actually i've been using my own MIDI/OSC interface software for a while in my live setup, using a Gigabyte m912 netbook tablet as hardware. I also use my iPod touch with the amazing touchOSC. I think this is the way forward, but still, the lemur's software design is spot on, only a shame you have to buy their damned hardware.

    I have plans to start and open source Processing project for touch/multitouch control on midi/osc. I hope to get it up n running by the last quarter of 2009 (hope it's not too late) and i'm really interested in listening to everyone's opinion!

    Keep the brainstorm going!

  • Armando

    Peter,

    looking forward to the video! I was going to order one this weekend and to my shock found everyone back ordered. Talk about perfect timing! Thanks for the heads up!

  • http://www.tonvibration.de tonvibration

    Hey Pedro,

    nice idea with that kind of editor software for every/normal hardware. That is definitely needed. Those i-phone apps are cool (esp TouchOSC), but I wonder, that there is not much software for building controls on normal (single) touchscreens you migth get on ebay for a few hundert or less. (there is usine,
    http://createdigitalmusic.com/2008/10/08/modular-

    ,but thats the only one I know so far) This migth be intereting even now, as long as multitouch hardware is still expensive. So go for it, and drop me a line…

  • http://torley.com Torley

    There is… a kind of strange valley between very affordable, consumer touchscreens (like iPhone) and significantly more expensive, specialist models such as the Lemur. I haven't used the TouchOSC app but I've repeatedly heard "It's like a Lemur but much cheaper!" (Obligatory "It's not the same, but the allure remains.")

    As covered recently, with the USB mini-monitors and others becoming more accessible with multi-touch, it'll open up many more midrange options.

    I love it when at-one-time novelty and esoteric controllers become available to the masses. Or common controllers are engineered to do experimental stuff, like Wii hacking.

  • E.X.P

    @Torley

    the iphone is cheap because , a lot of em have been produced.

    if there were as lemurs as iphones produced , the lemur would have been cheaper. the more you produce , the cheaper you can negociate your product production. period

    now the iphone is less precise , smaller and not as tough as the lemur. I already broke one iphone using it as a controller.

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

    @EXP: Actually, it's not quite that simple. My understanding is that part of what makes iPhone unique is that it is able to employ a different touch method because of its size. So scale matters in terms of quantity, but so does physical size. It'll be interesting to see if the rumored Apple pad device surfaces, and what that does in terms of size/price. Certainly, I don't expect whatever that is to be alone.

  • GavinFAW

    Wacom have a really good touch screen on the way that is also pressure sensitive. I think 1 year more before it is released. Currently they are using the technolgy in their dj hardware and it is very responsive and accurate.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ Jeanne

    I just hope whoever writes these keeps wirtnig more!

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