DIY MPC: User Builds the Controller MOTU’s BPM Drum Sampler Forgot

David Pogue made the immensely-successful Missing Manual book series in order to fill in for the manual that should have been included with software. But an impassioned fan of MOTU’s BPM drum sampler went further than that – a lot further. Simon (ssp/plastikaudio) has constructed an entire hardware controller for BPM. It gives MOTU’s software tangible form, with more than a little nod to the classic Akai samplers and Roger Linn. The form factor is oversized and roomy, with big knobs and faders and pads you can reach out and grab – no tiny hands or mice required. Now, naturally, …

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Colorful, Touchable, Futuristic DIY MIDI Controller, with Details: Station

Ander sends us his creation, “Station,” a brilliant-looking MIDI controller built on the ucapps.de hardware platform. It could easily have qualified for the kinds of designs in the dreams competition – except he went ahead and made it. He filled it in with RGB LEDs, touch pads, and new SMD-based hardware. The impact of the colored LEDs is something that provides some of the visual feedback of a touchscreen, but with real, tactile control and the satisfaction of using something physical. I challenge the iPad running TouchOSC (or Lemur, or anything else) to a smackdown with this gorgeous beast. Even …

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DIY Compact Music Workstations: Magnets, Eee, x0xb0x, Recycling

Very often, computers and music gear greedily consume whole corners of the room. Here’s a tidy alternative, modest in space consumption as well as in cost. So, what’s so wonderful about DIY creations by our friend Sasa Djuric (aka fibra)? It isn’t just that his stands are recycled from monitor stand parts. It’s not just because the free ReBirth for Windows and an Asus netbook make for a wonderfully affordable computer music station. It’s not even that his cases for the x0xb0x 303 clone and a MIDIbox project are beautifully executed, or that magnets on the stands more effectively support …

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A Dreamy Prototype for Ableton Live Control Finally Mimics UI

Ableton Live controllers are suddenly everywhere, in commercial products and DIY creations. But an in-progress prototype being designed by Serbia-based creator Sasa Djuric, found on the CDM Flickr pool, goes the extra distance to integrate more effectively with the software. The hardware looks more like the on-screen UI, for starters – an elusive objective for many controllers. And by working with the Mackie Control protocol, Sasa is able to make communication between hardware and software fully bi-directional, so the controller gives you essential feedback. There’s even a facility for scratching. The design is based on the popular MIDIbox platform. Sasa …

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Geek Gawking: An Opticon Podcast and a Plogue Maestro

Chris Randall of Analog Industries (and, of course, Audio Damage) is on a roll in his latest around the Interwebs roundup. Not to steal your post here, Chris, but on the off chance someone missed this, he nets both: 1. A podcast episode with music made entirely on the Optigan, Mattel’s bizarre “optical organ” of the 70s. (See Optigan.com for more on that.) 2. Stefan Goodchild’s blog, aka “Stabilizer”, who’s on Peter Gabriel’s multimedia team (nice work if you can get it), and — in addition to having lots of wonderful goodies built in Mac/Windows music patching software Plogue Bidule, …

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