The right midi controller

How an idea is born?

When I started producing music in my home studio all I had was an old computer and a headphone set. After purchasing a new computer, two active monitors and a simple midi keyboard, I noticed something was missing. The attachment to my computer’s mouse and keyboard – was too demanding. I couldn’t do all the fine-tuning maneuvers with more than one parameter at once. I felt frustrated.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step

Lao Tzu

Research

With the right set in my mind, I started online research. The goal was to find a simple yet functional midi-controller, which will allow me to accomplish simple tasks. Tasks such as applying a high-pass filter, controlling the sends or just use it as a mixer control. It should accomplish all with an ease of use and most important – simultaneously.

I created a wish list of all the features this controller should have:

  1. 32 Knobs – At first I thought about 16 knobs, but I guess 32 would be twice the fun. More possibilities in the reach of a finger (or two).
  2. Compact package – As for my weapon of choice when talking about musical instruments and electronic instruments, in particular, I prefer it to be minimal, clean of distractions and neat. I also would like to pack my gear quickly with no special box for each instrument. Well, my guitar is a big exception.
  3. Affordable – Just didn’t feel like spending my well-earned money. Just in case I wanted to purchase two.

Disappointment

I found some which looked promising but were much too expensive for what I am willing to pay. Some were just overwhelming with unnecessary functionalities or just were too big to carry in my backpack.

After digging deep in the DIY products, I’ve found similar projects which had been abandoned several years ago and as of today, are not for sale.

Enlightenment

So I’ve concluded to create my custom multi knobs midi-controller.

With my programming skills as a web developer, a decent soldering skill and an enormous amount of ambition, I was ready to take the journey of building a better, affordable, clean and usable multi-knob midi-controller.

This is the story of the N32B midi-controller.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *