Introduction to “EntroPea” – arduino-based MIDI instrument/expression controller…

Sorry about the un-polished nature of this video, I was partway through editing it when my hard drive died and i’ve not been able to restore the backups yet, so imperfect as it is, I thought I’d just upload it as is otherwise I’d probably end up doing nothing. This is new a MIDI instrument/expression controller I built called “EntroPea” (aka the electric hedgehog) which I’ve been working on to control various vintage synths using ultrasound sensors measuring distance, and arm-waving, piped through to midi signals.

I love my Behringer TD3 and Roland TB-303 but they both require you to prepare patterns before you can play, there’s no on-the-fly editing and I find that can mean you just keep doing the same stuff over and over or have to be very organised with your patterns, which I am not.

The Korg EA1 lets you edit on the fly but has no accent/velocity and that’s something i use a lot so isn’t much use really. bababaBOWbababaBOW – gotta have the accents.

The Futureretro 777 is the only one which lets you edit patterns on the fly (and does it extremely well) but it has so many knobs that you’re basically starting from scratch every time anyway sound-wise. Coming back to a sound isn’t really a thing on that because the range of sounds it can make is so huge and bizzarre.

Anyway – re this device, I wanted something where you could (somewhat) intuitively throw together a short pattern of a few bars (to sample) or to use as an expressionate lead, either on its own/layered up with delays/fx for chilled music, or perhaps over another 303 or something like the futureretro 777 so then you’d get the mix of patterns plus random extra wibbly lead bits.

Continue reading “Introduction to “EntroPea” – arduino-based MIDI instrument/expression controller…”