Embodme Erae Touch - now on kickstarter

This has some real potential, if the sensors are decent, and the LEDs can be scripted externally.

MOD EDIT: kickstarter launched, link below

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Very promising project indeed!

On first sight this looks like a 2x2 Morph with leds instead of overlays? Interesting, indeed! (4x1 would imho have been an even more awesome form factor! Depends what one wants to do with it of course)

It is today that the Erae Touch will be launched on Kickstarter :

If only this extra big version of the Roli Block could have the sensitivity of the Sensel Morph !

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maybe it does have it?

I really hope !
But it is hard to tell from the videos…

It seems to have less sensors per area (About 20000 sensors for Morph and about 1000 for the more than twice as big Touch). But if these sensors are precise and fast then it might still be a good experience - human fingers aren’t that thin :slight_smile: And there is some semi-rigid material on top that might help with interpolation. But no clue. Looks interesting though!

Edit: I’ll find out - backer no. 6 :slight_smile: Very close to the original idea of the Linnstrument. And nice for playing around with mad musical layouts, which is just my cup of tea :slight_smile:
And it could be great as a more hands on synth parameter controller, similar to Lemur.

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looks interesting, and doing well… (though - gets a bit harder now all the ‘super early birds’ are gone)

it’s a good size too and price is good, esp. since you get Audio Damage Continua with it.

only one thing not clear, when in isomorphic mode, do you get XYZ per pad, Im guessing you should do (tech should be capable) but its not ‘spelt out’ or evident in the demos.


mod note: I’ve merge this with existing topic, and added the link to kickstarter page.


some other notes…

there is a facebook live q&a at 7pm CET today.

they have just said in comments, they are moving the logo in the production version, to one of the edges.
(thankfully… looks dreadful in the demos :wink: imo)

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Congrats, will be interested to see what you think of it…

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Yepp, lots of questions. What happens when you slide outside a cell? And when entering a new cell? Hopefully they give us configuration options. From restricting xy inside a cell to extrapolating the cell where a touch initially happened (these are the two options Morph offers). And perhaps: Optional pitch rounding to newly entered cells.
I will surely provide them lots of feedback for feature requests :stuck_out_tongue:

yeah, Ive asked them if there is going to be pitch slide… again, technically seems a ‘non-issue’

I’m sure they must have looked at/played with the linnstrument - so will be clear on the expectations.

Im sure there will be some technical limitations,

e.g from comments
The Chords are playable already with up to 10 points of contact on the pad and can be arranged with the desired scale as you can see on the video and description.
this implies to me, its limited to 10 touches at once… so no playing with your toes as well;)

also perhaps we will see limits similar to linnstrument about ‘in between cells’ accuracy.

(latency, I saw some talk of 1ms, so that ok :slight_smile: )

but as long as its done well, it will be highly playable , and visually really nice … also looks really flexible in use-cases by having different layouts.
still really pleasantly surprised about the size… incredible at this price point.

EDIT: ok, they have said full XYZ on isomorphic layout and keyboard…
though dodged the question on pitch slide :wink:
(this is interesting, since it could break their ‘object model’, where each cell is independent)

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From images the sensors seem to be about 1 cm apart, so yes, would expect similar restrictions as for Linnstrument or Continuum when it comes to distinction of two fingers. Even for Morph two fingers blend to one when the distance gets lower than ~1cm.

1 ms latency sounds good! If they bring this to the floor over the USB and MIDI interfaces…

Edit: For Morph each cell is also independent. But they have a mode where shape detection is only active on initial touch. And then they just extrapolate x and y from the initially touched surface. So as long as one wants linear extrapolation one can slide out of cells as desired and Linnstrument-like layouts are no problem. Hope they will have something similar. I guess a Linnstrument-like grid will be a highly popular demand, so I cannot imagine they won’t support this(?)

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From the live stream: They use some kind of portamento/pitch rounding when going from one cell to the next. The exact approach wasn’t described (e.g. whether the pitch rounding only starts to take place when the finger stops on the cell). But they mentioned most things have parameters to tune. Needs playing around with, but sounds promising!

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I was impressed with the Facebook QA ( well the bit I caught) - they seem to be very much going in the right direction… and aware of the importance of touch and playability - all good signs.

Oh… and I see they have hit their funding target in less than 2 hours… wonder if they have stretch goals in mind :slight_smile:

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The hardware seems to be mostly finalized. So I guess most imaginable/desirable stretch goal ideas (like a 2x or 3x stretched Touch at the price of <= 2x or 3x the price of one Touch, an (option for an) integrated synthesizer or >= 3 CV outs etc. probably won’t happen.

Open sourcing the firmware and editor software would be a cool stretch goal though :slight_smile:
Sensel didn’t do this for the Morph, too many patent related topics in the way I guess.

Was pleasantly surprised to see it has MIDI (via trs minijack). I was expecting it to be USB-MIDI only.

That alone was enough for me to jump on it.

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Welcome! Yepp, good to have! Will be interesting whether MIDI 2.0 with full resolution over DIN MIDI is still realistic? Perhaps it’s MIDI 2.0 over USB and MIDI 1.0+optional MPE over TRS?
Might make sense, as most DIN MIDI compatible synths won’t speak MIDI 2.0 anyways.

Kinda cool that you can use drumsticks with it. But the key thing is how robust is the playing surface and build quality, would it be user-serviceable and what kind of long-term support they have in mind. I’m not a light player, and Seaboard Block was dissapointing in that regard.

I’m hoping they can get some prototype units out to people with sound generation and playing styles different than the ones in their current demos. The thing looks really cool and certainly should have a lot of stylistic range that they should be showcasing.

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In the Q&A this was explicitly discussed.

they believe the construction is very durable, and surface resistant to marks.
however, they said like a drum, it’s possible after a while it might get some marks on it.
I think they said, they haven’t seen it… but of course, theres a ‘with time’ element, that unknown at the moment.

however, they also went on to say,
the Erae Touch is a very simple construction, 4 parts just screwed together, and so its very easy to replace the surface, and so could supply a new surface to users (if needed, at additional cost)

I don’t think they have at this stage decided on the logistics of this… but thats reasonable at this stage of the product life cycle, and also given its unclear if this will even be necessary.

funny, Im not so fussed about that… the problem with all these kind of demos, is it tells you more about the musician than the product (imho)

what I really want to hear more about is how light/responsive the touch is… the ‘feel’ is everything with these kind of controllers… e.g. how will the (rubber?) surface feel… will it drag/carpet?
unfortunately, this of course, is almost impossible to know without actually getting your hands on one.

I’d urge others to go checkout the Q&A ( I think link above works, if not its on their facebook page)
what struck me from the Q&A , was not so much the answers - but the fact it was pretty obvious, that for all the questions, they already asked themselves the same questions during design/development.
… so there answers were always ‘on point’ and detailed, rather than the oft ‘anythings possible, we will see’ thats is often the case with kickstarter.

I guess my one ‘concern’ , is like a few other controllers (Sensel, Joue) - they appear to be spreading their target audience wide… so trying to cater not only for a playing surface, but a drum surface , a mixing/control surface…
thats a ‘cool’ aim, but I always fear that lack of focus can be problematic - jack of all, master of none.

the other side, as pointed out by @NothanUmber - the hardware is done… and I think most of the firmware too - so there is no feedback loop for kickstarters wishes/desires… it is what it is.
that said… the flip side is, its feels like Feb 2021, is a realistic target shipping date. ( * )

overall, if the ‘feel’ is there, I think this is going to be a really good controller at this price point.


( * ) of course, with current world situation, firm dates are impossible…everything seems to be getting delayed.

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