Interesting layouts for usage as a musical instrument

#1

The Morph is imho a very interesting testbed for new ideas - particularly with the innovator’s overlay in combination with the SenselApp’s capability to define custom layouts and upload them directly to the Morph - so it can act as a self contained class compliant MIDI device. The sensors are also highly sensitive.

Here a cross post to some simple layouts that work well for me: https://forum.sensel.com/t/overlay-design-best-of-musical-grid-layouts/473

Initially had to get used to the (compared to e.g. Linnstrument) smaller width-per-pitch that works best with Morph. But starting to get used to it. Still wider than in the higher positions of a violin :slight_smile:

Afaik a new version of the Morph firmware and SenselApp with extended capabilities (e.g. more definable areas) is supposed to come out by end of February - fingers crossed…

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#2

are any of the currently available overlays (from sensel) MPE compliant?

I think they mentioned MPE with the new Buchla Thunder layout!?
… I actually think that layout would be huge fun with a modular, and as the Morph is class compliant, would work with either by Bela Salt, or Squarp Hermod :slight_smile:

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#3

Yes, all of them :slight_smile: The functionality isn’t defined by the overlay but by the mapping that can be configured in the SenselApp. And SenselApp has full MPE support (or let’s better say - the Morph firmware has full MPE support - the SenselApp is essentially just a configuration and mapping editor). There are partially non-music-related default mappings for the Sensel made overlays of course, but they can be overwritten as desired.
Don’t have the Buchla overlay - but looks interesting!

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#4

ah, thats quite similar to Joue then…

what i like about the buchla layout is, to me, it seems to use the size really well… its quite an efficient use of space. I hope they have it at superbooth, id like to test it out … not that i need any more controllers really … or do I ? :slight_smile:

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#5

2018 yep, http://2018.superbooth.com/en/sensel.html
Probably also 2019 :wink:

Ahah one dedicated to modular? Why not?

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#6

I should have enough vsts, but never enough controllers… Next has to be the Breath and Bite controller…:wink: I guess I don‘t need a Joué if I have a Sensel…
The Thunder overlay is too expensive for me, almost double of all the others…

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#7

And since when did “need” factor into it. :slight_smile:

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#8

True :slight_smile:
I’ve really just been hoping senseless will release a bigger model - they said during KS this was possible.

What I like about them is that you can have diffferemt “markings” - very useful for controllers

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#9

Yeah, a bigger model would be awesome. Learned to live with the size, having several side by side is ok. Not being able to bend notes over morph boundaries is a little a pity but once accepted as an inherent characteristic it’s actually not so bad. Am experimenting now with several 24 semitones per morph layouts, this turned out to be the most matching config for me - and it’s easier to learn when using consistent spacings for all layouts (it’s also the spacing of their piano overlay, so it fits in nicely). Two positive aspects of that: you can do nice vibratos with less horizontal movement and have a good range per hand, playing an octave and more without thumb is no problem.

Sensel seem to be mainly in the OEM business when looking at their homepage. They also write that custom sizes are possible. Perhaps they could be convinced to do another Kickstarter when enough people are interested up front?

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#10

I have to confess I had never heard of this device before coming to this forum, but it certainly looks interesting!

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#11

yeah, they seemed keen on replacing ‘trackpads’ in laptops, I guess thats a huge market if you crack it.

I also wonder if the issue is different applications required different sizes / form factors.
for music purposes, a horizontal format seems preferred, similar to linnstrument/soundplane.
for a graphic artist I suspect they’d want it bigger in both dimensions, given thats the usual format of graphics tablets.
I also wonder how much more expensive it gets, if you double in both dimensions… perhaps its gets a bit prohibitive?
or perhaps they are still testing the waters, and seeing what the market wants to use the tech for.

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#12

Yepp, something bigger in one or both dimensions would indeed be nice.
The concept seems to foresee sensor everywhere, not only on the edges (like as far as I understood the Apple thing works, what explains why they can only provide that on the small iPhones), so “going big” might perhaps be more realistic.
Not sure how price would scale with size though. My guess would be linear with area, but perhaps at some point the manufacturing would become overproportionally more expensive or even technically difficult… - no idea, really.
Another point for making it smaller was afaik that they speculated that everybody and their dog will create custom overlays with 3d printers - which cannot print arbitrarily sized stuff. But realistically I see most people either using the pre-provided overlays or putting paper-prints into the Innovator’s overlay.

From that perspective perhaps an A3 sized Morph might be nice. Might be something both musicians and digital artists could like. And A3 printers are available in every print shop - or people could realistically just put two A4 sheets under such an A3 Innovator’s overlay.
On the other hand, you are right, a wide horizontal area would probably be an even better use of sensor area from a musical perspective. E.g. a flat, light, full-length-piano sized Morph would be totally awesome - and if reasonably priced probably quite a hit!

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#13

I could vote for 2 times the length. I am so glad that my LinnStrument is smaller than a 5-octave keyboard and still spans 5 1/2 octaves. Full-length-piano size is a night-mare on the road and needs to be significanntly thicker and heavier to not fall appart when you want to move it…
I could also imagine a Sensel same size without border…

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#14

Sure, somehing as wide as a piano claviature isn’t exactly handbag compatible. Still I hope, compared to e.g. mechanical keyboards etc. such a long Morph could still be relatively light weight.
But that’s one advantage of the current small Morphs. Hard to beat when it comes to transportation and they are arbitrarily stackable (for me arbitrary ends with four :slight_smile: ). If you accept these gaps, the four wires and the hub then it’s a nice litterally “batteries included” combo. The batteries also mean you don’t have to power the hub. Together with e.g. a notebook for sound generation you can be “off grid” - well, for a few hours… :wink:

Have lately experimented with retuning my Linnstrument to have two instead of one semitone per cell horizontally and an octave between rows vertically. (Not by hacking the firmware but by retuning it via a GigPerformer script). Found it somehow refreshing to play with an instrument with 10 octaves range, liked to play around with the high vs low contrasts etc. Sure, you can have a lot of fun with five or for some stuff even two octaves, but such a wide range in contrast somehow felt like - freedom :slight_smile:

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