Thoughts about Joué?

sorry, you are absolutely right… after some wine … getting confused these days :wink:

So, it’s the wine’s fault :blush:

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The Joué is by far the softest feeling of all the surfaces. Some people don’t like that, but it’s very easy on the fingers.

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I got answer from the Joué customer support. So far, the fretboard can’t play more than one note per string at a time. Tuning of the strings other than guitar normal tuning is not possible (support wrote “can” but I believe it was a typo because they also invited me to try the editor, which I did, and that was when I found that it can’t).

Pads are pressure sensitive and can also do vibrato but glissando is not possible. I was thinking on a Linnstrument type of set-up.

Regarding the scaler, chromatic scale can be set, allowing for a Dodeka style keyboard. This would require painting or marking the keys in major third patterns.

Actually, the only reason I was attracted by the Joué (apart of natural curiosity) is that, by what I can see on the videos, there is more pressure feedback on the silicon surface(s) than on the Linnstrument. Someone said here (sorry, cannot remember who or where) that the Linnstrument is like playing on a board, and I agree.

This is the actual state of the Joué but it seems they are working, improving and adding features constantly so it could change in the future.

Apart from the hardness of the surface, I still think the Linnstrument is my instrument.

Yes, that has not change; now that is kind of a strange request from a user and contradictory, as this Fretboard module pretends to emulate as close as possible a 6 string guitar or bass or real string instrument; sure it could have a “polyphonic-string-mode” and instead of notes could output MIDI CC’s or sysex or OSC and… its a Fretboard module.

I recall and have used a “Custom mapping” setting and with that you can change its MIDI Ch and per string its starting note, so its easy to have any running you like :wink:

Here again you have the “Custom mapping” you’re free to do whatever you like (configure independently each of the 17 vertical strips)

About pressure, yes you do have to press in a bit more, say then LS and as most Joué modules are a bit thick, you do get some feedback.

I also have an LS that its crucial part of my last show, have not mixed both (LS and Joué) outside my studio… but I love the Joué; its fun, expressive, engaging as you are swapping things around.

Oh, I see. I remember trying a different tuning and only finding “guitar”. But I didn’t try custom mapping. Maybe it’s a contradictory request if you think emulation but what interests me it’s the grid not the emulation. The Linnstrument has both modes and as it is a question of midi settings I don’t see a problem with it.

Thank you for the description on the pressure. That’s my major problem with the Linnstrument. That said every time I play with it I have a lot of fun. Pushing strings on a feet is also hard.

If I could afford both I’d buy it but for now I will wait.

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I haven’t plugged mine in in a while, but I imagine my frustrations are still basically frustrating.

Specifically, there was only one USB MIDI endpoint, shared between every one of the overlays. And no support for other protocols (such as OSC) which might help a patch tell which overlay is connected.

If you’re not using MPE, you could set 16 overlays up, each on their own channel, controlling a separate instrument.

If you are using MPE, you can limit how many channels that one overlay is using, qnd put the rest of your overlays on the remaining channels (with a limit of 16, in total).

If you’re using MPE on two overlays, they can either control the same instrument (why bother?), or they can severely limit your choices even further.

I think with the new full-surface overlays, and none of the previous ones, that paradigm can be worthwhile. But with the full stack of overlays many of us bought in the Kickstarter, you really have to choke down your ambitions.

(Again, possible they’ve fixed this. But it didn’t sound like they were interested in addressing it, last I checked)

Seems all good ideas to send to the Joué developer team :wink:

I’ll get right on that, in March of 2018. (I’ll be more specific there, and also propose solutions that weren’t mentioned here)

Oh, look; they already responded! That was fast.

Per their encouragement, I wrote them once further, with a very detailed examination of three separate aftertouch issues.

(That one, they did not write back to. I would assume that they’ve fixed two of those since then, even if they deleted my email without reading it. But again, I haven’t checked.)

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Thank you very much for sending in ideas so we all can have a better Joué. (I do have some ideas I should send also)

I still have one for sale, with a bunch of overlays, if anyone wants it. One will be plenty for me and I don’t need two.

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I wanted to love the Joue so badly. But I think MPE channel aftertouch implementation is a complete mess, at least with the Scaler overlay. I posted about this on their fourm a long time ago, but instead of promising a firmware fix they started going on about a sensor limitation. And since then I think they got rid of their forum completely.

The channel pressure messages coming from each simultaneously pressed note interfere terribly with eachother :frowning: If you just hold one note, the messages are fine. But when you press a second note and add pressure, the pressure messages of the first note falls as the 2nd notes pressure rises. Useless!

Midi monitoring software will confirm whether other people see the same behaviour. Its much easier to see whats going on if you have something that can draw a realtime graph of the data…

If you have a mac, I would recommend OSCulator (trial version available) to visualise the issue:

Run app
Press settings cog button at top right of window
Enable Joue Play in the Midi inputs.
Exit the settings screen.
Press two notes at the same time on the Joue
In the list, select /midi/pressure/2 and then press the eye button at top right of window
Do the same for /midi/pressure/3
Arrange these graph windows so they can both be seen
Experiment with holding 1 note and changing pressure, see the graph behave as we would want
Add a 2nd finger and experiment with different amounts of pressure on each finger. See how the graphs show the unwanted interaction between the two pressure values.

This is very interesting! What did the Joué folks say about this data? They’re very responsive and friendly, and if there’s a technical issue that they can fix, I’m surprised that they haven’t jumped on it yet.

Well I didnt go through my ‘how to visualise the issue’ steps with them - I only asked on their forum about the poly pressure of one note interfering with another, and they told me it was a sensor limitation. At that stage my options were to moan or get angry, or give up. So I gave up. And now their forum doesnt seem to exist so there is no record of this communication. Months later I was talking to a new Joue owner and I came up with the ‘how to visualise the issue’ steps, and they saw the same thing I saw. While I was talking to them I got my Joue out of its box, where it has been sitting unloved for months, applied latest firmware update, but nothing had changed. Just terrible, which is a real shame as I like some of the Joues overlays.

And yes, I would love to be proved wrong, or for them to realise they were wrong and that its is an issue that can be fixed in firmware. I’ve no hope of this happening though, and yes it completely blows my mind that I seem to be the only person to have mentioned this rather notable issue with the Joue on the internet in all this time. This alone is reason for me not to place too much weight on my own experience, but since its consistent and repeatable and I cannot come up with a workaround (other than not using pressure at all), I dont really know what to think.

Well, I don’t think you’re wrong, nor do I think that it is a fixable thing in firmware if they flat-out told you that it’s a hardware limitation. You shouldn’t cast doubt on your results, particularly if they ARE consistent and repeatable.

Take one step back in the process, though, and you might see where the disconnect is happening: if you’re the only Joué user who has run into this behavior and worried about it enough to study its cause, it may be because you’re the only Joué user who has even noticed it without having it pointed out to them. I guess the question becomes: is this limitation bothersome because it’s technically inelegant, or because it screws with the process of making fun and pretty music with the Joué? That is a very different issue than whether or not the hardware is behaving as expected.

Looking at this from a musical perspective, I actually find the idea of one poly pressure point robbing from another to be kind of intriguing, and I am tempted to fire up my Joué again and play with it in the context of using it deliberately in my compositions. To quote Victor Wooten, “If you can’t get rid of it… make it funky.”

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Well, it totally screws up my ability to play, which I do not consider to be fun.

It’s not subtle, dont ask me why nobody else moans about it. I only started monitoring the midi data because things were so obviously screwed up whilst playing and I wanted to see what was going on.

I think the reason is that few people use polyphonic aftertouch while playing polyphonic. Quite challenging for the player. With poly AT, even in MPE, most people are in legato mode.

I need to revisit my previous evaluation.

In hindsight, I was already able to determine which overlay was in each slot, and to create all the virtual midi ports I could possibly want. So… I don’t know what my problem was.

Will report back when I figure that out. In the meantime, just assume I was wrong about everything.

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I can confirm your findings @SteveElbows. I too wrote on the forum and was disappointed when I saw that they ended up deleting the whole thing instead of discussing things in the open.

I do believe it’s due to a limitation of the sensor as I was able to prove that the behaviour would difer based on where you would press on it.
3 presses on the same horizontal axis causes issues, but move one finger upwards (y axis) and things are much better.

It’s disappointing to see that nothing has changed with the new Joué on KS. Worse, the old version is called Pro, when it has such obvious flaws.
Needless to say that mine has been in a box for over a year now as nobody was even interested in buying it 2nd hand.
It’s a shame, as the concept of modules is great. You can play 3 instruments from a single layout, using 3 modules and can replace them on the fly during a performance.