Arduino to ribbon controller as midi.

Hi guys :)

i'm a musician and i'm looking for something cool to play with on stage / live performance. i want to make a midi ribbon controller using a SOFTPOT http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8681

now, i have few questions before buying the Arduino.. 1, can i connect this http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8681 to the Arduino and work with it as a midi controller? 2, can the Arduino USB serve me as a midi in and out and power the whole deal? 3, can i get a technical support here if i have any trouble? 4, do i need any other device in addition to Arduino? 5, please look at this youtube video (sorry for the Russian language) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyhhNXXGIa4 move to 3:05 min, this is what i want eventually! ;D

at first was i was looking at this product by Tom Scarff http://tomscarff.110mb.com/midi_ribbon_controller/midi_ribbon_controller.htm after seeing is not replying to any of my e mails i'v decided to look for other alternatives, this is how i got to u. i think his product is the same as the Arduino, no..? i see also that he is using for some of his products with Arduino http://tomscarff.110mb.com/index.htm

anyway hope u guys reply soon coz i really need this for my live shows.

thanks, Isak E.

Hi Isak.

Yes you can connet the soft pot to Arduino. It will work as a potentiometer, and you would hook it up to one of the analog inputs on Arduino. When reading the value from it you will get an integer between o and 1023, and you would have to somehow map that to a midi note or whatever you want your self.

The USB port on Arduino is really not a USB port, but a serial port disguised as a USB port.

There are lot's of examples aroud for sending MIDI from Arduino. But i don't think you can send MIDI and recieve MIDI over the serial at the same time.

If you are making a ribbon controller, why would you want to recieve MIDI ?

thank you very much for u’r reply :slight_smile:

on second thought i will not need a midi in. :-/
i’m happy to hear that i can send a midi note from the serial (usb ;))
as for the midi mapping i have this code …http://tomscarff.110mb.com/downloads/source/midi_ribbon_controller.txt
do u think it will be ok for the Arduino?
this is what the guy that made this code says…
" Open the source code file and copy and paste it into the Arduino programme and save it as a .PDE file."
the code meant to be for this… http://tomscarff.110mb.com/midi_ribbon_controller/midi_ribbon_controller.htm
as u can see the Miduino and Arduino use the same Atmega168.
i’v also seen this product http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=9598
do i need it in addition to the Arduino to send midi or the Arduino can send midi all by it self?

i’m asking lots of questions coz i dont really understand all the midi protocols and Arduino and so… :-[

thanks again for u’r support :slight_smile:

I just took a short look at the code and it looks like standard Arduino code.

I don't think you need the MIDI break out board for just sending MIDI.

Check this:

http://todbot.com/blog/2006/10/29/spooky-arduino-projects-4-and-musical-arduino/

MIDI is really just a protocol sending bytes seriall at a speed of 31.something kb/s, so it's pretty simple to implement the physical transmission.

What can be more complicated is WHAT you are sending, understanding the MIDI protocol is important here.

Here's a good starting point:

http://www.midibox.org/dokuwiki/doku.php?id=midi_specification

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Musical_Instrument_Digital_Interface

thanks man :)

i really hope i can set this up. the code that u'v see is suppose to work perfectly with the softpot coz its meant to be for this. although he have more things in there, like a 4 way dip switch and the code also contain this 4 way dip switch which Arduino dont have. ammm...i wander...will it make a problem or not.. :-?

Using switches with Arduino is not so complicated. Look at the examples in the playground.

thanks again :)

You might want to look at this project that takes switch inputs and turns them into MIDI. There is a minimum extra hardware version if you download the schematics. http://www.thebox.myzen.co.uk/Hardware/Pendulum.html

thanks man :)