Help With Sensor/Trigger Multi Audio Files

Hi - I am a visual artist with an installation strategy/need… I am hoping to use Arduino and related hardware to trigger a collection of 16 or so discreet audio files from a (16) push button panel. Each individual sound file would be triggered on/off from each push-button, and playback would be routed to (16) individual speakers. Any advice on hardware or patches/scripts, etc. would be helpful. Thank you!

Will more than one sound play at a time ?

Is The Arduino connected to a PC ?

Yes - all sounds would playback either individually or simultaneously in any combination. The sound for each channel would be in a looping buffer of some kind - the buttons are on/off switches to trigger audible signal from each indep. spkr.

Arduino can be connected to a PC - at least I assume it will need one for this?

You are prety much describing the most basic operation of a monome

Of course the monome can also do a LOT more, but your project is where most people start.

The question though is can you do it more cheaply (I’m guessing - you didn’t provide a budget, but lets face it, 99% of the time it’s “as cheap as possible”)

Since you can connect it to a PC, I’d just use a simple sketch with 16 buttons connected to the arduino. This leaves you enough pins for a serial connection back to the PC. On the PC side, you’d need to use software like processing,max/msp etc (I’m not an audio geek) to play the sounds corresponding to each button.

Ofcourse you could make it more complicated/neater by using input shift registers, but from your questions it sounds like the simplest would be the best way to go.

Thanks trialex - I am familiar with monome, but want to create my own button panel using simple circular buttons like those used in doorbells… so I’ll need to wire the buttons to the i/o device.


So… have you read the button tutorials on this and ladyada’s website?

I’d get one button sending a “hello” message to your PC… then two… then 16 sending their own ID numbers.

Then you can move onto the PC/sound side.

Haven’t read those, but I will. Wanted to see if there was a definitive place to begin before I dove in. Thanks again for the input, I’m sure I’ll be back with more ?'s…

Yes read the Lady Ada tutorial, and then decide how the PC will make the sound.

There are many alternatives.

It is not very difficult to turn the button pushes into MIDI messages.

Or send commands to MAX or similar software over serial.