May 132012

While guitarists enjoy a long history of manipulating their guitar sounds with guitar pedals, it’s nice to see a new type of gadget aimed at synth owners: the MIDIpal. This gadget can manipulate, tweak, filter, and generate MIDI streams to your heart’s content. For example, instead of pumping your synth through a delay/echo pedal, MIDIpal can generate a stream of trailing notes to create a MIDI delay. Need a quick arpeggiator to inspire you? Step Sequencer? The MIDIpal has a myriad of tricks up its sleeve:

  • Keyboard-controlled drums sequencer
  • Note randomizer
  • Chord memory
  • Arpeggiator
  • Delay
  • Scale Restriction (Where have I seen that before?)
  • 32 Step sequencer
  • MIDI Monitor
  • BPM counter
  • MIDI Stream splitter
  • Note dispatcher
  • Channel Stream Merger
  • Clock divider
  • MIDI clock generation
  • CC LFO generation

MIDIpal is currently sold by Mutable Instruments as a DIY electronics kit and runs on a 9V battery. The hardware is “open hardware” and is based around the ATMega328p (the same chip family used in the Arduino). The software is also open source so developers can tweak the code to their own liking (new arpeggiator patterns? new delay types?). The kit includes everything you need to have a completed MIDIpal including PCB, parts, and clear acrylic case for 69EUR (~$90US at the time of writing).

Mutable Instruments MIDIpal.

 Posted by at 9:41 am

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