I think I've found the perfect Drambo MIDI controller...

Presonus just released this a few days ago. Seems actually really well suited for Drambo. Great to see a few more groovebox style controllers coming on the market!

I made a quick mockup of how everything could be mapped. What's everyones' opinions? With some tight integration this could be killer.



  • Same. It does seem really good, but I'm pretty use to my Beatstep. I wonder if it supports relative cc control, that's extremely nice with Drambo. I don't think the ATOM (PAD) does unless I'm missing it in the manual.

  • Can't wait to see a review of this. Maybe we should all pitch in and get one for @giku to see if we can have super tight Drambo integration with it. FWIW, I made a custom setup for my LaunchPad X and Drambo which works pretty well. I also have another 2 Custom views for Mixing Board...16 Channels

  • Interesting.

    Not sure if I wouldn't better invest into a Keystep Pro though. A standalone sequencer is worth something.

  • Regardless of whether this hits the spot, I’d love to see tighter integration with midi controllers. The step sequencer would be great to be mappable. Then you could enter p-locks just like in the app!

  • FWIW, I think someone with enough coding experience could get the LaunchPad MK3 generation of controllers to do a lot of cool things...like the guy did for them and BitWig...but there would need to be a demand for it for sure...

  • Each to their own. Launchpad is definitely useful but I’d prefer something with a more groovebox-like interface and set of controls

  • edited July 2020

    I've been looking at the PreSonus ATOM controller...seems like a decent iPad controller as well. Good to see more players in this space...may be Gen 1 of their controller offerings...but at least a few YouTubers show how it works with iPad.

  • I've only sequenced the DigiTone with Drambo and I love that workflow. I haven't used it to sequence Drambo though...and I haven't messed with getting the OT to sequence Drambo yet either. I've been distracted with Multi-Outs this week :)

  • Controller editing of the step sequencer would be dope. Even the ability to turn trigs on/off in realtime would be really fun. Though I think for it to be optimal you'd want Drambo to have a midi cc to output the state of all its trigs so your controller can display things correctly. Gets pretty hairy to integrate well in MIDI.

    In the end I think the best options in the near future are to just use the touchscreen for sequencing, or completely offload your sequencing to a piece of hardware. And with the latter you lose trig locks unless you like... use an octatrack to sequence drambo :P.

  • Yeah...I haven't crossed that bridge yet. I think it's a specific CC value...I need to test it out...just haven't been compelled to as of yet...Drambo is sustaining my interest Stand-Alone and in AUM :)

  • edited July 2020

    I was planning to put my Octatrack up on Reverb this weekend (after it not selling on craigslist). I could definitely see some cool stuff with running Drambo into the Octatrack, using the Octatrack loopers/sampling/crossfader. But tbh it seems like overkill which is the problem with most of my projects! Trying to simplify.

  • I'm voting for a MIDI control concept that is as generic as possible so it will work with different control hardware. Once sequencer steps and bars of steps can be controlled by generic MIDI messages to set sequencer steps, the only missing link would be to mirror the step content by LEDs on the controllers.

    I've already done that (for fun) and created some dot matrix graphics on my Launchpad Mini by using several MIDI note and CC modules, and I think it could be done by extending the MIDI learn function with output messages.

    Just like you can currently map incoming MIDI messages to module controls, it would be possible to send user-definable MIDI messages whenever a control value changes. In case of the Launchpad, I would map a sequencer step to the respective MIDI note message that will illuminate that pad in yellow when note data is on the step (high velocity), red when there is a p-lock on the step (medium velocity) or dark if there's no data (zero velocity). Same for LED rings, LED strips and whatever feedback disolays the controllers offer.

    This means some work for the Drambo user but it would likely be a rather straightforward thing for @giku to add because the main work, mapping all the different controllers, would be done (and hopefully shared) by the controller owners themselves.

  • Sounds super interesting. Would love a demonstration of that LP mini setup!

    I’ve done a fair bit of MIDI remote script editing with Ableton because I love the idea of tight software/hardware integration. The interface of Drambo is amazing already and I couldn’t imagine improvements to it. That said, when it comes to performing live it’s definitely beneficial to have “grab-able” controls to manipulate and bright LEDs to indicate things at a glance. I’m also playing guitar while performing so having clear feedback and accessible controls is a must.

    On the step sequencer, I really like your idea. Definitely would be great to allow the user to choose the velocity number that’s given for each of those states (note, p-lock) as some controllers give different colours/brightness on different numbers. Also, would be great to have some midi controller button to scroll through different sets of steps (1-16, 17-32 etc). It doesn’t have to appear on Drambo’s interface but maybe when you press the MIDI learn button you see a couple of extra controls that are available for MIDI mapping (ableton does this with ‘next/prev scene’ controls). In the same way, you could also add a mode switch that would switch your 16 pads between mutes and step sequencer on controllers that don’t have an extra step sequencer section.

    Anyway, I’m just dreaming. Love Drambo and excited to see how it develops. It’s already so feature packed. Big love to @giku for making what I have wished for for years!

  • edited July 2020

    @scarpolish Cool, good to know!

    Do you own a Launchpad? Mini?

    BTW, good point choosing steps 1..16, 17..32 etc.

    @giku: I think that MIDI mapping the left+right arrow buttons would make sense:

  • I think they would make sense only if you could edit steps via midi controller.

  • Yes they are :) after MIDI control surfaces

  • I’m definitely for a broad and generic approach to midi control. We all different and many controllers seem to have their own way of doing things as do we. The bidirectional usb midi will be important to those with leds on controllers but I’m not sure how useful they will be in low power mode and even more so if or when playing outdoors.

    To me personally, getting as many commands such as double tap and hold will allow for as many onscreen functions as possible to be relegated to physical controls is one of the main objectives. This way we can get closer to the ultimate physical control when touching screen will only be required to launch the app and get as close to possible t hardware but with benefits of being able to influence over the structure under the hood.

    I’m quite close to this using launchkey mini and nanokontrol but slowly running out of assignable controls and needing to compromise because of this. Let’s face it, a vast majority of users will only have a couple of controllers at the most so wld be good to get out as much as possible it of them.

  • edited July 2020

    A tad off subject, but I just bought the parts to make one of these https://create.arduino.cc/projecthub/anewxptr/crossfader-with-arduino-for-virtualdj-c6eb43

    I swapped the generic fader in the project for a well priced pioneer fader I found on reverb :). Looks like it'll cost ~$40 total.

  • @quartzite Although I love DIY projects, I wonder if that's a better deal than a USB DJ controller?

    For about $30 more, you'd not only get a crossfader but two more vertical faders, touch-sensitive jog wheels that are perfectly supported in Drambo, buttons and pads with many pad banks, knobs - all sending MIDI.

  • edited July 2020

    Yea its definitely not the cheapest/simplest option on its own, but I didn't actually want to replace my beatstep. My plan is to just have it sit below above that controller and not take up that much more space. Heck I may even attach the fader to the beatstep :P.

    Some of the reason for this is I wanted to mess around with midi-over-usb for arduino. I've messed around with arduino midi before using a shield, but usb midi like this seemed fun :). Also getting a quality fader seemed cool (tho I believe that some of the tiny dj controllers could have been good enough for my needs).

  • @quartzite That's a good point. Now that you mentioned it, I now want 3 crossfaders on the bottom of my Beatstep 😅

    If I had more time, I'd probably use an Arduino Nano with 3 analog inputs and MIDI I/O as a pure MIDI device that merges incoming MIDI from the Beatstep with X-fader control messages, all that mounted under the rear side of the Beatstep plus a flat LiPo USB power bank and a Yamaha MD-BT01 (which has a tiny pcb inside that can easily be extracted for diy projects).

  • edited July 2020

    UPDATE! Loopop giving an overview of the Presonus Atom SQ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR7OWG2RVL8

  • Looks cool

  • I don't think it has a built in sequencer. But if you MIDI map it to an in-app sequencer then maybe it could work pretty well

  • I like the form factor.

    I'm not sure it has an editor. As far as I know, you won't be able to change behaviours for buttons (toggles, momentary etc) or change cc numbers and so on.

    I love my MIDI Fighter Twister, it has knobs, switches, side buttons and the editor has everything needed, even unusual functions.

  • @quartzite Just started playing around with mapping Drambo to The Beatstep1—I was wondering how you’re mapping the controls. I’m trying out different things—maybe something for live jamming, and a different setup for sound design. The big rotary dial is better then I thought for the crossfader, but I like the arduino add-on idea.

    One mapping setup I’m thinking of is using the Dramboctrack patch. I’ll post what works if you’re interested. Trying not to buy another controller and use what I’ve got!

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