Product Idea |

Modular DJ and Production Controllers

I was thinking about the present "modular" push for DJ Controllers (Controllerism) and how much fun I had with Lego Mindstorms... I finally put the two thoughts together today and thought about how truly inventive people could be by using the Lego Mindstorms kit for DJing, Producing and other things that require many buttons, sliders, knobs and such that inherently needs to be / should be modular. This idea isn't that far-fetched because top-of-the-line professional DJ programs like Traktor Pro 2 (from Native Instruments) or Scratch Live (from Serato) can use M.I.D.I. for almost any control and there are programs out there that translate signals from Human Input Devices to M.I.D.I. *AND* the Mindstorms kit is surprisingly technical, rugged, flexible and yet, easy to use.

I'm certain that many people have been frustrated by the fact that they bought a controller surface for something and when they got into using the controller they wish they had "Another couple of buttons/sliders/knobs *RIGHT HERE* (pointing to an area right where they aren't)" or "Geez, I wish I could move these controls over here/there. Sadly, a lot of companies that make controllers don't make their interfaces to be completely modular and I think this is one of the strongest aspects of Lego.

Not much is standing in the way of this happening right now because the NXT brain block can send/receive signals via bluetooth (which would then be translated into MIDI for programs like Traktor Pro and Scratch Live) but I'd like to make sure this was an ALL-LEGO project, not just some Legos glued to the surface of a DJ interface.

Some areas that concern me are: the speed at which this would all work. I had some problems with things taking a long time to respond when I bought the original Mindstorms kit, the V/U lighting working in real-time, the sensitivity of controls (and there are a lot of controls to choose from), the linear faders (I didn't see these available on the Mindstorms site and it's pretty important for a DJ to use a linear fader or something that acts like one) and the durability of the kit (especially when being transported from home to show).

This is not a project intended to be built with specific elements and then completed, it's designed to be open-ended so that the user can determine how to make their interface better for them.

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