Kenton have made a couple of prototype controllers intended for use with Ableton Live or similar software. Neither unit has a final name at the moment and are temporarily being called AB Mini and AB DJ. If you have suggestions for better names or for improvements to the designs, please let them know.
"The AB Mini communicates via USB, has 9 endless rotary encoders, 9 push buttons and a joystick. It is USB powered for convenience. The 9 encoder knobs can also be pushed to select MIDI channels to operate on - allowing up to 9 channels of operation. When a channel has been selected, one of the buttons lights up to indicate that channel is active. The encoders also remember where they were when they were last on that channel and display their position on the ring of leds around each knob.
The joystick can send X and Y co-ordinates on the currently selected channel, and could be used for pitchbend and/or modulation control.
With the 9 channels, you effectively have 81 endless controllers and 81buttons at your fingertips in a very compact unit.
The whole unit is finished in brushed aluminium with matching knobs and is the same width as a 12" powerbook."
"The AB DJ, as its temporary name suggests, is aimed at the DJ market. Again this controller is mainly aimed at Ableton Live and Tractor users.
The unit has three channel strips and a master section.
Each channel strip has a Master Volume with six rotary knobs below that. Beneath that again are 6 buttons which illuminate when active, intended for mutes, AB selection and headphone monitor. Beneath that are two pads which can be used for firing off samples. It is intended that on production versions, these pads would be velocity sensitive, allowing them to be used as drum pads.
The master section is similar but benathe the master volume has four rotary knobs and a joystick. Again it has the six buttons, and below that a cross-fader.
The whole unit is finished in brushed aluminium, and has USB and MIDI ports for connection to your computer. Production models would be mains powered, although the prototype shown uses a power adaptor. Production models would probably have aluminium knobs too, rather than the Moog type knobs on this prototype."
My one and only suggestion : Don't remove the Moog type knobs !!!
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