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Developing Trigger -> MIDI Hardware -- Looking for marketing suggestions

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  • Developing Trigger -> MIDI Hardware -- Looking for marketing suggestions

    HI All,

    I've been developing a trigger to MIDI module (no audio). I have a 10 input prototype working, and I'm currently focusing my efforts on developing the user interface. I want to bring the module to market, but I want to make sure I'm developing something people need / want to buy.

    I know Alesis / DDrum and Megadrum are already established products, and I'm thinking of making something smaller in order to differentiate my own product. Maybe a unit with only 5 inputs + MIDI for $120. I would be targeting users who want to extend their current modules, or just want to hook up a couple of pads. Here's a screenshot of where I'm at with the user interface. If anyone has any suggestions or questions, I would love to here from you.


    Rob
    Last edited by yeahtuna; 10-23-18, 07:25 AM.

  • #2
    I remember you. You had that DSP Trigger plugin back then, right? Are you planning to have options for 2 or 3-zone cymbals or hihats?

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    • #3
      Ya, that's me. I've since been producing USB Pedal Interfaces called MIDI Expression. Yes, 2 and 3 zone pads / cymbals are supported. I'm even playing with the idea of supporting positional sensing with mesh pads, but I'm not really clear on the status of Roland's patent. Has it now expired?
      Last edited by yeahtuna; 10-23-18, 06:22 PM.

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      • #4
        Interesting! Does it support both Roland and Yamaha cymbal types? How about hi-hat pedals/sensors?

        I'm assuming that the interface is an app that runs on the computer?

        I was in the market for something like this recently. I ended up picking up a used Yamaha DTX502 to supplement my existing module. I paid just about the price you are looking at targeting.
        Last edited by ladron; 10-23-18, 07:04 PM.

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        • #5
          Yes, it supports both Yamaha and Roland cymbals. My hihat circuitry is borrowed from MIDI Expression and will support Roland FSR style and Yamaha HH-65 type inputs.

          Yes, while the module itself is of course hardware, the control application is software that runs on Windows / macOS / iOS. There will also be a plugin version of the control application so users can save and load settings for the module on a per project basis.

          Rob

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          • #6
            I don't know how big the market is, but I certainly would have considered something like this if the triggering is on par with decent modules.

            To me the major selling point would be providing an inexpensive upgrade path for people with older or entry-level kits. That, and allowing cross-brand expansion (add a Yamaha ride to a Roland kit, or a Roland hi-hat to a Yamaha kit, etc.).

            Depending on how much each input adds to your cost, there may even be value in units that have 2 or 3 inputs (or even 1 - assuming we are talking about stereo inputs).

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            • #7
              Originally posted by yeahtuna View Post
              Ya, that's me. I've since been producing USB Pedal Interfaces called MIDI Expression. Yes, 2 and 3 zone pads / cymbals are supported. I'm even playing with the idea of supporting positional sensing with mesh pads, but I'm not really clear on the status of Roland's patent. Has it now expired?
              That is great news! I have a feel that the patent is already expired. There are still no other modules that support positional sensing except Megadrum (how they could do that for at least 10 years already by the way?). I think it is a good selling feature to have positional sensing so you should look it through. I myself feel that positional sensing is somewhat overhyped feature if you play metal/rock/pop music like majority of edrummers tend to do from my experience . It would be nice to test it with SD3 though.

              As for the size of the module. There are no all-in-one midi modules available except DITI which I have not seen anyone to use or talk except Alternative Mode themselves. There are people that are looking for that kind of solution to play with VST. Then I believe this kind of 5-input device would be a choice for many to get additional inputs to them modules. This unit should be very reasonable priced and small in size IMO.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Espen View Post
                That is great news! I have a feel that the patent is already expired.
                I'm pretty sure there are follow-up patents that cover positioning, although I'm not a patent attorney. The devil's in the details, and you have to be really versed in this field to draw the right conclusions. Apart from that, it's mainly U.S. and Japan, at least in the EU we have other regulations, especially in terms of follow-up, trivial patents, and of course software. (I'm a software DSP guy and glad to be an EU citizen in this regard... you can't patent algorithms here.)

                Originally posted by Espen View Post
                There are still no other modules that support positional sensing except Megadrum
                My Markdrum Yes has positional sensing (concentric, seamless) by using 4 head sensors. They only provided one single snare sound with positional info, though. Back in the days they decided to not sell in the U.S. because of patents. To my knowledge this wasn't because of Roland (no center triggering and slew-rate detection) but more because the multi-sensor approach is based on signal delay / time difference and theoretically capable of absolute position. It was even used to track rim/sidestick impact. My info on this was that such algorithms are patented in the U.S., at least partly, and they wanted to play safe.

                But when detection is purely software based (thus solely interpreting data), it's safe to do that in the EU, at least.
                Last edited by sascha; 10-24-18, 04:04 AM.
                MarkDrum YES e-kit highly modified (DIY hall-sensor based hihat, low-volume trigger cymbals, 16" DIY kick, 12" DIY snare + tom 3), Triggera 10" splash
                Gibraltar 9607NL-DP Legless Hi Hat, Intruder Double Pedal
                Shure SE215 in-ears w. CustomArt silicone tips

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Espen View Post

                  That is great news! I have a feel that the patent is already expired. There are still no other modules that support positional sensing except Megadrum (how they could do that for at least 10 years already by the way?). I think it is a good selling feature to have positional sensing so you should look it through. I myself feel that positional sensing is somewhat overhyped feature if you play metal/rock/pop music like majority of edrummers tend to do from my experience .
                  position sensing patents is not expired yet, reason why megadrum had no problem, because it's diy and are not sell in retailer store and in USA. Agree position sensing is over-hyped but good for jazz, quiet music, solo which is audible for nuance.
                  Last edited by Chris K; 10-25-18, 01:48 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by yeahtuna View Post
                    HI All,

                    I've been developing a trigger to MIDI module (no audio). I have a 10 input prototype working, and I'm currently focusing my efforts on developing the user interface. I want to bring the module to market, but I want to make sure I'm developing something people need / want to buy.

                    I know Alesis / DDrum and Megadrum are already established products, and I'm thinking of making something smaller in order to differentiate my own product. Maybe a unit with only 5 inputs + MIDI for $120. I would be targeting users who want to extend their current modules, or just want to hook up a couple of pads. Here's a screenshot of where I'm at with the user interface. If anyone has any suggestions or questions, I would love to here from you.


                    Rob
                    There is not a lot new module supports expandable sound for their internal sound module, older td6\td12\td20\td30, (and maybe Yamaha dtx900 not sure) , newer Pearl Mimic pro, I don't expect newer module to do these, it require more power horse.

                    I would recommend at least 8 inputs, most old\current supports higher than 8 triggers for midi. The problem you will face is the price vs megadrum inputs.
                    Last edited by Chris K; 10-25-18, 12:37 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Have you had any issues in the past with the DSP Trigger positional sensing? Anyway a midi module with 8 or 10 inputs and positional sensing will be great in my opinion.
                      If you will implement the DSP trigger features (positional sensing and 3-zone with one piezo or two maximum) in one 'cheap' MIDI module (120$) I buy it soon. I had liked your plugin in the past and those features are still useful.

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                      • #12
                        I would definitely buy this if it had at least 6 inputs and positional sensing for SD3

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                        • #13
                          I would only be interested if it had at least 16 inputs, supported PS, could use a good variety of different vendor pads and especially hi hats. Trigger as good as the Roland units. I would then consider and sell on my TD30 as I only use it to trigger SD3. I donít like add on midi as it complicates. I would prefer all my triggers into one unit.
                          Roland TD30 module on TD20 kit SD3 with various kits. Pearl Masters Kit, Yamaha 9000RC original natural wood finish. Cymbals from Zildgian Pasite and Sabian. Loads of percussion bits. Cubase and Wavelab always current versions.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by mkok View Post
                            I would only be interested if it had at least 16 inputs, supported PS, could use a good variety of different vendor pads and especially hi hats. Trigger as good as the Roland units. I would then consider and sell on my TD30 as I only use it to trigger SD3. I donít like add on midi as it complicates. I would prefer all my triggers into one unit.
                            megadrum do all this and available since age.
                            Last edited by Chris K; 10-25-18, 04:07 AM.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Chris K View Post

                              megadrum do all this and available since age.
                              It is but notoriously painful to program and I havenít seen a single video where it triggers well.
                              Roland TD30 module on TD20 kit SD3 with various kits. Pearl Masters Kit, Yamaha 9000RC original natural wood finish. Cymbals from Zildgian Pasite and Sabian. Loads of percussion bits. Cubase and Wavelab always current versions.

                              Comment

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