Let’s get this straight, [Alex] is going to show us how to make controllers like this one? Where do we sign up? Even without seeing it in action we want one, but the urge to build is even greater after he shows it off (check the clip after the break). He’s a design student who made an open source project aimed at making it easier to build hardware controllers that pair with just about any software application.
The need for external controllers is on the rise, starting with music-based applications like DJ tools, and Midi controllers for musicians (we’re thinking Monome clones). But anything that can take input from a USB HID can be controlled with something like this. That’s because [Alex] is using the Teensy controller board as an interface. Just select the input types you want – sliders, potentiometers, buttons, switches – then wire them up to the microcontroller pins. If you start to run out of inputs he also discusses some add-on chips to use as port expanders.
Of course there’s a lot to be said for the physical appearance as well. Even though he used point-to-point connections for all of the controls, that wiring is hidden behind the aesthetically pleasing laser-cut dashboard. Follow his advice for layout and find a friend with access to a sweet laser cutter and you’re in business.
Filed under: Microcontrollers, peripherals hacks