New Keith McMillen Instruments QuNeo MIDI Controller

KEITH MCMILLEN QUNEO MIDI CONTROLLER

QuNeo is a different species of pad controller for electronic musicians, DJs, VJs and DIY hackers. While it covers all of the functionality of other pad controllers, QuNeo adds the power of touch recognition in other dimensions. The first thing you notice when you see the QuNeo is the wealth of colorful LED lights that are visible beneath its buttons, pads and touch faders. The Keith McMillen QuNeo controller has pressure, velocity- and location-sensitive pads, sliders and rotary sensors.

For musicians that have tried using an iPad as a controller; they’d be amazed to hear that unlike the iPad, the Keith McMillen QuNeo controller will react to how hard or softly you strike the pads, and it will also register how much pressure you apply to a control without striking it. You can use two fingers on its sliders to adjust and pinch parameters; which is why Keith McMillen Instruments refers to the QuNeo as a 3D Multi-touch Pad Controller.

The QuNeo also has an incredible LED light show. 251 multi-color LEDs come alive on the device, using only bus power from a standard USB port. The staggering amount of lights dramatically increases the amount of interaction and communication between human and machine. The sliders double as VU meters, the drum pads transform into a multi-level step sequencer, and the LEDs stay illuminated to remind you how you had adjusted a control. It’s an inspiring amount of visual feedback, and it ultimately makes using the QuNeo more fun.

Most rotary controllers are essentially intelligent knobs. The rotaries on the QuNeo go much further. They’re capable of measuring angle, pressure and distance from the center. They can do everything from acting as virtual DJ decks for scrubbing and scratching, to triggering and stretching samples.

As a manufacturer, Keith McMillen Instruments is well-versed in the rough world of foot controllers (its Keith McMillen SoftStep and Keith McMillen 12 Step foot controllers are among the most highly-regarded in the industry). The company’s designers know how to make a product that can survive getting stepped and stomped on constantly. The same robustness in design is found in the QuNeo. It’s ultra-thin, ultra-light, and really tough.

The QuNeo operates as a class-compliant device. Out of the box, it can be used to control music software simply by connecting it to a USB port. The QuNeo can easily be mapped to communicate MIDI or OSC information. It can also be used to control MIDI hardware with the addition of the Keith McMillen MIDI Expander, which is an external box that adapts the QuNeo’s USB MIDI into standard MIDI ports.

More advanced users will appreciate the Open Source Developers Kit, which enables you to write your own code for the QuNeo. There are no limits to what can be accomplished with this controller. Hackers, DJs, electronic musicians and experimentalists of all stripes can have a powerful new tool in their hands.

This is a unique product that first surfaced as a Kickstarter project. Not only was the development of the QuNeo fully funded within 24 hours, it quickly became the most funded music-technology project in Kickstarter history. As exciting as it sounds on paper, from all of the reporting done at the 2012 NAMM show, the QuNeo is far more impressive in person. Get your hands on one, and get deeper into your music.

Pad Sensors 16
Slider Sensors 9
Rotary Sensors 2
Switch Sensors 17
Multi-Color LEDs 251
Square Pad Velocity Levels 127
Dimensions 7.31 x 9.5 x 0.34″ (18.57 x 24.13 x 0.86cm)

QuNeo Features
Tactile Pads, Sliders, Rotary Sensors and Switches
Each of the 27 pads, sliders and rotary sensors are pressure, velocity, and location sensitive. Even the 17 switches respond to how hard you press.

LED Light Feedback
A remarkable lumination scheme combines variably diffusive elastomers with 251 multi-color LEDs providing visual feedback that is immediately responsive and delightfully informative. Man and machine are coupled through light, feel and sound.

Trigger Pads
16 square pads provide 127 levels of Velocity response. And X-Y location. And continuous pressure. For each pad. Times sixteen.

Rotary Sensors
2 rotary sensors allow you to scrub, trigger, stretch, pinch and play phrases and sound files, manipulate continuous controllers and more . Each rotary sensor measures angle, pressure and distance from the center.

Multi-touch Sliders
9 touch sensitive sliders can be mapped to fader and effects controls. LEDs within each slider act as VU meters or remind you where you were. Multi-touch lets you select a length between two fingers to set stereo locations or filter resonances. Tapping a slider can mute or toggle any track or function.

Switches
The switches are located in smart groupings to select samples, fader banks, and transport controls. Each of the switches can scan up and down through files at speeds variable with your touch. Great for quickly locating that perfect fill or telling your looper you really meant it.

The Size of an iPad
QuNeo is the size of an iPad and can fit in iPad accessories such as mic clips, stands and more.

Class Compliant and Open Source Development Kit
QuNeo works with USB, MIDI or OSC and will communicate with your favorite music software environments right out of the box. More advanced users and programmers can use the development kit and API to create their own code to respond to QuNeo’s sensor data. Hack away to control your world in ways never before possible!

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