MIDI Drum Pad (aka Koala 1) Final Post – Reflections


Functionally, I’m really happy with how my project turned out.  It syncs up seamlessly with any music software that accepts MIDI ins, and can transmit a variety of easy-to-change MIDI signals.  The response time is also super quick – unnoticeable.  Even when two pads are being struck at the same time, the Koala 1 works amazingly.  The pads have also stood up to all the abuse thus far, and still look pretty nice.  I can’t wait to use the Koala 1 to make some sick beats!


Aesthetically, I’m also really satisfied with how the project turned out.  The Koala 1 is sleek, organized, and consistent.  The wood stain goes well with the black pads and nameplate, and if I can get some LED’s to diffuse through the acrylic body, it’ll look amazing.  The end product has definitely inspired me to design and build some more MIDI instruments in the future.


First, I’d like to create a PCB for all of the electronics.  This’ll prevent everything from getting jumbled around, and will end up saving a lot of space.  Second, I’d like to create a hysteresis band for each of the sensors.  This will allow me to hook the sensors up to digital pins on the Teensy instead of analog pins.  With digital pins, each of the sensors can be read via an interrupt instead of using looping conditional statements.  This will allow for even less latency (even though its pretty much unnoticeable now), and will make the project feel more professional.  Finally, I’d like to figure out how to hook up more LED’s to the system.  Currently, I can only hook up 2 LED’s without the controller freaking out.  This isn’t enough to illuminate the nameplate, let alone dissipate light through the body.  Hooking up an external power supply would easily solve the problem, but it would be more rewarding to figure out a way to do it using only the Teensy.  I’ll figure it out this summer.




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