MIDI mappers: mapping your controller to your brain
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 17
  1. #1
    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Maida Vegas, London
    Posts
    2,816

    Default MIDI mappers: mapping your controller to your brain

    So I'm at the design stage of writing my ultimate controller mapping. This is the stage where decisions now will affect future development. Changing my mind and starting again will require lots of effort. So my question is - what decisions to you mappers make when mapping your brain to your controller?

    - deck layout. ABCD or CABD? How does the physical layout of your controls reflect the layout of your software in your head?

    - old school or new school? Do you want to lay it out like vinyl/CDJ's with a mixer in the centre? Or have you moved on to a new level where those old paradigms no longer apply?

    - to mirror or not to mirror? relates to the above point. Do you want your controls to laid out like (from left to right).

    A B C D / D C B A or
    A A B B / C C D D

    - complex but deep or simple and intuitive? Do you want your mapping to be able to do EVERYTHING in the software at the expense of being easier to use, or do you want it to be rigidly fixed but intuitive. Relating to this; shift or no shift. Is it okay to have to 'play chords' on your controller to access functions.

    Thoughts welcome...
    Rob
    Last edited by lethal_pizzle; 05-04-2011 at 12:26 PM. Reason: Typo
    DJTT Nu Disco Mix Train Vol 1
    beats and balearic bobs in north-west london
    iTunes podcast
    soundcloud

  2. #2
    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Maida Vegas, London
    Posts
    2,816

    Default

    Here are my current thoughts on the matter:

    - deck layout: CABD. I'm going to aspirate my controller to work with 2 track decks and two sample decks. In my mind I've got 2 virtual CDJ's in the middle with my samplers on the outside.

    - old school or new school? old school with a new school twist. I want my mapping to be instantly useable for anyone who has used decks and a mixer before. The new school stuff will be accessible via other modes which won't get in the way of the 'basic' modes.

    - To mirror? yes for the reasons above.

    - complex or simple? Tricky one. Hopefully as simple as possible that people will be able to do the basics of mixing without getting lost or pressing a button and stopping the music, but with complex stuff underneath. I want my mapping to be used by people other than myself so there will always be a bit of a trade-off here. People use DJ software in different ways.

    - shift? Inevitable. However, it is my intention for the user to be able to use basic transport, loop, hotcue, fx and EQ functions without having to use a shift, and for the shift to do more advanced stuff. For example 'Loop' will set a loop at starting at the current position and 'Shift + Loop' will set a backwards loop ending at the current position.

    Cheeers,
    Rob
    DJTT Nu Disco Mix Train Vol 1
    beats and balearic bobs in north-west london
    iTunes podcast
    soundcloud

  3. #3
    Tech Guru sarasin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Cape Town
    Posts
    5,082

    Default

    THIS!!!

    I had a similar experince with my APC80.

    The whole ABCD...or CABD

    I went with CABD.....works better with TT's at the outside.

    But yeah.....I found Traktor's Midi section helpful in switching these decks around.....had to tweak a lil....but got it goin!
    APC80:STR8-100's+Ortofon Concorde Scratch\Electro:ButterRugz:TSP2-NI Audio4DJ:Xone22+Innofader:MacBook Pro 15"
    www.soundcloud.com/djsarasin
    www.youtube.com/adriansarasin

  4. #4
    Tech Guru
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    2,019

    Default

    I map things in whatever way it makes my work flow as easy and streamlined as possible - even if that means I need to give up some features and tools.

    For me - More things mapped, more shift buttons, more layers = more chances to mess up, more time messing with a controller vs. enjoying myself, more things to remember

    As simple as I can make it for what I "NEED" and not what I can do.

    For me less is more most of the time. I understand that there is something cool about mapping a controller to do 10,000 things but what at what expense.

    I just remapped a VCI-100 and I deleted Fader FX and added 4 super knobs. Now the 4 preset buttons I turn on my effects with. Much easier, no shift, no dual use of a fader, no risk of messing up and I have 4 knobs that I press one button and just turn.

    I find worrying less about the controller allows me to worry more about music and people having fun.
    SSL - DJM 800 - Technic 1200's - X1 - ITCH - NS6 - VCI-300

  5. #5
    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Maida Vegas, London
    Posts
    2,816

    Default

    @sarasin... yeah mate! There are a couple of different ways of chopping and changing if you decide to go with the other. You can use the Controller Manager in Traktor to swap A > B and so on. My mapping is going to have 30+ logical templates though so a bit arduous! The other thing I can do is just switch around the MIDI cc numbers in Maschine. When I release my mapping to the world though I'll probably do both ABCD and CABD. It's gonna be a nightmare!

    Cheers,
    Rob
    Last edited by lethal_pizzle; 05-04-2011 at 12:11 PM.
    DJTT Nu Disco Mix Train Vol 1
    beats and balearic bobs in north-west london
    iTunes podcast
    soundcloud

  6. #6
    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Maida Vegas, London
    Posts
    2,816

    Default

    @haze324... absolutely mate! When I got a VCI I downloaded the djtechtools .tsi and then stripped out all the fader FX to make a custom version. With my latest mapping however I want lots of people to use it so there are tradeoffs... I want DJ's with zero computer experience to be able to pick it up and be able to use it in as many different ways as they like without them having to remap it or for it to be too complex for them to use... the best way I can see for this at the moment is to have:

    - different 'flavours' of mapping available
    - 'basic' and 'advanced' versions of each 'flavour'

    Cheers,
    Rob
    DJTT Nu Disco Mix Train Vol 1
    beats and balearic bobs in north-west london
    iTunes podcast
    soundcloud

  7. #7
    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Maida Vegas, London
    Posts
    2,816

    Default

    Gah! Posted a cerebral topic and then put a typo in the heading! Mods, any chance of changing 'you brain' to 'your brain'?
    DJTT Nu Disco Mix Train Vol 1
    beats and balearic bobs in north-west london
    iTunes podcast
    soundcloud

  8. #8
    Retired DJTT Moderator DvlsAdvct's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Jersey/NYC
    Posts
    4,854

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lethal_pizzle View Post
    Gah! Posted a cerebral topic and then put a typo in the heading! Mods, any chance of changing 'you brain' to 'your brain'?
    Fixed

    Also, as to the topic

    I find it best to map the controller with the specifics of whatever software you're using in mind. That way the user can look up and down and understand exactly what they're looking at. This is, at least, how I conceptualize it. It's also why mapping a standard controller style to Ableton can be much more difficult as it goes across and not up and down AND across like Traktor.

    As far as complexity goes, I've found that the best mappings include a LOT of complexity on the backend to keep the frontend as graceful and intuitive as possible. New DJs aren't going to be as focused on layers of controls, but having them isn't necessarily a bad thing.

    The most important factor of mapping a controller to me is making sure everything has a certain workflow and logic, and that commands avoid as much redundancy as possible. Having two places to Play/Cue can lead to either confusion or mistakes.
    It's the FAQ. Read it.

    My Mixes, Mashups and Rants

    Divided we stand
    United we fall

  9. #9
    Tech Guru lethal_pizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Maida Vegas, London
    Posts
    2,816

    Default

    @DvlsAdvct - thanks for the fix. Yes, I guess the interface of the software has a lot to do with the mapping. Traktor, for example, I think lends itself to CABD because that is the way the 4 decks on the screen map in my mind.

    As regards complexity, I guess you can 'have your cake and eat it' sometimes. For example:

    The 'Loop' button (we will use Maschine in this example)
    Simply tapping it could toggle of an auto-loop of 8 beats. A lot of people can use this and nothing else.

    However; holding the button down acts as a shift and could allow you to use other buttons (eg the buttons above the LCD screens) to directly access 8 different loop lengths.
    An example of simplicity and complexity at the same time.

    Cheers,
    Rob
    Last edited by lethal_pizzle; 05-04-2011 at 01:51 PM.
    DJTT Nu Disco Mix Train Vol 1
    beats and balearic bobs in north-west london
    iTunes podcast
    soundcloud

  10. #10
    Retired DJTT Moderator DvlsAdvct's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Jersey/NYC
    Posts
    4,854

    Default

    Exactly. I was playing with a Launchpad setup that allowed you 4 quick loop values, and if you held the shift key you got 4 smaller values, but you always had loop up and down. It's just a question of elegance, really.
    It's the FAQ. Read it.

    My Mixes, Mashups and Rants

    Divided we stand
    United we fall

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •