«Hot Hand MIDI Expression Controller Users Guide Thank you for purchasing a Hot Hand MIDI- EXP Controller. The MIDI-EXP is a general purpose ...»
Note Control 2 mode requires one of the trigger modes to function. Every time the threshold is crossed a Note On MIDI message will be sent. The speed at which the threshold is crossed will determine the Velocity value of the Note On MIDI message to be sent. Using this mode effectively requires some time to carefully set the threshold, depth, and smoothing to get the desired response.
The expression output uses a 10kOhm digital potentiometer to simulate a passive expression pedal. Since there is only one expression output, it can only be used with one axis of the accelerometer at a time. The expression output uses whichever axis is currently selected using the Axis button. None of the settings in the Function Bank apply to the expression output.
However, when trigger mode is used with the expression output, the ramp parameters (start, stop and speed) will all apply to the output. All button functions (axis, trigger, invert, gain mode) apply to the signal on the expression output. When the footswitch is pressed and the unit is deactivated, the expression output will hold the last value that was set.
With the ability to exchange the tip and ring signals using the switch on the back panel of the MIDI-EXP, the expression output is designed to be flexible and work with most expression pedal inputs. However, expression inputs are not standardized by any means and users should check the manuals for their third party devices to understand what is expected at the expression input.
Normal mode (Continuous Control) example:
Here is an example of using the MIDI-EXP in normal mode (trigger mode off, invert off, normal gain mode). One common setup used is with a Digitech Whammy pitch shifting guitar pedal in the octave up mode. Both units should be powered up and connected with a MIDI cable. From the Whammy manual you can find that the MIDI message for controlling the position of the treadle is on Continuous Controller 11 (CC 11) and it varies from 0 to 127.
The goal is to set up the Whammy to respond to the X axis of the Hot Hand ring. Start by making sure that the X axis is currently selected with the Axis button. Since the whammy responds to CC 11, set the MIDI-EXP function to Continuous Controller (if it wasn’t already there) and use the encoder to select controller number 11. Next, press the footswitch to activate and start sending MIDI messages to control the pitch with the ring. If you’re not getting the entire octave range you can then increase the depth so that you can get the range you want with the desired amount of motion. If the sound is too jittery because the pitch is fluctuating with every movement of the sensor you can increase the smoothing to reduce that.
Trigger mode example:
The following an example of using the MIDI-EXP controller to a parameter with a triggered ramp.
Let’s say, you have the MIDI-EXP unit connected to the MIDI input of a processor that is running a Leslie effect that you can control the speed of by writing to CC 27 and you want to ramp between two speeds by making a quick gesture with the Hot Hand sensor.
First, editing the x axis controls, set the function to Continuous Controller and select CC 27 using the encoder and activate the unit. Next put the MIDI-EXP unit into trigger mode 1 by pressing the trigger button once. The first LED labeled “1” will be lit. The unit will be using the default threshold which is set to the midpoint of the x axis. Take your hand and point it at the floor then slowly raise it, when you cross the midpoint of the x axis (the current threshold), the MIDI output will begin to ramp and you should hear the LFO speed increase slowly over two seconds to a maximum value. Since the unit is in trigger mode 1, to get the LFO to ramp back to the minimum speed, you need to repeat the same motion again. Raising your hand from the bottom and crossing the threshold will start the ramp moving the other way. The unit is currently triggering when the sensor input goes from low to high. If you want to trigger the ramp as you move your hand from the up position to the down position, you can turn on the Invert function.
In most cases, you won’t want your output ramp to go from 0 to 127. In the case of the LFO it would go from being very slow to very fast and probably wouldn’t be desirable. You can adjust this by pushing the encoder to move to the Utility Bank and changing the ramp parameters.
First, adjust the ramp start to the desired slow LFO speed, let’s say a MIDI value of 38. Next, adjust the ramp stop to the desired high LFO speed of 97. If you don’t want the ramp from low to high to take quite so long, adjust the ramp speed to a higher value of 4 or so. As you adjust the ramp parameters, you can cross the threshold with the sensor and try out the new settings.
Now let’s try setting the unit to start the ramp with a specific motion. Having the threshold point be right in the middle of the Hot Hand range is not ideal for triggering the ramp with a quick gesture. The likelihood that you would cross that point unintentionally is pretty high. If you press and hold the footswitch for a couple of seconds, the unit will go into Set Threshold mode. Note that you can only edit the threshold when Trigger Modes 1 or 2 are selected! If you point the x axis of the sensor up at a 45 degree angle and while holding it there press the footswitch, then you’ve set a new threshold a much higher point where you are unlikely to trigger it accidentally. You can try out and verify the new threshold by moving the sensor through the full range of pointing down to pointing up until you cross the threshold point.
Since the Hot Hand sensor responds to acceleration, it will respond to both motion and gravity. Gravity is what causes the signal to change while slowly moving the orientation of the sensor. You can create the same response by moving the sensor quickly along whichever axis you’re currently using. So, by making a quick flick of your wrist with the sensor, you can generate enough acceleration to cross the new threshold point. By adjusting the depth and smoothing knobs you can finely tune the response of the sensor so you can trigger the ramp only when you want to with a specific motion like a flick of the wrist. Increasing the depth will mean that you have to move the sensor less to get to that threshold. Increasing the smoothing will eliminate fast transitions of the sensor but require more and more deliberate motions to hit the threshold and trigger the ramp.
The above example is also very useful with a Moogerfooger type analog effects pedal that features an expression input. In that case, use a TRS (stereo) ¼” cable to connect the MIDIEXP to an expression input.
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