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MIDI 26-Way Drum Controller




This design is a 26-way MIDI/USB drum pad system with the velocity byte fixed for 10 input drum switches and a 16-way velocity sensitive circuit, providing a full (0-127) velocity range using piezo sensors. The drums are pre-selected to the MIDI outputs 35-50 for the piezos and 51-60 for the switches. The MIDI drum selections are available for General MIDI drums.


It provides MIDI data which has to be sent to a drum/synthesiser or sound module. The velocity byte is dependent on how hard the piezo transducer is hit.  The drum choices, and the MIDI transmit channel are assigned in the  program. However, normally the drum sounds are assigned to MIDI channel 10.



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PRICE:  €65.00




The 26-Way drum inputs to MIDI Output unit utilizes:

  • An Arduino Mega board including a suitable pre-programmed Atmega microcontroller,
  • A 2.1mm power socket, and associated LED, 
  • 16 inputs are velocity sensitive, providing a full (0-127) velocity range,
  • 10 inputs for momentary action switches, giving a fixed velocity output,
  • A MIDI 5-pin DIN output socket,
  • Each input (1-26) is pre-selectable on programming to a particular MIDI drum selection ,



The 26-Way drum inputs to MIDI Output unit requires:

  • A 9v battery or equivalent DC power source,
  • The circuit consists of the MIDI drum interface.
  • Suitable external 16 piezo-electric transducers,
  • 32 off 1M Ohm resistors
  • 16 off IN4148 diodes,
  • 16 off 100 nF capacitors,
  • Suitable 10 push-to-make switches


Circuit Schematic:

A circuit schematic of the MIDI drum interface shows the Input/Output connections. The circuit schematic for the Arduino MEGA is also available. 


NOTE: Any unused analog inputs should be connected to ground (GND) otherwise they will pick up noise and produce spurious outputs.



The MIDI OUT connection uses 5-Pin 180 degree DIN sockets. Note that the MIDI Out socket is polarised and the correct pins should be used. The MIDI output is set to MIDI Channel 10, which is the standard MIDI drum channel. This unit can work in standard MIDI mode, at a MIDI Baud rate of 31250. 


Power Supply:

External power can come either from an AC-to-DC adapter or battery. The adapter can be connected by plugging a 2.1mm center-positive plug into the board's power jack. Leads from a battery can be inserted in the Gnd and Vin pin headers of the POWER connector. A low dropout regulator provides improved energy efficiency.


The board can operate on an external supply of 7 to 20 volts. If supplied with less than 7V, however, the 5V pin may supply less than five volts and the board may be unstable. If using more than 12V, the voltage regulator may overheat and damage the board. The recommended range is 7 to 12 volts.


Note that with the Arduino Mega the power input selection (USB/EXT.) is automatically selected.