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Is it possible to control a light system with a drum machine and MIDI?

I know this has to somehow be possible but I just haven't been able to find anything on it. It seems like such a basic idea for controlling lights especially for DJs.

ionia237 years ago
As a matter of fact YES there is a way to do this without having to purchase a DMX controller.  I have constructed a rather nifty 4-channel (4 power outlet) lighting controller driven by a drum machine.  I use a sequencer from a laptop to send midi note events to the drum machine and I use the audio as a trigger to open voltage gates for the outlets.  Works really well.

I haven't had time to write up the instructable for it and I'll need to give appropriate credit to the authors of several other instructables that helped me 'fill in the blanks'.

As soon as I can post it you'll see 'one way' you can do it.

Truth be said, if money isn't really an object, purchasing a lighting controller capable of controlling analog and DMX devices is truly the way to go in terms of convenience.  There are some really affordable ones out there.  It's just a question of how much control do you need?
DMX is one option and is probably the most suited for your needs.

Heres another option, too:
If you are more into software, you can make some really cool visuals with VJ software like Arkaos Grand VJ.
http://www.arkaos.net/product/index.php?catid=1&pid=1001&iid=42

You can use it along with a midi keyboard or through music production software like ableton live, logoc etc.

Of course youll need to buy a projector and all the software, which can be very expensive... but i think the results are more interesting than just blinking lights.

gmxx7 years ago
yes. the interface is called DMX. you have to buy some addon hardware.