Tuesday, 1 November 2022

ROLAND VT-4 Midi Remote Control

I needed a way to remotely trigger my Roland VT-4 voice transformer easily. So I came up with this remote control box that connects via 5-Pin Midi to the VT-4. It uses a 4-Position rotary switch to select presets and an Arcade Button to trigger them. Here's how you can build one!

Download the code and schematic HERE

Parts List (with Amazon Links)

1 - Arduino Nano

1 - 4 Position Rotary Switch OFF/ON/ON/ON

1 - Arcade Button with LED

1 - Panel Mount MIDI Jack

2 - 1/4" Mono Phone Jacks

3 - 220 Ohm Resistors 1/4 Watt

1 - Power Jack 2.1mm

1 - Adafruit Perma-Proto Board (Half-Size)

1 - Hammond 1590XXBK Enclosure

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Dave Makes Your Dreams Come True - Strymon BigSky Remote

Dave Makes Your Dreams Come True is a show where I take a random viewer request and make it reality! In this episode I am building a custom controller for a Strymon BigSky reverb for a viewer named Hank.

Download the code and schematic HERE

Parts List (with Amazon Links)

1 - Arduino Nano 5V

2 - SPST Footswitches

1 - Midi Jack

4 - 220 Ohm Resistors

2 - LEDs

1 - Power Jack

Sunday, 1 May 2022

Build a USB Midi Footswitch

Download the files for this project HERE

The best part of being a maker is being able to build the exact solution to your problem. I have spent the last few years building a musical playground that allows me to create jams on the fly when I livestream on my Twitch Channel. I've been slowly refining this process and learning how to be a one man band. I recently got to perform at Synthfest which put my skills to the test.

I discovered a great piece of looping software called Endlesss that greatly simplifies capturing my ideas in real time. You just play and hit a button to capture a loop. This works great - until I pick up my guitar. Then my lack of free hands makes looping an awkward proposition. The solution - a footswitch!

I designed a simple four button footswitch that puts out a Midi CC command when the switch is pressed. This is mapped into Endlesss to record the loops. Simple! I call it the EDLS-FS (pronounced as "Endless FS"). It's a very simple project that makes a great introduction into Midi controller design.

Watch this video for build instructions:

Parts List (with Amazon Affiliate Links)

1 - Hammond 1590BX2-BK Enclosure

1 - Teensy LC Microcontroller

4 - SPST Momentary - Normally OPEN Footswitches

1 - USB B to Micro USB Panel Mount Cable

2 - Rolls of 22AWG - Stranded Wire

Tools Used

- Soldering Iron

- Drill with 1/2" Stepped Drill Bit

- Automatic Center Punch

Thursday, 6 May 2021

Project C.H.E.E.T.A.H.


The goal with project CHEETAH is to build a box that makes you sound like a Synth Wizard without really knowing what you are doing. All you need to do is press a pedal (Major, Minor, Dominant) and ideas of that type will flow from your fingers.

Watch these videos for a full demonstration!

When you're ready to build one you can find the code and schematics at my GitHub Page 

Parts List (with Amazon affiliate links)

1 - Arduino Nano (clone version)
1 - 6N138 Optocoupler
1 - 1n914 Diode
2 -  5 Pin Midi Jack
3 - 220 Ohm Resistor
1 - 1K Ohm Resistor
1 - 470 Ohm Resistor
3 - Footswitch - SPST Momentary
1 - Adafruit Perma-Proto 1/2 Sized Breadboard
1 - Chip Socket - 8 Pin
1 - Header - 2 Pin - (or cut from longer Breakaway type)
1 - Jumper - 2 Pin
1 - Hammond 1590DD Aluminum Enclosure - Black preferred
1 - DC Barrel Jack - 2.1mm
4 - Rivets - 1/8" Aluminum - 1/4" Grip
2 - M3 PCB Standoffs - 10mm
4 - M3 x 6 - Button Head Bolts
4 - Rubber Feet - Adhesive

Tuesday, 2 February 2021


In the last installment we decided to use the built-in 12 Bit DAC that comes with the Teensy 3.2 board. For the prototype I decided to try something different and came up with a Gold Edition of the TS-1.

You can download the code for this new version HERE

TEENSY-Synth EXTRA: Do we need the Audio Board?

 Here's an update for the Teensy-Synth project. The original project used the Teensy Audio Adaptor Board for it's audio output. This provided 16-Bit audio at 44.1 Khz.

The Teensy 3.2 also has a built-in DAC providing 12-Bit audio at 44.1 Khz so I wondered if this was suitable for out synth project. Watch the video for the results.

Thursday, 30 April 2020

Build a Mute Button for Discord

Prevent embarrassing audio mishaps on your next voice conference with the TALK-R - a mute button for Discord! It also does Push-To-Talk and has a foot-switch input for gamers.

DOWNLOAD the Schematic and Code HERE

Parts List:

1 - Teensy LC
1 - Arcade button with LED
1 - Toggle Switch ON-OFF-ON
1 - 1/4" Phone Jack - Mono
1 - 220 Ohm Resistor
1 - USB B to USB Micro Cable
4 - M3 x 6mm Screw 
4 - M3 Heat Set Threaded Insert - McMaster-Carr (94180A333)