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Ribbon Controller for Pitchbend

edited October 2013 in Hardware


I have a Kurzweil ribbon controller. I was considering buying a Brain JR to convert this to USB midi. Can the brain be configured to use a ribbon controller as a pitchbending device? The desired behaviour being that you can play a note on a keyboard, then press on the ribbon's center and bend the note either way. And then the bend returns to zero when you lift your finger. Also a "relative" mode would be desirable (i.e. the bend starts wherever you place your finger on the ribbon).




  • I'm not sure how those ribbon controllers work. Do you have a link to a data sheet?

  • Hi Mark:

    I don't have a data sheet per se. But I found a web site where someone built a CVS module for the ribbon.

    The ribbon has an RJ12 connector on it. Apparently it has 3 zones of about 20k each. A Kurzweil keyboard can configure the ribbon with 3 zones or one large continuous zone. Personally I'm looking to use it with one continuous zone.



  • I don't think this will interface well with our brains, since it is not a pure analog component.

    Have you seen these?

    This will connect directly with our brains, and its one long strip.

  • Thanks for the suggestion.

    If you use this for pitchbend, can the Brain be configured to do a pitchbend from the center of the ribbon and then return to a zero bend when the finger is lifted? I can understand that this would happen with a pitchwheel because the wheel itself returns to the center. But the ribbon would go to (I think) zero resistance when the finger is lifted, so it seems that the software would have to handle this scenario.


  • You are correct that you would need the wheel to actually return on its own, via spring or similar.

    So this pot would not work like a pitch wheel, or like a true fader. It will snap to zero when released.

  • I realize this is an old thread but I'm looking at how to get the strips on the Guitarwing to do a similar thing. How do we get the strip to snap back to zero? and is it possible to set it up to revert to the zero position in the center of the strip so you could bend up or down with a snapback to zero? The Weeel app for iOS devices does something similar to this and the strip on Ableton PUSH device does the centering on the strip thing. Any ideas? 

  • Thanks Moon, 

    I get your meaning re: the ON/OFF touch capability. I can't think of a way to make that work for mimicking the behaviour of a spring-loaded pitchbend wheel though. Is it possible?

    Regardless, I'm sure many users are looking forward to November and new GW features! It's been too long :)
  • Any word on that November GW firmware update?

  • Excellent. Keenly waiting :)

  • Hi Everyone,

    Unfortunately, while deleting hundreds of pages of spam today, I deleted my own posts.
    As I previously had stated in this thread, this firmware update is due about 2 weeks from now.
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