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Brain Jr with a softpot for different notes

edited September 2014 in Hardware


For my first build I am trying to add some midi controls to my guitar. 

I am trying to figure out the best way to use a brain jr to translate the note and/or cc data from a softpot to different notes in Ableton.  I am able to get use a pitch modifier to to alter the messages, but that requires using another midi button to trigger the note, and the softpot to alter it to different pitches.  I'd love to be able to do it all with the softpot!  Many thanks for any ideas! 


  • You can use the Brain Jr. editor to set the softpot to FSR mode. Then it will output a note and cc. You can set the cc to control the pitch and use the note message to fire it! Download the editor here:

    Brain V2 / Jr. Configure v1.07

    | Windows

  • edited September 2014

    I was thinking that that is how it would/should work, but it doesn't seem to!  I have the softpot installed and set as an fsr (I've tried mode 1 and 4 to get note and cc data) mapped in ableton to a midi pitch control.  When I touch the soft pot I see the pitch control changing based on where I touch it.  Adding an instrument after gets me sounds, but they don't change based on the changes to the pitch knob. 

    If I set it up so that I trigger the note with another controller, and use the soft pot only to adjust the pitch, it works perfectly. 


    I've tried to keep repeating this to troubleshoot and different notes come out randomly.  Could be a problem with the softpot?  As per the livid video, I just have the softpot inserted into the analog pin bank with no resistor.  Is that correct? 

  • For the best signal from a softpot you will want to add in a resistor and capacitor, both sit between signal and ground as close the the softpot as possible.

    The resistor value is 10K Ohm
    The capacitor value is  .01uF

  • Cool!  I added a .01uf cap (all I had on hand) and it already seems more stable. 

    Seems like the issue might be that the note on message and the CC message (which controls the pitch) arrive in Ableton at the same time?  Meaning the note happens before or concurrently with the pitch change, which is why it doesn't change accordingly with the pitch parameter.   Ideas?  haha

  • Yes the cap will stabilize it, and the resistor will decrease the fall time when you let off.

    Hmm.. my first thought is a max4live device to delay the note on message.

  • Yup -- that's where I ended up and it seems to work!  I have been doing my testing with a short softpot (which makes it hard to hit different pitches reliably) but am going to order a 300mm one and will report back. 

    For anyone in a similar boat:

    Regarding the different fsr settings -- I can't seem to find any explanation about the differences between the floor, centers, and ceilings.  Is there somewhere you can point me to? 

    Thanks for all the help!

  • Floor is the lowest amount of signal that triggers a message. Ceiling is the amount of signal required to trigger the highest midi message (127). Center is the space in between.

    FSR types 1-3 mirror 4-6 in the messages they send. The only difference is the center range. I'd say play with the 2 settings big center and no center to see which you like better.

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