Patching on a computer involves plugging something into something else virtually. In this video tutorial, you can extend that by adding a physical knob to control your custom creations, for Max/MSP (and Max for Live).

It’s just a quick tip, but I know this gets asked a lot. (Greetings, students – happy spring semester to you!) And there’s something really fun about seeing a knob in the real world controlling something. Bonus points for using a toilet paper roll as a custom “housing.”

It’s also nice seeing this accomplished in the all-new Max 7.

And this is just the start, part of a project extending beyond Max/MSP to free tools like Pure Data, JavaScript, and Python. The basic idea is a set of techniques for real-world control, backed by free code/patch examples and video tutorials. The creator explains:

Arduivis is a bi-directional communication paradigm for programming languages & microcontrollers. The purpose of this project is to explore and expand the interconnectivity possibilities of music, art and science. The general idea revolves around using an Arduino, or a microcontroller with serial capability, as a communication hub. This hub can be programmed to handle with several types of interactions from a selected programming language. Currently, this project is compatible with MaxMSP, Pure Data, Python and NodeJS.

More videos include this Max-to-light example: “Controlling an LED in Max with an Arduino in under 40 seconds”

And for users of other environments…

Here’s NodeJS:

http://cskonopka.github.io/arduivis/nodejs

And Python:

http://cskonopka.github.io/arduivis/python

And, including free patch downloads, Pure Data (no Pd video yet):

http://cskonopka.github.io/arduivis/puredata

  • DPrty

    Whats the cheapest kit to set up a usb knob … needs to be much cheaper then arduino.

    • wo3

      I’ve gotten arduinos for like $5. The knob casings are going to be the most expensive part (besides the computer) lol

      • DPrty

        I was thinking they were way more then that … I see the Usb Host Shield for 27.12 ??

        • rimwolf

          The Arduino Uno, which is what I believe those examples are using, is $25, and has a USB device port on board, no additional shield necessary. (That “usbmodemfa131” component in the MAX/MSP example has the name the Uno uses for its virtual serial port over USB.) There do appear to be Chinese clones available for as little as $5.

          The smallest Arduino compatible I know of with USB is the PJRC Teensy 2.0 at $16; you’d have to modify the code samples to use their USB Serial library, and the virtual serial port would have a different name on the computer side. (The modifications are straightforward.)

  • DPrty

    Whats the cheapest kit to set up a usb knob … needs to be much cheaper then arduino.

    • wo3

      I’ve gotten arduinos for like $5. The knob casings are going to be the most expensive part (besides the computer) lol

      • DPrty

        I was thinking they were way more then that … I see the Usb Host Shield for 27.12 ??

        • rimwolf

          The Arduino Uno, which is what I believe those examples are using, is $25, and has a USB device port on board, no additional shield necessary. (That “usbmodemfa131” component in the MAX/MSP example has the name the Uno uses for its virtual serial port over USB.) There do appear to be Chinese clones available for as little as $5.

          The smallest Arduino compatible I know of with USB is the PJRC Teensy 2.0 at $16; you’d have to modify the code samples to use their USB Serial library, and the virtual serial port would have a different name on the computer side. (The modifications are straightforward.)

  • DPrty

    Whats the cheapest kit to set up a usb knob … needs to be much cheaper then arduino.

    • wo3

      I’ve gotten arduinos for like $5. The knob casings are going to be the most expensive part (besides the computer) lol

      • DPrty

        I was thinking they were way more then that … I see the Usb Host Shield for 27.12 ??

        • rimwolf

          The Arduino Uno, which is what I believe those examples are using, is $25, and has a USB device port on board, no additional shield necessary. (That “usbmodemfa131” component in the MAX/MSP example has the name the Uno uses for its virtual serial port over USB.) There do appear to be Chinese clones available for as little as $5.

          The smallest Arduino compatible I know of with USB is the PJRC Teensy 2.0 at $16; you’d have to modify the code samples to use their USB Serial library, and the virtual serial port would have a different name on the computer side. (The modifications are straightforward.)

  • Patrick M

    Yes thank you so much! Whoever made these videos is a genious!!!

  • Patrick M

    Yes thank you so much! Whoever made these videos is a genious!!!

  • Patrick M

    Yes thank you so much! Whoever made these videos is a genious!!!