The Ergodex DX-1 keyboard is a custom keyboard for adding up to 25 macro-powered keystrokes in any arrangement you like. Engadget, Music Thing, and Gizmodo are all talking about it. I’ve found out some more details that will be important to musicians:

  • It’s Windows-only. Ergodex are “investigating” Mac or Linux support, their marketing person told me. There are some fairly involved drivers and configuration software; I should be in touch with their technical person soon and will let you know if there’s any solid word on other platforms.
  • This is macro heaven. The big advantage of the Ergodex is the ability to create complex macros for whatever you might do. There’s even a hardware macro record button. Possibilities for music: keyboard shortcuts for your favorite DAW, or complex non-linear triggering and configuration with Ableton Live.
  • Totally custom — at least for keys. Here’s the wild part: the keys are apparently stick-on affairs, attaching via adhesive to a clear tray. You could put a template diagram behind the clear overlay.

    It’s a dream for gamers, but if you pay attention to what gamers like about it you can glean some handy uses for music, at least as a supplementary control surface — adding additional control beyond your (musical) keyboard, faders, and knobs. For an obsessively thorough review, check out Tom’s Hardware Guide. Ergodex has promised me a review unit in the next couple of weeks. I’ll let you know how it gets along with my PC running Live, Reason, and Project 5 v2.