Any Monome Grid Owners?

Been looking at monome’s gear for a while and I’m thinking of starting with the grid and one of there sequencer modules for eurorack. Will consider their Norns when it comes back into stock, or aleph if I can somehow find one…

Just want to make sure I’m getting something I want.

I kinda realize the community and machine is very relate-able to the organelle. But there seems to be a lot more technical stuff to the monome community.
Do you have to be a programming expert to own these things? There are pre-made applications out there for the devices, correct?

What I exactly want out of the grid is something to sequence a eurorack and something to generate interesting patterns and melodies. Maybe eventually, I could consider this to be a performance launch tool . I’ve seen deadelus do it this way and, it’s got me very intrigued.

I may pick one of the used ones up. But they are the older models from 2010. There is the new one they have in stock. But I’m investigating what the differences are.

One thing to keep in mind is that nothing is stored on the grid devices (versus organelle). You will need a computer or euro modules to use one.

I used to have a grayscale grid. The differences between the models can be found on their website I think. The main difference is the newer ones have variable brightness which I think is necessary when using the eurorack modules.

There are many pre-existing apps/Max patches out there to use with the grid and computer and that output MIDI (from computer).

In my opinion, you should be interested in Max patching/programming to enjoy the most out of the grid. It really is an open-ended box of buttons to use as an interface to an application. Your imagination is the limit.

Why not join their forum to learn more:
Lines

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I would do some research on this on Lines - if I recall, with a non-varibright grid, the Eurorack modules (or at least Ansible) will simply display a non-lit button for anything programmed to be dimmed. This makes some of the applications/modes perfectly usable, and others harder to use but still usable.

If you want to try before you buy and are comfortable with building from source, Monome grid + the original trilogy of Eurorack apps have been ported to VCV Rack: https://github.com/Dewb/monome-rack

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Long time monome 128 user here, still have the walnut version with no variable brightness.

No programm skills needed, there are enough apps at monome.org for instant use.
It is not plug and play, but once you figured out how to use it (Max runtime/I.P. confg.) it is as easy as using any other software.

Set up is easy, meanwhile much easier than some years ago.

Besides the OT, my monome 128 is still to be considered one of the most inspiring gear I ever bought.
If you want to generate interesting patterns and melodies, the monome is the midi controller to go for, very unique!

One of the apps I am using is this one:
http://www.markeats.com/sequencer/
Download, connect, start, have fun :wink:

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thanks rennweg,

I saw a walnut 64 grid on sale on reverb I might cop for a very good deal. Defiantly wanna start with using it on my computer and run a few Max programs on it. Eventually down the road I plan to get a eurorack set up and have this be the main sequencer with the medowphysics module.

If a 64 suits your needs go for it.

But don´t take the oldest and heaviest used ones, the pads are really high quality pads, but they also get older like everything else on other hardware does.
Maybe buy a used one at monomer.org directly, it is a great community and people are allways selling their gear there.

A walnut normally needs a power supply, but you can equip it with an addition for USB power use by yourself or a professional you know.

This is the best advice. The Lines community is something special indeed.

Sending an email to tehn directly works as well. He’s very nice and helpful.

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I think I’m going to build a monome 256 clone based on this info.

Has anybody built one of these? I considered buying the 128 official one but they aren’t available right now and are pretty highly priced. Plus I’m more than capable of making one of these.

I also really want a 256 and those aren’t really available or are hard to find. If I like it well enough I may even get an aluminum front panel made (or make it) and I can easily carve a walnut base for myself.

I think I’ll do the RGB boards for possible future code expansion or just for making the pads different colors that suite my eyeballs.

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I think you should ask yourself what you want from a 256 that you can’t do with another grid. what you’ll be running on it, basically. it is quite a lot of buttons to deal with at once, and you may not really need it.

my main grid use was mlr. but I ran a heavily modified version with a lot of the interface elements tied to buttons on the grid. so the top half of the 256 would be normal mlr loop slicing and the bottom half would be controlling everything else the app can do. probably the best use of the 256 I ever came to. lots of other times, it was overkill.

I’m sure you’ll have fun building it and love it, if you go ahead with it! just giving advice so you don’t get mesmerized by “must have all the buttons” mode and get more than you’ll use.

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I’m mostly looking to use it with terms for writing repeating melodic elements where I can sort of change the sequences live.

The goal is to use it for recording a lot variations that I can use as material for finishing songs.

I mostly want to have a very large pitch range available immediately in front of me (which is why 256 seems the most appealing).

Most of the programs would run on half of it if they aren’t compatible with 256. I also may look at writing some of my own Max patches for it eventually too.

I don’t have experience with it (monome) so I appreciate your input regardless. I may look more in depth at how 128 might work for me as well.

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I owned both. It works, it’s cheaper but it doesn’t feel like a real monome. Pads are more stiff, plastic vs aluminium enclosure, it’s bigger and lights are less pleasant than the real one.

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I still want to get a Monome Norns so I can make use of the Oxi One’s Grid mode. The sound of the patches is a bit ‘twee’ for my liking but it kinda puts me in a Four Tet frame of mind which is nice. Gotta love the graphics on those patches too, they seem really beautiful and inspiring.

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Thanks for the input. I figured that it wouldn’t be as nice. I’ll be making my own case, so that can be as nice as I want. Hopefully the buttons aren’t too bad.

I made a CNC machine a while back which also can be a laser cutter (diode only). I think I could even cut my own aluminum front panel (In theory that’s the maximum of my homemade CNC though).

I’m really just using it in the studio for generating ideas. After that everything will be recorded as audio and it will be put to the side until the next track.

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yeah that’s another important question: are the apps you want to use even supported for 256? otherwise, you’d have to modify them. or maybe you can run two apps at once on the 256 split in half, possibly with some modding.

128 is also good. but hell even the 8x8 grids are super fun. maybe build one of those and see how you like the workflow, integration and results, while you keep an eye out for a used 256?

I’m the opposite. I only ever used it live (with one exception). and since I don’t play live any more (and likely wouldn’t use one if I were to), I have a 256 and a 40h SE that I haven’t touched in like a decade. but I have too much nostalgia attached to them to ever let them go.

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If you’re into max/MSP and if you want to create your own apps (based or not on existing apps) it’s a lot of fun. A lot of headaches as well.
I use my 256 with my own MLRDJ app for ‘djing’. Imagining this and making it was (and still is) an adventure and playing with it is still great fun.

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Just for comparison, the monome grid pads are slightly smaller. Pressing pads feels similar nice.

Good luck building yours, I always wanted a 256. I still should have some old Max patches I downloaded very long ago and there should be some 256 versions somewhere as well…, need to check, but building your own is certainly better.
I still use pages (platform for stacking many apps together) once every while with Molar vst (only vst that exist for monome grid). Too bad Molar has been discontinued, it is still my Nr. 1 ever app/VST and has been developed by Steve Duda (Serum) back then.

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anyway to emulate with a deluge?

this is really exciting and i say go for it! if you weren’t interested in making your own max patches i’d say 128 is considered standard (why 64s and 256s from monome have not been made for years)

tho frustrating for people who prefer the larger square surface, the side benefit is that almost all app development has shifted to refining UI for 128 especially for sequencers

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emulate what? and I’m not sure I can help as I don’t know the deluge at all.