After seeing the images by AdamJay with the MIDI Fighter Twister, i decided to have some fun and check out some options possible using Palette Gear to fill in the “AK Wasteland”. I pretty quickly came up with these 5 different layouts; but there’s ton’s of other ways to put this thing together.
The three sorts of parts that comes with Palette Gear, beside the single USB interface/power/display block, is an arcade button, an encoder that can also be pressed, and a generous 6 cm slider. They hook together with strong magnets, and electrical connectors. The software recognizes how things are arranged. It’s all very flexible, except for the sliders which can sometimes be limited in arrangement due to the position of the connector.
You can mix together MIDI output (one channel only unfortunately) CCs and notes, with keyboard outputs to a foreground program (like Ableton Live), and commands to switch profiles which will change the way all the controls are configured. But you can’t send MIDI Program Change directly. This all has to run through a PC or Mac, with their interface program running. Power comes over USB.
I don’t use Palette Gear with the AK, but i do use it with a rather plain but nice Yamaha piano style controller, and on it’s own.
The arrangements i put together in this picture all fit on the AK, the larger ones overhang, even over the top of the keys in biggest arrangement, but i’d say they all “fit”.
So Palette Gear has a lot of strengths and some short-comings too.
The three controls: