MIDI Control Surface of your dreams

Hi there,

I’ve been thinking on this topic for a while, and I’m in the process of designing my own controller. There are some great products around (Nuage, Avid-Euphonix, Mackie, and so on), but for me there are some common mistakes, typically in the “cheapest” units:

  • If they are full featured, they are VERY VERY expensive.
  • No user serviceable, but Mackie’s faders (that used to be pretty bad).
  • The not-that-expensive (but not cheap) and the cheap ones lack of controls of an ergonomic size, and most of their features are buried under layers of key combinations.
  • They mostly look like a toy. Clients like to see buttons, lights, etc.
  • Lack of proper meters.

What do you think?

If you could add a feature, what would you like to have?

What’s your dream controller?


the first novation remote sl is for me still the prototype of how a controller should be build.
It wasn’t that cheap but it has allmost anything you want, and due to the double screens everything is very accesable.
The only downsize is the automap software. That was a nice try but has never worked for me.
I use it as a normal midi controller.
This thing is now allmost ten years old and still does what it has to do without much hassle.
I never met a better controller than that one. (even not the later ones from novation)


The perfect controller would be a huge high-res screen with actual motorized hardware faders and encoders built right into it. So you’d have an actual hardware controller that shows the entire Cubase GUI and gives you full control over every parameter with a knob or fader right in the position where it would normally be on your screen.
Good luck with making that controller, I want the knobs on my plugins to follow the plugin window so if I drag it around the knobs follow with it, that might be a bit problematic :stuck_out_tongue:

I have one of them but I was meaning a console type controller.


Nice concept, the raven, but I don’t really like tactile things. I’ve owned a Lemur-Dexter and it’s great for some things, but not for mixing.

yeah, have mixed feelings on touchscreens too :slight_smile:

Had an elo several years ago. Was pressure based 15inch and quite accurate but too small for practical use.
Now got a 23 inch build on a rack as my mixer but this one is IR and since i bought it i know that flies running over the screen can ruin your mix. :slight_smile: :slight_smile:
Raven seems pressure based as i look to the pics and price tag, but don’t know.
But they are real eye-catchers that is a fact.

I use a Lemur and Ipad 3 and love it. I use various pages to control Cubase functions and RME Totalmix and it’s by FAR the best control surface I’ve used, and I’ve used many.

The surface of my dreams would be a touchscreen using the shapeshfting :wink: technology in the links below.

The screens can create raised shapes of faders, buttons and graphics on the screen surface.

Using touch screens is still cumbersome after all these years, mainly because you have to keep your eye on your hands, and you get no tactile guidance for moving in a straight line.

It’s not too far off according to this company http://vimeo.com/43431035 or this article about an Apple patent for something similar. http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2012/05/apple-reveals-wildly-intelligent-multi-tiered-haptics-system.html

I remember reading about another, iirc a daw control surface but can’t find the article now…

Nice concept!

Interesting, if they can do that with rotary knobs and faders we’re done :smiley:

WOW! About 15 years ago I was thinking about having something like that some day … and then thought: yeah … but not in my lifetime.

If they can make it really work, it would be a revolutionary. Even I could move to touchscreen interface.

I’m quite happy with my CMC Controls. I was looking at ipad but I have to look into that and I’m not crazy about controllers over wifi. Ideally in the future a yamaha product with 24 inputs that can control 7.5 and up. The tactus look interesting but I would like an all in 1 unit with I/O controller hardware.


That is my Dream Controller!
Paulo build it with the Steinberg Control SDK.

I am using MCU Pro with BCR 2000 with 14Bit on Encoders for Channel EQs etc.
Here is the link to my BCR2000 integration over Generic Remote:

I am always trying to ask steinberg to give the RCE to the Generic Remote users.
If they would do, things would get easy to implement ( focused VST Editor Window controls for example).

Regarding the Dragon, nice use of LCARS on the controller panels :wink:

Nice, I like the pots mounted on a LCD screen, that’s pretty awesome!

One “slight” improvement it would need is to have those pot axles go through the screen so there would be no wires in the front of the screen. I think we can see these kinds of control surfaces when OLED technology improves and gets cheaper.