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ISO Programmable Keypad (PS/2, USB)

Chuck(G)

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Anyone got a programmable keypad (16 or more keys) or key stick kicking around that they'd like to sell?

I'm looking to speed a task and wondering if one might be the answer to my situation (I'm not sure, so I don't want to dump $100 on one only to find that it doesn't work).

Most of what I see isn't programmable--and the programmable ones, which used to be common as dirt are in the $100+ range.
 

gslick

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Do you require firmware programming ability in the keypad itself or would a host based macro package work?

Looking around I saw these, which are less than $100 but still not that cheap at around the $65 shipped.

http://www.genovation.com/683.htm

No first hand knowledge of that product myself.
 

Chuck(G)

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Oooh, a blue LED! :)

Yes, I saw those--they're a maybe.

Macro programming would be okay--I don't need to change firmware.

It could be that I'm going about this the wrong way, however. What I'm doing is transcribing musical notation using Sibelius and a MIDI keyboard. I'm currently stretching out so that my right hand is on the MIDI keyboard and my left hand is on the keypad of the desktop. When I get going, I can go pretty quicky, entering notes and articulations, but things such as slurs and tuplets slow me down because they're not keypad items.

My thinking was that if I could sit at the MIDI keyboard naturally with programmable keypad, I could probably go even more quickly. But maybe not, which is why I"m reluctant to dump a lot of money on a solution that my not work.
 

lucasdaytona

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Oooh, a blue LED! :)

Yes, I saw those--they're a maybe.

Macro programming would be okay--I don't need to change firmware.

It could be that I'm going about this the wrong way, however. What I'm doing is transcribing musical notation using Sibelius and a MIDI keyboard. I'm currently stretching out so that my right hand is on the MIDI keyboard and my left hand is on the keypad of the desktop. When I get going, I can go pretty quicky, entering notes and articulations, but things such as slurs and tuplets slow me down because they're not keypad items.

My thinking was that if I could sit at the MIDI keyboard naturally with programmable keypad, I could probably go even more quickly. But maybe not, which is why I"m reluctant to dump a lot of money on a solution that my not work.

Maybe I'm saying a lot of useless crap... but are you trying to write MIDI files on your computer by playing the same thing on the keyboard and on the Sibelieus keyboard? If so, why not to use a MIDI to USB cable, and use any transcription software?
 

Chuck(G)

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No--I'm using a MIDI keyboard to input note pitches, but trying to play the stuff using the Flex-Time realtime input just creates a huge mess. So I use the keypad shortcuts to set note duration, ties, articulations, etc. while I actually play the note pitch with my right hand on the MIDI keyboard.

This has nothing to do with MIDI files per se, but rather notation editing.
 

MikeS

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What OS? Maybe a serial keypad with something like SerialKeys or equivalent now that MS no longer supplies it, as long as it can be custom mapped.

I've used a few of Hagstrom's products but they're a tad expensive (and no, you can't have one of mine ;-) )
Serial to PS/2, 12x12 matrix to PS/2 etc., programmable:

http://www.hagstromelectronics.com/products/modules.html

Sounds like all you really need is a little reprogramming of the AT>XT keyboard adapter
 
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Chuck(G)

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Sounds like all you really need is a little reprogramming of the AT>XT keyboard adapter

I've thought about it--but I'm not quite sure that the whole scheme will work. Maybe foot pedals?

It's funny--musical transcription has hardly been sped up at all with computerization. Where you gain the advantage is when copying parts from a score and making corrections. Otherwise a stack of ledger paper and a sharp pencil seems to work about as well.

And don't get me started about music OCR--even the best packages are horrible. Neuratron PhotoScore was so bad that they licensed a competing package (Sharpeye) and try to get better results by a rather complicated polling method. It doesn't work most of the time.
 

MikeS

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Why not just use a key macro package to (re)program a normal keypad or even a full keyboard? Maybe just the function keys so as not to interfere with your normal keyboard. At least that would let you know whether the concept works.

I like AutoHotKey myself:
http://www.autohotkey.com/

How about a set of organ pedals connected to a contact-closure or matrix > PS/2 converter? Or even just to the matrix inputs of a spare normal PS/2 or USB keyboard? A Saturday afternoon project for a guy like you ;-)

Or how about a good speech-to-text package?

Why doesn't just playing and recording a MIDI stream and then editing/converting work?
 
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lucasdaytona

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Why not just use a key macro package to (re)program a normal keypad or even a full keyboard? Maybe just the function keys so as not to interfere with your normal keyboard. At least that would let you know whether the concept works.

I like AutoHotKey myself:
http://www.autohotkey.com/

How about a set of organ pedals connected to a contact-closure or matrix > PS/2 converter? Or even just to the matrix inputs of a spare normal PS/2 or USB keyboard? A Saturday afternoon project for a guy like you ;-)

Or how about a good speech-to-text package?

Why doesn't just playing and recording a MIDI stream and then editing/converting work?

I think that MikeS idea is good, I used "Joy To Key" to remap my custom built super nintendo gamepad adapter that used parallel port to a standard joystick or even to keyboard commands, look at this ebay link:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Toshiba-NW6...32?pt=PCA_Mice_Trackballs&hash=item4d02659968


Grab this parallel port keypad, write some code, and build your programmable keypad! Take a look into Joy To Key if you want
http://www.electracode.com/4/joy2key/JoyToKey%20English%20Version.htm
 

Chuck(G)

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Why not just use a key macro package to (re)program a normal keypad or even a full keyboard? Maybe just the function keys so as not to interfere with your normal keyboard. At least that would let you know whether the concept works.

I like AutoHotKey myself:
http://www.autohotkey.com/

How about a set of organ pedals connected to a contact-closure or matrix > PS/2 converter? Or even just to the matrix inputs of a spare normal PS/2 or USB keyboard? A Saturday afternoon project for a guy like you ;-)

Or how about a good speech-to-text package?

Why doesn't just playing and recording a MIDI stream and then editing/converting work?

Some interesting suggestions, Mike. The last, however--it's just as much work entering note-by-note as editing a real-time MIDI stream. Consider that I'm working with orchestral scores, with bowing marks, slurs, articulation marks and other markings (such as enharmonic accidentals) and you'll understand why.

I've got some thinking to do here and have a few things to try. Thanks to all.
 

MikeS

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... Consider that I'm working with orchestral scores, with bowing marks, slurs, articulation marks and other markings (such as enharmonic accidentals) and you'll understand why.
Ah, OK; definitely not the kind of scores I'm used to seeing, but then you probably don't have to worry about letters and little pictures of guitar frets or piano keyboards up above for the chords... ;-)

Let us know what you decide to do, if anything; sounds like an interesting HID challenge.
 

Chuck(G)

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I got one of these. All keys programmable, so it's a start--and it's typical Cherry mechanical switch quality.

G84-4700_big.jpg
 

grantb5

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With regard to the 683 that someone mentioned above, Sibelius in mentioned on the Genovation website. Maybe you can get a better deal on eBay?

http://www.genovation.com/avcontrol.htm

"John Orams in New Zealand has put together a PDF file, located here, that highlights many keyboard shortcuts for Sibelius v4. These can be easily implemented on the Genovation Controlpad 682 or 683. "
 

Chuck(G)

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Here's an interesting follow-up to the Cherry programmable keypad that arrived today.

With a "dumb" (passive) PS/2 to USB converter, it works just fine on USB--but here's the good part: plug an old Model M keyboard into the keyboard socket on the keypad and the Model M is also USB-compatible--no special "active" converter needed for the model M.
 

gslick

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I got one of these. All keys programmable, so it's a start--and it's typical Cherry mechanical switch quality.

G84-4700_big.jpg

I took a quick look at the manual and it appears that you can program it in the keypad itself, which is non-votatile, or you can use their host based software. Are you using they keypad with the programming in the keypad itself? Have you bothered trying their host based software?

Your post on the Cherry keypad reminded me this morning that I picked up a few of the older MX-3700 (AKA G80-3700) model a few years back for pretty cheap. I had no idea they were programmable until I checked the Cherry website just now and they appear to be programmable just the same as the G84-4700. I'll have to poke around and give them a try. The only drawback of the older model is that they might be old enough that they do not support native USB operation.

If I was looking at buying a new programmable keypad I would probably still consider the Genovation ControlPad 683 myself. The main reason is that it appears from a quick look at their documentation that programmable delays can be inserted into the key sequence, which is sometimes necessary when programming a key sequence that controls some software operations that needs delays between multiple steps.

-Glen
 

Chuck(G)

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Glen, I haven't fooled with the programmable aspect yet. It's on my list of 'round tuits.

But where did you find the mention on being able to program the thing from the host side? My printed manual makes no mention of this.
 
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