12x6 Linnstrument/MPE Grid

Please do! A properly textured overlay for grid playing would help enormously, as the most basic division between “schools” of MPE performance is the linear keyboard (ROLI, KMI, arguably Haken) vs. the grid (Linn, Artiphon). It would be amazing if the Morph had properly textured overlays for both approaches, and while the Piano overlay does 95% of what I’d like to see (and 100% for most sane folks) for the former, we really need the latter if at all feasible.

I would also put in a vote to put dedicated pressure buttons along the top edge for up-bend, down-bend, and modulation, as well as a sustain button. Just sayin’ :wink:

I received the lasercutted silicone. Overall pretty happy, the laserengraving is pretty even and legible. Personally I would have like to have a bit more relief, you can feel the ridges but optimally it would have been a bit more. I send the laserengraving an e-mail to ask how much laserpower they used for the engraving, that might be usefull for others.

This one I created for use on top of the innovators overlay. It’s higher than the area in the overlay so 1 mm might have been better. My initial idea was to use doublesided tape as a semi-permanent solution but the tape I have laying around doesn’t stick to the sillicone of the innovators overlay.

This is what it looks like after cleaning and removing the white residu. It’s a little bit legible and I might experiment by filling it up with some kind of paint.

These are the other overlays I created. One is meant to play a Hang drum VST by Soniccouture and the other is meant as a straightforward drumpad, potentially with sticks.

The full size overlays still don’t really have a good fastening method to the Sensel. I cut parts that could house the magnets. It would be really useful if Sensel would make 2 (or more) magnet configurations available in the software for custom designs. They could sell kits with the right magnets, and a spec sheet with the right magnet orientation, that could really speed up the development of new overlays.


Thanks A TON for sharing. These look unbelievably cool.

Regarding the magnet configurations, we’ve added this to the suggestion queue and will of course keep you posted with any developments.

Huh, well how about that. I buy a Sensil Morph at the 2019 Synth Expo in Brooklyn, beeline to the forum here on the LinnStrument topic, and find @mrspiral here. How serendipitous.

I am one of the early serial number owners of the LinnStrument (original larger version). I’m downloading this custom template now to give it a shot and comparison. At the very least, I can now put the Morph next to the LinnStrument and have a handy dandy custom template, with an X/Y Pad and the like. At the very most, I can run two grid-esque LinnStrument-ish devices in tandem, one for each hand? Heheh. Now all I need to find is a Continuum-like template, and I’m golden.

I’ve just sent this template to the Morph and had a chance to play with it. I have it side by side with the LinnStrument, and calling up some of my intimately familiar patches that I’ve programmed in various softsynths for the LS. I’m really sorry I’ve come late to the game here; but I have a few suggestions that in the end affect your print template and layout.

  1. I’ve tried changing the settings on the bend range, and it works rather well, good job. I wonder if there’s a smarter way to do the calculations outside of millimeters vs semitones. But I realize that’s a limitation of the SenselApp.

  2. Can you shed some light on why you choose to make the grid 1/2 step short of an octave? (I’m certain it’s the even-divide math of the grid). But musically, it’s frustrating to not be able to slide and hit a perfect octave in a scale, missing it by a half step, if your patch is programmed with that bend range. Again, I know I’m late to the game here, but I just got the Morph two days ago, my apologies. You have the notes in 4ths progressing upward per row, which is perfect, but the lack of the octave span across the Morph is a head-scratcher. I’m suggesting to change the grid somehow to be a full octave from left to right (13 steps).

  3. Just discovered that, unlike the LinnStrument, you cannot “strum” or slide your fingers downwards or upwards and trigger notes in a column. Thus strum like a guitar. I’m assuming that’s a Morph limitation. Let me know if I’m wrong here? Or can that be programmed?

  4. Also just discovered the difference in MIDI output between the LinnStrument and Morph (using MIDI Monitor): the LinnStrument outputs more data per millisecond, but only sends what’s changed at any given moment from the last-known status; compared to the Morph, which constantly outputs a perfect orderly trio set of Control, Channel Pressure, Pitch Wheel, over and over again, whether anything changes or not, and not as often per ms as the LinnStrument. But I still get the same “musical response” from my softsynths with no discernible difference in sound and playability–outside of that pitch-bend octave thing, which is due to the programmed layout.

I’m sure anyone can work around that octave limitation, but it’s musically problematic.
Otherwise I really like that I have a second option for an X-Y-Z touch surface controller.

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Happy to hear that it is musically very similar to the Linnstrument. With regards to question 2. This has to do with the pitch bend ranges that can be selected in the Sensel app. When having 13 notes per row the pitchbend would be a little out of sync with the note fields. Would be nice if the sensel app would allow a custom number in mm to improve this. I can imagine that 1.5 octaves also could work really well. Two octaves is personally to small for my taste.

  1. To my knowledge, the Linnstrument is configured to have the Y-axis control cc74. This setup does the same. Maybe if you turn that off you could strum the notes but I’m not sure.

  2. That’s really nice to hear, great what the sensel team has been able to create.

Y axis does control cc74, within a given cell. But, leaving one row and entering the next ends the note from one row, and attacks the note from the other. I think that’s what rdorsche felt was missing from this layout.

Visually, the relief looks to match the Linnstrument itself fairly well. (it’s meant to be subtle)

Have you tried the other layouts? Are you looking to share those in another thread? :slight_smile:
(I also own the Soniccouture hang drum, albeit probably the Ableton version, which won’t be so great with MPE. I need to contact them and beg for a license transfer on several of their instruments…)

Super cool! I recently discovered Ponoko will laser cut/etch silicon. You can get 3 overlays out of the 15x15 sheets, but they seem pretty thin (.06 in/1.5 mm). I suppose you could buy some raw silicone that is thicker and use it as a backing material. Neoprene could also work as a backing material, but might be hard to bind to silicone (cyanoacrylate or super glue might work).

Depending on the design (aka machine time), it would probably be around $100.
I haven’t used the service yet, but good to know about.


Haven’t tried them yet. I didn’t yet make the Sensel maps. Hope to do that soon.

Thanks, that seems like a good US based service!

Here’s what I’m printing to test out tactility on their "ultra suede" material

Cool really curious how that works out.

Same! Ultrasuede looks like a great compromise between haptic and visual differentiation, at least from the description.

Searching some laser cutting forums for it, people seemed to feel it wouldn’t hold its shape rigidly enough. (The word they used was “floppy”) So, you might end up wanting to affix it to some kind of stronger backing material. Or, that comment might prove irrelevant, as they were looking for a leather substitute, not a silicone replacement.

Also, their material might not have been thick enough.

But, yeah. In that other context (using ultrasuede as a leather substitute), it was recommended we try this instead:


That grid with the laser cut texture looks fantastic! maybe I missed something, but how is it attached to the Morph?

I would be OK with the 12 x 6 layout, but I would start on a low B rather than C. that allows scales in all modes with the same set of finger patterns. That’s how my Artiphon Instrument1 is set up.

it would be nice if the SenselApp allowed for arbitrary pitch distance, so a 13-step grid would be feasible.

Oh, and hello @rdorsche ! seems I can’t join any forum these days without you chasing after me. :slight_smile: Which sucks, of course, because you’re so much better on these instruments than I am.


I don’t believe it is attached.

The grid layout is a little smaller than the others pictured, and it looks to be sitting atop the Innovator’s Overlay. One could glue those together, if they’re feeling ambitious.

@mrspiral at this moment they aren’t attached. The smaller version sits on top of the innovators overlay and stays in its position quite well with normal playing. Normal double sided tape doesn’t work very well with silicone so i’m thinking about using more specialized tape like VHB or silicone tape by 3m for a semi permanent bond.

For the full size overlay I made top layers that could house magnets. Would be nice if Sensel could explain where to buy the right type or make them available for sale because opening another overlay just for the magnets is a bit too expensive.

@ybr RE: the two-octave comment.
Have to be careful about our lingo here.
I was referring to having the pitch bend be two octaves, defined by your softsynth’s patch.
I was referring the the layout having 13 notes, referring to having a range of one full octave from left to right on the layout.
You can’t achieve an intended slide of any octaves without a full octave being present on the layout.
All of that said, I might have to make a 13-note layout.

BTW excellent job on sourcing the materials and getting a prototype going. Very ambitious, and it looks great!

@mrspiral waitaminute… are you saying the SenselApp does NOT allow for arbitrary pitch distance?
If that’s the case? limitation noted.

I’m gung-ho on making a 13 note layout now.
It doesn’t make sense to me musically to not have that available.
I just noticed their factory piano overlay… I just don’t get the C-to-B layout.
Otherwise this is a neat controller, truly.

I’m also wondering how many hardware synths I can bang out a programmer/controller for.
I’m looking at my JX8P for starters. If not in the Mrph itself? then at least using simple CCs to control a programmer VST as an intermediary from the Morph to the synth.

Roli does the same thing on their Seaboard Block. The reason for this is modularity – you can put a second unit next to it for additional octaves, where going C-to-C wouldn’t allow that.

But the Morph overlay adds a C, in the bottom-right corner. It works better than you might think. (and you can disable it in the editor, if you are using multiple units)

a spray-on adhesive might also be sound, though I don’t know that I’d go there. I worry about damaging the morph.