Using Play's grid as a general purpose midi launchpad

It would be great to have a mode turning Play into general purpose MIDI launch pad.

What is the problem?

There are many ways the Play’s beautiful grid could be used, but current firmware doesn’t allow the launchpad capabilities. It would add a lot of value to the device.

What do you want to achieve?

Controlling other devices with it and getting visual feedback from them via its beautiful colorful grid. Simple white will work too.

It would be great if user could switch between the modes as seamlessly as we switch between audio and midi side of a sequencer, so Play’s sound could stay, if possible.

Are there any workarounds?

Not, I guess.

Any links to related discussions?

Any references to other products?

The Native Instrument Maschines (i.e. MK3) can turn into MIDI controllers pressing a button (official support but it relies on a MIDI editor software). The MPC One / Live can also act as a MIDI controller (no software required).


Only slightly related: Developer mode for the Tracker Mini?.

In general, I think that hardware that can be used in different ways than the ones they are conceived for (through their official software) become more attractive for creators, and this in turns brings a return of investment to the original product, increasing its coolness and unsuspected appearances in setups and in ways they were not designed for.


@icaria36 exactly. It would make it really useful device to control 3rd party software and DIY projects like Norns. Sequencers come and go, but you’ll always need a good launch pad, especially with such advanced knobs and colorful pads. Currently I really consider selling it and maybe buying it later again depending on the added features/value, but with this wish implemented it will become a solid keeper.


glad to see many «likes» here, hope it will get the team comments and leave the draft branch eventually. sadly, there were no clear/related answers in the «1.5 and beyond» thread.

@Mitch @Piotr

sorry to bump this thread once again, but could you tell if this wish fits your plans? is it easy/doable or is it something completely off the table? encoders and so many colorful pads may be a great platform for a midi control of all sorts. if it will be implemented/announced, it will open a whole new perspective/point of having the device. It just sits in drafts since the beginning of august and gathers likes. However, making it votable won’t answer the question if it’s really worth waiting or we have higher chances of meeting a unicorn.


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@here Thanks for your wish. It’s now ready for voting :slight_smile:

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I currently have a bunch of fairly sophisticated applications written against novation lunch pad programmer mode. I would love to port them to the play(+). to me a grid controller is a blank canvas on which you can put any instrument, the play being a particularly good instrument already on the canvas.