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Probably the biggest Arduino based Monome

dcuartiellesJanuary 19th, 2009

Oh yeah!

A 256 buttons Monome in action. I was the other night on Arduino’s IRC channel on Freenode (/join #arduino at when Bastian Chroos posted a video about a 256 buttons Monome. I couldn’t help it so I asked him for some pictures just to check the wiring of that board. Here you can see Bastian’s prototype in action and a picture of the back of his PCBs.

Video and picture courtesy of Bastian Chroos, (c) 2009

Bastian said that he used:

– 1x Arduino
– 2x 74hc595 (giving voltage to the rows)
– 3x 74hc165 (sampling the columns button states) 1x 8 extra input.. so I
totally get 256+128 buttons..(16 encoders extra and 4 menu buttons are part of the plan)
– 4x MAX7221

I did all the code and boards by myself [using Sparkfun parts] but I haven’t implemented everything yet. I just took the basic commands to clearly use the applications.

If you want more information you should look for Chroos on the IRC channel or visit his myspace profile where his music can be found. I got promised some extra pictures soon … neat!

5 Responses to “Probably the biggest Arduino based Monome”

  1. Lars Says:

    Wow, very nice! 🙂
    Thanks for sharing this one…

    How is the synchronization between the blinking buttons and the music done?
    Does Bastian know all 256+128 button functions by heart while improvising?

    Cheers from Germany,

  2. Gary Says:

    proper awesome!!!!! 4x 64’s in one!!! woooooo
    can’t believe you’re coding it on your own too!
    proper ace work man!

  3. bastian chroos Says:


    to the buttons..i actually have the possibility to connect them all.. but i will truely just add 4 additional buttons for some menu stuff and i think 16 encoders..depending on how i get that serial stuff working… any more buttons wouldnt make more sense..
    ist just like i had to add one additional 165 for these buttons so i can actually use 128 more buttons… for the encoders i have some additional chin of 165’s that ive planed to serial connect.. its prepared, but not used yet..

    actually im havin some problems with serial transfer from pc to the arduino…

    i got everything almost working now..all leds.. i route every osc message into serial messages and pack them.. i think basicly i just should write it into an array on pc side then only tranfering the changes.. that will save A LOT data to be transfered….

    but basicly i followed all original protocols from the monome guys..



  4. madaerodog Says:

    Yep very cool, we are waiting for the pictures 😀 don’t forget us.

  5. wetterberg Says:

    yeah, definitely only transmit the changes – it makes the whole thing a LOT smoother.
    Andreas (who does 16×16 RGB matrices on the Lemur)

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