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Foot-opearated sampling on the cheap?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by mlwarriner, Apr 2, 2008.

  1. mlwarriner

    mlwarriner Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2003
    KC, MO, USA
    OK. So I'm looking for some way to load up a bunch of sound effects (car crashes, cat screeches, 808's etc) in some sort of sampler, and then be able to trigger them with my feet.

    Has anyone here done such a thing, and if so, how?
  2. i have a jamman... if you had a ext. controller you could do this task... but the speed of changing the banks is limited!!!
  3. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Any MIDI foot controller hooked up to a unit that has the samples stored with a MIDI interface (a laptop for example) would work.
  4. mlwarriner

    mlwarriner Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2003
    KC, MO, USA
    Don't think me stupid, but...

    could you elaborate?
  5. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    MIDI (musical instrument digital interface) is the most basic way for different instruments, samplers, sequencers, etc. to talk to each other. If you have a computer, keyboard, etc. with a MIDI interface, you can use another device, such as a MIDI foot controller, to "trigger" different parameters in the device you're controlling. Playing different sound effects or patches for example. Another would be playing the notes on your keyboard with your feet via a foot controller- the foot controller "triggers" the digital interface in the keyboard to play a note. A MIDI foot controller works by setting up different buttons to control different functions- you can set up some buttons to play particular patches or patterns for example. It all depends on what you're using as your main device that will receive the MIDI messages from the foot controller.
  6. NoHitWonder


    Apr 12, 2008
    Memphis, TN
    I don't know if there is a "cheap" way to do foot operated samples but it can be done for under $200 with some limitations.

    I recently purchased a used Boss RC-2 pedal off ebay for $130. They typically sell for $180 new.
    I use it to trigger recorded phrases of keyboard parts for a few of the songs my band plays.
    It can only store 11 phrases but it will store up to 16 minutes of total time (so a few full songs can be stored).
    You have to manually change a knob to select a phrase though. Once a phrase is selected, it will trigger every time you step on the pedal (such as during each chorus of a song).

    I have been using Boss SP-202s to trigger phases by hand for years. These can sometimes be found for under $100 on ebay. The internal memory is limited (around 1 minute of total time using the standard quality setting). This memory is shared by the 16 sample phrases. A 4MB memory card adds another 8 minutes of time and an additional 16 samples.
    The Boss SP-202 can be triggered by MIDI devices such as a Behringer FCB1010 pedal (which can sometimes be found for under $100 on ebay). The programming to send a note to activate a sample is tricky for the FCB1010 but it can be done.
  7. I was thinking about the same thing except taking an Ipod with sound effects on it and plugging it direct to the PA with a wireless unit+1/8->1/4 adapter
  8. +1, I hope to do the same one day...

    Cheapest way to do this is get a cheap MIDI trigger pedal like this:


    Then if you have a bit of cash, get a cheap firewire audio interface with MIDI in/out and balanced outputs for sending to a mixing desk. If you are on a severe budget just get a dirt cheap USB MIDI interface and use the built in sound of the laptop (assuming you're running Windows, getthe ASIO4ALL soundcard driver to improve the performance and get low latency).

    Best software for this job is Ableton Live, it's very easy to use and you can do so much with it. You can download a demo or find a 'free' version if you know where to look.

    You can then even route your bass through the laptop and use some of the extra pedals as stomp box effects!
  9. Hi Folks,

    I'm new around here.

    I found this thread and thought someone may be able to help.
    I have a Boss SP-202 and wish to be able to operate it via a MIDI Foot Controller. This is so I can play bass and trigger cool samples.
    I can cheaply acquire a Roland FC-100 MIDI Foot Controller, but will pay more if something more suitable is available.

    The problem is however that I can't find much literature on the connectivity of these 2 items.
    I can't much info on the connectivity of any MIDI Foot Controller to the SP-202.

    I managed to find user manuals for both products at this site.


    They weren't heaps of help. Does anyone here have any experience in operating a SP-202 via a MIDI Foot Controller?

  10. cameric


    Dec 31, 2007
    Sorry, quick detour to the Boss RC-2. I bought one for similar reasons, although I wanted one to sample noise loops. The RC-2 is great, and incredibly compact, but the deal-breaker for me was that there was no way to do a one-touch fade-out of the loop (i.e., ending the loop and have the volume automatically taper out). I found that was something the task required, so I sold the RC-2. The RC-20XL, however, has that highly useful fade-out feature, and although the unit is bigger, it still isn't that expensive for such a live-friendly solution. Gassing it big time.

    Another live-friendly (but considerably more bulky) option is the Roland PK-5/PK-5a pedals and a sample module. They have a 'sound effects' pre-set that offer exactly the kind of control options that you're after (but of course, it makes no sound on its own - you'll still need an appropriately configured module - but it makes the job much more satisfying and gives loads of cool options besides).
  11. Inflin


    Apr 30, 2007
    Newcastle, UK/Currently London
    Affiliated with Genelec, Avalon Design.
    +1 on midi foot controller + sampler.

    I live for the day you can get one of those roll out piano mat things with midi on it.
  12. Martian Matthew

    Martian Matthew

    Jan 23, 2013
    I am also wanting a cheap way to trigger sampled sounds with a foot-controlled midi device.
    It looks like the cheapest sampler is the Boss Sp-202.
    I've read conflicting reports on whether or not the Boss Sp-202 can be controlled by a midi foot controller.
    This review says it can't:
    Does anyone here know if it can?