Mellow Mushroom – About our MIDI harp

MIDI harp full

It may look a bit messy here, but this bad boy is inspired.  We based our idea off of the laser harp MIDI instrument.  Although we weren’t able to use real lasers due to power constraints and safety issues (pff safety…) (Instructor note: one demerit for flippancy), we found that infrared distance sensors get the job done, with the added feature of allowing multiple notes per “string”!  Basically, a MIDI instrument sends a digital signal rather than an audio signal.  The instrument is plugged into a computer via USB, and through one of many MIDI software programs, the digital signal is converted to musical data which can be output as a real sound by the computer.  The MIDI software is able to control the sound output, allowing us to produce everything from harp sounds, to synths, to drums all with our nifty little gadget.  But, be not fooled, ye mortals, this contraption was no walk in the park. Read on to find out more about the ups and downs and struggles of Mellow Mushroom and the MIDI harp.