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Multitouch Sensing on Disklavier Grand Piano

This week we installed multitouch sensing (Touchkeys – array of capacitive sensors) on the Yamaha Disklavier Grand Piano in our labs at the Institute of Music Informatics and Musicology.

Different from the MIDI data from the instrument (which senses ballistic actions) this new technology allows acquiring continuous data from sensing touch position and contact area, fusing both types of sensing provides a rich potential e.g for study of gestural interaction with a piano keyboard.

In addition, the instrument features a “silent mode” – separating hammers from strings. This allows to carry out experiments with re-mappings, latency/jitter studies, etc. — Exciting new research possibilities!

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Andrew McPherson preparing the sensors for installation.

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Touchkeys sensors and ribbon cables installed on a Yamaha Disklavier grand piano.

The installation went well and I am very happy with the result – the sensors are seamlessly integrated, non-invasive and do not interfere with the mechanical action of the keyboard.

 

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The piano’s keyboard lid can be used as normal.