ForumsHardware ← Windows 7 drivers for Soundplane A

I'm interested the Soundplane A. when will you develop App/Drivers for windows 7

Hi Arnaud,

Thanks for your interest. Unfortunately there is some very low-level USB code needed, which will be difficult to port to Windows. If there is enough interest in Soundplane for Windows, I plan to hire someone to do this part. I really have no idea as to timing -- it will depend a lot on how many people are interested.

Would you also be interested in a Linux port?


no only Windows..;(

I'd be interested as well. At the price point of the first run I would have actually been in line for one if it had been Win7 compatible. As it is I'm kind of waiting for the LinnStrument.

Can't the driver be done in java? I realize the huge problem cross-platform development (still) poses, but if in any way possible it should be adressed in a sustainable way IMO, not avoided until it can't be ignored. The entry-cost to offer your product cross-plattform will only get bigger the more advanced your mac software gets... and Windows is a huge potential user base.

I'm just putting this in to let you know. How about putting a call up on your website that people should write in if they would be interested in a windows compatible version? I for one have been here before and left again in frustration after reading the mac only part.

You have a gorgeous device there. Everybody should have one. :)

Best regards

Sorry you are frustrated, but I don't have the time or the money to work on a Windows version right now. I have plans to do so later, so stay tuned, if you like.

/me sobs uncontrollably.


Just don't forget us if you ever see an opportunity to expand the software.

As far as I know, the driver cannot be written in Java. Actually, on OSX, there is no driver needed, but the low latency asynchronous USB streaming code is incredibly touchy. I am not aware of a Java API that can handle low latency isochronous USB.

For Windows, it might be a driver, or maybe libusb would work?

@rsdio: I have no idea, I am unfortunately not a programmer. All I know is that the SoftStep controller from Keith McMillen is officially run and programmed via MAX/MSP only, as the live data it sends is not readable without translation.

In the meantime though someone has written a 'driver' in java. The SoftStep also requires no proprietary driver per se in Windows or OSX, it requires a program to translate the raw data from the sesors into something useful (there's a USB-midi mode as well, but that's not what I'm talking about here).

I sense there may be significant technical parallels to the Soundplane on an interfacing level and was hoping they went deeper.

We could have implemented USB-MIDI for the Soundplane Model A, but that would have forced severe limitations. I am glad that there is MIDI support, but MIDI is certainly not enough on its own for a 3D controller.

If anyone knows of a Windows programmer who can handle Custom Class USB communications, I'd be willing to give them the information needed to get the Soundplane working there, at least at the raw data level.

By the way, SoftStep and Max/MSP have to communicate somehow over USB, so it's theoretically possible to tap directly into the USB link if you must avoid Max/MSP. It'd require documentation from Keith or hacking skills, for sure. You are correct to surmise that the Soundplane is similar, except that we do not require Max/MSP. I'm not quite sure what you mean by hoping that the parallels went deeper, but if you were hoping that the protocols were identical then there's no hope of that. The Soundplane protocol is highly packed to squeeze the most surface information into the smallest bandwidth possible. There's no hope that the SoftStep uses raw data anything like the Soundplane. Considering that OSC doesn't have a USB Class, and doesn't even have an official 3D protocol that works everywhere, it seems like we might be waiting a while for a standard protocol for 3D control surfaces.

Any news on the Windows version?

Nope, no Windows news.

Maybe I should put a call out:

If anyone has experience with libusb on Windows, or has worked on something like the alternative 'driver' for the SoftStep, or otherwise written software to directly communicate with custom USB protocols, then please contact me. I'd like to determine exactly what is needed on Windows and go from there.

Any progress for Windows version?
I am interested in Soundplane but I guess I will not buy one more notebook just to be able to use Soundplane.

Thanks for your continued interest in Soundplane drivers for Windows. No breakthroughs there yet, but after I'm done with this Soundplane run I should have some time to spend on Windows / Linux support.

Add me to the list of people interested in Windows support, and/or in getting information on the raw data format.


Hi Tim, do you have experience writing drivers for Windows that can handle USB Isochronous data? All of the user-level code I know about (WinUSB) does not support isochronous endpoints. There may be a solution that is specific to Windows 8, but I'm hoping that Windows 7 and XP can be supported as well.

Maybe this is useful information

Thanks, shedacq. That page looks like it might be specific to Windows 10. Looking around at some of the chapters, there are references to Windows 8. I'll take a further look when I have some time.

Ive recently developed stuff for the EigenD/Eigenharp using libusb (including isochronous io), currently Ive tested with linux (including PI2) and works fine.

For the Eigenharps, Eigenlabs wrote (contracted? unfortunately its the only bit I don't have the code for) a small driver, which basically replicated an iso transport into userspace with a 'generic driver'

my understanding though, is that from Windows 8.1 this is no longer necessary, as WinUSB supports it... Im quite tempted to now test this, as libusb* supports this, so theorectically my code should work as is :)

*this assume libusb, has been updated to support the new iso functions in winusb, Ive seen "issues" asking for it to be added, but have not checked the code yet to see if it was.

I think libusb would be the way forward, when this happens as you will get both linux and windows (and also potentially OS X) with the same code base, but it does look like it would be 8.1 would be the minimum supported version, without going the Eigenlabs route.

btw, it may be possible the Eigenlabs driver could be used, as it has no specific eigenharp code* in it, it just forwards requests from a userspace layer into the generic driver...

*hmm we'd have to check its not castrated the vendor ID... you could perhaps even talk to John to see if he might work with you on a derivative driver?

ok, did a bit of checking on the windows side...

at the moment libusb does NOT have winusb iso support implemented,
however there is a patch available that makes iso support available liubusb via libusbk... which has the advantage, it works on older versions of windows but is more hassle to install.

I may be 'digging' in this area in the next few months (with the soundplane and eigenharp), if I do, I'll let you know.

Is there some news on windows drivers ?

I think that apple is going on the bad way for musicians, and probably my mac will be the last one for me. The soundplane is the last thing that keep me in osx.

In the other hand, there's some really small devices like this one : that potentially could be a perfect stage box for hosting the soundplane app and stream OSC/MPE to better sound processors on the control room.

That also could be a small standalone soundbox (with non CPU intensive sounds) for practicing on the road.

I think this could be better useful than a CV box (even if I have a modular), because some solutions still exists for that via expert sleepers (like a DC coupled audio interface or the FH-1).

I'm feeling the same. Expect more serious effort on Linux and Windows support as we work on Soundplane B.

I always planned to have Windows support "soon" but it turned out to be much harder than expected. A nice contractor did a Linux driver for me and we intended he would go on to Windows work, but he ran into problems. Maybe in Windows 10 this is easier. If not, we'll just do whatever we have to including possibly contracting the work to someone who has low-level driver experience on Windows.

I still have my sights on making a well-designed "music appliance." I'm always looking at ARM vs. Atom vs. DSP and so on. I think enough power for lots of audio processing, just about anything I'd want to do on stage, can go in quite a small box now.