ForumsHardware ← Hardware Issues: Soundplane continues holds notes indefenitely at random intervals, ghost presses, more

I recently purchased a Model A soundplane, which I have been waiting to get for a few years.


Tested using Ableton Live 10 Stable and Beta releases.
Tested using standalone Madrona Labs Aalto
Tested two different usb cables in two usb ports (will test another computer today), both directly plugged in to the computer (no bus)
Tested using my Scarlet 2i2 as the audio device and CoreAudio internal
Running MacOS Catalina Developer Beta (most recent) - testing Mojave today on a different computer.

No difference in results when changing these parameters.


When plugging up, everything seemed to be in order, but as I started actually trying to play, I noticed several issues rendering calculated play essentially impossible:

  1. If I push down one note, any note within a 1-2 block range becomes impossible to hit due to Soundplane reading it as the same "Finger" or "touch" as the initial touch.

  2. When playing, if certain points are hit too hard or too long (seems almost random aside from those two characteristics) the note will hold indefinitely until I reset the midi bus by switching the input to a different midi input.

  3. When playing around the board, random notes will be detected and triggered, regardless of threshold set. Often these ghost notes will be the ones that are held indefinitely as mentioned in #2. If I set the threshold to .03 I'll begin to hear a flurry of notes not being played.

  4. When looking at the data feeds in the Soundplane app, there is always a constant jittering even at the lowest scaling.

What I've tried from reading other posts:

  1. Massaging the board.
  2. Cleaning the board with non-invasive microfiber and furniture cleaner deluded slightly with water. Was carefully and quickly dried after exposure.
  3. Playing with the parameters for hours. Including "expert" page which I've done that calibration quite a few times.
  4. Change hardware/software combos (listed above)
  5. Ensured I was setting the soundplane on a flat, stable surface during every step of the troubleshooting process.

Next steps?

I am at a loss. I'm devastated that I waited so long to receive an instrument that may (potentially and hopefully not) broken or damaged. I truly want to use this instrument and try to innovate my music production with it's unique features. It's surprising because the condition of the Soundplane was nearly flawless. A slight nick in one of the keys in the middle, but not a lot of evidence of strong blunt force impact. Everything else was flawless, aside from a very needed dusting, which is why I'm inclined to believe it may be software/user error...I hope. Please tell me I've messed up somewhere along the line?

Would appreciate any help with this. Even fixing the issue with notes held indefinitely would escalate this instrument from "unplayable" to "somewhat playable". but right now I can't use the device without having one hand on the mouse ready to reset the bus, tweak the parameters, ect.

I've contacted some people and shops in the LA area to see if they could repair it. After watching the teardown video, it seems relatively easy. But none of the people I spoke with had any experience (understandably) with this device so I am reluctant to get it serviced through them.

Please help...I want to make some art!

Hi there, I'm happy to help you diagnose what's going on. Getting a movie of the data from you is the best way.

You can record the screen using QuickTime Player:

I'm assuming you have the latest software v. 1.8.3:

Please go to the Touches page and set the view mode to "calibrated." This shows the closest thing to a direct pressure readout from the sensors. Then make sure "view scale" is at the default of 1.0.

Then capture a video of running a single finger slowly across the surface from left to right on each row of keys. You could take around 5 seconds per row.

Then try to capture one of your stuck-note events, again on the "calibrated" page, so i can see what that looks like.

This should let me look for electrical and mechanical issues at once for an initial diagnosis.

Fingers placed on adjacent keys are going to be recognized as the same touch. This is a limitation of the current sensor software. I plan to improve this in software in the future.

Noise when the sensor is at rest is normal. Not enough to trigger random notes, obviously, but it is OK to see the noise. Every sensor has noise—most just don't give you a way to see it.

Forums are a great way to get in touch but not good for sending videos—please direct followups to You can share the videos using Dropbox or something similar.