Shawn Wasabi + 64 Button Midi Fighter Special Edition

Our friend Shawn Wasabi is back on the Midi Fighter performance train, this time with an epic three minute performance that mashes up samples and sounds from over 150 different songs. What makes this performance special the use of a custom-made Midi Fighter 64 that we built exclusively for Shawn at his request.

Get your own Midi Fighter 64 right now

Behind Shawn’s Performance

A behind-the-scenes shot of the bubble moment in the routine; photo via Shawn himself

We wanted to learn a bit more about how Shawn puts these types of routines together, and he was nice enough to answer a few questions. We asked how we remembers exactly what he’s triggering with so many pads and samples in a routine:

“It’s a lot of muscle memory and strategic sample mapping! Instead of remembering where each individual sample is, I try to remember the pattern that my hands move in. There are parts where I press 6-7 buttons simultaneously, so I always map the samples so that my hands are in the least awkward position possible when playing through the controller routine.

In Ableton, I have banks within banks. I place drum racks within chain selectors within even more chain selectors. There are 5 buttons on the bottom of the Midi Fighter button layout that are mapped only to chain selectors. Everything else is mapped out to drum rack cells across several banks.”

Behind The Midi Fighter 64

Photos from during the development of the Midi Fighter 64

There’s plenty of 8 X 8 pad controllers out there, but none that have the insane responsiveness of the Midi Fighter controllers – which is why DJTT’s Michael Mitchell took on the challenge of crafting a unit just for Shawn.

“As the original Midi Fighter was somewhat inspired by the Monome I had always wanted to build a Midi Fighter with a lot of buttons, but had never had a great reason to, so when Shawn emailed me early last year and asked if I would be willing to build him a 64 button Midi Fighter it was reason I had been waiting for.” – Michael Mitchell

The interesting thing is that it’s not really just one unit – the Midi Fighter 64 is actually made out of a number of different unique parts. The guts of the unit are actually four Midi Fighter Spectra PCBs chained together, running a custom firmware.

With the boards connected, the under-development Midi Fighter 64.

Also needed was a unique enclosure for the 64 button controller, so Michael designed and 3D printed the entire chassis.

Right now there are no plans to bring the 64-button version of the Midi Fighter to mass production – but maybe someday!  The midi fighter 64 is finally going into production – get on the list here. 

Want to get started finger drumming like Shawn? Try out a Midi Fighter 3D, Soundpack, and ask our store’s live chat team to help you get started.

marble sodamichael mitchellMidi Fightermidi fighter 64shawn wasabi
Comments (96)
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  • InfiniteToast

    The one reason I will never buy a midi fighter… Too little buttons.

  • xdddsd

    i mean.. if your flagship dude thats showcasing the midi fighter is using this, this is what people (including myself) are going to want.

    its basically like saying “WOW CHECK IT OUT! LOOK WHAT YOU CAN DO WITH THIS THING! TOO BAD THERES ONLY ONE AND YOU CANT HAVE IT!”

    poor business strategy tbh

  • ian

    IM VERY EXITED

    I talked to Matias here and he said theres coming an limited run of these midi fighter 64s
    but probably in the future it will be unlimited ones
    the prizes of the limited run 1000-1500€

  • DJ Despoil

    First, the Wasabi routine was fucking ridiculous. People don’t seem to realize how difficult that is to do. Second, a 64 midi fighter would sell like mad…

  • Ethan Robinson

    Shawn’s was stolen from his car along with his MacBook.

  • Mary

    I would love to own one of these!

  • Will Matos

    Please make this! I would buy one in a heartbeat. I neeeeeed this!

  • Hank Ryfield

    This is the one that got stolen from his car last night?

    • Simon Paschal

      The one from Marble soda is. But he just got two more, in which one of them appears in Spicy Boyfriend.

  • Vicki

    I WANT I WANT I WANT

  • Silly_illi

    I would start using this if I had the one that Shawn used. I love it! It’s so pretty and appealing! I would so buy it ???!

  • Emo

    Oh my god mass produce this

  • Tiowaii

    And to think I thought those were CG bubbles.

  • $AM FRARA??I

    wtf!!!! ? i need this

  • Seamus silliman

    Is there any where i could find the firmware and 3d files so i could make one

  • Seamus silliman

    Where could i get this firmware and the 3d files to make one my self

  • Atom Brisbine

    Can you put two of these side by side with some bar and knob modulators in the middle? I’d like a cross fader between them. If not that could you make me two 64 ones so I can use them together? See you have turntables like Serato ones with two 64 pannels in front of them at an angle. That’s what I want… but you could integrate a DJ cross fader beetween them.

  • Anthony K. Jackson

    sooooo…if I buy 4 Midi Fighter Spectra….merge the PCB Boards…and 3D Print the Panels…I have this…Challenge accepted…

  • soulXreaper

    If you guys make the midi fighter 64 available to everyone, i will buy one so fast lol

  • IHEARTCOMIX

    […] Rice,” and like its predecessor, comes with another hypnotizing video featuring a Midi Fighter 64. The song was a collaboration with an up-and-coming LA production crew called YDG and allegedly […]

  • JTucaho

    It is the best thing to have instead of having a launchpad s or launchpad cover

  • kyu

    hey, I really need this. I own 4,4 but i want to give a challenge

  • ????

    looks very well made ovo

  • Sral Kowski

    please make a midifighter twister 64 … we still need more knobs! 😉

  • niky

    I want it !!! where i can buy it ???? please answer to : niky.vlaskova44@gmai.com or my fb Niky Vlášková

  • Mgdl

    Can you please make a midi fighter 64 for me? i really want one like that 🙂
    i will buy it

  • DC Richi

    That Midi fighter is so sick I would love to rock out on that thing. Make them available!

  • Kuhn-Mook Lee

    NEED

  • hypnosapien

    Want! In black!

  • Kris Young

    Just shut up and take my money! I definitely want to see the Midi Fighter 64 be brought to mass production. The design is so spectacular. As an owner of a Midi Fighter 3D and Spectra, the thought of having a Midi Fighter with 64 super responsive buttons is just fantastic. I’d definitely buy one of these

  • proben

    Amazing routine, but the tech is no different from the arcade button monome built years ago: http://www.defcon6.com/?cat=15 … that solution seems less kludgy than patching 4 midifighters together but either way it looks cool as hell 🙂

  • couic

    pleaaase

    customizable like the spectra, and with the possibility to change some buttons into tiwster rotary knobs when customizing.

  • Adam

    You had me at hello.

  • Jack Gibson

    djtechtools, whatever we have do to get this midi fighter 64. we will!

  • Jack Gibson

    Please sell this!

  • Jack Gibson

    please officially release this!!!

  • LordNikkon

    I just started experimenting with chain selectors after the 128’s article. I have heard of this technique before but never tried it. Chain selectors are amazing! I feel like I am just scratching the surface of what is possible with them. Shawn could you please demonstrate the way you incorporate them in drum racks please

  • Patrick Jurdana

    Voting !!!!! Make some

  • Unkle Rukus

    Totally make this available in a limited edition at least. Because I so would buy one… It’s exactly the pad I’ve been waiting for.

  • meta at em

    Open source the firmware! Then we can buy and build one ourselves. Opening the firmware and editor would only sell more midi fighters, and let me remap the 1-127 color sequences (I liked the 1.0 sequencing much better for visual feedback).

  • Joshua Bennett

    That beats launchpad any day.

  • Colin Mansfield

    What a great video! Shawn Wasabi is a very talented individual. And what a great ad for MID Fighter! Too bad you’re not actually making the 64 button units as a production run…

  • noxxi

    you have opened the floodgates! i bet everyone wants one of these now! 64 button midifighters to be in store soon?

  • Pedro González

    It kinda reads like you guys are doing custom builds.. is that a possible thing?

  • Zacharia Stone

    That was hands down the best finger drumming routine I’ve ever seen. Great work Shawn!

  • samerneergaard

    Produce the MIDI FIGHTER 64!!!! I Would buy it!!!!!

  • Thomas Mclaughlin

    Midi Fighter 64. Please let me give you my money…

  • RogueMURICAN

    How do you even remember where all of the samples are on a board that big?

  • Victor

    If they get the Midi Fighter 64 button, I get money from anywhere but buy it * – *

  • Generic Name

    I really like the idea of the Midi Fighter 64, it’s like a Launchpad and a Spectra had a love child. I think that before DJTT moves on to bigger things, they should bring the Spectra back and maybe even a new Midi Fighter Pro. Maybe even see a new 8×8 Midi Fighter made in response to the LaunchControlXL? I’m not sure, I just feel that DJTT has a really great potential with their Midi Fighter lineup, but they’re not at the level of popularity to get there. Maybe start a Kick starter for your new products?

  • BadData

    Curious how he’s programming the LED’s to react the way they do? Is that via MIDI? or touchosc or something?

    • Stewe

      LED animations are most likely handled via max 4 live.

  • Gary MacGregor

    I just wish I knew how to make the LED’s do all that…

  • - Producer DJProducer DJ

    […] pals at DJ TechTools have crafted a custom, one-of-a-kind, 64 button Midi Fighter for the infamous finger drummer Shawn […]

  • Alex Favilla

    I would buy it right now. I have two launchpads but that are not so comfortable (and cool) like the MF…

  • jprime

    Big shouts out to the DJTT crew for building that controller 🙂 Looks very slick as usual!

  • Vader Trackerz

    on http://www.etsy.com there is a guy who made cheap midiffgter and he made a 64 buttons midi fighter for me

    it works very well and it cost about 550 dollars

    maybe i don’t have the nice led response but i don’t care 🙂

  • Unreallystic

    The routine was wow, I flipped when the FF music got flipped at the end.
    The MIDI FIGHTER. Caught my attention first though. I’ve been wanting something like that for the exact reason listed, I like the buttons over the pads of say a launchpad, but when doing research on making my own, I stumbled across a wall…more like large chasm…$$$. Using some of the sites I go to for arcade parts, those buttons alone would run me $150 at least, and at that point, I might as well get the new Sanwa quiet buttons, but that would get the price to $200 “easy”. Add in getting a custom grid made, that would run me a chunk of change, through in the brains and the work coding it, not even talking about LEDs, and it’s a cool $400 – $750 project. So back to trying to find a launchpad for cheap when the new ones come out haha.
    Though true story, if one offs from DJTT became available, I’d most likely being willing to put money up, up front, something to be said for the quality and cleanliness of their products.

  • couic

    I need this controller badly.

    and a 4×8 too.

    • couic

      and a 4×8 with additional controls for remix decks

      (like a 4×12 based on 2 MF and a MF tiwster in the middle, all in one box)

      if only spectras were customisable in size and types of buttons too 😉

  • Lu Ynoji

    YEEEEEESSS

  • Shawn Wasabi i jego Midi Fighter 64 - Kontroleryzm.pl

    […] Wi?cej informacji na temat kontrolera Midi Fighter 64 (wraz z komentarzami Michael’a i Shawna dotycz?cymi konstrukcji urz?dzenia oraz przygotowywania rutyny) znajdziecie na stronie DJ TechTools. […]

  • Kevin

    With some minor tweaks this thing could out perform Novation’s Launchpad S.

  • Richard Lathrop

    Amazing mashup, and we need a 8×8 midi fighter publicly!

  • Mike Estacio

    If you’re wondering if you should produce the Midi Fighter 64…let me just say…I’m very very very jealous of Shawn Wasabi right now…having access to all those triggers without having to switch through banks…c’mon now…

  • Oddie O'Phyle

    I would have killed for one of those when I was using Live in the pre launchpad days. Still a very sweet unit and if I were to start using Live again I would definitely covet one.

    Awesome routine!!! The response on custom spectra reminds of a colourful Tenori-on.

  • Juli Petric

    Lol at first I thought it was some phshoped midi fighter like when Neville plays with himself with the launchpad, but gosh that was astonishing! Congratulations Shawn on the routine and DJTT on the building! It’s nice to see the technology creators are in the same way artists are-

  • deejae snafu

    so on point…

  • Max Dolensky

    Just saying, it would be nice to see more love for the DIY like this, the old MIDI Fighter spirit is shown with this project, would love to see you guys revisit it someday. Bravo to Michael for the outstanding build, I’m sure the firmware was a fun thing to write as well.

    I’ve thought about making a build-your-own Spectra guide, already written a lot of the source code for it using a Teensy 3.1. Just so you guys know, the original MIDI Fighter DIY spirit is still alive <3

  • Manny Macfly

    Why not make this for customer order?? I would buy one if it wasnt 4x the price.

    • Michael Chan

      If it’s 4x the parts plus some custom modification you’d imagine its MORE than 4x…not less.

  • CUSP

    That is just so darn cool. Even if you don’t like the music, the routine takes a lot of planning, a lot of doing, and a lot of creativity. I give it about until Summertime ’til Shawn Wasabi is touring with Madeon.

  • Navi Retlav

    I have the hardware suggestion. Instead of working on midi fighter 64, why not making the midi fighter 8 chainable with the simple usb system ( port on each side and extra screw for linking them). Just imagine how great it could be if we could link the next gen midi fighters in any directions and even combine them with the rotatory versions. That could make the unlimited size modular midi system 😉 You like that idea ?

    • couic

      yup. everything that prevents us from having to use a USB HUB.

      the unreliability of USB HUB is the bottleneck of midi controllerism

    • LordNikkon

      I think with the upcoming Virtual Reality revolution it is time for someone to start planning the virtual production/controllerism environment. Hardware is changing way too often. There will always be something newer bigger and better. I cant wait for the day we can just download a new layout built by a community and add it to our virtual studio. Lets end Rapid Gear Aquisition Syndrome all together

    • Jack Gibson

      IFI prefer the midi fighter 64, but still cool idea

  • Super Truper

    I love Shawn Wasabi! He is the reason I have recently began to practice finger drumming! I was in pure awe when I first saw his original Hotto Dogu, and I still am every time I watch it.

  • Shawnyd

    This is awesome! Fantastic job Shawn and what an awesome build Michael. I would love to see more videos on how you go about designing your controllers Michael. Even the resources you used to learn about building usb midi devices.

  • Dennis Josek

    I would buy 64 rotary midifighter twister
    Or make a modular midifighter version where you can choose between buttons or rotaries
    Thanks djtechtools ????????????

    • Michael Wachala

      My god! A MidiFighter Twister 64 would be pure insanity!

      • Scott Frost

        You’d be twistin the night away!!! That would have to be their slogan.