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Application of Arduinos to VPOs

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    Application of Arduinos to VPOs

    Recently I have been on a roll exploring all the ways an Arduino Microcontroller can be used when implementing a VPO. So far, I've published the following on the Hauptwerk Forum in the DIY organ/MIDI section.

    An Arduino Decoder
    An Arduino Parallel Keyboard Scanner
    Arduino + Optical Switches
    Pipe Organ "Front End"
    Korg: "Time of Flight" Debounce
    A Simple VPO
    Galanti to VPO Conversion

    You can view the code for all these applications on my website:

    It is my hope that some of this may be useful to electronic hobbyists like myself who love organs.

    John, that's great. I'm downloading the sketches now and hope to look at the code to see what you are doing. I look forward perhaps getting you code running on a test board.
    Eric Mack
    Rodgers 340 S/N 34341
    Los Angeles, CA


      Hello, John, First of all, sorry for my broken english and second, you're doing a great job. I'm starting a project of building a VPO for my particular use at home and my first intention is to use Arduino as well. (by the way, I began programming in Fortran also .

      I'd like to ask you one question regarding your web page. In the section "A simple VPO" in the comment in the beginning of your sketch, you say:

      "Equipment: Arduino Mega 2560 with three MIDI shields to accomodate three manuals."

      How can you accomodate three MIDI shields in a single Arduino Mega? Is a particular model you can stack?

      Thanks in advance and best regards



        Thank you, this is all terribly useful. I've found myself a console and am planning my attack - by the time I figure out how to get it moved to my house I'll be all ready to go.

        My first plan is to chain several of these things to scan the keys in parallel and use a small arduino - probably a metro since I've got a couple lying around.


          For those of us familiar with Arduinos, this most versatile of technologies is a fun way of implementing a VPO.
          I'm glad some are finding my ideas useful.

          Enrique, I apologize for not responding earlier. I check the forum regularly and don't understand how I missed your question.

          While one shield is mounted on the Arduino as usual, the other two I simply mount beside the Arduino and then I hardwire the required connections. First you need to provide power and ground. Whereas the first shield communicates via TX0 and RX0, the other two are connected via TX1 and RX1 and TX2 and RX2. The pinout for your MIDI shield can be found online. Four connections. That's it.


            Woohoo and down the rabbit hole I go! I'm checking out all your posts. Arduino and components in hand and working in breadboard. Used organ console should show up at my house next week. "God willing and the crick don't rise" as my organ teacher likes to say. bouncebouncebouncebouncebounce!