Posted by on Sep 6, 2011 in music, software, video

i discovered there’s a shortage of keystroke to MIDI converters for mac so I made MIDIpress.  to use it…

  1. Download MIDIpress
  2.  select your keyboard from the menu on the left.  this might take some trial and error – when you find it the yellow button next to the menu will flash when ever you hit a key.  mine’s “Apple Internal Keyboard / Trackpad 4”.
  3. choose your MIDI output settings.  “from midipress 1” is a safe bet.
  4. make sure your target application (ableton, FL studio etc.) has your chosen midi port active in it’s preferences.
  5. set your velocity and note length.
  6. do whatever! you can control any midi mappable parameters or jam as you type.

here’s the max patch for the nerdlingers



  1. Nicolas
    October 6, 2011

    hey, bob!
    I am using MIDIpress as I type, hahaha
    Music to my ears, well only after a bit of tweaking in ableton. I am wondering if there is an way to specifically assign the space bar to be a note in particular? I’m guessing there is a way, but my wee pea-size of a brain can’t quite figure it out. any help would be super awesome!

    (I really mean if there is a way to assign the space bar in the program itself) cheers otherwise I love it, so much fun.

    • bob
      October 7, 2011

      Midipress works by converting the number sent out by your keyboard directly into a MIDI note so there isn’t any way to choose which notes particular keys spit out.
      however it is possible to do this in ableton using the inbuilt midi effects or third party midi filter plugins. hunt around on google and see how you go.

  2. David Vilhelmsson
    October 7, 2011

    Just downloaded Midipress and it is exactly what i´ve ben looking for! Great program. Thanks a bunch! I´m also wondering if you know any way to trigger midi with a usb-joystick/gamepad on a Mac. I have found ways to do it in windows but not osx. Would be really useful in many ways.

  3. Nathaniel Salvador
    November 2, 2011

    hey man this is insane. This is exactly what I’m looking for. :D problem is I’m on Windows. Do you have a version of midipress that works for windows?

    • bob
      November 7, 2011

      I haven’t released it for windows as there are already a lot of keystroke to MIDI converters for windows out there. Just have a google for “keystroke to midi”. If you want to run midipress you still can, just…

      1.) download the (free) max/msp runtime from http://cycling74.com
      2.) download the midipress max patch above
      3.) open the max patch using the max/msp runtime

      good luck!

  4. Nils
    February 24, 2012

    Hey Bob,

    Thanks a lot for sharing this great little piece of software. I’m using it to control Max via my numeric-pad-foot-pedal, to send midi to Live.

    Is there any way of saving the configuration (i.e. if my setup requires that I select Trackpad 4, IAC-bus 3 and change the duration to 1ms) that I’m using, as a default, so that Midipress launches with these settings?

    best wishes from Stockholm

    • bob
      February 25, 2012

      Yo nils, glad you find it useful. Currently there aren’t any plans to update this software but you have two options. If you’ve got max you could create your own preset system. Otherwise something I’ve has a lot of success with in the past is using automator to open and set up my entire gig set up in one click. I think dubspot have a video on this up on YouTube.

  5. Nils
    April 28, 2012

    Hi again Bob,

    I missed your answer and didn’t see it until now. Will check the Automator first thing in the morning, thanks a bunch for the advice! That seems to help a bunch with the whole process of setting up my gear for a gig…


    / nils

  6. Austin
    May 6, 2012

    Hey zeal,
    I wanna know how did you use you numpad as an mpc? I already have Max 6 though but the thing is I don’t have the patch. Where can I get it?

    • bob
      May 6, 2012

      you can use midipress (standalone and max patch linked to above) or you can try the more rudimentary patch linked to in this vid: http://youtu.be/yK9bk6ts73Q

  7. Rus Pearson
    January 27, 2013

    Hey Bob,

    Thanks so much for this great program. You have solved a connection riddle for me! I’m just wondering if there was a list available of which keys are mapped to which notes, I may have missed this somewhere or is this available online.

    Thanks again and all best wishes,


  8. bob
    March 10, 2013

    hi rus, apologies for the delay. The program translates the keyboards ascii key code directly to midi. if you can find a list of ascii keycodes that will give you the number of the midi note that will be played.