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Deadmau5 teases software project with Microsoft

Microsoft and Deadmau5 have a pretty cozy relationship. The two have teamed up plenty times in the past to promote various products and services. Recently, Deadmau5 helped kicked off the second-generation of Surface in his homeland of Canada. Earlier this summer, Deadmau5 (along with Macklemore) were present for an event to celebrate Microsoft’s strong intern program. The two are apparently teaming up again for something a little more on the product side, check out the video below to see what we’re talking about.

You’ve got Deadmau5 using a Perceptive Pixel display and some custom software that his team and Microsoft have been jointly developing. The demo shows some “righteous” touch software that drives OSC/MIDI to other “stuff”. He’s playing coy with the details, but it seems that Microsoft and Deadmau5 have some surprises for those who like to create music. That's also clearly the 55-inch display from Microsoft versus the 82-inch one Bill Gates uses

Have experience with creating EDM and other music? Tell us what we’re really looking at and what the potential here is. In the meantime, try out FL Studio Groove for Windows 8 if you want to make some music on a touchscreen.

Source: YouTube

Thanks for the tip Hugo!

  • I think it's gonna be for him to run shis show on his new tour
  • Music Producer here... What this is is basically the most advanced midi/USB controller on the planet... Before we had computers to sequence tracks on people used midi devices such as drum machines, synthesizers, keyboards, and various other computer based devices that had built in sequencing, and audio processing capabilities, and virtually any sound sample could be loaded into some of the machines to be turned into music.. By the late 90's computers had become used for more than just recording music, but for music production.. These electronic devices, that I previously mentioned could interface with computer programs, and act as peripheral devices to control the functions of the on screen program. So, you have a keyboard on your screen, and you control it with a real keyboard.. Moving on... As computers became more powerful, and portable, and the music programs became much more intuitive, and powerful, these electronic instruments shed their audio processing capabilities, and became strictly controllers for computer based programs like Pro Tools, and Ableton... Fast forward to the future... I could be wrong but in the video it looks like this controller lets you configure its setup.. First, it's completely touch, and doesn't have the traditional sliders, knobs, buttons, fixed grid of pressure, and velocity sensitive pads... The guy in the video is adding the controls he wants, at the size, color, shape, position, and number he wants... What's really interesting, and mind blowing cool, to me is that he is able to change the traditional grid of 16 pressure, and velocity sensitive, pads to virtually any shape and amount he wants, and this all makes sense with the news of pressure, and velocity sensitive, touch screens being developed for such applications... So, to sum it up this is basically the most advanced controller in the world... And it seems to be taking a new, and totally different approach. It's combined the computer, software, audio processing, and controller all in one. And being controlled by a touch screen it is infinitely reconfigurable... Basically it's what we had before with the out of the box experience of say a Korg Tritan... What's old is new again❕.. Lol..
    Currently, Apple owns the music, video, and music production industry, and I'm glad MS is finally stepping up and doing something about that..
  • This is just a controller for your existing DAW (music software).
    It does not "combine the computer, software, audio processing and controller all in one" as the korg triton.
  • Seeing that what he's working on could be a all in one computer yes all of that could be combined into one machine... Remember, none of us are 100 percent sure what we are looking at here... I think it's time you humbled yourself.. This is just my opinion of what we're looking at, and I'm not saying that it is 100 percent accurate at all.. I just know its a very kick ass controller..
  • To me it is what a smartphone is compared to an old push button, single row LCD display phone.
  • That's a very, very good analogy.
  • Aweessome love deadmau5
  • Here it looks like the potential is to create your own mixing desk - The bars are faders, the square with smaller squares can be used to trigger samples or sequences, and the circles are dials. The cube I'm less sure about, perhaps by turning it or lighting up faces you change the tone of something? The awesome thing is the flexibility. Need another fader, just add one on!
  • I see the cube as the grid of 16 pads on a MPC2500, except he is making the grid with as many pads he wants, in whatever size, and shape.. Awsome❕
  • He always used a cube on his tours with led panels for images etc
  • That's probably a Akai ableton controller..
  • Or it could be a kaos pad... But he may have a touch pad to make visual effects.. If you go to guitar center you'll see that there's all kinds of crazy stuff nowadays..
  • They are both squares not cubes. The cube being referred to here is in the video. He touches the sides of the cubes lighting them up and rotates it too.
  • No, he's talking about the actually equipment he uses on tour already.. Not the cubes in the video.. I replying to Ultimateone's comment..
  • Yes but you first replied to tomoakley, describing a cube as a grid of 16 pads.
    You were correct in saying that he uses an ableton controller. I think its launchpad.
  • I wasn't describing it as.. I was comparing it to the 16 pads on the MPC.. IOW,, for example..
    You miss perceived a lot of what I've said on several comments, so far, and you've done the same to others.. It's time for you to step back, slow down, and really read what others are writing.. Nobody likes a MR. know it all, and the fact is that none of us here are completely sure what we are looking at.. This is all just speculation at this point, and your attitude is ruining the fun for us music lovers..
  • LCARS 1.0? ;)
  • We can only dream. ^_^
  • Looks like some version of TouchOSC, look it up if you're interested.
  • DM needs to promote the touch dj whatever soon.
  • Yeah, I am pretty sure that he will be promoting the DJ touchcover.
  • DM stands for Depeche Mode...just saying
  • +925
  • +1020
  • Dead Mau5.
  • Balls out awesomeness!
  • I believe Joel is using Emulator PRO
    I want to use it with XPS 18, Traktor and s4.
  • Although it looks very similar. Joel is creating this software himself with his team working with Microsoft.
  • I'm an edm music producer of 12 years. Plus I love Deadmau5. To me this looks like a build your own midi controller. To put that simply: in your music software there are lots of parameters that can change sounds like, volume, eq, send amounts etc etc. However these can often be on different pages in your software or simply not intuitive or quick enough to access. If you were to play live you may want to access the controls that you most use quickly and conveniently. So this is basically a remote control for your music software.
    It looks as though you can create your own custom setup of knobs, faders, pan pots, pads, buttons and a whole world of interesting touch interactive controls and then map them to the parameters of your music software as you wish.
    This has been done for years using hardware midi controllers, however this is limited by the fact that the controls are already placed on the unit for you. You can still assign said controls to any parameters you wish. But this looks amazing! Because its software based you can create your own custom setup exactly as you like. In the video he is moving the controls around the screen and resizing them! Cool. This would be massive for DJs. I for one would definitely make room for this in my studio. Very excited. Feel free to ask questions incase I didn't explain it clearly.
  • This is the most accurate description, was just about to post something similar! :)
  • Exactly❕.. Read my description at the very top.. Mine is more along the lines of actual music production, and not just DJ equipment.. But, its all the same. BTW, long time Akia MPC fan here.. I'm currently using the MPC2500 for most of my production.. I haven't, and doubt that I will ever switch completely to producing on a computer.. I'm old school.. And, I was just reading somewhere about a pressure, and velocity sensitive, touch screen that's being developed.. This may be what we're looking at❕
  • I wasn't talking about dj equipment. It says at the top I'm a producer. I have a studio. I talk about computer software. Oh, well, its seems that you more or less understand what this does. And the man in the video is Joel Zimmerman aka Deadmau5
  • Right.. Yeah, I've been producing music for about 14 years.. I don't know everything, but this is some cool shit.
  • Mix Engineer here, you two, stop arguing and relax. We, producers, are going to use this machine when its released, and then we'll talk about it, lol.
  • rodneyej cant relax. he always got something to say
  • Lol❕.. It was all good till your boy started being Mr. know it all, and not reading through peoples comments.. It seems like everything I post he had to comment about.. Damn, it all speculation at this point, but the dude is acting like he's working on the project.. LOL❕❕
  • I only commented on things that I felt were wrong, you made yourself the target by talking rubbish. Why do you think I haven't read through peoples comments? I did. Just because I have a different opinion to you doesn't mean I haven't understood what you've said. If you had read the description in the youtube video you can clearly see that this is a midi controller, he said so himself. Your suggesting that this could be an all in one music station is ridicules! Are you even an EDM producer? Your right about me being Mr know it all though, well on this subject at least.
  • The first thing I said was that it was a midi controller.. But, I was suggesting that it could be more than that.. The idea that it is a all in one computer that he was working on was just speculation on my part, just a idea of mine, because like I said before none if us are completely sure of what we are looking at.. That's why you don't need to be going around acting like you know exactly what it is, and telling people that there guess is wrong.. It's quit obvious that it's some kind of ver advanced controller, but I'm just trying to dig further to come up with ideas of what's special about it... Your attitude just ruined the whole thing by thinking that you know more about music production than everyone else.. Fact is that this system hasn't been unveiled yet, so take anything that anyone says about it with a grain if salt... Go count how many times I said that anyone 's guess was wrong, then go count how many times you told someone that they were wrong or you miss interpreted what they were saying... Me=0 You=❔
  • And, the idea about this controller being a all in one came from the Open Labs Miko lxd.. This is basically a controller attached to a PC running W7.. With the graphics displayed in the video I figured this prototype controller might be configured the same.. That's why I'm calling it a all in one.. Just an idea of mine..
  • An on-demand mixing board? If so that's very cool
  • Microsoft should also partner up with Koobra and Joanna, and with Clubfeet. FL Studio Groove is well worth the pocket change. Well done app, although the left and right audio channels are reversed.
  • I remember that Deadmau5 were used for marketing that SeaRay phone by Nokia back in 2011.
  • They have done a coule of events for Nokia in London.
  • But what was that SeaRay phone?
  • I love his music, his honesty, and his no bandwagon, hipsters approach to doing shit. Hell yeah mau5
  • AutoCAD for the Muscian.
  • Pretty Much❕.. Read my take up at the very top..
  • Interesting research project, maybe, but could we get Microsoft to focus on more mainstream projects? 
  • Music production is huge❕.. We're talking one of the biggest industries in the world.. It has to be in the top ten industries.. I've been saying for the longest that MS needs to focus on the music industry because right now Apple has music, and movie, production on lock❕
  • I agree, I wish we could get more apps for windows 8 and wp8 as there are loads of ipad/iphone ones!
  • Exactly❕.. Now we agree on something❕... Lol❗❗
  • If a guy like Deadmau5 starts using windows/Microsoft products publicly that'll do huge things in the music industry. People are just so ignorant when they just automatically think they need a Macbook to become a DJ or a Mac to work Pro Tools etc. Same with graphic designers and photographers and such.
  • Yep❕❕
  • Ugh...couldn't they bother to use an actual band with instruments? The popularity of garbage today makes me a little sad.
  • This is for computer based music. Were you hoping he would use a touchscreen to control a real band?
  • You missed his point..
  • How have I missed his point? You cannot control an acoustic instrument with this software. I play acoustic instruments but they wouldn't be very good in a video showing software that controls midi compatible instruments.
  • You can, by micing the instrument and running it through a dynamically-controlled effects chain.
  • Ok, that's true. Well done.
  • I use electronic equipment, and play acoustic instruments.. A instrument can be a pot, forks, a cell phone, sounds of nature, a synthesizer, anything❕ The last thing we need are people trying to define what real music is.. This reminds me of comments that some people make about tablets.. They say that a tablet is supposed to be ultra thin, simple in function, and not a real computer.. And, I say let us define on our own what a tablet should be.. Just like w WP users believe that we need more options besides the defined two, real artist respect all artwork,, even if they aren't particularly interested in it.. What's wrong with human evolution❔
  • Hey rodneyej
    Love your passion man!
    It definitely looks like a wild project that could have some huge potential! And with DM5 involved its gonna rock.
  • I hate the fact that companies like Akai make all these accessories, and apps, for iPads and iPhones.. The iPhone has a official MPC app for Christ sake❕.. That would be awesome on the 6" screen of the 1520... I'm sick of WP not getting the recognition it deserves,, but I need to be patient..
  • I've played guitar for most of my life. Music is very much a part of my life. Using computers to create music is as much an art as playing any other instrument. I've been using DAW software for a couple of years now and its opened a whole new world of musical possibilities for me. Now autotune...yeah that's just going too far imo. :P
  • Computers can't ever compete with live instruments. A computer can't add feelings into the music.
    I've played the saxophone for more than 30 years and have played with some really impressive living, human sound-machines that a PC never could replicate...
    But on the other hand, for all kinds of synthetic music and mixing of all kind... It would be really great could one use a PC instead of some fruitburgerthinghy...
    And Rodney, what happens❓❔
    You actually make sense ;) ✅
  • I'm smoking crack tonight...
  • Aah, there's always an explanation to things... :D
    Take care and leave alone those gardenias in your neighbors yard...
  • Haha❕❕
  • Looks like a way to eliminate hardware controllers and lay them all out in a custom manner each one tailored to a song if you so choose. That's my take; one screen to control them all. I wouldn't mind having this. I dont DJ but I compose via DAW and that just looks fun. :)
  • What I see is the beginning of MS opening up a few more APIs that would allow DAW developers do some amazing things with a windows store app.
  • But it could be even more than just a mixing board. Could also be digital modules along the line of the old Moog synths. Stacking, filtering, adding and subrtacting waveforms. This is really just the tip of the iceberg, so the argument that this is only a connection to other devices is likely wrong.
    Complete packages including soft synths, video, etc. such as Cakewalk's Producer software make it completely possible to have this become a single device doing all of it including sampling, audio manipulation, autotuning, effects and final production work, all on a single touch screen. 
  • Jeeze people, it's the Geometry Wars 3 intro.
  • Want Kinect control of parameters convert to different midi streams to control daw. A clever app to manage this would be appreciated.
  • I was impressed with the Surface Remix Project I was able to demo at the Microsoft Store with a Surface 2 a few days ago. I've always wanted to remix music and learn DJing, just didn't have the hardware to do so. This looks very similar to that functionality, and it's also why I want a Surface 2 this year. And the pressure-sensitive pen now makes me want a Surface Pro 2 as well! Ahhhh!!!! How it hurts to want! :)
  • Awsome! :)