Touché: A New Way To Play

The Touché midi controller uses touch sensitivity to blur the lines between musical instruments and a musical accessories. The welcome press of a piano key has long been a missing component, and link between midi controllers themselves and traditional instruments. Now Expressive E aims to further fill that void by introducing their Touché into the mix; a touch sensitive pad with the depth of an acoustic instrument. This innovative pad can be used to easily alter synth parameters with such fine sensitivity, that even a light tap, and a slightly lighter tap, can be the difference between notes. When used with other hardware, like the aforementioned midi controllers that utilize key presses, you can obtain more accuracy, or depth from each note. The item can also use software to be a stand alone instrument, or controller.


The Touché is an incredibly fun to use device, and welcome companion for digital musicians, allowing easy access to notes and sounds at your fingertips. This device aims to join the two worlds of digital and instrumental sounds by acting as a unique controller, for tactile shifts in tones, thanks to its incredible sensitivity, and deep musical qualities.

Modern midi controllers are becoming more and more instrumentalized these days. While nothing digital may ever feelfor some, as compelling as plucking a string, or the press of a key to ring a note, the development team at Expressive E understand that, and aimed to encompass the finesse and musical sense of a real instrument into their product. Thanks to their efforts the birth of a new and exciting concept in the form of the Touché, was created to be a skill-based interactive controller, as apposed to the slightly less interactive on-screen only control schemes common among midi controllers. The use of our hands to touch and play with instruments makes for a unique but satisfying way to get tonal precision, and create an intuitive way to produce a workflow.

Where size is concerned, the Touché doesn’t take up much desk space at all; it’s a little less than a foot in length, and has a fine, smooth, (and gorgeous) thin, wooden surfacewhich is only the front door to a depth of acoustic sounds while simultaneously feeling great to touch. The surface is seemingly suspended about an inch above the rubberized base, and has a float-y  feeling when touched or pressed, similar to an accordion. The panel can detect four different dimensions of touch. It’s delicate sensitivity lets your hand make music by brushing, flicking, tapping, and pressing down on the device itself. A rotary knob sits at the base above two buttons for patch changes.

Pressure and direction can also both be adjusted when using the outputted control signals. It contains four CV outputs for connecting to modular gear, or other synthesizers, and a 5-pin midioutput when paired with their converter cable. Touchés versatility as a device is especially where it shines, as it can be used to control external tools, or be paired with the Lié software.

Ultimately the Touché is a hybrid instrument and midi controller meant to be explored. It can be used to discover new techniques and methods of producing music, making it an innovative and worthwhile addition to any musicians digital tool set. Considering it’s ability to save configurations, once mastered we can’t wait to see someone use this bad boy for live performances somewhere down the line.


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