Roland has updated its impressive MIDI foot pedal with the introduction of the PK-6 dynamic MIDI pedal.
Looking much like the pedals found on an organ, this versatile piece of kit allows the keyboard player/pianist great creativity and flexibility by controlling MIDI with the feet.
Compatible with most MIDI devices and including a MIDI merge facility, it allows players to send a variety of MIDI signals which can then be used for playing baselines, harmonies, or sending control messages.
The 13 pedals, spanning a chromatic octave, are velocity sensitive so will send appropriate data depending on how firmly they are depressed.
There are four selectable performance modes: Mono, Poly, Drums and MIDI controller. Although Roland doesn’t explain these in the press release, we can assume that “mono” is for sending single MIDI note on/off messages on a single channel, “poly” will allow multiple notes to be sent at once (possibly on different channels), “drums” will map to a GM (General MIDI) Drum Map, while MIDI controller will allow alternative control messages to be assigned to each pedal.
When sending notes, the pedals can be transposed over a nine octave range. As well as the MIDI ports there’s also a PK Out port for use with existing Roland instruments that utilise it. It runs on batteries, and presumably (hopefully) can also be mains powered.
Exact pricing and availability to be confirmed, but we expect it to retail at around the $500 mark.