Use Hapax as DAW controller

Would be great to use Hapax as a controller to Ableton or another DAW. Could this be possible in the future without recording MIDI?

You can already do this?


Oh wait, you mean that you can directly put in notes in the piano roll of the DAW with the Hapax? I think that will never happen.

However, they have midi clip import/export on the roadmap I believe, so it should be easier in the future to export a Hapax project to a DAW.

at least for Abelton isn’t that basically what the Push is for?


You can use hapax with a daw no problem. But it will only ever be with MIDI. Same with every other controller. What exactly do you want to do?

For me it would be great to just put in a note on Hapax that will instantly show up in the DAW. I understand that that would perhaps require a Plug in, but it would be nice.

Hapax will send midi notes and cc to your DAW in real-time. Can you be more specific about what you want to instantly show up in the DAW? Maybe I’m not understanding what you’re trying to do.

You still haven’t provided enough clarity about what you want to do. I’d recommend getting a good understanding of MIDI fundamentals first. With an understanding of how midi works you will answer your own questions. DAWS, sequencers(hapax), synths, drum machines all use midi protocol. It might seem intimidating at first but once you understand it you’ll realize how to do what you want to do!

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Ok, I’ll try to be more specific. I would like to use Hapax as a midicontroller to Ableton just like Push 2. Use the grid to put out notes in the pianoroll (instant), fire patterns/scenes, edit parameters with the knobs etc.

I think using the Hapax grid as a controller for the Ableton grid is not really possible, but I could be wrong here.

What do you mean by ‘instant’ on the piano roll? Don’t all midi keyboards need to be recorded (and then played) to be displayed into the piano roll. This works as usual with the Hapax.

You can assign a lot of parameters to the 8 encoders in Assign mode: Hapax Manual | Squarp instruments
Just have to set these up to correspond with what you want your DAW to do.

I owned Push 2 a couple of months and I could select pad/notes on it’s grid and they would show up immediately on Abletons pianoroll. Really nice if Hapax could do something similar. As I wrote, perhaps you would need a standalone/plugin for that to work like MPC and Maschine software if Ableton don’t want to support Hapax as an official Ableton controller to control VST instruments.

I understand what you want, but it’s not gonna happen. Would be cool though - so I could get rid of my Push 2…

Ah I think I see want you mean now. You want to control VST instruments in real time. So that when you play notes on the Hapax the software plays the sounds? That works for me. Just need to make sure (midi)monitoring on the Ableton track is active.

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You clearly just want a Push lol!!


That + pressing a pad in the grid on Hapax will create a note in Abletons pianoroll. Would be nice and fast workflow and would take advantage of Hapax excellent grid well. Talking about step recording and not live recording.

Yes, it was nice but like the grids Hapax more. More pads. :sunglasses: also don’t have enough space to have them both. :sweat_smile:

If you’re motivated enough, you could try and roll your own custom User Remote Script for Hapax :wink:


I’m not. :sweat_smile:

to do this ‘properly’ Hapax would need some kind of ‘controller mode’…

this would be something like:

a) present all buttons/pads/encoders as separate (midi) messages
Push 1/2 use mix of CC/note due to > 127 (so cannot just use notes)

b) allow us to send button/pad message back to hapax to ‘light’ the pads
Push 1/2 use same notes/CC as (a) where velocity/value = colour.
colour is chosen from a palette… so you dont need full rgb

c) allow messages to be send to control display.
Push 2 has its own usb protocol,
but you could follow push 1, which simply used sysex. it was pretty much just text and a few graphics.
(mainly you just want to display text, and then simple graphics like bars… to represent values)

it worked pretty well for push… and you could look at the controller mode of the Push 1 (sdk), you could see how you could potentially write something similar for the Hapax. ( * ) …
personally, id say not too difficult, since basically its a pretty ‘dumb’ interface…

once that was there, then the community could build something to interface to Live/Bitwig.
(assuming anyone can be bothered to put the required effort in !)

honestly without this… Im not sure how useful/interesting a controller script would be.

BUT overall, Im not really sure how much value any of this this has
… after all most have bought it as a hardware sequencer , often to get away from the DAW :laughing:

( * ) and before anyone asks, no you’d not be able to make it ‘compatible’ with the Push1/2… that’d be a huge amount of dev effort :wink:

Mod note:
Ive re-titled topic, to reflect the topic is about hapax being used as a controller…
“Using Hapax with a DAW” , felt more like how to combine a sequencer (hapax) with a DAW, which is a very different topic.

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I’ve personally wanted exactly this from every grid based sequencer, and I would especially love the same thing against an MPC.

I’ve given up on this dream, tbh. The push 2 satisfies well enough for ableton and the MPC’s step sequencer just sticks to ‘wait why is it like this?!?’.

Giving up gave me this instead - the hapax is capable enough to work as a live sketching palette. You can control and record any performance and param changes in the Hapax as a sequence. Using an instrument def file you could get targeted control over a soft-synth, or you could map midi controls on the fly

You don’t get the visual of the notes in the software piano roll, yet. That also means no mouse interaction. For now, you’re working in physical space and playing the sequencer.

Then once you have the performance the way you want / close enough / time to move on, you print it into the piano roll by recording the sequence into ableton. Now that it’s in ableton you can mute, delete or iterate on the pattern in the hapax and reprint an alt take, etc.

It’s how I’ve been using it with MPC stand-alone and SW too. I still use the MPC or Ableton workflows, but build the trigs on the Hapax. I eventually print each performance and have the native sequencer take over as I go.

Edit: I think the lowest-effort path to something close enough to be enjoyable would be to make an instrument def for the Hapax that corresponds to the vst/soft synth you load in ableton. You might have to make a matching instrument rack in ableton to map the macros from the input to the specific function on the VST, but that’s fairly simple in ableton. That lets you load a synth, load its controls in the hapax and use it as your piano roll pretty fluidly.

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