Dashboard icon

ROLI Dashboard allows you to set up your Seaboard RISE, Seaboard GRAND, and BLOCKS with various applications. Follow these instructions to download the latest version of ROLI Dashboard


For guides on using Seaboards and BLOCKS with specific applications, see Compatible synths, DAWs, and instruments.


Using BLOCKS with ROLI Dashboard

Connect your Blocks

Connect your first Block via Bluetooth (MacOS only) or USB. Subsequent Blocks can be connected by DNA – simply snap them to the first Block to magnetically connect. With your Blocks connected and turned on, ROLI Dashboard should automatically open the BLOCKS tab, or you may click the BLOCKS tab yourself. 


Your Blocks must be updated to the latest firmware to be used with ROLI Dashboard. Make sure you have updated each of your Blocks individually via NOISE or ROLI Dashboard following the instructions here.


Visualizer represents your BLOCKS setup

The visualizer shows your BLOCKS setup and the current state of each Block. Seaboard and Lightpad Blocks display your touches, while Control Blocks display the state of their buttons. 

Click on a Block to highlight it. Mouse over the Block to see its firmware version and other information, and click "Update" to update its firmware.


Apps and Modes determine the Block's behavior

To customize the behavior of a Block:

  1. Select a Block by clicking on it in the ROLI Dashboard visualizer.
    • If you're using a Lightpad Block, click on an app underneath the visualizer to load it onto the selected Block.
    • If you're using a Seaboard or Control Block, the default app will automatically be loaded.
  2. Click the "Edit" button to modify the currently loaded app's settings (the Seaboard Block is by default in Edit mode).

Note: when a Block is connected to NOISE the Block will bypass the ROLI Dashboard app running. As soon as a Block disconnects from NOISE it will revert back to the ROLI Dashboard app currently saved on the Block. To customize the behavior of Blocks within NOISE, load a NOISE project and tap on "Studio." Then connect your Block, and tap the "i" ("information") icon to adjust its settings.


Mode

The Mode section determines how a Block sends MIDI by allowing you to select a MIDI mode and the MIDI channels to use. Several modes are included with ROLI Dashboard, and you can also save your own modes.


  • MPE
    MPE Mode optimizes the Block with any other hardware or software that supports MPE. When MPE mode is selected, the global channel is set to 1. Global messages – like from a sustain pedal – are sent on the global channel, while note information is sent on channels with the range set by MIDI Start Channel and MIDI End Channel, by default 2–16.
  • Multi Channel Mode
    In Multi Channel Mode, the Block transmits data over multiple channels of MIDI. This setting makes it compatible with non-MPE multi-timbral synths.
  • Piano Mode
    In Piano Mode the Block will behave like a conventional MIDI keyboard by turning off the Glide, Slide, Press, and Lift dimensions of touch. The Block transmits all MIDI data on a single MIDI channel only, making it compatible with mono-timbral synths. 
  • Single Channel Mode
    In Single Channel Mode the Block transmits all MIDI data on a single MIDI channel only. This makes it compatible with mono-timbral synths. Pitch bend, channel pressure, or Slide (MIDI CC 74) messages will apply to all notes equally.

Saving Modes

To save custom settings as a mode, go to File > Save As..., enter the name of your mode, and click "Create Mode."


Seaboard Block Settings

  • MIDI Settings
    • MIDI Start Channel and MIDI End Channel – determine the channels that will send MIDI data for the notes you are playing. This range determines the expressive polyphony of your Block. For full MPE compatibility these will be set to 2–16.
    • Use MPE – turns MPE on or off. When MPE is on, the global channel is set to 1. Global messages – like from a sustain pedal – are sent on the global channel, while note information is sent on channels with the range set by MIDI Start Channel and MIDI End Channel.

    • Pitch Bend Range – allows you to match the pitch bend range of the software or hardware instrument your Block is controlling. By default the Pitch Bend Range is 48 to match the default pitch bend range of MPE synthesizers like Equator and Strobe2.

  • Pitch
    • Octave
    • Transposition (in semitones)
  • Play Mode
    • Slide CC – the MIDI CC on which the Slide dimension of touch is sent (74 by default)
    • Slide Mode – Absolute, Relative Unipolar, Relative Bipolar (Relative Bipolar by default)
    • Piano Mode on/off – turns off Glide, Slide, Press, and Lift
    • Glide Rate – how quickly notes glide from one to the next when Glide Lock is enabled (see below)
    • Glide Lock Enable – also known as portamento, this will allow notes to automatically glide from one to the next. Note: this will make your Block respond monophonically, so that it will only play one note at a time
    • Hide Mode on/off – hides notes not in the selected scale
    • Chord – allows you to play a chord with each single note played:
      • Off 
      • Octave 
      • Fifth
      • Major triad
      • Minor triad
      • Sus4
      • Sus2
      • Dominant 7th
      • Major 7th
      • Minor 7th
      • Major triad add 9
      • Minor triad add 9
      • Diminished triad
      • Augmented triad
    • Glide Tracking Mode
    • Slide Tracking Mode
    • Pressure Tracking Mode
  • 5D Touch
    • Set the sensitivity for Strike, Glide, Slide, Press, and Lift
    • Fixed Velocity on/off, Fixed Velocity Value – To make each note's velocity consistent, turn Fixed Velocity on and choose a Value (for example, choose 127 for each note to be as loud as possible)

Lightpad Block Apps

All ROLI Dashboard apps for your Lightpad Block are available in the scrollable list shown at the bottom of the window when your Lightpad Block is selected. After assigning the app of your choice to your Block, click "Edit" to the right of the app name to adjust your Block's parameters and settings.

Ableton Live Control

The Ableton Live Control app lets you play, record and navigate clips in Ableton Live projects using a Lightpad Block, as well as play melodic instruments and trigger samples loaded to a Drum Rack. See this guide for full instructions on using this app with Ableton Live.

BLOCKSvaders

Play our rendition of the arcade classic "Space Invaders."

BreakBLOCKS

Our take on "Brick Breaker." Let's see those high scores!

Control Grid

A fully customizable grid of notes or CCs with or without pressure. By clicking "Edit," you may control:

  1. The Drum Grid's MIDI Mode settings and what the note bottom-leftmost grid should send;
  2. The size of the Grid (1x1 to 4x4);
  3. The minimum value of Strike;
  4. The response and MIDI message sent by the Slide dimension; and
  5. The color of each pad on the grid.

Drum Block

The Drum Block app turns your Lightpad Block into a drum pad, with a wide variety of LED layouts and MIDI modes designed for playing percussion.

Fader Block

The Fader Block app lets you use your Lightpad Block to control 4 banks of 4 MIDI CC faders each. You can change the banks by pressing the Mode button on the Lightpad Block. You can edit:

  1. What MIDI channel the faders send messages on
  2. What MIDI CC message each fader sends

Mixer Block

The Mixer Block app lets you set your Lightpad Block to have 4 fader and 4 buttons each sending different MIDI CC messages. You can edit:

  1. What MIDI channel the faders and buttons send messages on;
  2. The color of the faders and buttons;
  3. The behavior of the faders and buttons: Toggle, Gate or Trigger; and
  4. What MIDI CC message each fader sends.

MusicGen

Create up to 4 note emitters by tapping the Lightpad Block's surface. Your emitter's placement and direction determine the chords and rhythms created. To reset, press the Lightpad Block's Mode button.

Note Grid

This app sets your Lightpad Block to a grid of notes, ideal for using your Lightpad as an drum or instrument controller. You may edit the following settings:

  • MIDI Settings
    • MIDI Start Channel
    • MIDI End Channel
    • Pitch Bend Range
    • MPE on/off
  • Pitch
    • Octave
    • Transposition (in semitones)
  • Play Mode
    • Slide CC – the MIDI CC on which the Slide dimension of touch is sent (74 by default)
    • Slide Mode – Absolute, Relative Unipolar, Relative Bipolar (Relative Bipolar by default)
    • Piano Mode on/off – turns off Glide, Slide, and Lift
    • Glide Rate – how quickly notes glide from one to the next when Glide Lock is enabled (see below)
    • Glide Lock Enable – also known as portamento, this will allow notes to automatically glide from one to the next. Note: this will make your Block respond monophonically, so that it will only play one note at a time
    • Mode –  the number of pads in each direction. For example, select 4 for a 4x4 drum grid, or 5 for a 5x5 melodic grid. You may also adjust this with the Lightpad's Mode button.
    • Scale
    • Hide Mode on/off – hides notes not in the selected scale
    • Chord
    • Glide Tracking Mode
    • Slide Tracking Mode
    • Pressure Tracking Mode
  • 5D Touch
    • Set the sensitivity for Strike, Glide, Slide, Press and Lift
    • Fixed Velocity on/off, Fixed Velocity Value – To make each note's velocity consistent, turn Fixed Velocity on and choose Value (for example, choose 127 for each note to be as loud as possible)

RISE Controller

Use the RISE Controller app to emulate the Seaboard RISE's Touch Faders and XY Touchpad with your Lightpad Block. You can navigate between the different controllers by using the Mode button. This is a great app to use with the Seaboard Block and Equator Player. See this article for more on using BLOCKS with Equator.

XYZ Pad

This app turns your Lightpad Block into an XYZ Pad sending MIDI CC messages. Click the "Edit" button to change:

  1. The MIDI CC messages sent by the Lightpad's X, Y and Z axes,
  2. What MIDI channel the CC messages are sent on, and
  3. The color of the Lightpad's LEDs.

Filtering SysEx messages

BLOCKS and ROLI Dashboard communicate with each other by sending MIDI System Exclusive ("SysEx") messages. If you find that these messages get in the way of your MIDI mapping, you may either close ROLI Dashboard or filter out these messages.

To filter SysEx messages in Logic, for example, go to File > Project Settings > MIDI > Input Filter and check "System Exclusive."

Songmaker Kit mode

If you have a Songmaker Kit, see Songmaker Kit Mode for details on special Songmaker Kit functionality.

If ROLI Dashboard does not recognize your Blocks

If ROLI Dashboard doesn't seem to be recognizing your Blocks, make sure that:

  • If you're connecting via USB the USB cable is firmly connected on both ends and your Blocks are turned on
  • The "BLOCKS" tab is selected.
  • If you are connecting via Bluetooth (MacOS only) you've followed the steps in this article.

Resetting Blocks

If your Block is behaving unexpectedly or you'd like to restore it to its original settings, simply select it in the visualizer and then go to Device > Reset to default settings. If you continue experiencing unexpected behavior with your Block, see the tips in My BLOCKS are behaving unexpectedly.


Using the Seaboard RISE / GRAND with ROLI Dashboard

Connect your Seaboard RISE / GRAND

Connect your Seaboard RISE or GRAND via USB or Bluetooth (GRAND and MacOS only) and turn it on. With your Seaboard connected and turned on, ROLI Dashboard should automatically open the RISE/GRAND tab, or you may click the RISE/GRAND tab yourself. 


Visualizer represents your Seaboard

The visualizer represents your real-time physical interactions with the playing surface and their relation to the 5 Dimensions of Touch.


Dashboard Visualiser 2


Each note is represented as a blue circle and white outline.

  • The blue circle represents the Strike value.
  • The white outlined circle represents the Press value.
  • The horizontal position of the note Glide value.
  • The vertical position represents the Slide value.

Mouse over the visualizer to see your Seaboard's firmware version and other information, and click "Update" to update its firmware.

Settings and Modes determine the Seaboard's behavior

Mode

The Mode section determines how the Seaboard sends MIDI by allowing you to select a MIDI mode and the MIDI channels to use. Several modes are included with ROLI Dashboard, and you can also save your own modes.

  • MPE
    MPE Mode optimizes the Seaboard with any other hardware or software that supports MPE. When MPE mode is selected, the global channel is set to 1. Global messages – like from a sustain pedal – are sent on the global channel, while note information is sent on channels with the range set by MIDI Start Channel and MIDI End Channel, by default 2–16. In MPE mode, Absolute Slide – the absolute value of your finger's position on the keywave's y dimension – is sent.
  • Multi Channel Mode
    In Multi Channel Mode, the Seaboard transmits data over multiple channels of MIDI. This setting makes it compatible with non-MPE multi-timbral synths. In Multi Channel Mode, Relative Slide – corresponding to your finger's on the keywave's y dimension relative to its initial position upon Strike – is sent.
  • Piano Mode
    In Piano Mode the Seaboard will behave like a conventional MIDI keyboard by turning off the Glide, Slide, Press, and Lift dimensions of touch. The Block transmits all MIDI data on a single MIDI channel only, making it compatible with mono-timbral synths. 
  • Single Channel Mode
    In Single Channel Mode the Seaboard transmits all MIDI data on a single MIDI channel only. This makes it compatible with mono-timbral synths. Pitch bend, channel pressure, or Slide (MIDI CC 74) messages will apply to all notes equally.

Saving Modes

To save custom settings as a mode, go to File > Save As..., enter the name of your mode, and click "Create Mode."

Settings

  • MIDI Settings
    • MIDI Start Channel and MIDI End Channel – determine the channels that will send MIDI data for the notes you are playing. This range determines the expressive polyphony of your Seaboard. For full MPE compatibility these will be set to 2–16.
    • Use MPE – turns MPE on or off. When MPE is on, the global channel is set to 1. Global messages – like from a sustain pedal – are sent on the global channel, while note information is sent on channels with the range set by MIDI Start Channel and MIDI End Channel. Also, when MPE is on Absolute Slide – the absolute value of your finger's position on the keywave's y dimension – is sent, while when MPE is off Relative Slide is used.

    • Glide and Slide Tracking – If you are using Single Channel mode this controls which note's Glide and Slide information is sent: the note that was Last Played, the Highest note, or the Lowest note. This can also disable Glide and Slide.

    • Press Tracking – If you are using Single Channel mode this controls which note's Press information is sent: the note that was Last Played, the Highest note, or the Lowest note. This can also disable Press.

  • Pitch
    • Octave
    • Transposition (in semitones)
    • Pitch Bend Range – allows you to match the pitch bend range of the software or hardware instrument your Seaboard is controlling. By default the Pitch Bend Range is 48 to match the default pitch bend range of MPE synthesizers like Equator and Strobe2.

  • 5D Touch
    • Strike (RISE)

      This Touch Fader controls the dynamics of Strike, or the velocity with which a finger makes contact with a keywave.

      When the Strike Touch Fader is at its maximum setting you can access the full dynamic range of velocities from MIDI velocity 0 to 127. As you reduce the value of the Touch Fader you will reach the maximum velocity with softer Strikes, and at its minimum setting you will reach maximum velocity regardless of how firmly or softly you Strike.

    • Glide

      This Touch Fader controls the dynamics of Glide, or left and right movements of the finger on the keywaves or along the ribbons.

      When the Glide Touch Fader is at its maximum setting, the keywave surface is maximally sensitive to sideways movements, and even minute movements will bend pitch like vibrato on a string instrument.
      Note: when Glide is at its maximum, the RISE will not be able to play adjacent semitones (minor seconds).

      A lesser setting will auto-correct pitch, pulling notes towards the nearest semitone at a rate controllable by the fader, and at its minimum setting the RISE will respond like a standard Piano.

    • Slide (RISE)

      This Touch Fader controls the dynamics of Slide, or vertical movements up and down a keywave.

      When the Touch Fader is at a lower setting, the spectrum of sound available for modulation along the Y axis of a keywave is narrower. This means that you can reach the maximum end of the range of modulation with a shorter movement up or down the keywave. When the Touch Fader is at a higher setting, the sensitivity of the Y axis decreases. This means that your finger must travel a greater distance to reach the maximum end of the range of modulation, and you can access a wider range of intermediate sounds along the vertical path of travel.

    • Press (RISE)

      This Touch Fader controls the dynamics of Press, or the response of the keywave surface to continuous pressure applied after Strike.

      When the Press Touch Fader is at a lower setting, the spectrum of sound available to modulate through pressure is narrower. This means that you can reach the maximum end of the range of modulation through lighter pressure on the keywave surface. When the Press Touch Fader is at a higher setting, the spectrum of sound available through pressure is wider. This means that you will press more firmly to reach the maximum end of the range of modulation, and you will be able to access a wider range of intermediate sounds as you vary pressure on the keywave surface.

    • Lift (RISE)

      This Touch Fader the dynamics of Lift, which describes the release velocity or speed of liftoff from a keywave.

      When the Lift Touch Fader is at its maximum setting you can access the full dynamic range of release velocities. As you reduce the value of the Touch Fader you increase the sensitivity and reduce the range of release velocities.

  • Control Inputs (RISE)

    • RISE Touchfaders and XY Touchpad
      In MIDI Mode (when the RISE's LED is white), you can map MIDI CC messages to the RISE's Glide, Slide, and Press Touch Faders as well as the X and Y axis of the XY Touchpad. 

      The RISE will retain these mappings even after it is powered off. This is useful for setting up with third-party instruments which may only respond to specific CCs.

    • Pedal
      You can assign the pedal to a MIDI CC and pedal type. The RISE automatically detects the pedal type when you connect a new switch pedal. Check here for details on assigning the pedal in Equator.

  • Control Inputs (GRAND)

If ROLI Dashboard does not recognize your Seaboard

If ROLI Dashboard doesn't seem to be recognizing your Seaboard RISE / GRAND, make sure that:

  • If you're connecting via USB the USB cable is firmly connected on both ends and your Seaboard is turned on
  • The "RISE / GRAND" tab is selected. 
  • If you are connecting via Bluetooth (RISE and MacOS only) you've followed the steps in this article.

Resetting your Seaboard RISE / GRAND

If your Seaboard RISE or GRAND is behaving unexpectedly or you'd like to restore it to its original settings, simply go to Device > Reset to default settings. If you continue experiencing unexpected behavior with your RISE, see the tips in My Seaboard RISE is behaving unexpectedly.