Polyend PERC Robotic MIDI Drum System Now Available

Polish startup Polyend has announced that the PERC – a MIDI-controlled system for playing acoustic percussion instruments – is now available. All pre-orders have been shipped.

The PERC system can be combined with any set of drums to create a robotic virtual drummer, to augment a traditional drum kit or to create live acoustic drumming that explores territory that might be impossible for a human drummer.

At Superbooth 16, we talked with Polyend founder Piotr Raczynski, who gave us a sneak preview of the new system, embedded above. 

The PERC Kits include PERC Controller, PERC Balls, dedicated mounts and cables.

The PERC Controller is capable of operating up to three PERC Balls. To operate more, several controllers can be connected together.

PERC Controller IN/OUT:

  • 1x MIDI DIN in
  • 1x MIDI USB in
  • 3x Drum Gate in
  • 3x CV Velocity in
  • 1x MIDI DIN thru
  • 1x MIDI DIN out
  • 3x PERC Ball outPERC Controller POWER:
  • IEC AC power inlet for internal power supply
  • Operates worldwide on voltages between 100 and 240 volts at 50 to 60 Hz; 280 watts maximum power consumption

Pricing and Availability

PERC PRO is available now:
  • $1299 for set with three beaters
  • $1099 for set with two beaters
  • $899 for set with one beater
All sets include controller that plays up to three beaters.

13 thoughts on “Polyend PERC Robotic MIDI Drum System Now Available

  1. Can someone explain me how is this useful? If the controller doesn’t recreate “human error” when playing isn’t this the same as using a good set of samples? Or does it?

  2. As a drummer, I actually think this is cool. Yes its robotic sounding, but what did you expect from a robot? some people might want a perfectly sequenced performance, but with the sound of a real acoustic space, this would be a good way to achieve that. Definitely not very human, but if I’m going for a human sound i’ll play the drums myself.

  3. This looks great for sound art installations and with generative systems. Who says you have to use drums for these. If you want, you can have them tap on any surface! I’ve been less inclined to build my own robotic machines, but these seem to have simplified that process. There’s a lot to be said about the visualization of a musical or sound process. Yes I could just use samples for some things, but electronic is still not acoustic. An example I could give is Janet Cardiff & George Bures Miller Pandemonium 2005.

    “Using the existing elements in the prison cells Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller have made the entire Cellblock Seven into a giant musical instrument, producing a percussive site work. This instrument, controlled by a computer and midi system, is made up of one hundred and twenty separate beaters hitting disparate objects such as toilet bowls, light fixtures and bedside tables found within the prison cells. The composition begins subtly as if two prisoners are trying to communicate and then moves through an abstract soundscape and lively dance beats until it reaches a riot-like crescendo.”

    I find the artistic potential of musical robotics quite fascinating. Sometimes the space you’re in has more sonic potential than just using a pair of speakers the same way all the time. “I am sitting in a room…”

  4. If you have acoustic drum triggers then you could record the MIDI and then play it back through Perc. Maybe even switch out drum kits.

    I really want one of these.

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