A MIDI foot controller gives you the freedom to switch back and forth between preprogrammed effects while leaving your hands free to play your instrument. Using signals known as continuous controller (CC) messages and program messages, MIDI foot controllers tell all your devices which channels and settings to use based on the programs you set up in advance for each key, pedal or button. Below are our top rated MIDI foot controllers:
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- Behringer FCB1010 (Most Popular)
- Studiologic MP-113 Dynamic Foot Controller Pedal Board
- Hammond XPK100 MIDI Pedal Board
- Fishman TriplePlay FC-1 Floor Controller
- Keith McMillen Instruments 12 Step Chromatic Keyboard
- Keith McMillen Instruments SoftStep 2
- Voodoo Lab Ground Control Pro Programmable
- FAMC Liquid Foot+ Mini
1. Behringer FCB1010
When you’re carting around a full rack of MIDI equipment, you want to get the most out of it. The FCB1010 from Behringer gives you the control you need to put on a professional show every time. Ten banks of presets with ten presets per bank provide an impressive level of customization. With five program change commands and two MIDI controller options for each preset, the amount of effects you can create is nearly endless. You never have to stop and sit down to program the presets you want. The FCB1010 is designed to let you program functions while standing up, allowing you to use the pedals to assign MIDI channels, controller numbers and range. Backup capabilities mean you never have to worry about losing the presets you rely on to make each show unique and successful.
- 10 banks of presets
- Multiple program change and control commands per preset
- 2 programmable expression pedals
- 2 programmable footswitch jacks
- Optimized for guitar, keyboard and studio use
2. Studiologic MP-113 Dynamic Foot Controller Pedal Board
The MP-113 from Studiologic is designed for use with MIDI keyboards and modules. Plug it in and get ready to rock with your keyboard, digital organ or guitar. With 13 velocity-sensitive pedals, you can play a melody or accompaniment line with your hands while a simple tap of your foot creates dynamic bass lines. Enjoy a professional level of control over MIDI programming, banking, channels and transposing for every song in your performances, or hook the pedal board up to onstage lighting to create responsive effects as you play.
- 13 velocity-sensitive wood-tipped pedals
- 4 buttons to control channel selection, transposition and program changes
- MIDI out port
- Professional quality for live performances
- 90-day manufacturer’s warranty
3. Hammond XPK100 MIDI Pedal Board
Three available ports make the Hammond XPK100 a versatile tool for MIDI control. Ideal for use with Hammond keyboards such as the XK-2 and XB-1, this controller can also be connected to most digital piano models with MIDI capabilities. Whether you want separate control over bass lines or are looking to create a virtual copy of a Hammond B-3 organ, this foot controller has the power you need. The 13-note pedal board offers a great deal of freedom for switching between presets, giving you the chance to try new setups and sound effects whenever you play a gig.
- Plug and play functionality
- Easy-to-read LED screen
- 15 presets
- One MIDI out port and two MIDI in ports
- Pedal board with 13 notes
4. Fishman TriplePlay FC-1 Floor Controller
If you’re tired of hauling a computer around to control MIDI at your shows, try this simple floor controller from Fishman. A USB receiver creates a direct connection between all of your MIDI devices, eliminating the need for computer software. A combination of three foot switches and an effects pedal gives you the power to quickly jump from one effect to another. Program the pedals according to your preferences using the included software, plug in the receiver and play your set without having to worry about whether or not your laptop will make it through the night.
- Large LCD display with graphics
- 3 programmable foot switches
- 1 programmable expression pedal
- Utility software for programming
- Built-in tuner
- Plug and play USB interface
- Battery level indicator
5. Keith McMillen Instruments 12 Step Chromatic Keyboard
This lightweight chromatic keyboard controller from Keith McMillen Instruments packs everything you need for a dynamic MIDI experience into a sturdy one-pound unit. When plugged into your on-stage setup via MIDI or connected using USB, this versatile device brings a whole new level of functionality and energy to your performances. Use it to control MIDI interfaces, sound modules and soft synths throughout each show, taking advantage of the velocity-sensitive pedals to create a variety of unique tones. Bright backlighting makes it easy to see the controls onstage so that you’re always in control of your effects.
With the capability to store up to five notes per key, the 12 Step can crank out multiple complex chords on demand. Enjoy endless musical possibilities with the dozens of factory presets and the ability to create many more of your own.
- 13 velocity-sensitive keys
- Touch responsive operation
- Backlighting for keys and display
- Program up to five notes per key
- Made from strong, long-lasting carbon fiber
- 59 factory presets
- Up to 128 user presets
6. Keith McMillen Instruments SoftStep 2
Another easily portable and feature-packed offering from Keith McMillen, the SoftStep 2 provides unprecedented control and flexibility for all of your MIDI needs. Each of the ten key pads features five different degrees of control: X, Y, pressure and clockwise or counterclockwise rotation. This device not only hooks up to your MIDI devices or rack but also has the ability to control lighting, video, robotic effects and even pyrotechnic displays. Use the included software or your favorite music program to customize the SoftStep 2 to your heart’s content and create the kind of show you’ve always dreamed of.
- 10 key pads with multiple degrees of control
- Controls effects, looping, panning, sample triggering, levels and DAW transport
- Combines with SoftStep MIDI expander for direct MIDI synth control
- 1Includes control mapping software
- 1Compatible with other music programs
- 1Powered by USB
- 1Can power MIDI and OSC devices
- 1Works with or without a computer
7. Voodoo Lab Ground Control Pro Programmable
With its easy-to-read alphanumeric display and compatibility with a wide range of MIDI devices, the Voodoo Lab Ground Control Pro is the perfect compact solution for your live shows. A combination of 12 patch switches, two bank switches and an edit switch grants you the flexibility to program and control up to eight different devices. Each device operates on its own channel, and you can expand the functionality with volume and expression pedals. Hook up a System Mix Plus or a GCX Guitar Audio Switcher to create unique effects loops. Give names to your favorites so that they’re easily recognizable as you switch between presets throughout your performances.
- Controls up to eight MIDI devices in real time
- MIDI in and MIDI out ports
- 12 patch switches
- 2 bank switches
- 1 edit switch
- Fully programmable
- Durable for long-lasting functionality in live shows
8. FAMC Liquid Foot+ Mini
If you’re looking for a small, powerful, affordable foot controller, the Liquid Foot+ Mini is just what you need. FAMC designs its tools to provide musicians with as much customization and control as possible. With eight buttons at your disposal, you can program as many as 50 customized layouts to use in your shows. An array of colored LED lights lets you track the layouts you’re using. Silent operation prevents background noise from interrupting your sets.
- USB enabled for Windows and Mac
- 8 programmable buttons
- Lifetime warranty on every button
- Ability to create up to 50 custom layouts
- 7 colored LED indicator lights per button
- Up to 128 set lists
- 60 songs per set list
- MIDI out port
- Phantom power
The Benefits of MIDI Foot Controllers
Incorporating MIDI effects makes live shows more interesting for you and more exciting for the audience. A foot controller gives you the freedom you need to put on the seamless show your fans expect and provides the chance to experiment with new and unique ways of presenting your music. Modern computer programming capabilities simplify the process of setting up presets, creating programs and assigning functions to pedals and switches. Whether you play keyboards or guitar, a foot controller enhances instruments with dynamic effects you couldn’t have created in the past.
When shopping for a MIDI foot controller, consider your playing style and the venues you frequent. The number and types of effects required for your music influences the features you’ll need to look for, as does portability, price and ease of use. Get ready to wow your audience with the controller that provides the best combination of features for your performances.