Liam Baum : Pringles MIDI Drums
Pringles MIDI Drums
This project turns Pringles cans into MIDI controllers by using piezo sensors to send MIDI data from an Arduino MKRZero to trigger sounds in Sonic Pi. I added the LEDs for some extra visual effect.
Pringles Drums w/ Sonic Pi and Arduino Since I first started learning about micro controllers and arduino, Ive wanted to make something like this. I saw someone else who did a project like this posted somewhere and got really inspired. However, it took several years before I accumulated enough knowledge and gear to make this into a reality.
Frequently Asked Questions
What inspired you to do this?
When I first started learning about Arduino and micro controllers, my main interest was how they could be used as MIDI controllers. One of the first projects I saw was someone who had made MIDI drum pads out of Pringles cans and it was something I always wanted to try.
How long did it take to make it?
Putting together the actual Pringles cans with the piezo sensors and LED lights took a solid Saturday afternoon.
How long have you been doing things like this?
Ive been playing around with Arduinos for about 5 years now, but only started using them for MIDI controllers for about 2 years now.
How much did this cost to do?
The MKRZero arduino board was about $25. The hardware (wires, piezo sensors, LEDS) prob was around $7. The cans of Pringles were $1 each.
Have you done other things like this?
I have made other arduino MIDI controllers linked to SOnic Pi. Check out my youtube channel to see them and other projects: http://www.youtube.com/mrbombmusic
What did you wish you knew before you started this?
That the MKRZero board makes MIDI communication much easier than using an Uno board.
Are there plans available to make this? Do you sell this?
I posted about this project on a Sonic Pi forum: https://in-thread.sonic-pi.net/t/pringles-can-drums-w-arduino/4341
Heres the original post I saw on Instructables that inspired me (Although mine is made much differently) : https://www.instructables.com/Pringle-Can-MIDI-Drums/
What’s next?
I would like to add more cans.
Liam Baum : Musician / Educator / Creative Coder / Tinkerer
The maker Liam Baum
Queens, NYC
I am a musician and educator who teaches at a public middle school in Queens NY. I have spent the past several years exploring how coding and technology can be incorporated into creative music making experiences. I work with coding and hardware to make musical instruments and interfaces that can be played in the physical world as well as strictly code based projects that can used as instruments.

I do this as a hobby but also have found ways to bring the experience of creative coding and physical computing to my students. I also have led several workshops both in person and virtually about combining music with coding and technology using different languages and hardware.
Connect with Liam Baum
How I can help you:
Im a musician and educator who is always happy to answer questions or offer assistance for things related to music and code.
I also lead workshops a few times a year with different organizations.
How you can help me:
Check out my youtube.
Follow me on twitter.
Book me for a workshop.