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Overview

Padz is a music creation application that allows users to record sounds they hear in real life and assign them to a grid of pads to trigger, such as a drum machine. The goal of this design is to provide a user-friendly way for any type of user to make music out of thin air.

Design Need

There are many music recording applications on the market, but most of them require extensive knowledge to use and some musical background experience. Also, the current services do not incorporate the ability to easily record any sound you hear and assign it to a specific, playable button. Padz is an extremely easy and user-friendly music making application that can be used by anyone of any age, regardless of their musical background.

Objectives

  • Allow users to record any sound they hear
  • Easily assign sounds to any pad for easy play
  • Allow users to easily assign icons and names to each of their saved pads
  • Easily record their own song using saved sounds

Assumptions

  • User wants to record a sound they hear
  • User wants to use that sound to make a song
  • User wants to record and create own song using recorded sounds
  • User wants to share songs and sounds with other users

Target Users

The target users of this application would be anyone who wishes to take the sounds they hear around them to easily make a song. The application is for users who wish to create music in a create, unique way.

User Tasks

  • As a user, I want to be able to record any sound I hear and turn it into a responsive button.
  • As a user, I want to be able to share a sound or song I recorded.
  • As a user, I want to modulate and affect my recorded sounds.

The Process

I began by sketching out the main layout of the interface, as well as the interactions. I did analysis on hardware drum machines to mimic the familiar interface in a digital format. This was ideal for experienced music makers to feel at home. The biggest challenge was designing a way for users to share and store their sounds within the application’s library. 

Images of hardware drum machines for inspiration

Sketches for application interface

Site Map

Record

The recording process of Padz is incredibly quick and fluid. While the user is in record mode, they can hold down a specific pad of their choice, which will enable the phone to start recording a sound. After the user stops holding down the pad, the sound is saved to that specific pad and the user may name it whatever they desire. 

Play

After the user records their desired sounds, they can switch to Play mode where they can freely play their pads and start to create a song. The play mode offers users a variety of ways to record and manipulate their recorded sounds without a heavy knowledge of beat-making.

Share

Padz is designed to be a collaboritive application and encourages users to share their creations with one another. Within the Share section of the user profile, the user may share their sounds or songs with their friends. The user is able to send their file through the phone’s messenger, email, or social media.