Monome grid/arc edition check


depends on what your intended use is, in my opinion.

i’ve owned a 64 from 2008, a 256 from 2012, and a 128 from 2016—here are a few points that stuck out.

the aluminum 128s are undeniably excellent—leds are beautiful, build-quality and durability are outstanding, versatility is nigh-maximal, and perhaps above all else, the buttons are incredibly playable. i use mine primarily in tandem with norns, as the keypresses feel just as natural when improvising on earthsea as they do chopping breakbeats with mlr.

the older models, however, are incomparable in their specialized functionality—if you’re really big into mlr like me, for example, you’ll likely be sorry to have anything other than a 256 with tilt controls and maybe even a 64 as an aux. while the buttons on my 256 in particular don’t feel quite as musical as the ones on the 128 somehow, simply having more of them makes it the easy choice for a monster mlrv set in performance—to me, it’ll always be the biggest and the baddest.

at this moment, i use the 128 most. when i was playing professionally, it was 256 all day long.



Would it be possible to upgrade a non varibright grid to a varibright?
What parts are different between the different models? Is the circuit of the „mainboard“/brain totally different? (Beside the leds and the relating resistors)



it’s really not possible. most at issue is the mechanical differences— the enclosures are not cross-compatible, particularly the transition from USB B to mini-B. so you could replace the circuits entirely, but they wouldn’t fit properly. sorry!

1 Like


Okidoki…just a thought/idea…
Thanks for your reply!!!



I have someone saying I am giving them inaccurate information about an arc because I said a 2012 arc 2 was functionally similar to the current arcs. However, they stated that the current arcs have keypress functionality of some sort. Is this accurate. I can’t find any info on the arc page on to indicate they do have any other functionality beyond rotational. Thanks in advance!



The first generation of arcs in 2011 had keypress functionality. They haven’t had it since then so current generation ones don’t have it.

See this page for details:



That’s what I thought, thank you!




I’m recently considering getting a 128 Grids and I noticed there is a heavy price difference between a new Grids and a Used Grids. Now, the primary difference is some panelling (some are walnut vs. silver, etc) and that I’m buying equipment that was previously used but I was wondering if any folks have noticed any difference in the past year or two of Grids productions that really make the new ones different (maybe more tactile buttons, better backlighting, performance fixes on the hardware, you name it).

I haven’t really found anything on these forums that discusses this, so I figured I’d ask. Thanks in advance!

1 Like


Here’s a page that list differences

The biggest difference is that >= 2012 have variable brightness which many apps and the modules take advantage of.



I own a 128, and I owned a previous 128 before that. Both were used. The only reason I leveled up the second time was, as @jlmitch5 explains, I wanted a post-2012 grid for the variable brightness.



Hello, first, what a great community I’ve come across. I just discovered Grid and the entire Monome family. Hope to learn more about the amazing hardware/software and the people producing/supporting.

Had a quick question about a Grid 128 I just bought used on Ebay. It is the most recent generation (2015) but is there a difference between the batches released? Like does an earlier 2015 gen differ in any way? Just want to make sure I’m getting the best bang for my buck.

Thanks, and look forward to joining the auditory journey.







Thanks for the reply @spacelordmother

I’m familiar with that page. Like I mentioned I know it’s a 2015, just curious to know if there are differences in the batches released within that generation.



I think the very most recent ones may have slightly different LEDs? as per @tehn

Otherwise I don’t know of any differences and expect there aren’t any visible ones.



Awesome, thanks so much for the info @alanza @tehn



Ah, answered my question. After having two grids side by side, one purchased recently from monomer and the 2nd from Reverb, I just noticed that the Reverb unit’s leds have a slight yellow tint, while the monome-purchased unit is sharp white. Was wondering about the difference.

Now… will I get all OCD about it? :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

1 Like



the USB-Port of my 128 Grid has some major problems and need to be replaced
Does someone know the Partnumber of it?




which edition is the grid?



Hi tehn, it is this version:

2015 grid

128 only. bright warm white light. variable brightness. two-tone all-aluminum assembly. super thin. bus powered. mini-usb.



that is a very surgical fix… unless you’re very confident with repair-grade soldering i’d suggest sending it in (email if so).

here’s the USB port (same as arc and norns)