The Puc from Zivix (makers of the Jamstik) is a wireless MIDI interface that can connect to your iPhone, iPad, or Mac computer. It uses wi-fi to wirelessly send MIDI data from your MIDI enabled device to any of the three aforementioned Apple products. I spent some time with the Puc to see how well it preformed these tasks. I tested it on an iPad and a Macbook Pro, connecting it to my Korg Kronos to control a few different samplers and virtual instruments.
First thing you have to do if you are doing to be using it with your iPhone or iPad is downloading the Puc app from the App store. Next you turn on your Puc and on your idevice you connect to the Puc’s wifi. This is one of the downsides to having it be wireless over wifi, you have to be connecting and disconnecting from the Puc every time you want to use it. Once it’s all connected, the app will automatically see if you have the latest firmware update. They seem to put out updates fairly often, so every once in a while you will probably have to update it.
I tested Puc out with Garageband, the Korg Polysix App, and Jordantron. It worked fine in all three. One thing you might notice is a slight output lag from the moment you press a key on the keyboard to when you hear the sound. It probably doesn’t matter for things like Amplitube where you are just changing patches but if you are trying to perform live using this thing, it will be a minor annoyance.
Now if you are trying to use this thing on a Mac, it’s a bit of a different story. It isn’t as simple of a process but Zivix do have walkthroughs to help you with the set up. The lag while using it with a Mac was about the same as it was on my iPad. It worked with all software that I tried it with.
The Puc uses 2 AA batteries for power. I tested the Puc’s battery life on the default power setting with sleep turned off to see how long it could last on 1 pair. It lasted around 8 hours. That’s more then enough if you plan on using it for live shows but for every day use its not much at all. So I would recommend rechargeable batteries if you plan on every day use.
The Puc is aimed at users of virtual instruments and effects on their Apple devices. If you are one of these people, it is more convenient to have the wireless freedom the Puc offers. Overall I think the Puc does what it sets out to do, wireless MIDI in a very portable package. My only gripe is the battery life which is on the short side if you plan on using it a lot.