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New AirTurn BT-200 S-2 and S-4

Started by arlo, September 12, 2018, 08:37:25 AM

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AirTurn just released two new Bluetooth foot switches, the 2-button BT200S-2 and the 4-button BT200S-4. They sent me one of each to try out, and I'm impressed!

My first reaction when opening the boxes is that they felt great. The cases are made of sturdy plastic that feels like metal. The switches are metal, with excellent feedback when you step on them. They're not completely silent, but they don't include a latching mechanism that makes a loud click, like some amp controllers with similar switches. And the colors are fun but classy -- dark red for the 2-button model and dark green for the 4-button model. These should look right at home on a guitar pedal board with traditional stomp boxes.

Another reason they'll fit in nicely with your stomp boxes is that they're powered by either an internal, rechargeable battery, or a standard 9v power jack. In my opinion, rechargeable batteries are nice, but plugging into my existing 9v chain is even better.

Like other AirTurn foot switches, these models have a few different modes that control what messages they send to your mobile device. The default is mode 2, which sends up and down arrow messages (plus left and right for the 4-button model), so these will work with my apps out of the box. Just pair the BT-200 in your mobile device's Settings app, then go to Settings > Remote Control in my apps and map some actions to the arrow messages. In this mode, the BT-200 will suppress the on-screen keyboard, but you can display it by pressing the power button on the unit. (You have to press and hold the power button to turn off the unit.)

Like newer AirTurn foot switches, these models also have an AirDirect mode (mode 1), which eliminates the need to manage the on-screen keyboard, and allows you to connect multiple foot switches with separate messages from each. But honestly, the keyboard management is so easy here, and the new AirTurn Manager software has other options for multiple foot switches (see below), that I wouldn't bother with this mode.

Unlike any foot switch I've seen, the BT-200 combines the typical keyboard-style message options with a MIDI mode (mode 7). In this mode, you would use the Connect to a Bluetooth Device button from the MIDI Status window, then map remote control actions to the Damper and Sostenuto messages (plus Portamento and Soft Pedal for the 4-button model), and make sure MIDI Button Style on the remote control page is set to Momentary. Although my apps readily support this MIDI mode, there's no real advantage to using it over the default mode. But having this option on board makes the BT-200 compatible with all kinds of other devices and software, which makes it an excellent long-term investment.

If you want to customize how your BT-200 works, you can download the free AirTurn Manager app. This lets you set a key repeat rate (great for manually scrolling through lyrics), update firmware or customize the messages that your BT-200 sends in each mode -- including sending a mixture of keyboard, mouse and media controls, and sending multiple messages per button press (you cannot send a mixture of keyboard and MIDI messages). This customization would allow you to connect several foot switches with separate messages from each. That's the only situation where customizing the messages would be needed with my apps, because they fully support the default options. But I love that AirTurn offers this kind of flexibility, and this is another feature that gives the BT-200 unprecedented compatibility with other products.

You can order from the links above, or check out the user manual or app tutorials for more info.

P.S. Through October 14, these are 10% off if you use the coupon code 10YEARS on the AirTurn store.


AirTurn now has a 6-button version, the BT200S-6.

Joe Waltemire

Hi there...I recently bought the bt200s-2 so that I can step through my set list and also so that I can switch to my monitor mix app and still be able to step through my set list in the background. I'm using it in airdirect mode and it is working, but my question is this: when setlistmaker is in the foreground and I step to the next song, the entire screen flashes like its reloading the app. It moves to the next song, but instead of just moving down the list, it has the distracting flashing of the screen. Is this normal or do I need to configure something differently to make it move down the list "smoothly" without the distracting flashing of the screen?  Thanks, Joe


That doesn't sound normal. Can you take a video showing the problem? Then submit a help ticket and include the video.