I had been eyeing these things for awhile and finally decided to give myself an early Christmas present and get one. It was designed to be a sort of electronic conga drum and it has some very good conga sounds built-in (as well as several hundred other world and electronic sounds). The interface is split into 10 rubber pad areas and each one makes a different sound. Some of the pads can influence other pads to emulate things like holding one hand down on a drum while you hit it with the other. You get a different more muted sound. That works pretty well and if I was a better drummer I think it might sound pretty realistic.
It has inputs for a couple of external pedals so it can be closer to a full drum kit with the addition of kick and hihat pedals (but way more portable), and it has the nifty ‘D-Beam’ infrared controller for triggering sounds (like a big gong, blammo!) or affecting other sounds like fiddling with the pitch for some cool effects. It also has a somewhat interesting ‘Rhythm Coach’ that I’m hoping may help me actually be able to play some of these ethnic beats.
I played with it some today and it’s pretty fun so far. I’ll be using it live for the first time tomorrow (at the Be Nice Party one year anniversary) so hopefully I don’t embarrass myself too much. I was hoping to have more than a day to get to know it. Wish me luck!