I'm in the early stages of planning a MIDI-mapping component that I can plug into my Alesis DM-6 drum kit so I can ultimately play it through Rock Band 3. I know there are commercial options out there, but I'm intrigued about building one (at probably 5x the cost, no doubt :P). Everything I've read about this talks about requiring an extra set of patch cables to plug into each drum which then plugs into the Arduino black-box.
Anyway, my question is this: Is there a specific reason the connector of choice for each drum (not to mention guitars, etc.) is the 1/4" phono? I could probably get away with a much smaller box if I can use 1/4" on the drum-plug side, but the smaller 1/8" (3.5mm) phono on the box-side. Am I losing anything by using 1/8"(3.5mm) connectors going into my device? Other than being more 'durable' or maybe having a tighter-fit, are there electrical or noise/interference/impedance/other issues using the smaller connectors?