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 Forum index » Clavia Nord Modular » Nord Modular G2 Discussion
G2 MIDI management
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Does the MIDI functionality in the G2 editor need an overhaul?
Yes, it's clunky
33%
 33%  [ 1 ]
No, buy the keyboard you cheapskate
66%
 66%  [ 2 ]
Total Votes : 3

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Anig Browl



Joined: May 05, 2004
Posts: 20
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 2:54 pm    Post subject: G2 MIDI management Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I've been thinking since yesterday about Howard's suggestion from some time ago that nobody would buy a G2 rack unless they already had the keyboard. I suppose that means I'm a nobody Wink but to be fair I remember similar comments about the micromodular.

However it is a fact that not having any controls whatsoever on the G2 rack is a bit of a pain, as everything must be mapped using MIDI controllers instead. The new auto-assign feature in the editor is useful, but not perfect. Oddly, I can't find a way to reassign things like mod wheel and aftertouch, which appear to be permenently mapped to the morph controllers (does this work better with the synth connected??). However you often do not want to assign all the knobs and switches on a module to controllers and so the auto-assign is a bit of a blunt instrument.

Clavia should really include a MIDI learn feature, which assigns a module control to whatever MIDI control source is received following the selection of the module parameter. Another alternative is to have a MIDI 'floater' like the knob floater, on which 20 of the most commonly used controls on other gear (you pick what they are using CC, aftertouch etc.) are permanently available and can be assigned much like the G2's own knobs.

So pots won't give the same behaviour as rotaries and various other limitations are imposed in the absence of the G2 controller, but honestly the controller is not the Holy Grail of keyboard design. The ring LEDs are impressive, but they're not a Clavia invention (Spirit mixers first featured them AFAIK) and frankly they're a waste of money - almost the same information could be communicated by modulating the brightness of a single LED for a fraction of the cost, as used on the front panel of the Access Virus for indicating LFO amplitude. I do see the benefits and hope I'll have a g2 keyboard at some point, but really I'm quite happy to muddle along with MIDI control for the next year or three.

The reason I feel this is important is not just for the sake of us G2 rack owners but because there are many legitimate reasons to control even the full G2 with other pieces of gear and/or software. Implementing a more user-friendly approach to assigning MIDI control should be trivial for Clavia. While they're at it, adding MIDI Machine Control (ie start, stop, continue) should be easy too and would not consume any significant DSP, but would add an extra layer of sophistication to the G2; still that's much less important than making it as usable as possible. There's no need for the MIDI control assignment process to be as cumbersome as it is.
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mosc
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Joined: Jan 31, 2003
Posts: 17552
Location: Allentown, PA
Audio files: 123
G2 patch files: 60

PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 7:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hehe... I didn't answer the poll because I think there needs to be more alternatives. Laughing

I think the G2's controllability via midi is excellent. I think there are some problems that could be fixed, but even as it is, it's very nice. I don't see what the problem with right-clicking on a control to assign it to a midi CC.

True, permanent assignment of a CC (Wheel etc) to a specific morph group is a bit of a limitation, but not too serious, because you can assign a morph group to another CC with no problem.

I think being able to process midi data through the G2 modules is fantastic. In that respect, the G2 Engine would be worth its price just as a midi processor. Wink

Just personal opinion, but the LED collars are very nice. I wish there were more of them, like another 24. Not only is are the LEDs nice, but the LCD description is invaluable in a performance situation. BTW, if you set a control to an LFO, the LED under the control modulates with the signal. Razz

So, if you have the engine you must have some midi controller, or plan on getting something. Razz

I wonder, has anyone had any luck getting the Doepfer Pocket Controller to work with the G2? Actually, I'll start a separate topic for that.

Anyhow, I can see lot's of applications for the engine. Other than the few nits we have picked, the midi controllability is great. (IMHO).
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Anig Browl



Joined: May 05, 2004
Posts: 20
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I'll be happy to keep you posted with my adventures in rackland Howard Smile I'll be using it with an RM1x for sequencing and possibly some drum samples/waveforms, and 8 knobs' worth of CCs. What I don't like in the NM is having to always assign CC from an abbreviated selection, always beginning at the top of the list. That may seem like a trivial objection, but consider that filter cutoff is MIDI cc #79, ifyou are having to scroll down every time you want to assign it gets old. Similarly it is a pin not being able to use modwheel as that is normally the easiest thing to use while experimenting.

That's why I'd prefer to be able to define a list of CCs once, and then have the editor treat them as 'MIDI A/B/C/Etc' for quick assignment as with the panel knobs. Not every cool or ergonomic controller (sometimes on cheapie boxes) allows you to reassign knobbage to different CCs, although mine does. You can have these as modules for handling the most common CC inputs, but that takes up DSP; this is really an editor issue. I suppose one solution is something like a channel/cc remapper managing the MIDI interface outside the editor.

Now the internals of the G2 and how it handles MIDI - absolutely no complaints there, I think they have struck the perfect balance between power and common sense (eg trying to generate sysex in the g2 isn't worth the design horrors it would entail). I'm so excited about this and I think it is underrated as something that sets the G2 apart from the first modular, more so than the reverb or delay modules. Why? Because any synth or effect processor that can respond to MIDI control can now be manipulated by the G2 modulators and you thus have the capacity to integrate up to 4 external processors into your modular creations and adjust the sound dynamically. Just imagine having 2 mono reverbs with the wet/dry and hi-pass controls managed by MIDI on 2 of the G2's inputs, with something like a Dave Smith evolver effecting the left and right input independently, under more MIDI control, and feeding back into the G2. Now imagine doing this with interslot communication and building very large noodles incorporating these external processors as if they were plugins. I can't seem to find any Emoticons of smiley faces wetting themselves...

I didn't know about the LED modulation for LFOs, I have to admit that's cool.
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mosc
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Joined: Jan 31, 2003
Posts: 17552
Location: Allentown, PA
Audio files: 123
G2 patch files: 60

PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Anig Browl wrote:

I didn't know about the LED modulation for LFOs, I have to admit that's cool.


Opps, I have to apologize about that one. The LEDs go off and on with the freq of the LFO, but they don't modulate with the instantaneous level. I guess I got confused. I just checked it out.

Yes, it sounds like your are set for a great time. Wink

I'm looking forward to hearing what you come up with.

I'm sure Clavia is aware of the problem people are having with the dedicated connection of the CCs in question to morph groups. I don't know if you can expect much help in the area of the scroll down menus though. Seems a bit pickey to me, but hey, we're musicians. When it comes to instruments, these things are real and they're improtant.

Back in the old days, I used to work as a recording engineer. There were people who couldn't sing if the mic didn't "look right". I'm not talking about the difference between a Realistic mic and a Neuman, I'm talking strictly styling. Rolling Eyes

Anyhow, you can make come great contraptions with these modules.
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mosc
Site Admin


Joined: Jan 31, 2003
Posts: 17552
Location: Allentown, PA
Audio files: 123
G2 patch files: 60

PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Anig Browl wrote:

I didn't know about the LED modulation for LFOs, I have to admit that's cool.


Opps, I have to apologize about that one. The LEDs go off and on with the freq of the LFO, but they don't modulate with the instantaneous level. I guess I got confused. I just checked it out.

Yes, it sounds like your are set for a great time. Wink

I'm looking forward to hearing what you come up with.

I'm sure Clavia is aware of the problem people are having with the dedicated connection of the CCs in question to morph groups. I don't know if you can expect much help in the area of the scroll down menus though. Seems a bit pickey to me, but hey, we're musicians. When it comes to instruments, these things are real and they're improtant.

Back in the old days, I used to work as a recording engineer. There were people who couldn't sing if the mic didn't "look right". I'm not talking about the difference between a Realistic mic and a Neuman, I'm talking strictly styling. Rolling Eyes

Anyhow, you can make come great contraptions with these modules.
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Rob



Joined: Mar 29, 2004
Posts: 578
Location: The Hague/Netherlands/EC
G2 patch files: 109

PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

mosc wrote:
Anig Browl wrote:

I didn't know about the LED modulation for LFOs, I have to admit that's cool.


Opps, I have to apologize about that one. The LEDs go off and on with the freq of the LFO, but they don't modulate with the instantaneous level. I guess I got confused. I just checked it out.



On the LfoA and LfoB when you rightclick on the led you can assign the led to a knob. What it will do is make the ledcollar follow the waveform. But right now it is only on those two Lfo's.
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mosc
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Joined: Jan 31, 2003
Posts: 17552
Location: Allentown, PA
Audio files: 123
G2 patch files: 60

PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 6:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Rob wrote:
On the LfoA and LfoB when you rightclick on the led you can assign the led to a knob. What it will do is make the ledcollar follow the waveform. But right now it is only on those two Lfo's.


Ooooh! That's really cool! Razz That's better than a glowing LED.
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