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 Forum index » Instruments and Equipment » General Discussion
Help/Advice/insight about MIDI controllers and software
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khedger



Joined: Aug 22, 2018
Posts: 1
Location: Cambridge, MA

PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2018 8:23 pm    Post subject: Help/Advice/insight about MIDI controllers and software
Subject description: Looking for some answers....
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Hi all,
I'm very familiar with MIDI and gear, but I have some questions about a problem I'm trying to solve. I'm hoping that some of the collective experience out there might be helpful. Here's the problem I'm trying to solve:
I use a variety of musical software. This includes Live, Arturia's V collection, and other stuff. I have a MIDI controller hooked to my computer which will allow me to assign MIDI CC numbers to various knobs/sliders. Likewise, most of my software will let me assign CC numbers to various parameters.
So, let's say I run the Moog5 modular from Arturia and I want to assign my controller to control various knobs in the interface. I set about assigning the controller to correspond to the CC settings in the Moog (or vice versa) and after a bunch of tedious work, I'm off. Later, I want to do the same thing with the ARP2600 instrument. I have to go through the same tedious exercise. Later, I want to use the controller for Live, guess what? Once again I have to reconfigure. I can save my controller configurations, but I'm wondering if there's something I'm missing here. Is there a way to automate this process with some code or something? Has anybody come up with a good efficient solution for this without having to spend hours of tedium configuring and reconfiguring MIDI CCs in the controller and/or software?
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MusicMan11712



Joined: Aug 08, 2009
Posts: 1007
Location: Out scouting . . .

PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2018 6:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I am not familiar with your controller, gear, etc. but if any of them have the ability to take snapshots of settings or send settings via software, I'd suggest looking into that. Let me try to be a little more specific with gear I know fairly well.

Most of my keyboard controllers allow me to save banks of setups and to recall banks. Some also have software for editing controller configurations. Configurations can be loaded from the PC. I am not sure if they are saved as sysex files; if they were there might be an option to send sysex to change the controller's setup.

To make life easier, I tend to use CC numbers and function assignments fairly consistently across gear. The MIDI specs have some standardization, but you might want to vary that. For example, I do use vol. as overall volume for gear (and pan as pan, etc.), but I use the expression CC to set the relative vol of channels in multimtibral modules. I tend to use freq cutoff and resonance CCs consistently across gear and softsynths (as well as some others), but after that, the CCs for me are all fair game. It really would depend on how flexible your gear/softsynths are; the synth engine parameters might be hard coded to certain CCs.

There are some possibilities for mapping CCs via software (such as a DAW) and saving loadable control surfaces.

I use E-mu gear which allows for "multisetups" which include CC assignments globally. CC functionality is achieved by virtual presets. That's being part of the design of the gear is fairly straight forward for E-Mu users.

However, having gotten into the deep structure of E-Mu MIDI, I know that just the CC assignments* can be tweaked on the fly via sysex parameter changes *(i.e., not ALL the global parameters which multisetups have). So, with E-Mu boxes with hardware sequences, I can put CC assignments, knob assignments, etc. in via embedded sysex. With a DAW, I could do the same thing.

Here's what I am leading towards--depending on your gear/softsynths, you MIGHT be able to use software (a DAW or another utility, such as midi-ox) to set the CCs.

I am foggy headed today, so I hope this make sense, is useful, and/or sparks some thoughts on what you might be able to do.

Steve
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