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Author Topic: Need help with midi connectivity  (Read 233 times)


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Need help with midi connectivity
« on: September 16, 2019, 02:35:58 pm »
Hi there...first time posting here. I would extremely appreciate if anyone could help me! I have a Vermona DRM1 drum synth that I was controlling through its triggers, going into the Drum channel of the Beatstep. However, I found out that the triggers don't have velocity, so I need to control it through midi. The problem is that I have my Bass Station 2 occupying the only midi space in the Beatstep. What do I need to do to be able to connect both the Vermona and the Bass Station and be able to sequence both through midi using the Beatstep? I have the Vermona and the Bass Station going through my Allan and Heath MZ3 mixer, to my Focusrite Scarlett 8pre thunderbolt, and finally into my Macbook using Ableton 10 as the DAW. Thank you!


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Re: Need help with midi connectivity
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2019, 12:36:38 pm »

There are a few ways you can get the MIDI data onto all your instruments from your BSP.  One way is to use the MIDI THRU on your DRM1.  The MIDI THRU socket sends on any MIDI data received on the MIDI IN socket so that you can daisy-chain your instruments.
 Send the BSP MIDI OUT to the DRM1, then connect the MIDI out on that to the MIDI IN on the Bass Station 2.
MIDI THRU ports are easiest way to get many instruments to connect to a single master MIDI source such as your BSP or a master keyboard.  With large set-ups it can get tricky doing it this way, as some instruments don't actually have a MIDI THRU port or sometimes won't even echo the MIDI data on their MIDI OUT port, but with gear you have you won't have any issues doing it the way I have described above.

*About the Bass Station 2*
I own a couple of Novation controllers and a Circuit, as well as knowing a few people who own other Novation gear and one thing I have noticed is, Novation manuals never give full details of their instruments' MIDI functionality!  I've read through the Bass Station 2 manual when I was helping my cousin set up his to run with FL Studio and then again just then to try to confirm if it does indeed echo MIDI data it receives on its MIDI OUT.  It very ambiguously says to hook up many modules to its MIDI OUT, but doesn't directly mention that those modules will be sent data received on the Bass Station 2's MIDI IN port.  It mentions specifically that MIDI data received by the Bass Station 2 on it's USB port will not be sent on via the MIDI OUT, but that's as specific as it get about MIDI echo.

Now I've had my rant about that, I would suggest you experiment with the MIDI OUT on your Bass Station 2.  Plug the BSP into its MIDI IN and then plug its MIDI OUT into the DRM1 to see what the DRM1 receives.  If the DRM1 plays as it should, you know that the Bass Station 2 does have MIDI echo functionality and you can do a MIDI chain with it anywhere along the line.  If the DRM1 doesn't play (and you definitely have it set to the same MIDI channel as the Drum Seq on the BSP) then you know that you will need to place the Bass Station 2 at the any of any MIDI chain it is in.

If the last scenario is the case, then it's not the end of the world.  Another way to send MIDI to multiple instruments is the good ol' "throw money at it" solution.  There is a device known mainly as a MIDI THRU Box or sometimes called a MIDI Splitter.  They are a box with a one MIDI IN port and multiple MIDI OUT ports.  To use this solution, you do is you first of all buy one (hence why I call it the "throw money at it" solution), then you plug your BSP into the MIDI IN and then connect the MIDI OUT's to the MIDI IN's on your other gear.  It's pretty much fool proof, but it mean spending more money.  There are actually other versions of that solution but you really don't need to fill your head with those until you are fully fledged synth junkie and have more gear than what a simple MIDI THRU Box can accommodate.

I hope I've not given so much info as to confuse you more than educate you (it has happened before), so just in case here's the tl;dr

Connect MIDI cables from the BSP -> DRM1 -> Bass Station 2 and play!
Currently running synths from Waldorf and Arturia, Drumsynths from Korg, MAM and IK Multimedia, sequencing it all with Arturia's looping steppers, mixing and recording it all with a Zoom (no DAW involved, for better or worse ;) )


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