Midi Controller Basics

Midi Controller Basics

This week I cover the basic concept of MIDI and Controllers as I sometimes get asked questions like “Will this controller sound good for bass lines” or “Will this (USB) MIDI controller work with X interface”.  So instead of repeating the same basic info I thought I would do an episode on it (so I never need to explain it again!)

  • Blackart

    Nice video well done! The only thing about the encoder knobs is that they behave exactly the same as other potentiometers. I’ve got MPK49 which has the same encoder knobs and for example if I assigned the knob to the cutoff of a filter and then re-assigned to the resonance, when i start tweaking the parameter turn exactly where i left it when i adjust the cutoff. The reason is that the encoder have values for 0 to 127 if i want to set the value different from the value i set before i have to hold “Preview” button in order to see the last value and then add the new value.

  • Anonymous

    I think this behavour is controller specific, I know the early Akai controllers still had “parameter jump” like a pot (My MPD24 has this problem) which unless im missing something seems to compleatley voids the whole point in using an encoder over a pot!?!

  • Blackart

    Well it turns out that Akai MPK 49 has 360 degree rotation pots not encoders(silly me….) but they solve the parameter jump problem with this “Preview” button which when it’s hold down Knobs doesn’t sends values and you can also see what was the last selected value.

  • http://djgirish.com DJ Girish

    Rupert,

    Just so you know – your website linked to your disqus directs to http://theddspproject.com/ instead of your site.. there is an extra ‘d’. You should fix that. Thanks for the website, by the way.

  • Anonymous

    Dude, thank you.

  • G.B.

    Hey man thanks for the video, it cleared a lot up. I have a question about the computer aspect of midi controllers. What softwares are used for this stuff? I’ve heard the word Cubase thrown around a bit. Also, since I’m a drummer, I’ve been looking into the Alesis Control Pad as it’s cheap and seems to be a decent controller. If I buy this, am I going to have to buy a 400 dollar program to use it, or does it come with software? Thanks!

  • Anonymous

    Hey G.B.
    Most software for producing tracks on computer is reffered to as a D.A.W (Digital Audio Workstation) there are a few of them about like Cubase, Logic, Ableton (Which is what I use in my tutorials) and the list goes on. As for which one is right for you just depends on which one makes the most sense / you enjoy. Most of them can be downloaded for a free trial. It doesnt have to cost you either there are free programs like Reaper that I am told are very good (All these DAWs will accept MIDI).
    If you dont want to get into full “production” and just want to hit stuff and noises come out you could look at a more drummer focused package like fxpansion’s BFD.
    Hope this helps.

  • G.B.

    Thanks for the help, I guess I have a decision to make now…

  • Jasebaxter

    Excellent

  • http://www.bestmidicontroller.co Charlice

    Thanks Rupert, the video is is excellent with detailed explanation.