do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

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Music Maven
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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by Music Maven » Tue Dec 06, 2011 7:34 am

I, of all people, would love to replace all my MIDI interfaces with something simpler and more flexible. But alas, there doesn't seem to be a suitable replacement. Here's my insane MIDI setup:

* emagic AMT 8 connected to a Mac running Logic 9
* MOTU Midi Express 128 connected to a PC running SoundDiver (which no longer runs under Mac OS 10.7 Lion)
* 8 MIDI Solutions merge boxes
* 8 MIDI Solutions thru boxes

I use the MIDI Solutions merge and thru boxes so that I can communicate with all of my synths from both the Mac and the PC at the same time. That way I can still use SoundDiver as my master editor/librarian with no switching cables, etc..

It was crazy expensive to buy all of these MIDI Solutions boxes. But I have WAY too much time and effort invested in my SoundDiver patch libraries. It just sucks that there really isn't a decent alternative on the Mac these days. I did recently purchase a copy of Sound Quest 10. But the program doesn't support all of my synths and some of the editors aren't as good as the equivalent ones in SoundDiver. So it's just easier to continue to use one program (SoundDiver) for everything even if it is 15 years old and barely runs on Windows 7 Pro 64bit.

This brings me to a final rant: As much as I love my Mac and Logic, it blows that Apple will just cut you loose whenever it suits their purpose. Say what you will about Microsoft, the company at least supports their customers over the long haul.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by Nannerfan » Tue Dec 06, 2011 7:45 am

Once again I think it's a factor of "too late now"... they had 24 bit CD's ready to go... it's just hard to convince what was once a standard .. to change/improve.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by Shreddie » Tue Dec 06, 2011 4:18 pm

I have alot of MIDI hardware and intend to get more so I hope MIDI interfaces don't fall by the wayside just yet!

And despite it's flaws, I'm a big fan of MIDI in general.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by DLovas » Tue Dec 06, 2011 4:25 pm

Music Maven wrote:I, of all people, would love to replace all my MIDI interfaces with something simpler and more flexible. But alas, there doesn't seem to be a suitable replacement. Here's my insane MIDI setup:

* emagic AMT 8 connected to a Mac running Logic 9
* MOTU Midi Express 128 connected to a PC running SoundDiver (which no longer runs under Mac OS 10.7 Lion)
* 8 MIDI Solutions merge boxes
* 8 MIDI Solutions thru boxes

I use the MIDI Solutions merge and thru boxes so that I can communicate with all of my synths from both the Mac and the PC at the same time. That way I can still use SoundDiver as my master editor/librarian with no switching cables, etc..

It was crazy expensive to buy all of these MIDI Solutions boxes. But I have WAY too much time and effort invested in my SoundDiver patch libraries. It just sucks that there really isn't a decent alternative on the Mac these days. I did recently purchase a copy of Sound Quest 10. But the program doesn't support all of my synths and some of the editors aren't as good as the equivalent ones in SoundDiver. So it's just easier to continue to use one program (SoundDiver) for everything even if it is 15 years old and barely runs on Windows 7 Pro 64bit.

This brings me to a final rant: As much as I love my Mac and Logic, it blows that Apple will just cut you loose whenever it suits their purpose. Say what you will about Microsoft, the company at least supports their customers over the long haul.
I have no issue at all with sounddiver on win7 ultimate x64 - but I too agree that the abondonment of the software by apple was sacrilegious - and it is a shame that apple now will not allow you to run the latest version of sounddiver.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by cgren72 » Tue Dec 06, 2011 4:52 pm

sometimes i midi out sequences from FL to midi hardware. i use a um 2g cakewalk, and it works pretty well. i use an oxygen 49 as my midi controller for midi into the computer, which is easier than using an interface. sometimes usb wont really due, but it works well.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by nogginj » Tue Dec 06, 2011 5:58 pm

I think MIDI will go the way of the analog synth.

It's funny too when you think about it like that - analog synths being what they are to digital synths and MIDI being what it is to USB/etc Controllers. :]

Personally the thing I love most about MIDI is the standards and no-nonsense of it. I don't think I'd get as far 'accidentally' sending OSC messages intended to one to device to another device. With MIDI, it's literally as simple as swapping cables.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by DLovas » Tue Dec 06, 2011 6:42 pm

nogginj wrote:I think MIDI will go the way of the analog synth.

It's funny too when you think about it like that - analog synths being what they are to digital synths and MIDI being what it is to USB/etc Controllers. :]

Personally the thing I love most about MIDI is the standards and no-nonsense of it. I don't think I'd get as far 'accidentally' sending OSC messages intended to one to device to another device. With MIDI, it's literally as simple as swapping cables.
I agree with your analogy, however I do not see
MIDI as such a simple thing. I have headached over many MIDI related things - for instance with my Fizmo, I know not how I could automate key pressure, or the filters - probably simple to do tho

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by Spadz » Tue Dec 06, 2011 7:05 pm

I think there should be MIDI Wi-Fi adapters. USB ports, depending on the machine, is of limited count. Then, in the case of our friend who wishes to connect both the PC and the Mac on the same MIDI kit, there wouldn't be a problem.

You build the MIDI to WiFi ports, with multiple port on it. You connect the synths on it, and the become available on the network the same way you make a Media server, or file server (same principal, I mean). There are software for this kind of communication to run plugins on remote machines, why couldn't it be done for MIDI synths?

I too have a complicated setup, which is not complicated enough to actually work... I stopped investing 'cause I was getting lost. This would simplify things so much.

Latency, can be compensated, specially using MIDI timestamping. h**l, this is really giving me crazy ideas. I am a software developer after all. Maybe I should shut up and do it before someone steals my ideas! LOL

Anyways, just a thought.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by Mino » Tue Dec 06, 2011 7:56 pm

I need to get MOTU Midi Express XT before going obsolete like USB MTP AV. :geek:

My 2 synths predate the USB era, too. And I'm not going to give them up for that.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by skizzle » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:38 pm

i too have a microlite, it does what its supposed to and its one of those pieces i wouldn't ever even think of getting rid of. considering that MIDI is barely vintage i hope it doesn't phase out anytime soon.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by mharris80 » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:31 pm

nogginj wrote:
Personally the thing I love most about MIDI is the standards and no-nonsense of it. I don't think I'd get as far 'accidentally' sending OSC messages intended to one to device to another device. With MIDI, it's literally as simple as swapping cables.
=D> I too love MIDI for this reason. Love the fact that no matter what brand the gear is, I know it'll still communicate with my other equipment.

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by DLovas » Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:31 pm

Spadz wrote:I think there should be MIDI Wi-Fi adapters. USB ports, depending on the machine, is of limited count. Then, in the case of our friend who wishes to connect both the PC and the Mac on the same MIDI kit, there wouldn't be a problem.

You build the MIDI to WiFi ports, with multiple port on it. You connect the synths on it, and the become available on the network the same way you make a Media server, or file server (same principal, I mean). There are software for this kind of communication to run plugins on remote machines, why couldn't it be done for MIDI synths?

I too have a complicated setup, which is not complicated enough to actually work... I stopped investing 'cause I was getting lost. This would simplify things so much.

Latency, can be compensated, specially using MIDI timestamping. h**l, this is really giving me crazy ideas. I am a software developer after all. Maybe I should shut up and do it before someone steals my ideas! LOL

Anyways, just a thought.

Spadz
That would be something

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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by Spadz » Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:36 pm

DLovas wrote:
Spadz wrote:I think there should be MIDI Wi-Fi adapters. USB ports, depending on the machine, is of limited count. Then, in the case of our friend who wishes to connect both the PC and the Mac on the same MIDI kit, there wouldn't be a problem.

You build the MIDI to WiFi ports, with multiple port on it. You connect the synths on it, and the become available on the network the same way you make a Media server, or file server (same principal, I mean). There are software for this kind of communication to run plugins on remote machines, why couldn't it be done for MIDI synths?

I too have a complicated setup, which is not complicated enough to actually work... I stopped investing 'cause I was getting lost. This would simplify things so much.

Latency, can be compensated, specially using MIDI timestamping. h**l, this is really giving me crazy ideas. I am a software developer after all. Maybe I should shut up and do it before someone steals my ideas! LOL

Anyways, just a thought.

Spadz
That would be something
I did a quick search during a break and it exists. But it seems unreliable and expensive. I'd have to find the links again... Maybe just building a pc and connect one more midi interfaces, it's probably possible to virtualise them on the network. There is an Open Sound Control standard, and some software already seem to support that.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenSound_Control
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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by wildpaws » Wed Dec 07, 2011 1:44 am

I think MIDI is going to gradually fade away except for users of older gear. While there are limitations in MIDI and a new spec would have helped a few years back, I don't think the manufacturers have the willingness or desire to work on a new interface that will work on all brands. For my MIDI needs (which are minimal) I use two Yamaha MEP4 midi event processors and an 8 in/8 out MJC8 midi junction controller. No need to swap cables or worry about which synth is the master because all of that is taken care of in the MJC8, and plenty of options for modifying midi data in the MEP4s. I think it's a shame Yamaha discontinued them and didn't come out with new improved versions.
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Re: do you think MIDI interfaces are going obsolete?

Post by Music Maven » Wed Dec 07, 2011 4:07 am

There is another issue that I don't believe members have fully addressed: Timing

I know what you are thinking, "Yeah, MIDI timing sucks and the latency is awful in a multi-port interface."

But in reality, MIDI over USB is even worse - especially when trying to sync the LFOs or arpeggiators from your synth. With USB MIDI, the LFOs often drift out of sync because of dropped USB data packets. The Access Virus TI support forum is littered with rants from irate users who are unable to reliably sync their TIs.

But if you simply connect the Virus to the computer via standard MIDI, all of these syncing problems go away. The Dave Smith Tetra supposedly has the same problems with its USB MIDI.

So I'm sticking with MIDI because it just works. The only thing that works as reliably is something like Vienna's MIDI/audio over LAN system (as featured in their Ensemble Pro software). That works flawlessly. It's really pretty amazing.

It would be awesome if you could connect all of your synths to an inexpensive Gigabit Ethernet switch via standard CAT5 cable and access them from any other computer or other device on the system.

Sadly, that's never going to happen. :-(

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