MIDI Foot Controller Recommendations?

Discussion in 'Keyboards' started by Aaron R A, Jan 10, 2019.

  1. Aaron R A

    Aaron R A Member

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    For live performance I play a Yamaha MODX and a Dave Smith Instruments Prophet Rev2. I'm looking for a foot controller that will allow me to change the presets for both simultaneously with a single press. Because of the way these keyboards handle MIDI, it's a little bit weird, and I need something that can fit the bill.

    I need to step on a switch and have it send MSB 62 / LSB 0 / PC 1 on channel 1 and PC 1 on channel 2. The next time I hit the same switch, it should send MSB 62 / LSB 0 / PC 2 on channel 1 and PC 2 on channel 2. So forth and so on, with an increasing PC number with each press. I would also use a neighboring switch to do the exact opposite, send those messages with decreasing PC numbers. Hopefully there will be a third and forth switch that I can use for sustain for the two instruments.

    Seems super simple to me, but it's proven to be quite a tall order if I add in that I really need it to be fairly compact. I've looked at the Source Audio Soleman and the Morningstar MC6, but am still unclear on whether or not either of those two can do exactly what I need. I sent e-mails with my questions to both companies, but have gotten no response. If anyone has experience with something that can handle that and isn't monstrously large, please let me know!

    Sorry if that was confusing (or if I sound like an idiot), and please let me know if you need any more clarification. Thank you in advance for your help!
     
  2. stevel

    stevel Member

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    I feel your pain.

    I'm not clear on something - why the channels like they are?

    What it sounds like you really want to do is this:

    Put the patches you need into a user bank on each instrument, in the order they appear during the set.

    Then all you need to do is increment one PC number to go to the next patch.

    There's no reason you shouldn't be able to put them in the right order, and just scroll through them with even the most basic of momentary footswitches.

    At least one of them should be able to "thru" a message to the other, so a PC 000 message is going to change them both to Patch 1.

    Is that what you want?

    There's no need for the MSB/LSB messages if you stay in the same bank.

    I hope they both have user banks of at least 128 slots where you can store your sounds in order.

    Then a simple up/down foot switch is all you need (in case they swap the order of the songs live and you need to go back).

    MSB/LSB are generally used to change BANK, so as long as you set up each keyboard to the right bank and DON'T send any MSB/LSB messages, it will stay in that bank and the 0-127 will select patches 1-128.

    Is that what you want?

    If so, see if your boards will transmit PC messages received at In to Thru. Or see if there's a "soft thru" setting as this can do it out the out jack in case you need to go that route.

    I just took a gander at the Soleman and it should actually probably do what I've described. Since it has two MIDI Outs you wouldn't need to "thru" the two boards.
    But I think when you answer the part about Channel 2 that'll help.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019
  3. Aaron R A

    Aaron R A Member

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    Thanks for the response. The simple answer of just sending PC messages seems reasonable, and that's how I've controlled the Prophet. Unfortunately, that's not the way the MIDI architecture of the MODX works, as the individual patches are made up of 1-8 different voices. The MSB and LSB messages are required, as I've confirmed with Yamaha.

    The reason I want to go the through method is so that 1) I can use two switches on the same foot controller for sustain message to either board, and 2) so that I can use an external expression pedal, that I can hopefully set up to transmit to one keyboard, the other, or both, depending on the song. That should also answer the channel question.
     
  4. kiki_90291

    kiki_90291 Member

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    Check out the Keith McMillen Softstep or 12-Step - I think they permit pretty deep MIDI control. I had a 12 Step, but it's been a while, so I can't recall exactly what messages you can send. I think the Softstep is more about control and the 12 Step is more about playing notes.
     
  5. GovernorSilver

    GovernorSilver Member

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    MoarGear likes this.

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