Trying and build a rig around a Fishman TriplePlay. I'd appreciate help from MIDI guys

Discussion in 'Keyboards' started by Viabcroce, Nov 22, 2017.


  1. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    Hello everyone,
    hope this goes here... I am mainly a guitar player but my question is not strictly guitar-related, so I believe it's legit :)
    Actually, it seems to me it's mostly a MIDI-related question.

    I am planning to buy a TriplePlay (a guitar-to-MIDI hex pickup) from Fishman and use it for driving a Yamaha Motif XS Rack. Here's the link to the PU.

    the TP is wireless, and the device transmits to a USB-stick receiver that needs a device able to read MIDI data from the stick. Is my understanding that, in order to avoid a computer and drive a sound generator, I'd need a USB Host to MIDI converter.

    I've found an interesting firm that develops MIDI-aware devices, and had a look at their Host MIDI Router. It seems to me that this would do the job.
    They also make simpler devices, but with the HMR I'd be able, IIGTR, to also connect an expression pedal and a switch for patch changing.
    Here is where your help would be appreciated:
    1. is my reasoning correct? Would this work?
    2. I guess i would not be able to use the Motif's USB port for the purpose (it seems it's just meant for connecting a computer)?
      If I would instead, would I otherwise be able to just use an even smaller device by CompasFlamenco, the MIDI USB-USB?
    3. Any suggestion about an as-simple-as-possible controller (2 Up/Dwn buttons and an exp pedal would suffice) I could use in conjunction with the HMR? What do you guys use for your sinths if you don't want to use your hands? :)
    4. Last, do you see any flaws in my little project? Anything obvious to you guys that's escaping me?
    Thanks for your help! :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2017
  2. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    No-one in the know?
     
  3. tjontheroad

    tjontheroad Supporting Member

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  4. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    Thanks TJ, iC would undoubtedly work.
    I was looking for something cheaper and equally effective tho. CF's HMR costs half the price of the iC, which is indeed more versatile and "looks" more expensive as well ...

    Wonder whether the iCMIDI2+ would serve the purpose as well...

    Thanks for chiming in

    :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2017
  5. tjontheroad

    tjontheroad Supporting Member

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  6. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    Thanks TJ, not cheap to Italy I believe tho?

    PS: For anyone interested, I've had clarifying conversations with the guys @ compasflamenco.com. Here it follows for further clarification.
    HTH :)



    [...]
    I need a device for connecting a Fishman TriplePlay to a synth module w\o using a computer.
    (Basically, the FTP is a guitar-to-MIDI converter which sends MIDI signals via radio to a receiver shaped as an USB stick.)

    Of course the device must offer an "USB Host to MIDI" connection.
    I see you make at least 3 different MIDI-related devices, and would like to know more about the differences among them and what would best suit my plans :)

    What I am looking for is the most practical and cost-effective solution: I am a guitar player, not a synth player and my knowledge about MIDI is quite basic.

    [...]

    1. What would the smallest and cheapest option be for a straight connection between the FTP and a synth?

    A: It would be the UHM2


    2. What if I wanted to add a pedal\switch\MIDI pedalboard to the system at a later time in order to for example change patches or send MIDI commands to the synth?

    A: If you want to add a pedal, it depends on the type of connection you have. To add more than one USB device you need the UHMR.


    Q: It is my understanding that I could use this device to connect the FTP USB receiver (using the USB port) on one end and the Motif (using one of the two DIN ports) on the other hand and, at the same time, some controllers for Expression and Patch change using either\both the other DIN port or the same USB port (through a passive hub like in the video?). Is this correct?
    If it is, what would perspective limitations be?
    For example the inability to use a single USB or DIN for more than one In/Out data flow?

    A: In principle there is no limitation. The UHMR system is configured as a matrix where each input can be directed to each output simultaneously. Using a USB hub we can connect the FTP and a USB MIDI pedal and both of them come out through the MIDI DIN output. If the pedal is MIDI, we can connect the pedal output to the MIDI DIN input, the FTP to the USB and both directed to the MIDI output.


    3. Would any of these solutions work with an iPad 3 Retina as well? Can I avoid buying a Camera Kit connector (they are also becoming rare for the Retina...)?

    A: The iPad is not a MIDI device it is a host (computer). To integrate it in all this you need a device like our "MIDI USB-USB" and also the camera conection kit.


    4. The synth I am planning to use is a Yamaha Motif XS Rack, which has also got an USB connection (for a computer): could we use it in some way?

    A: If the yamaha motif is a usb midi class compliant you could use the USB, but if not, you have to connect it by MIDI.


    5. Are the DINs forced\labelled to be 1 In and 1 Out, or can they be assigned (for example to be 2 Outs or 2 Ins)?

    A: It is an input and an output forever. But you could connect more conventional USB to MIDI converters to the USB hub, and thus have more MIDI inputs and outputs.


    6. If I'm getting this right, I understand that the unit needs to be powered through one of the USB ports?

    A: UHMR has two USB connectors, one type A which is a host and one type B which is where it is powered by a USB source similar to the one you sample. The type B connector is also a USB device that connects to the computer only to program the matrix of inputs and outputs. Once programmed the equipment works independently with the power supply.
     
  7. Jimmy_Rage

    Jimmy_Rage Member

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    Viabcroce likes this.
  8. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    Thanks Jimmy :)

    Doesn't it do the same things the UHMR does, at a pretty higher cost?

    Guessing you own the Kenton, can you confirm that you can use a USB hub and have several USB-MIDI devices work together?
    For example, in the simplest scenario (FTP->Kenton->Motif) can I add a USB-MIDI pedal expression (or a more complex MIDI pedalboard) "in parallel" (so to speak) to the TP and have it properly interact and work?

    Yep, the FC-1 looks like an obvious choice, but TBH I find it quite expensive...

    EDIT: as per data sheet, it seems that you can connect up to 4 USB devices by using a powered hub :)

    Thank you for chiming in! Still trying to make my mind about the whole thing and growing :)
     
  9. Jimmy_Rage

    Jimmy_Rage Member

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    No sweat. I have the FC-1 and while it had some initial teething problems, they have since allowed it to pass through midi clock and other data, which helps keep things in sync. The buttons are useful if you don't have a midi controller that can control both your guitar rig as well as the Motif.

    But it is definitely too expensive. That's why I pointed at the Kenton, isn't it cheaper than the UHMR you were looking at?
     
  10. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    Figures are actually the same, but one is in pounds, one in euros...

    I'm in touch with an Italian workshop that might build a custom box for me... I am waiting for a quote.

    I'll post here when I know something more

    :)
     
  11. JiveTurkey

    JiveTurkey Supporting Member

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    Interesting conversation indeed. I run my FTP through some softsynths on my Ipad. It plugs into the ipad camera kit (~$40) and does a really good job I must say. Furthermore relevant to OP; I run it into the loop return of my Kemper so I can use delays and verbs of the Kemper then out to FOH. Works really good imo. I am still eyeballing the FTC-1 and hardware synths but this rig is a lot more compact than that would be and I am settled. At the moment at least :D
     
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  12. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    Yep JT, I've been considering the iPad option. In order to change patches I'd need some kind of footbox tho, which would sum to the camera kit. Also, I'd want to use my exp pedal with the rig.

    Last but not least, I'd need something specific for powering the iPad while I use it (batteries on mine are lasting around 40' nowadays (it's a model 3 Retina)).

    Basically, my point is I am not sure the iPad would be a viable solution live... :confused:

    :)
     
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  13. JiveTurkey

    JiveTurkey Supporting Member

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    Very obvious and real concerns Viabcroce. I only one run synth sound at a time on the Ipad and it is a limited amount of synth tones over a 4 hour set at that. I will just use the Ipad screen itself to switch patches. I will keep it plugged it in back by the Kemper. If you find a cool hardware synth solution that works for you; please report back!
     
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  14. Viabcroce

    Viabcroce Member

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    Yep JT, it makes sense in your application :)

    My first current option re: hardware sound modules is the above-mentioned Yamaha Motif XS Rack, because I am a fan of real, sampled sounds (best option in this regard would actually be TP-specific EastWest libraries, but I'd be back to a computer for live use; even tho I plan to use some of them in studio). Also, the Motif is very good for "synthetic" sounds. It allows 6-part setting etc.

    If you are more after classic, analog sounds, I'd take into consideration FutureSonus' Parva, which costs less and has a spectacular feature for a TP user: it allows direct connection of an USB MIDI controller! :cool:
     

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