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Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

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outteh
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Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby outteh » Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:00 pm

Have been reading several posts on the forum about MIDI and control commands (CC) and usage. Several folks have asked for a post where they can add info and help on MIDI. Let's use this topic to post help for all those who want to understand a bit more about MIDI and how to use it. To start here is a link to a great reference on MIDI and Control Commands:

http://www.midi.org/techspecs/midimessages.php#3

Using the table, looking at the decimal equivalent commands, you'll see that the CC command (10) controls panning. This is the command we would put into our piano roll to effect panning of the midi sound. Record a short melody or set of chords in a midi track and then go into the piano roll view.

MIDI Tutorial (1).jpg
MIDI Tutorial (1).jpg (216.55 KiB) Viewed 8916 times


Notice the area circled in yellow, it should show piano roll and (none) in the second box (if you chose a piano). The area in red is where the midi CC commands are stored and used. To add a new midi CC command, click in the command box and delete what is there and then enter the number ten (10). Then go to the piano roll at the block below the tab and point to the top of the block and click. (note: To save the command you must place at least one line in the track after you add the command in the window). A straight line will be placed in there with a highlighted value of 100 to 128, depending on where you pointed the mouse cursor.

MIDI Tutorial (2).jpg
MIDI Tutorial (2).jpg (216.9 KiB) Viewed 8916 times


Now the CC command 10 controls panning. The value of this straight line you just put in can be 1 to 128. Half of 128 is 64, so if you set the line height to 64, the panning will be in the center. If you go up to 128, the panning goes to the right, and below 64 goes to the left. Now don't get excited, this is just being used as an example because it is very prominent in the sound. You can always pan from your mixer controls and track controls. Just using the CC command 10 as an example. Now you can begin to experiment. Notice all the other commands already in the drop down. Some of these work with different instruments and effect different parameters. If you choose the reverb level command (31) you again can add a line and adjust it's height to increase the reverb of the instrument.

Now that you have some rudimentary concept of the CC commands you can add and play with those that you want. The link I provided at the top kind of explains the function of what certain commands will do. Have fun and play around.

Expert Note: - You can add lines anywhere in the track and adjust the height. So for the panning command (10) you could move your sound left to right as it plays!)

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outteh
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby outteh » Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:33 pm

Another good sourceof info on MIDI CC commands. This one gives a bit of an explanation and the control parameter to be used with certain commands, like I explained in the panning example. Lot's of fun! :D

http://nickfever.com/402/production-tips-and-resources/midi-cc-list/

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chibear
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby chibear » Tue Apr 29, 2014 5:18 pm

Great stuff. I especially like the 'undefined' list at the bottom of the Nick Fever link. That's my goto reference when adding CC#s for control of nobs & sliders.
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Mark Bliss
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby Mark Bliss » Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:41 am

Thanks for starting this thread Tom, I intended to do same, but have had to catch up on some much needed rest after a marathon session of putting up some of next winters firewood. We went through an unusual amount this winter for some reason........

Ok, there's much to study here. After a quick scan my first impression was of course "Wow, I'm in over my head already!"

There are a lot of parameters I don't fully understand, but the first that caught my eye were those "undefined" sets, so my first question/request is for further elaboration from Chibear on this.

Keep in mind you are describing this to a MIDI dummy........
Stay in tune, Mark

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outteh
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby outteh » Wed Apr 30, 2014 12:09 pm

Clyde can chime in here but my understanding of the unassigned commands is that they are for your use in assigning commands and actions to your controllers switches, dials, and knobs. In other words, general midi (GM) doesn't specifically assign these to a function but they are available for use. Some manufacturers of midi controllers use these in their specific hardware to perform some function. This is where some of the differences come in on midi controllers, synths, and plain old keyboards. :D

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chibear
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby chibear » Wed Apr 30, 2014 12:28 pm

Tom Nailed it. This has been particularly useful in my new Kirk Hunter Library in Kontakt. He divided string vibrato into 3 elements, each with its own slider. You can use presets which sounds fakey, assign everything to the mod wheel which is a little better, OR give each of the 3 nobs a CC# and draw in all 3 parameters. Same thing works (sort of) in Omnispere either with MIDI CC#s on some or host automation on others, but so far the buttons I REALLY want to automate don't seem to work with either :(
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby outteh » Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:20 pm

Clyde, which ones are giving you issues (and which commands)?

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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby chibear » Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:34 pm

I'm traveling right now so don't have it on this machine, but I was trying to automate the arp in omnispere either with CC# or Host Automation so I could change the range (from 1 to 2 to 3 octaves) by automating those buttons somehow.
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby outteh » Wed Apr 30, 2014 3:30 pm

On the controller itself? Not in the piano roll, correct?

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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby chibear » Wed Apr 30, 2014 5:30 pm

Correct. On the Omnisphere UI. I have already assigned CC#s (or host automation. can't remember which...OFC) to slide and a couple of others and was hoping to those buttons in the arp: would be really cool to crescendo and add range at the same time.
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outteh
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby outteh » Wed Apr 30, 2014 6:09 pm

I thought it already had octave change capability? Can't you midi learn the command from it's current control and assign that to another, if you want?

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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby chibear » Wed Apr 30, 2014 6:31 pm

Like I said, I'm on the road so won't be able to try it again till probably next Wednesday, but when I right clicked on those particular buttons I wasn't offered that option.
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Mark Bliss
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby Mark Bliss » Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:17 pm

Ok, just being thick headed (again) but this stuff as usual is hard to communicate in words....
The undefined CC's can be assigned to control parameters other than the common standard CC's where allowed by specific VSTi's? Have I got that right?

Automation: Somewhere in another thread on the topic of MIDI (I cant find it now) there was a link to a web page that showed screen shots of projects where it appeared that CC controls were automated via the host automation lanes, not the piano roll CC controls. Or am I mistaken on this and it was possibly regular automation lane items. The images were too small and I couldn't see the details to learn much. (I cant see so well these days for some reason.) :shock:

I know I need to explore this more, just trying to wrap my head around some of the possibilities and begin to understand how people typically work with MIDI and VSTi's. 8)

Maybe someone could share some basic MIDI projects to dissect and examine sometime?
Stay in tune, Mark

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chibear
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby chibear » Thu May 01, 2014 5:15 am

Will do next week, Mark. I was already going to do a post on using CC11 (expression) for just that: Expression. I'll dissect the first cello solo of Romanze and post all the graphics of the different CC#s I used.

Also I thought of another (unless someone beats me to it) is to show how to apply CC# and/or host automation in Kontakt. I believe you have Kontakt. Might inspire you to dust it off and give it another try :wink:
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Re: Midi Control Commands (CC) and how to use

Postby Mark Bliss » Thu May 01, 2014 9:54 am

I think that would be very helpful Clyde, and theres no rush. I intend to be around a while yet...... 8)

My goal is just to add some tools to the tool box. I can do the MIDI basics, but in a nutshell, I'd like to be able to have results that sound a bit further from what I played with while learning BASIC programming on the old C64 in about 1984. Now that was un-fulfilling.......
Stay in tune, Mark

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