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Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 12:16 pm
by rrichard63
As usual, apologies in advance if this has been covered in a thread that my searches failed to find.

Some virtual instruments output MIDI as well as audio. I refer to Kontakt 5 as an example. In the Options dialog on the Engine tab, there is a setting to "send MIDI to the outside world". The choices include the incoming MIDI (basically an echo function) and generated MIDI (when the library has a built in sequencer and/or arpeggiator). I refer to any of the Orange Tree Samples Evolution Guitar series as examples of libraries that generate MIDI (in addition to audio) based on the MIDI they receive as input.

I would like to be able to record that generated MIDI on an instrument track. This could either be on the same track Kontakt is on, in which case it would be recorded instead of the MIDI that was input to the track. Or it could be on a different instrument track -- as long as it is captured somewhere.

Is this possible in Mixcraft 8? If so, how?

Note that this is a different question from how to render the audio output of an instrument on an audio track.

Thanks in advance.

--Bob Richard

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 12:39 pm
by Acoustica Eric
You could install this
It will show up as a virtual midi device. Then send the kontakt midi to it, and input from it to another virtual track in mixcraft.

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 12:55 pm
by rrichard63
Thank you. I discovered that this is a two step process. After you create an instrument track in the "external MIDI devices" category, you have to click on "Add Synth" and load (for example) Kontakt. Then you have to move Kontakt's position in the chain to come before Loop MIDI rather than after it.

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 1:44 pm
by lingyai
Thanks for these tips. I've tried to do exactly this in Mixcraft 8, replicating the setup described as best as I could, including the last two steps mentioned above. Everything works except the actual recording of Kontakt's midi output, as midi. If you've gotten it to work, I think I might be overlooking something basic.

I'm using a Kontakt instrtument which generates midi notes, arp-style, when I play a static triad on the keyboard. The audio part plays fine in Mixcraft. I can then easily render this result as an audio file, but I'm looking for it to be as midi output, so I can edit it and drive other VSTis with it.

I have Kontakt set to share scripted midi notes with the outside world. (I've used this feature of Kontakt in other DAWs.)

In Mixcraft I tried arming and recording the instrument track, but all that gets recorded is the incoming, static midi triad chord, not the complex pattern which Kontakt generates. I'm trying to figure out what I'm missing. Midi channel assignements look sensible to me, but that doesn't mean much as I've I've only got around 8 hours experience with Mixcraft.

Is there way to send that scripted midi to another track, arm that track, and record it?

That failing, would it be possible to post a screengrab showing the setup?

(I did discover a semi-workaround, but it is not fully "live", is more cumbersome, and is only useful to people who have the Toontrack EZKeys VSTi.

Basically, I've found that EZKeys *can* be set to record the outgoing arpeggiated midi from Kontakt. It records this as a midi file within the EZKeys interface. This file can then be dragged to a new instrument track in Mixcraft.

It works. But the problem here is that you are forced to audition things through EZKeys' "voice" i.e. a piano, which is not ideal if you want the recorded midi ultimately to drive a VSTi with a much different character, say, a distorted guitar, an 80s synth, a marimba, a horn section etc. ; i.e. when you audition, you have to imagine that what you're hearing is not a piano.

Anyway, if there are any EZKeys owners who are interested in this and need help with the setup, let me know and I'll post a a few screengrabs or a short desktop video.)

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:23 am
by rrichard63
I'll reconstruct how I did this and post the recipe here, but that won't happen for another day or two.

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2017 9:24 am
by lingyai
rrichard63 wrote:I'll reconstruct how I did this and post the recipe here, but that won't happen for another day or two.

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Fri Dec 01, 2017 10:35 am
by rrichard63
First, you need a MIDI loopback driver such as LoopMIDI or LoopBe. I use LoopMIDI and will refer to the driver by this name.

Create two instrument tracks. Let's call them "A" and "B".

On Track A, put the instrument that is going to output the MIDI you want to record. For learning/testing purposes, I suggest starting with something really simple like Insert Piz Here midiChords, because the relationship between input and output is really easy to understand (and because it's free). If you are recording the output of a VSTi with an internal arpeggiator, see the first footnote below.

Here's the step that I suspect people miss at first. In the dialog box where you selected (for example) midiChords, notice the drop down menu labeled "Select Synth" immediately underneath the name "midiChords". You have to scroll all the way down to the bottom of this menu to find the list of external MIDI devices. From that list, chose "LoopMIDI Port" (or whatever your driver is called). Make sure that "loopMIDI Port" comes after "midiChords" in the lilst of instruments.

If you are playing your Track A arp or instrument from a keyboard or drum pads rather than using MIDI data you have already recorded, then select that device as the input to the track, and arm the track for recording from it. Otherwise, this instrument will process whatever MIDI is already recorded on Track A.

Arm Track B to record and set its input device to the same loopMIDI port that you sent to from Track A. Put whatever instrument the recorded MIDI is intended for on Track B.

If you have an instrument that produces audio on Track A, as opposed to a chord generator or arpeggiator, you will probably want to mute either A or B. If you want to mute Track A, turn the level all the way down instead of using the Mute button. It looks to me like the Mute button defeats the input to the track as well as the audio output.

Hit Record. When you're done recording, Track A will contain the MIDI input from your keyboard or drum pads and Track B will contain the MIDI output from your arp or chord generator.

Hope this helps. If it proves necessary, I'll try to grab screen shots.


Different VSTi's have different options (or no options at all) for controlling what MIDI they send. Using Kontakt as an example, find the Options dialog (a gear icon at the top of the interface). On the "Engine" tab, set "Send MIDI to outside world" to "script generated notes" and/or "script generated CCs". I think that most of the time you will want to capture both, but will not want to echo the input.

Be prepared for the possibility that the output doesn't turn out to be what you expected.


Cableguys MidiShaper is an example of a MIDI source that describes itself to the DAW as an effect rather than an instrument. In Mixcraft, it requires a different approach. See this post:


Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 2:41 pm
by lingyai
This is awesome, thanks rrichard for taking the time to spell this out so clearly. I can't wait ot try this tomorrow when I'm back at my DAW pc...

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Sat Dec 09, 2017 2:31 pm
by lingyai
This works exactly as you said, I'd never have figured this out on my own. Thanks again for taking the time to explain the steps.

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Mon Dec 25, 2017 3:13 pm
by Eddiescoob
I guys and I apologise in advance but can someone please draw me a picture of how everything is done because I haven`t got a clue. I got as far as Track A with Cthulhu and a VSTi and both tracks armed. I`ve downloaded midiloops but from there I am totally lost, confused, frustrated and all alone lol. HELP.


Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:41 pm
by Mark Bliss
I recommend banjo lessons. It might bring far more satisfying results and only take a few years to get some modest results.

Just saying' 8)

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Mon Dec 25, 2017 6:34 pm
by Eddiescoob
Thank you very much for your most valuable suggestion Mark Bliss. Unfortunately we are not all blessed with the `Bliss Knowledge` but I will definitely take your comments on board. Please forgive me for asking for help with a problem I have but I must have mistaken this forum as somewhere I could come to for help, not ridiculed for my lack of knowledge. As you may have already noticed I am new to the world of DAWs and no matter how many tutorials and hours I put in to trying to learn how to do things I still come across things that I do not understand, hence the questions. I`m not a whizz record producer, sound engineer, DJ, I`m just a bloke who has a small studio set up in my bedroom, a love for EDM music and lots of enthusiasm to produce tunes that I get pleasure from knowing `I did that`.
As for me playing a banjo, I`d definitely take it up if wanted to screw my sister, marry my cousin or bend a random stranger over while getting him to squeal like pig, but I`ll leave the banjo playing to Steve Martin and the rest of it to you.

Just saying

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Mon Dec 25, 2017 8:19 pm
by lingyai
Mark Bliss, what does your last comment add to the discussion?

Eddiescoob, I understand your frustration but your last paragraph was over the top.

Anyway ...

If you simply want to play / record Cthulu, Kontakt or another midi-generating VSTi through a second VSTi, recording the incoming midi only, you don't need loopmidi, or even a second track. Just put your second VSTi on the same track. Follow the short instructions on page 283 of the Mixcraft 8 manual. It's dead easy. Everything will sound as it should. You'll be able to render the resultant arped performance as audio, but not as midi.

If however you want to play / record Cthulu etc through another VSTi, recording both the incoming midi and the Cthulu-generated midi , you do need loopmidi. I have made a video here

showing all the steps. Sorry if it's a bit rough, time permitting I would have edited it; I did mess up near the end, but then explained and corrected my error. Anyway, it should make things clear I hope.

Be aware that whenever I suddenly mouse down to the bottom left hand corner of the screen, I'm pausing the video recorder (you can't see its controls).

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:33 am
by Ian Craig
Yes, do not descend to abuse on this forum please, that's not what it's for.
I think the point here is that this process is an unnecessarily complicated process for anyone who tries to concentrate on making music rather than endlessly trying to envisage how something gets routed from one thing to another via some third software prior to a fourth process involving have to learn to actually use the plugin, which is why other DAWs already include this feature, so the sooner Mixcraft includes this feature the better. Hopefully in Mixcraft 9 (whenever that is due for release). In the meantime, any acquired software will still be waiting until it's use isn't an endless headache. Happy holidays 8)

Re: Recording MIDI output from Kontakt instrument

Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 2:44 am
by Eddiescoob
Thank you so much lingyai that was above and beyond what I ever expected and is very much appreciated. I had some problems getting Mixcraft to recognise loop midi but once it did the video was spot on and did exactly what I wanted it to do, a well earn pint or two for your good self if you are ever in Sheffield.
And yes you were right that the last paragraph was a tad strong and I apologise if I offended anyone reading it but in my defence the previous comment was, uncalled for, underhand and ignorant and for that I did what most people would have done and shot him down. At least he`s still got his teeth, whereas if that had been said to my face he most certainly wouldn`t.

Thanks again, I owe you one.