E1-Newbie: Recommendations for creating presets

Hi E1-user,

I am a new user and got my E1mkII some days ago. I tried some presets (thanks for the fantastic DX-7II preset!) and started to create my own. But before creating my first big preset I have some questions and hope that someone can give me some hints.

I want to create a preset for my Zynthian. The problem is that Zynthian is very flexible. I can create a chain (associated to a MIDI channel) which is using an engine (there are lots of engines) and add effects (you can do much more with Zynthian, but that’s the main usage). I can use several engines on different MIDI channels and store it as a Zynthian-snapshot.

As far as I have seen in E1 a device is a fixed connection to a MIDI channel? If this is the case, my plan for the various software synths on Zynthian, which can be on different MIDI channels depending on the setup, is not feasible. Or have I not yet understood something correctly? Ideally it would be, if I could set the MIDI channel for a device directly in the E1 preset.

The other way I can do is to create a separate preset for each Zynthian-snapshot, what is not very flexible and complex. But it will work well, due to MIDI-learning at Zynthian-side for my E1-controllers.

What do you think? What is the best way for dynamicly used software synths?

Another questions:
When using a fader I can choose the variant dial. But this does not change anything on my E1. So for what is this usable?


a device has a MIDI channel associated with it, but that can be changed dynamically.

See this Devices section of the on-line documentation.

So you can either use a control or do it programmatically to select the MIDI channel.

For now, the Dial option appears to be only available for the expanded envelope editing display

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Thanks @oldgearguy! I will try to fugure out how to use the Lua functions.

Start with simple things first if the device supports it (sending CCs, NRPNs). Once you establish you can talk to it using standard controls and configurations, then maybe start diving into the patch request path response stuff to sync the data between the Zynthian and the Electra One


First things done, thx! Works quite well.

I use Zynthian and even though it’s hardware, there are a lot of software synths on there and so the control is more software synth like. I have found that MIDI CCs are implemented very differently and are sometimes simply not mapped or not available at all. So with a generic approach I don’t really get anywhere, but that’s not so critical. I am then rather challenged to go deeper into the operation of the E.1.

But what works really well: Create controls with “any” MIDI-CC on the E.1 and then do MIDI-learning for a parameter on the Zynthian.

Where I just stumbled across in the app: What can I use the “categories” for? I have seen that I can create some and assign a control to a category - but what is this useful for?

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re: categories – no idea.

Martin has/had a plan, I’m sure of that, but I’ve never needed it.
Maybe to help you find and edit controls if you define a lot across many pages?
So you could find and edit all the controls in the “Envelopes” category ???

EDIT - Martin’s example below is very clear and shows how/why it would be useful.


Categories are meant to help to identify controls when working with the editor, eg. SysEx editor or SysEx Parser. Say, you have a several controls named Attack. One for VCF envelope, another for VCA. You can assign the the first Attack to category VCF and the other to category VCA. The control will be referenced with Category info along the name:



Ahhh, ok, got it! Thx!