Your midi setups, E1 implementation in your studio

Hey there,

as I get to know the E1 better, it is carving out it’s space in my studio. In an attempt to properly document my MIDI-routing for future reference, I stumbled over Visio, a great tool for making diagrams and tables (prettier than excel, much easier to use than say Word). Anyways, here’s a pic of my MIDI-setup as it currently stands (ish).

As you can see, there’s a fair bit of things going on.

Goals:

-being able to use the E1 for editor-like features while simultaneously clocking/trigging from the Squarp Pyramid

-Being able to use my midi controllers to expand the E1

-Master keyboard should be able to control all synths, in addition to the control they receive from sequencers (Pyramid, Octatrack, MCL, computer)

-easy choice of master clock: usually the outboard is clocked by a combo of Expers Sleepers modules (Es3/5/8MD), as they provide super stable sample accurate sync (and full midi control, all sample accurate). But there should be an easy way to switch to “analog” clock (when I just want to play with the modulars without firing up the DAW) as an alternative.

-create a central control position where a combo of midi controllers + E1 provide sensical control over (most) important systems.

So far, I’ve got the E1 + Pyramid + master keyboard + hardware synthesizers working as I wanted, where I can use the cool Pyramid features to come up with cool patterns and idea’s, while still having full control with the E1.

I’d love to see similar pictures/routing schemes of your setups, and your experiences, tips and ideas.

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Just wanted to recommend a tiny USB-helper I got recently, the CME U6Pro. It’s just a simple midi interface, but it’s very customizable so you can make specialized thru/merge boxes. I don’t use the USB interface part, but it’s equally powerful (actually 3 usb interfaces in one unit). Full merging/splitting/mapping/filtering on all inputs/outputs, very straight forward software etc. Honestly puts my Motu Midi XT, my main interface, to shame, being more flexible, easier to use and hella cheap. I have two, and don’t see any reason to get something different for future merge-boxes. Maybe a iConnectivity down the line… but those big, central interfaces are pretty clunky, having to go back and forth for simple merging/splitting etc. Nicer to process locally, close to the target (better for latency, too).

I got ahold of a used Bitstream 3x, and apparrently it’s the same guy behind both originally (before he sold it to CME). Great stuff!

I’ve also gotten a bunch of PCB’s of Midisizer’s thru box, which saves a bunch of money on such a trivial, boring task.

Oh, and a good label-er is key. I got this one to try as an alternative to the Brother style electric ones: Hellerman Tyton

On another note, I’d love to know more about the details of the configuration page on the controller pages. Some are pretty self-explanatory, but others are not (like the first and two last lines. What differentiates MIDI IO from the ports? What does the “post action” do? etc

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wow thank you for posting this. As a squarp pyramid user myself, this is really helpful!

Question, so I finally got things set up between my iconnectivity mio xl and various merge and thru boxes to be able to play on all my keyboard-synths and send it to the squarp while sending the recorded midi back out to the keyboards.

I am trying to figure out how best to integrate my modules. Right now I am toggling one of my synths to just perform midi out and sending it to the channel said module is connected to, but I’m imagining there is a better way somehow…

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PS: I meant to ask what else you are doing with the E1 aside from editing hardware?

We have two different setups in the Electra One workshops. Both are built around Mios XL / XM. Even though the setups are mostly used for E1 firmware and preset development and testing they are occasionally used to make music (I wish I had more time). The wiring gives me an easy way to reach all devices with Electra One, masterkeyboard, sequencer, and computers.

Setup 1:

note 1: Valhala FXs mapped to digital outputs/faders on Roland MX-1 and E1 midi controlled
note 2: often, extra gear is connected ad hoc to electras or to Mio via USB (USBMIDI convertor)
note 3: Motu Timepiece AV routing is managed with an E1 preset

Setup 2:

The main difference is that all midi is handled here with RTP-MIDI interconnected Mio XL/XM. It works perfectly. Setting it up is not very pleasant activity though.

note 1: ASR-88 is the main sequencer / masterkeyboad providing easy access to all synths
note 2: Keystage is there for MIDI 2.0 testing
note 3: Valhala FXs mapped to digital outputs/faders on Roland MX-1 and E1 midi controlled

In both setups, most of the synths run on their own dedicated channel(s) and I am able to use E1 to work with all of them. In setup 2, I ran out of channels (DP/4 would benefit from using multiple channels). Routing is fully managed from Auracle software, each setup has a few different presets.

I hope this helps… I used to use mergers and splitters in the past, iConnectivity routers made everything easier.

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Wow. You still have an Atari ST! That was my first real computer. Kept it for years in my parents’ attic, but sold it 10 years or so ago

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I got one this year and @markus.schloesser generously offered Mega ST that would be used in the second setup. The beauty is that there are so many excellent preset editors for old gear available for ST. And I must admit that cubase 3.1 covers almost everything I need regarding MIDI.

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I once heard that Atari STs have very good MIDI timing, which is why people still use them for sequencing today.

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@jhh Atari ST internal MIDI is good but there are multiple and more modern options.

I’ve had very good results with Steinberg’s LTB (Cubase VST/SX + Midex8) on retrocomputers.
Arturia Beatstep Pro and Keystep are very very tight too.

I will be using ST for fixing: Unstable or double tempo Clock with Midronome :slight_smile:

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Cool to see some responses here! Pardon my lack of reply; in the middle of exam period so been trying to steer clear of all geeky stuff I love to throw time at; at least one of the curriculums is (fundamental) digitaltech(niques), so I’ve gotten much improved on my understanding of sysex as a consequence of my curriculum… Those hex numbers aren’t so scary anymore, compared to the synchronous/asynchronous boolean logic synthesis stuff I’m currently trying to inject my brain with. Just finished a big project, building an interpretation of an AI neuron network building block that simulates the process of forming a memory based on an inputs strength/value… Sort of like, ‘if it ain’t interesting enough it won’t form a memory’. All built with boolean gates!

Anyways, I digress.

I just wanted to add that the Midipal’s are my choice of clock generator if not using the slightly cumbersome ES system. Those midipal master clock app is insanely stable and jitter free! There’s a cool clock tester app from the midisizer gal version if I remember correctly, that’s superb at analyzing your clock options and select the best one. Especially machines like groove boxes and drum machines with dubious internal clocks can really sound so much better when clocked from a stable, jitter free clock. My Machinedrum & monomachine really benefit so much from this that I consider them borderline useless without!

Oh, and to make it easier to focus on my studies, I finally managed to buy an Eventide H8000a. My dream machine! And since it was through a friend, I got it for a great price aswell :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: it’s got a pretty awesome midi implementation, so hopefully be able to come up with some cool E1 presets for it in the future.

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Hi there,
here is my MIDI map (with audio map too). I found extremely useful to use XMind as mind mapper.

Have a nice day.

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