AX Synth MIDI short comings

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AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby mathieumaes2 » 14:06, 21 April 2012

My main board is a Korg Kronos. Even though I like many of the AX Synth sounds, I'd like to use it as a MIDI controller for my Kronos. Unfortunately I'm having quite a bit of problems with it.

- When I press the TX-button and activate MIDI output, the AX sends out a patch change. This causes problems when I use ie. my Behringer FCB1010 foot controller to select the right programs...
- The first 4 program buttons use a different bank then the other 4 buttons. However, those aren't the banks that I need to use in my Kronos, so I disabled receiving bank changes. Problem now is, that I can only use the 4 buttons, since the others share the same program numbers as the first ones.
- My previous MIDI controller, an Axiom 61, had an easy way to change MIDI channel, and even layer them. This has been very handy to quickly change or combine sounds. Unfortunately, there seems to be no easy way to quickly change MIDI channel in the AX.
- There is no way to control the volume over MIDI

I'd like to know what others do to circumvent these issues ? How do you deal with programs in your host synth without changing them directly on the synth ?


Kind regards,
Mathew
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby Arjan » 13:12, 23 April 2012

mathieumaes2 wrote:- When I press the TX-button and activate MIDI output, the AX sends out a patch change. This causes problems when I use ie. my Behringer FCB1010 foot controller to select the right programs...


I find this one particularly irritating myself. My AX Synth is currently connected to the physically separate 'Remote Keyboard' input of my JP-8080 module but eventually I'll be connecting it through my own MIDI Live Commander software (which takes care of seamless sound switching during songs and now does lighting through DMX as well), once that happens I can patch and map the hell out of anything the AX Synth sends.

In your situation, perhaps something like this could be used:

http://www.midisolutions.com/prodepp.htm

Good luck,
Arjan
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby mathieumaes2 » 19:29, 23 April 2012

Thanks for the tip, might be worth checking out! I suppose I can map the AX Synth patches to different banks/patches in Kronos, and convert the after touch CC's to volume CC's...

The only problem is that my wireless MIDI receiver is using USB, but maybe I could get around that...

Kronos support seamless sound transition, so if I can get the patch changes right, I'm probably good to go.
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby Arjan » 16:01, 24 April 2012

mathieumaes2 wrote:The only problem is that my wireless MIDI receiver is using USB, but maybe I could get around that...


You could probably use this:

http://www.kentonuk.com/products/items/ ... host.shtml

to convert from USB MIDI to regular MIDI or you could use this for wireless MIDI instead (it's what I'm using):

http://www.cme-pro.com/products-list/pr ... idi-8.html

I actually built this one into my AX Synth so I wouldn't have a separate transmitter to deal with:

viewtopic.php?f=33&t=37671
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby mathieumaes2 » 17:56, 24 April 2012

I already ordered the WIDI-X8 for my keytar, and I also ordered this:
http://www.thomann.de/be/cme_widixu.htm

Hopefully I can just plug that into my Kronos' USB port.

I can probably find a workaround and by a second WIDI-X8 as receiver.

I like the idea of putting the transmitter into my keytar, but I don't like opening up brandnew hardware :)
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby Arjan » 10:29, 25 April 2012

mathieumaes2 wrote:I already ordered the WIDI-X8 for my keytar, and I also ordered this:
http://www.thomann.de/be/cme_widixu.htm

Hopefully I can just plug that into my Kronos' USB port.

I can probably find a workaround and by a second WIDI-X8 as receiver.


I would cancel the order for the Widi-XU if I were you because the WIDI-X8 package you ordered from Thomann will contain two (identical) units (I got mine from them as well), one to be used as the 'transmitter' and one as the 'receiver'. I put sender and transmitter between quotes because this is a full-duplex (ie. bi-directional) link so they are both sending and transmitting at the same time.

Also note that you can configure one Widi-X8 unit to do MIDI over the physical MIDI port (at the AX end) and the other over the USB connection if you want. So if you could connect the Widi-XU to your Kronos' USB port (which I very much doubt) you could do the same thing with one of the Widi-X8 units. But you'll probably need to use the physical MIDI port on your Kronos anyway rather than going through USB.

mathieumaes2 wrote:I like the idea of putting the transmitter into my keytar, but I don't like opening up brandnew hardware :)


Same for me. My original reason for opening up the AX was to install straplocks because I quickly found out that the normal strap system is not as reliable as I would like, it had almost fallen twice already because of the straps coming loose, just during rehearsals. It was then that I saw that there was quite a bit of space left inside and started thinking about putting the transmitter inside. After fiddling around with the separate transmitter for a while I decided it was worth it for me.
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby mathieumaes2 » 21:20, 25 April 2012

I ordered it here:
http://www.musicstore.com/nl_NL/NLG/CME ... 005898-000

It clearly states:
!!! Price for one unit! For operation w/o special CME keyboard a second X8 Unit is needed !!!
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby Arjan » 10:29, 26 April 2012

mathieumaes2 wrote:I ordered it here:
http://www.musicstore.com/nl_NL/NLG/CME ... 005898-000

It clearly states:
!!! Price for one unit! For operation w/o special CME keyboard a second X8 Unit is needed !!!


Ah, I had assumed that you had ordered the Widi-X8 from Thomann (since that was where you linked to for the Widi-XU) who are selling them as a pair:

http://www.thomann.de/nl/cme_widix8.htm

It's clear both from the price and the description that musicstore.com is indeed selling them not as a pair but per single unit instead so you're all good.

I noticed that the Kronos 1.5 OS adds support for USB MIDI input from external MIDI keyboards (not just from a PC host) so that should mean the Widi-XU will work with it after all. If it does it's probably the most convenient solution for you since the Widi-XU is USB powered so no need for batteries. That's another reason why I built the Widi-X8 into the AX: no separate batteries needed for it, it simply draws power from the AX' batteries.


Please let me know if the Kronos and the Widi-XU play nicely together, I might be getting a Kronos myself at some point.
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby mathieumaes2 » 15:41, 2 May 2012

Music Store seems to have the item on backorder, and the XU doesn't have an estimated delivery date... It might take a while before I manage to test this out...

Thomann seems to have the XU in stock, but they don't have the X8 in stock ("on request")... I'm looking for a different store...
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby Arjan » 15:49, 2 May 2012

mathieumaes2 wrote:Music Store seems to have the item on backorder, and the XU doesn't have an estimated delivery date... It might take a while before I manage to test this out...

Thomann seems to have the XU in stock, but they don't have the X8 in stock ("on request")... I'm looking for a different store...


For the Widi-X8 I can recommend this one as I've had nothing but good experiences with them so far:

http://www.bax-shop.nl/midi-interface/c ... tails.html

but they only sell them as a pair it seems and they don't seem to carry the XU. I don't know what countries they will ship to though.
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby mathieumaes2 » 17:26, 9 May 2012

Hi Arjan,

That's where I ordered it, I called them and they were able to deliver a single item.

Both items arrived today, and first impression is just perfect.
First of all, my Korg Kronos accepts the USB stick (WIDI-XU), literally plug 'n play!

Connecting the transmitter was easy-peasy. Just use the MIDI cable, press the "search" button and activate MIDI TX on the keytar.

It worked like a charm. Didn't test the range yet, but I managed to go to a different room without issues. Latency is hardly noticeable.

Now I still have to figure out an easy way to deal with patch changes. The MIDI solutions processor isn't possible, because the receiver is just the USB stick in my Kronos. Probably going to use some empty combi bank and select a patch whenever I want to use my keytar.
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby Arjan » 11:05, 10 May 2012

mathieumaes2 wrote:First of all, my Korg Kronos accepts the USB stick (WIDI-XU), literally plug 'n play!


That's pretty cool.

mathieumaes2 wrote:It worked like a charm. Didn't test the range yet, but I managed to go to a different room without issues.


I have the same positive experience with the Widi-X8 combo. I don't think you'll ever have any trouble with the range on stage.

mathieumaes2 wrote:Latency is hardly noticeable.


I'd say it's pretty much non-existant actually, at least with the Widi-X8. Could it be that the latency you experienced is simply the acoustic delay resulting from being further away from your speakers? Keep in mind that every meter (3.28ft) that you get away from your speaker will result in an additional acoustic delay of +2.9ms. I believe most people are able to sense this type of latency at >10ms (and some before that) which would equate to about 9 meters between you and your speakers.

Have fun,
Arjan
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby mathieumaes2 » 15:16, 4 June 2012

Last week I did my first gig with the AX Synth, the wireless gear and my Kronos. Everything went very smooth! The wireless system worked as expected, although I didn't need much of the range because the stage was so small I couldn't move! :)

The transmitter posed a bit of a problem, because it doesn't have a clip to put it on the keytar's belt. I purchased a camera case which has roughly the same size as the transmitter and has a clip. I can't build the transmitter inside the keytar because I need to press the "search" button to make the wireless connection. There is no such button on the USB stick...

In any case, I would recommend the CME system, it seems very reliable!
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby Arjan » 16:34, 9 June 2012

mathieumaes2 wrote:I can't build the transmitter inside the keytar because I need to press the "search" button to make the wireless connection. There is no such button on the USB stick...


I never push any buttons on either unit, I just power them on and they connect. I can even change the channel on the 'receiver' and the 'sender' in the AX will connect to it just fine on power up. You just need to set the sender unit to 'Auto' mode for this to work. Don't see why that wouldn't work with the USB stick but I can't be sure since I don't have one.
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Re: AX Synth MIDI short comings

Postby fuzztone » 02:23, 13 November 2015

If you're only lusing the sounds in the Kronos, how about plugging MIDI Out of your AX into MIDI In of your FCB?
True, the AX always transmits Bank and Program Change info, now can the FCB filter it out?
Ammo
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