Search:    
Search support site only

MIDI - 101 - Setup for Internal Playback & External MIDI Keyboard Synth

Add comment
Views: 4060
Comments: 0

This applies to all MIDI Sequencing, Recording or Notation programs. While the
way to access the settings or names may vary, the principle remains the same.

Play Keyboard through SoundCard MIDI Synthesizer:(MIDI In)
In order to play your external Keyboard through your Sound Card you need to:

  - First consult with your Keyboard manual to ensure that all Transmitting
    MIDI settings are configured properly in order for your Keyboard to send
    MIDI data. (If this is not setup properly, there is no way to establish
    communication). 

  - Make sure that the MIDI cable is properly connected:
          MIDI In to MIDI Out and vice versa.
    Please note that you must use MIDI ports (5-pin DIN MIDI In/Out ports)
    instead of a direct USB-to-USB connections.

  - Then, from within the MIDI Sequencing program go to: Options > MIDI Port
    Setup and from the MIDI Input section under the Port number select the
    Driver offered by your Sound Card/MIDI Interface installation. Nowadays,
    since Sound Card manufacturers no longer build "on-board" Synthesizers,
    usually the only available option is the Software Synthesizer provided
    by Microsoft called: "MS GS Wavetable SW Synth" with its well-known and
    documented Latency. Please see:
    Latency 

    IMPORTANT NOTE:
          Please do not expect to hear the same sound quality as from your
          Keyboard Synthesizer. The sounds you hear are entirely dependent
          upon the MIDI Sound Card you are using. The Software Sequencing
          program has nothing to do with the sound generation. All it does
          is assign the MIDI sounds (1-128) to the type of music instrument
          as determined by the General MIDI Conventions. In other words,
          number 1 will be an "Acoustic Piano" sound as opposed to a Trumpet.

    If you are still not able to hear sound please do the following:
    * Click on Start > Programs > Accessories > Entertainment >Volume Control
    * In the upper left click on Options/Properties
    * Be sure you are set to Playback and check all boxes in the white section
      at the bottom
    * Now click OK
    * Make sure all the volume sliders are turned up and nothing is muted

                            ********************

Play MIDI song through External MIDI Keyboard: (MIDI Out)
In order to play your external Keyboard through your Sound Card you need to:

  - First consult with your Keyboard manual to ensure that all Receiving
    MIDI settings are configured properly in order for your Keyboard to
    Receive MIDI data. (Again, if this is not setup properly, there is no way
    to establish communication).

  - Make sure that the Keyboard *IS* capable of generating sound as there are
    also Keyboard *Controllers* only, which make NO sound *of their own*.
    They only transmit MIDI data, which must be "played" by a MIDI synth
    or a software synth in your computer.
 
  - Make sure that the MIDI cable is properly connected:
          MIDI In to MIDI Out and vice versa.

  - Then, from within the MIDI Sequencing program go to:
    Options > MIDI Port Setup and from the MIDI Output section under the Port
    number select the appropriate Driver offered by your Sound Card for
    routing the MIDI signal to an external device. (If you are using a MIDI
    Interface, choose that.) In the early days of computing when MIDI was
    more prevalent than today (circa 90's) Sound Card manufacturers used a
    standard driver often called MPU-401. Unfortunately since MIDI features
    are no longer implemented in soundcards, this is no longer the standard.
    Users may need to experiment with what is available, provided by their
    Sound Card manufacturer.

This article was:  
Prev   Next
How to Enter: Eighth-Quarter-Eighth figure     MIDI - Newbie Issue 1