FCB1010 midi to USB

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
xuoham
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by xuoham » Tue Sep 07, 2010 3:27 pm

Sorry for the too large photo though.
This a-Pac thing is really good and reliable, heard about it
through this forum, btw.

Mojofunk : "...reveal the actual color of my pancreas ..." ^ ^
That's my man, mwahahahaha !! Like this kind of humour... it's funny because i have
something with pancreases too, the silly name, probably...
Didn't have time to check Platypus but Buffalo seems very nice, your site made me want to go there (lived 3 years in NY, NY, and never went far upstate).
Nice native artists list...

Pardon the off topic lines ^ ^
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ADK?1QAR?Laptop/Live Suite/Bidule/Aalto/Surge/XILS3/Nano Kontrols/
ATH-M50/TascamVLX5/ApacCustomUSBFootController/+Guitars

xuoham
Posts: 262
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by xuoham » Tue Sep 07, 2010 3:40 pm

mbenigni: wow, nice job, very clean (i won't show you mine's gutts ... grotesque).
Indeed too bad for the exp. pedals being photo-voltaic, but hey, you did very well apparently. Regardless the cost, the hours spent on it seem worth it !
Is it reliable on the long run ?
Mine is surprisingly good (was not too sure about the way i soldered)and so far no problem but i made the mistake of gluing some plexiglass to close the bottom (concerned about dust) and i'm gonna look stupid if i have to fix something before a gig. Dumbass :)
:::::::::


ADK?1QAR?Laptop/Live Suite/Bidule/Aalto/Surge/XILS3/Nano Kontrols/
ATH-M50/TascamVLX5/ApacCustomUSBFootController/+Guitars

mbenigni
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mbenigni » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:32 pm

mbenigni: wow, nice job, very clean (i won't show you mine's gutts ... grotesque).
Indeed too bad for the exp. pedals being photo-voltaic, but hey, you did very well apparently. Regardless the cost, the hours spent on it seem worth it !
Yeah, once I decided on using the newer part for the continuous (expression) controls, the pedals pretty much worked "out of the box". But it was a bit of a shocker when I first opened up the FCB and didn't find any pots underneath. I'm really lucky that the parts that generated the voltage from the photo-voltaic were easily isolated and re-purposed, and not buried in some monolithic IC.

Is it reliable on the long run ?
Honestly, I never got a really good read on that. I never actually gigged with the thing, and I was fidgeting back and forth with various Live settings right up until the time I retired the thing. It became too much of a trade-off for me, ultimately: I had cleaned up a few cables, yes, but I had also necessitated the use of custom software that might or might not be supported with any given version of Windows/Live... to the point where a crash or any other problem would be that much harder to diagnose. There's a lot more room for user error when you have to configure and remember to launch Joystick-MIDI middleware before launching Live and whatever else you use. In the end, the unit gathered dust until - during a hasty move - I just put the whole thing in a dumpster. (I should have at least taken that USB hub out first LOL.)

All of this would have gone much better if there were an A-PAC equivalent that put out real MIDI instead of gameport signals. But I never did find a part that fit the bill, and now (finally) there are commercial pedals available that do the job. It amazes me that it took so long, since there have been USB-MIDI DJ-style mixing boards/controllers on the market for ages. It's like all those mfrs forgot we had feet for a while. :)

Mine is surprisingly good (was not too sure about the way i soldered)and so far no problem but i made the mistake of gluing some plexiglass to close the bottom (concerned about dust) and i'm gonna look stupid if i have to fix something before a gig. Dumbass
LOL see my 2nd post in this thread re: looking like a dumbass trying to fix something during a gig.
Last edited by mbenigni on Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

mojofunk
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mojofunk » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:40 pm

Hi xuoham, thanks for checking out the site! Yeah, the pancreas really is the funniest body part. It works well as the punch line of any joke that you don't otherwise know how to finish - "Two guys walk into a bar . . . Pancreas!". Hysterical!

I think I need to check out Apac also - what is that exactly? If I understand correctly it'll give joystick messages that can be translated to navigation etc. in Live? I am curious.

mbenigni
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mbenigni » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:47 pm

Everything you wanted to know about A-PAC (and more) here:

http://www.ultimarc.com/a-pac.html

What you've written yourself pretty much sums it up. Ultimarc caters primarily to guys building arcade cabinets for emulators and the like. It's always been a bit of a stretch for musicians to apply this technology, but some of us will try anything LOL. (I was even getting some mileage out of a WiiMote for a little while.)

At this point, unless you're simply looking for an electronics hobby, I'd sooner recommmend that you buy a purpose-built controller from a musical equipment mfr. They've pretty well caught up with the demands of the market, to the point where their stuff will work better than most anything you can build from an APAC. All IMO of course, but I've been w-a-y down this road before.

mojofunk
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mojofunk » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:52 pm

Well theres some more info now, and mbenigni I know exactly what you mean about the worries of mechanical complexity when playing Live live. That is the one factor that has kept me nervous about computers in bars. But, thankfully the shows I have played thus far have not had any hardware snafus . . . yet. Hardware is just so much more reassuring than all these spidery cables (firewire 400 with its tiny little plug is the heart of the system - yikes!), so I am just waiting on the day when I have to bust out singing some country tunes with an acoustic while smoke pours out of the laptop. I've been working on building some wooden boxes for all the gizmos, so I don't have to dis and re-assemble everything so often. But I suppose the adrenalin boost of uncertainty has a certain electric edge. Mmmmm, adrenalin . . .

mbenigni
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mbenigni » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:53 pm

That FBV Shortboard MkII looks sweet. I Like the USB !! I wonder how programmable each of those pedals are. Will look into it when I get more google-net time.
If it's anything like the FBV Express MkII, wicked programmable. Everything from CC's to notes, to mackie control to sustain... but you do need to use a PC (not sure whether mac is supported?) and their software to program it.

The only funky thing I've noticed is that pedals are sometimes ignored if you're pressing more than one. Not even sure about that, but I have had a couple of "wait, what just happened moments" in that regard.

I posted a review of the express after I bought it, here: http://www.zzounds.com/item--LINFBVEXPMKII

mbenigni
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mbenigni » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:57 pm

mojofunk wrote:Well theres some more info now, and mbenigni I know exactly what you mean about the worries of mechanical complexity when playing Live live. That is the one factor that has kept me nervous about computers in bars. But, thankfully the shows I have played thus far have not had any hardware snafus . . . yet. Hardware is just so much more reassuring than all these spidery cables (firewire 400 with its tiny little plug is the heart of the system - yikes!), so I am just waiting on the day when I have to bust out singing some country tunes with an acoustic while smoke pours out of the laptop. I've been working on building some wooden boxes for all the gizmos, so I don't have to dis and re-assemble everything so often. But I suppose the adrenalin boost of uncertainty has a certain electric edge. Mmmmm, adrenalin . . .
Yeah, scary stuff. Especially with the house soundman staring at you while you set up, like, "dude, what the hell are you doing and where do I stick my SM-57's", and your drummer wandering around aimlessly acting like... like a drummer. For me it became less about adrenalin and more about agida. (I haven't done the club scene in years.)

mojofunk
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mojofunk » Wed Sep 08, 2010 2:00 pm

Very good review! I wish you were writing about all the products I research! For me though, not enough buttons . . . need more buttons . . . must have buttons . . . Mmmmm, buttons . . .

mojofunk
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mojofunk » Wed Sep 08, 2010 2:08 pm

mbenigni wrote:Yeah, scary stuff. Especially with the house soundman staring at you while you set up, like, "dude, what the hell are you doing and where do I stick my SM-57's", and your drummer wandering around aimlessly acting like... like a drummer. For me it became less about adrenalin and more about agida. (I haven't done the club scene in years.)
Lol, thats it!

I confess I had to look up agida, it's true - a great description of the feeling I have before any performance of any type, until about halfway through the first song, when I am sure everything is producing sound and the band knows the material and hey - I actually do know how this all works, and wow, I love it! Then the agida is finito!

mbenigni
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mbenigni » Wed Sep 08, 2010 2:27 pm

Very good review! I wish you were writing about all the products I research! For me though, not enough buttons . . . need more buttons . . . must have buttons . . . Mmmmm, buttons . . .
Then buy two! ;) Or maybe look into the larger "shortboard" version.

Glad you're getting the better of your agida, man. Mine appears to have won the battle - but hopefully not the war!

nowtime
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB (vs Line6 FVB Shortboard)

Post by nowtime » Thu Sep 09, 2010 11:54 pm

mbenigni wrote:
That FBV Shortboard MkII looks sweet. I Like the USB !! I wonder how programmable each of those pedals are. Will look into it when I get more google-net time.
If it's anything like the FBV Express MkII, wicked programmable. Everything from CC's to notes, to mackie control to sustain... but you do need to use a PC (not sure whether mac is supported?) and their software to program it.

The only funky thing I've noticed is that pedals are sometimes ignored if you're pressing more than one. Not even sure about that, but I have had a couple of "wait, what just happened moments" in that regard.

I posted a review of the express after I bought it, here: http://www.zzounds.com/item--LINFBVEXPMKII
Bought one yesterday. I'll let you know how it goes!
Last edited by nowtime on Thu Sep 16, 2010 12:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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mbenigni
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mbenigni » Fri Sep 10, 2010 1:19 pm

Bought one yesterday. I'll let you know how it goes!
After all my propaganda (honestly not intended as such) I sure hope you like it! :)

nowtime
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by nowtime » Thu Sep 16, 2010 12:56 am

Got the Line 6 FBV Shortboard MKii yesterday, set it up and programmed it. I loved it right out of the box! It was smaller than I imagined and very nice quality.

Easy as pie to program. Boom. It works (with shoes off,anyway: shoes on could be a problem because of the close proximity of the switches)

Well, it works except for one thing; the Expression Pedal. I tried every setting and mode in LIve 8 to control the wet/dry of a ping pong delay. Absolutley does not work. It just makes wonky movement of the knob.

I am running it on it's own dedicated USB port and I calibrated the pedal twice. :(
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mbenigni
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Re: FCB1010 midi to USB

Post by mbenigni » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:44 pm

Hmm. The issue with the expression pedal sounds like it might be related to a relative vs. absolute setting on the way that effect's knob. Does the problem persist if you assign it to another parameter, e.g. master volume or crossfade?

Also pay close attention to the way the pedal is programmed in the Line 6 config application. Maybe it's still setup to send proprietary Line 6 volume info, or Mackie control, or something weird like that. It could be that your FB is defective, but it's more likely a setup issue.

Glad you like it otherwise, and hope you get the pedal sorted!

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