Putting it all together

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soultwist
Posts: 108
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2010 6:03 pm

Putting it all together

Post by soultwist » Thu Apr 08, 2010 8:28 pm

Hello everyone! I have been lurking around these forums for over a month now but I think it’s time to come out of the shadows and reveal myself. I watched tons of tutorials, built racks, downloaded plug-ins, etc. (all through this site) – Thank you all! I hope you can help me with my setup.

I’m using a Roland PCR 300 right now and waiting for a PadKontrol to arrive.

I want to play the keyboard, and reserve pads on the pcr and padkontrol for triggering samples, drums, etc. In the future I might add another controller. But even the thought of adding the PadKontrol to the setup scares me a bit.

For example if I want a pad to trigger a sample, a key on the keyboard that corresponds to the same note will do the same. If I press the same ‘note’ on the padkontrol I will hear that sample too.

Is this why there are multiple midi channels? Or does the workaround involve setting the keys/pads on different controllers to different octaves? All amateur questions I’m sure, but you have to start somewhere :D

Please help me put it all together.

Tone Deft
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:19 pm

Re: Putting it all together

Post by Tone Deft » Thu Apr 08, 2010 9:56 pm

it's another dimension, ports.

each USB/Firewire connection to your computer will be a port.

the PCR is a USB keyboard, so it will have its own entries in the midi preferences. same with the PadKontrol.

so, set track 1's input to PCR and track 2's input to the PadKontrol. now they each control separate tracks without any further tweaking. 99% of the time this is how my controllers are handled, no midi channel specificity at all.
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flippo
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Re: Putting it all together

Post by flippo » Thu Apr 08, 2010 10:47 pm

yep, midi channels are important for remote mapping though as this ignores ports and only looks at channel and note/CC#. Also if you want to send notes from one device/port to multiple tracks without them all playing at the same time and without transposing notes you will need to use separate midi channels.

The pakdontrol also has two ports available, and you can customize any pad in each scene to come through either port A or B, which increases your routing possibilities beyond 16 midi channels.

Keep in mind also, ableton lets you specify if a device runs as a track control, remote control, or both. Basically track controls are used as midi inputs directly to individual tracks (and you can specify what midi channel to receive on). Remote control is for mapping parameters to everything that midi map edit mode allows, and this is channel sensitive but not devices/port sensitive (so if you have two remote enabled devices sending messages on the same channel, they will do the same thing). However you can have devices/ports that are enabled as track only submitting identical midi messages in parallel to eachother and your remote mapping, and there will not be interference.

For neatness sake I have port A on my padkontrol for all track control, and port B for all remote control.

main thing to remember is that if you enable a device as remote control you render any midi messages from that devices that are used in remote mapping as useless for track control as there is no way to distinguish if you want the message to go to your track or to the remote mapping.

If you think you will end up doing quite comprehensive mapping think about keeping an excel spreadsheet to keep track of who is control what and how - it's helped me a lot! I know that sounds like overkill but you'd be surprised how quickly it gets confusing!

soultwist
Posts: 108
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2010 6:03 pm

Re: Putting it all together

Post by soultwist » Tue Apr 13, 2010 1:58 pm

flippo wrote: Basically track controls are used as midi inputs directly to individual tracks (and you can specify what midi channel to receive on). Remote control is for mapping parameters to everything that midi map edit mode allows, and this is channel sensitive but not devices/port sensitive (so if you have two remote enabled devices sending messages on the same channel, they will do the same thing). However you can have devices/ports that are enabled as track only submitting identical midi messages in parallel to eachother and your remote mapping, and there will not be interference.
Thank you Tone and flippo for your responses, that really clarifies a few things. Excited to try the setup with the padkontrol now. :)

For now as I'm working just with the PCR-300, I changed the 18 pads on the controller to the highest note numbers -> 127, 126, 125... (G8, F#8, etc) and mapped the pads to the samples I want to trigger allowing me to still use the keyboard in a wide range of octaves.
I understand everyone uses Live in a different way, and there is no 'right' way to do anything, but I would like to know if I am getting the most out of my controller, or if I am still missing some key concepts. Say, I do want to use the highest octave in my playing; just seems like this is a round about way of doing things.

flippo
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Re: Putting it all together

Post by flippo » Tue Apr 13, 2010 11:28 pm

I'm pretty certain you will be able to specify what channel the pads are on, so you should not have to sacrifice any of your keyboard octaves if you keep them separate.

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