[Tip] Looping with Mackie Control emulation!

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Machinate
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[Tip] Looping with Mackie Control emulation!

Post by Machinate » Mon Nov 28, 2005 10:10 pm

For a while now I’ve been reading posts from a lot of people who are understandably upset about Live’s inability to allow remote control of various functions, such as left/right selection movements in the session view, undos (hi Quandry!), switching between track/clip views, etc.

Many workarounds have been proposed, all of them revolving around third-party software (Bome’s Midi Translator, Plogue Bidule and such) looping back midi (MidiYoke etc.) or very elaborate midi assignment schemes that have to be loaded as a template in order to work.

Namiheis extensive work with Mackie Control emulation got me thinking: We need to harness all this remote control power! It’s all very nice to be able to load your BCR with a preset, but we need to *control* it!

Here’s the thing: Mackie Control offers MANY of the features frequently asked for by Live users. And it CAN be emulated with nearly all advanced midi controllers!

What you need: A midi controller with user-assignable note-on transmission (TriggerFinger, BCR, MikroKontrol, FCB1010 footpedals, etc) and a spare midi port.

Here’s how it works: The Mackie Control Protocol may be one of the best kept secrets out there. Mackie either licenses the use of the system to other companies, or companies reverse-engineer the Mackie products. But the system is actually built on regular midi note transmission and continuous controllers, spiced up with a little sysex for the displays.

Namihei has already published some of this information on his website, but I will go into a bit more detail here, and I will focus on the requests from the Ableton Live forum.

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

The Mackie Control has arrow keys arranged with a zoom button in the center. In session view these keys are used to maneuver up and down and from left to right. The zoom button triggers the currently selected slot. Does this sound good to you?
Image

With this information you can easily assign just a few buttons on your midi controller to navigate all your existing sets, trigger ANY clip or scene, WITHOUT having to make a template set, and without doing manual midi assignments or routing the midi through third party systems.

- Bored yet? If not: Read on!
Image

All you loopers will notice the highlighted Undo ;-) The undo function is, in my limited experience, not quite as responsive in operation as the more brutish delete function, but it’s a step in the right direction… and again, it works in all your setups!?!
I also like the Track / Clip view toggle on D#4, and draw tool on/off as well. I hate using modifier keys!

Some more power-user stuff here, as noted by Namihei:

Image

- this will let you assign buttons to AlWAYS arm tracks in all your sets.
So as you can see, this has some serious potential, if nothing else then as a temporary fix until Ableton let's us assign everything to everything, eh?
FYI I'm redoing my FCB setup to look like this:
Image

Anyway, that’s it for now. I think it’s so cool that anyone with a 60€ Behringer Nano-Controller or similar can get full navigation in session view, almost out of the box, don’t you?

This tutorial and our *almost* full list of controllers will be available from the downloads section of The Covert Operators website soon, so come on by!

Cheers!
Andreas @ the Covert Operators
mbp 2.66, osx 10.6.8, 8GB ram.

Meef Chaloin
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Post by Meef Chaloin » Mon Nov 28, 2005 10:22 pm

thank you very very much!! Im getting an FCB in the next few days, i cant wait!

Nixon
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Post by Nixon » Tue Nov 29, 2005 12:23 am

WOW...this is some serous digging in the core...super nice machinate! Can't wait for the update!!! 8)
macbook 2Ghz 2GB, uc33, bcf2000, triggerfinger, monomachine, live 5.2/6.0.1, ozone 3, pure data, ultralite,
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timothyallan
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Post by timothyallan » Tue Nov 29, 2005 5:34 am

-Major- kudos to Machinate and Namiheis! Nice work guys.

tim

Michael-SW
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Post by Michael-SW » Tue Nov 29, 2005 9:25 am

This is excellent stuff, Machinate!

Now we just need to figure out how to do selected track local CCs and we can get Faderfox functionality without using a pre assigned template.

Machinate
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Post by Machinate » Tue Nov 29, 2005 10:08 am

Hey people! YEah this is pretty intense stuff!
Michael, as far as I know Live or the Mackie implementation does not have "selected track midi" (other than the looping tools available in Live5).

It uses 8 channel strips and then banks to go to 9-16 etc. However, these can be offset using the channel +/- buttons (check the spreadsheet available from my site. There is a possibility that this channel offset thing can be implemented for generic controllers, which would just be killer!

My ideal production controller doesn't have 8 channel strips... it only has 1 really powerful strip. I hope to suss this soon, but it's a real mind-fuck, it's taken me ages to understand what the f*ck was going on with the midi.
mbp 2.66, osx 10.6.8, 8GB ram.

Michael-SW
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Post by Michael-SW » Tue Nov 29, 2005 11:00 am

If mackie can do track offset (that doesn't actually doesn't change anything in the controller), then you should at least be able to control volume and sends with a single "channel strip" controller.

Nokatus
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Post by Nokatus » Tue Nov 29, 2005 12:10 pm

This is great. Big up! :D

continuous
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Post by continuous » Wed Nov 30, 2005 6:56 am

power to the people

Michael-SW
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Post by Michael-SW » Fri Dec 02, 2005 9:54 am

Bump! This is good stuff.

grfld
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Post by grfld » Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:14 am

Sounds great! Maybe this is interesting, too:

Fader touch by Mackie:

Code: Select all

Fader Note 
1       G#7 (104)   
2       A7 (105)
3       A#7 (106)
4       B7 (107)
5       C8 (108)
6       C#8 (109)
7       D8 (110)
8       D# (111)
I've tried this with BCF in MC-C mode and midimapping by MIDI-OX, automation seems to work (level moved up and down) but the fader doesn't stop moving. Maybe someone has an idea?

Machinate
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Post by Machinate » Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:17 am

cool! Where did you get that info?

Unfortunately I can't really try it out just yet, but I may get to do some testing early next week.
mbp 2.66, osx 10.6.8, 8GB ram.

grfld
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Post by grfld » Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:25 am

Machinate wrote:cool! Where did you get that info?
From a guy who hast setup a bcf to work with Samplitude. I just digged through Sams's templates.
Unfortunately I can't really try it out just yet, but I may get to do some testing early next week.
Would be nice, because i'm not familiar with midi and i think there should be a way.

btw. Note on means "Fader touch", Note off... guess! :lol:

TheAnimal
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Post by TheAnimal » Fri Dec 02, 2005 3:56 pm

Here's another source of info about MCP: http://members.aol.com/mhigrules/MCMap.htm.
Problem is that it doesn't show the note's numbers (i.e. the decimal or hexadecimal midi codes).

I also posted a small howto on the Tips&Tricks board a while ago:
http://www.ableton.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=28628

But I'm still looking for a description of the MackieControlXT protocol. Can anybody help?

Machinate
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Post by Machinate » Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:28 pm

TheAnimal wrote:Here's another source of info about MCP: http://members.aol.com/mhigrules/MCMap.htm.
Nice!!!! 8O Goddamit, I feel like I've trawled through the whole damn net for this! Very thorough work it would seem.
TheAnimal wrote: Problem is that it doesn't show the note's numbers (i.e. the decimal or hexadecimal midi codes).
Is this the kind of info you're looking for?
http://www.autosoft.com.hk/article/newu ... ote_no.jpg
?
TheAnimal wrote: I also posted a small howto on the Tips&Tricks board a while ago:
http://www.ableton.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=28628
yeah I saw that... Honestly I didn't understand it at all, since it had a lot of info on midi note conversion mixed in there. :oops:
TheAnimal wrote: But I'm still looking for a description of the MackieControlXT protocol. Can anybody help?
Me too, man. AFAIK the XT is a really cool addition, and has some possibilities not included in the mackieControl?
mbp 2.66, osx 10.6.8, 8GB ram.

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