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What is MIDI ?

wizards teeth on 2001-07-03 14:02 [#00011969]


What are MIDI files ?

What are they used for ?

How are they small in size ?



dingle berry from on a small plastic chair breathing fire on 2001-07-03 14:04 [#00011972]

musical instrument digital interface


hedtwin from manchester on 2001-07-03 14:05 [#00011973]

I don't understand midi either :(.

Everytime someone explains it to me they use really
complicated explanations, it scares me frankly.


dingle berry from on a small plastic chair breathing fire on 2001-07-03 14:08 [#00011975]

the binary code 1s and 0s
the transformation of electrical energy into digital code (a
representation of the analog original)


map[warp/rephlex-aholic] from CH - Mulligan on 2001-07-03 14:10 [#00011976]

MIDI transfers only the dynamic the pitch but no can remote samplers and synthesizers and others
with midi only the information, no sound.
MIDI is protocol to talk with electronic music equipment


map[warp/rephlex-aholic] from CH - Mulligan on 2001-07-03 14:11 [#00011977]

under about midi


map[warp/rephlex-aholic] from CH - Mulligan on 2001-07-03 14:12 [#00011978]

MIDI Stands for Musical Instrument Digital Interface. MIDI
is a digital language that was agreed upon by major
manufacturers of Electronic Musical Instruments. It allows
Keyboards, Synthesizers, Computers, Tape Decks and even
Mixers & Stage Light Controllers to talk to each other.

What has MIDI got to do the average person?

As long as you own at least a small keyboard that supports
MIDI, it means that you have the choice to expand the
system. The first step may be to connect the keyboard to the
PC's sound card, such that the sequencing (arranging of the
notes in a song) can be done in colour on a big screen
instead of squinting at a small LCD panel (or blinking

How do I get started?

You may already have some components of MIDI already. All
Sound Blaster compatible sound cards has the ability to
accept MIDI signals and play the sounds. All you'll need is
a Sequencer program (eg: MIDI Music Shop) and enter the
notes directly via the computer's keyboard.

If you don't like entering the notes by using the mouse &
typing, you can buy a music keyboard. A simple Yamaha or
Casio one will do. The most important part is that the music
keyboard must have a MIDI port at its back. The only other
extra hardware you'll need is to purchase a MIDI Interface
(I know there's a double "Interface" - it refers to a PC to
MIDI Interface) that plugs into the game port of your sound
card, and 2 MIDI cables.

What's the difference between a .WAV file and a MIDI (*.MID)

A *.WAV file is a digital recording of the sounds made by
any instrument (including your voice box). It basically
cannot be modified unless it is very short or you own a
workstation. When a PC plays back a WAV file, it converts
the numbers into the audio signal that's fed into the
speakers. A complete song done in .WAV format is always very

A *.MID file contains what the composer (or the person who
played it) did at his/her music keyboard. It keeps track of
which note (key) was pressed, when it was pressed, for how
long, and at what pressure. Playing back a MIDI file would
need a device (sound card) that can generate the sounds of
common instruments (eg: Piano, Violins, Drums) on its own.
The note data is sent to the device, which then generates
the sounds that was intended (or sometimes not intended). A
MIDI file is comparatively very small and can be edited
(including changing the instruments altogether).

However, a sound that is not in the memory of your sound
card cannot be generated (unless you have SB32) - and that
includes you voice. The quality of the sound is also
dependent on the quality of the synthesizer on your sound

By comparison, a wave file is always true to the original
instruments that produced the music.

What's General MIDI?

General MIDI is a standard adopted recently (comparatively)
by many manufacturers. The original "problem" of MIDI is
that if you took a MIDI file from one musician's studio to
another's, they probably won't assign the same instruments
to the same patch # (Instrument number). So a piano part may
be played as a drum, a violin becomes a trombone...and so
on. General MIDI is a set of rules such that the same patch
# correspond to the same instruments. (eg: Patch 0 is always
Grand Piano, Patch 40 = Violin) That is also the standard
for Sound Cards too.

What are Channels?

The idea is that there are 16 channels in General MIDI, and
that's also the case in most sound cards and synthesizers.

Different instruments can be assigned to different channels
at the same time. So theoretically you can have a maximum of
16 instruments playing at the same time. The actual number
can vary, because the sound card or synthesizer can only
produce a fixed maximum number of notes at the same time.
(eg: 32-voice polyphony means that you can only press 32
keys at the same time and hear them. The 33rd key you
pressed will either be ignored, or the first key you pressed
will be cut off) You can also use more than 16 instruments
if you can "steal" a track (eg: Your harp only comes in at
the introduction, so you can use the same track for another
instrument that only appears later in the song on the same
channel). All 16 channels are transmitted in one MIDI cable.

What are tracks?

You can use as many tracks that the sequencer program allows
you to. (Usually more than a hundred) A track contains the
events (i.e. the things you did; eg: what key you pressed at
when & for how long) you want to put inside. For example,
you may want to do a very complicated Grand Piano part. You
can record the right hand part in track 1, and then record
the left hand part in track 2. If you make a mistake while
recording the left hand part, you don't have to worry about
the right hand's - it's stored seperately in track 1. Then
you can assign both tracks to channel 0 (Grand Piano in
General MIDI - mentioned above). The end result will sound
exactly like you played both hands at the same time! (*Note:
percussion instruments are stored as a single "Instrument".
Different keys correspond to different drums)


SWAI from Denmark on 2001-07-03 16:46 [#00012012]

Thanx for sorting it out =)


Glitch from New Zealand on 2001-07-03 17:45 [#00012024]

and also, midi is a really Fucking huge pain in the ass to
work with, I have a drum machine (old 198? yamaha rx 21) and
every time I hook it up to my computer the computer crashes,
I can play my synth from the computer fine, but drums no.
Bloody Awful Midi.


map[warp/rephlex-aholic] from CH - Mulligan on 2001-07-04 07:15 [#00012176]

got no manual ?


wizards teeth on 2001-07-04 09:55 [#00012211]

Thanks Vey much indeed Map.

With your help and the help of my friend I have got closer
to my goal.

I managed to linked my synth to sequencer (cubase)

I am yet to discover how to link it to the sequencer in
Reason. I assume it should be exactly the same way as the
sequencer seems to be identical in it's function. Reason
recogines the midi input but during playback the sound of
the synth on screen is played not the real synth.

Sorry to ask another question but:

Is it possible to link to midi items into the MIDI input of
the sound card

example - the synth and a kaos pad (the input of the kaos
pad being another computer ((via the koas pads phono

Thanks again mr. Map. If you are ever in the north east of
england feel free to visit and i shall pay you in soup as a
thankyou for your help. Choice of flavour is limmited -
chicken, ministronie and onion.

Good bye


map[warp/rephlex-aholic] from CH - Mulligan on 2001-07-04 10:23 [#00012214]

nah you need an adapter for you soundcard (the joystick port
is the MIDI I/O Port, too) just ask for a midi adapter for
the joystick port. for the transfer, you'll need the DIN 5
cables. for software you can download a "virtual interface"
via TCP/IP between 2 pc's. so you can trigger reason via
Cubase. erm i'll search the configuration programm for this
interface.....the programm's called "hubis midi loop back"


map[warp/rephlex-aholic] from CH - Mulligan on 2001-07-04 10:26 [#00012215]


wizards teeth on 2001-07-04 11:18 [#00012223]

thanks again

a new flavour of soup will be available on the menu soon


map[warp/rephlex-aholic] from CH - Mulligan on 2001-07-04 11:22 [#00012224]

better you give me reaktor 3.0, if you have it or know where
i can download :)


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