First post, by voodoo5_6k
I thought, this might also be of interest in the Sound section of the forums. I'll spare you most of the story around it (you can read it here), just write about the setup... Also, all of the credit goes to @Cloudschatze, I just adapted it to my setup and wrote it down, so it is easier to find.
First, a little background. Roughly five years ago, I read about Cloudschatze's interesting setup, which includes a split channel configuration of 2x CM-64 (2x32 voice=64 voice polyphony) and 2x SC-55 (2x24 voice=48 voice polyphony), here and here.
Key is a MIDI interface that is capable of MIDI routing, or at least channel splitting/muting. Cloudschatze used a Music Quest MQX-32M, and then connected two daisy-chains of SC-55 + CM-64 to the two MIDI-out ports. Channel splitting (odd/even) configuration is applied via autoexec.bat. Then, SysEx messages would configure the MIDI devices for either SC-55 or CM-32L playback.
The result is a CM-32L cluster with 64 voice polyphony, and an SC-55 cluster with 48 voice polyphony.
I wanted to adapt this for my setup. But with a little twist... well, simplification 😉
What is that supposed to mean? First, I use my MIDI modules with three PCs. Therefore, the setup has to be as transparent as possible. Second, I didn't want to mess around with SysEx messages. OK, so how to get it done?
I purchased the current model of the MOTU micro express (https://motu.com/products/midi/micro_usb). It is a 4-in/6-out MIDI router, and can hold eight user-programmable presets. Using their ClockWorks software, the device can be configured as needed, and then can be used as a stand-alone device, with no further need for a USB connection (except for power). I created three presets, one per PC. In each preset, one specific MIDI-in port is routed to the five MIDI-out ports on the back. On the output side*, I have set a filter to mute the even or odd channels, respectively, for each pair of modules. As a result, CM-32L #1 only gets to play the odd channels, CM-32L #2 the even channels of the complete MIDI signal. Same for the SC-55's. The X3MB receives the unmodified MIDI signal. As all outputs receive the MIDI signal all the time, it is also great for testing different MIDI modules in games. I just power on all devices and then switch the desired audio output to the sound card.
(* It is important to do that on the output side, as otherwise the respective filter would change the MIDI signal entering the micro express, with no connected device having access to the full signal.)
Here you see the SC-55 pair playing the Sam & Max - Hit the Road intro. SC-55 #1 plays on the odd channels, SC-55 #2 on the even channels. Success!
- Configure a MIDI interface to split channels across at least two MIDI-out ports (odd/even).
- Connect one MIDI module to one MIDI-out port (at least two modules).
- If there are more modules than MIDI-out ports, apply SysEx messages for configuration of the daisy-chains or connect a MIDI patchbay between the MIDI interface and the modules.
- Enjoy 😎
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