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I just designed and built my Midi work station

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by 24 track, Jul 17, 2017.

  1. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    I just designed and built my Midi work station, I dont have it wired up yet but this solved a lot of issues for me as to where to place these items, so I placed 6 midi controllers on this workstation ( I have a lot more including a WX-7 yamaha wind controller, thank gawd for Motu midi time piece USB I use 2 for now I may need more of them), does any one else create these types of work stations, I'd be glad to see how you've solved some of these issues.I still need to run Midi lines, A/C , audio etc but thats the easy part.

    I took the design from the new pedal board I built

    P1011760.JPG

    and modified it to fit the extra midi controllers I had

    P1011766.JPG

    Configuring midi can be a bit of a challenge but I'll figure all of that out
     
    tery, Skully, studio1087 and 2 others like this.

  2. Chud

    Chud Poster Extraordinaire

    Dec 30, 2010
    New York City
    Wow, that is very impressive. I don't really do all that much with midi, and it's always mystified me a little, so I enjoy watching your builds and how easy you can make something so complicated look. Is there any geographical and functional congruence between the pedals below and the machines up top?
     
    24 track likes this.

  3. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    Thank you very much...not really, But on the pedal set up, I've placed guitar outputs where i can run the guitar signal into the Kaossillator pro or the KP3 and use the synth filters to modify the straight guitar signals so it all leaves so much flexability , just perfect for a demented mind like mine. Midi is just a command structure that gives you total control over each piece of midi gear you own and you can script and record and automate those scripts in your Daw .I really like Logic , such a dynamite Daw , it will record midi as well as audio, and I can build each piece of midi gear I own within logic and control all of the parameters with in logic
     
    Chud likes this.

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  5. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    I think I may replace the mac book pro with an IPad or a tablet for portability and a smaller foot print I'll load the editors I have for the Korg Kaossillators, Kaospad, Roland GR55, & Evantide H-9. Its still a work in progress. but Im quite pleased at how this turned out and it is really portable ( I love wheels!) and how stable it is .
     
    Chud likes this.

  6. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Nov 5, 2006
    Iowa City, IA
    I'm always reading with great interest, the latest studio developments by 24 track and raito. I'm trying to put my crawling around behind the equipment with cables days behind me, but you guys keep pulling me back in.
     
    24 track likes this.

  7. uriah1

    uriah1 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Feb 12, 2011
    Around
    What are you using for the Synth/midi (sound) itself to your amp?
    Horns, drums, etc all from same source? 64bit? How many meg samples?
    just curious.. Probably there, but, I did not see it or I am use to older
    stuff lol
     
    24 track likes this.

  8. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    I keep triing to remedy the behind the scenes wiring and simplifying the hook up portions, each piece in itself is not complex but once you start combining things , it can get a bit hairy.but usually its a one shot to get things wired up then its set and forget, ( thats why I make my own cabling so I know what went into the system , thank you larry that means alot to me
     

  9. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

    Jun 21, 2011
    Bakersfield
    Hey Bro, like a native son in the African wilderness watching a jet plane fly over, I don't know anything about what you're doing, but I think it's incredibly cool!
     
    24 track likes this.

  10. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    Im running 5 tower macs for the system all 64 bit , there are 2 mirrored sytems and 1 master system the 2 mirror systems are identical - 8 channel mic pre's lightpiped to a digi 002 , ( 16 channels in total) firewired to G5 tower decked out with 4 terrabytes of HD and max ram I use a Kurzweil K2000 for the master synth and controller , each G5 has 4 terrabyes of programs available to load in about 200 soft synths, romplers, samplers and libraries , from arturia, native instruments ,spectrasonis, M-media, big fish ,Kontact, waldorf, Reason,etc
    all of these computers ( the 2 recording computers and the mastering computer) have a Behringer BCF2000 assigned to them and BCR 2000 that switches in to each BCF via midi ,the computers are set up over their own lan and can communicate freely with each other. all of them run Logic and Protools , this is a quick synopsis of the system so far there are a few issues to work out yet but Im tasting as I go along,all of my outboard comes up in a patch bay and I can patch it in where needed , Parmetrics , compressors Digital reverbs etc
    I have a complete mastering suite for the mastering computer complete with full software. to many brand names to list

    each of the 2 matched systems has a G5 tower to store and run the libraries tied in to them decked out with max ram and about 2 t HDs
     
    uriah1 likes this.

  11. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity

    Dec 8, 2010
    Up North
    Is it strictly a studio thing or, do you intend to be able to Gig with it?
     

  12. BartS

    BartS Friend of Leo's

    Feb 18, 2013
    St. louis MO
    My tastes are different. I dig synths a lot. It's just the only midi programming sound I like is like one syncopated rhythm. Like a drum beat or say something from zztop in the 80s done with an external sequencer. Where the sound actually sounds like it was sequenced with midi. Not a huge fan of programming midi to make it sound real. To me it just never sounds the same as live instruments. Just a little bit of sequencing can sound great and normally just one instrument.

    I don't even have a sequencer right now. It's not worth my time that I may use it once in 10 albums worth of music for one track. I know peoples tastes are different so I am not hating.

    My rig just consists of a dx7. It's great except the hardware is so old. If I had a dx7 that's was basically the same as the 80s except it came with all the patches and had more memory to save more patches that would be about perfect. I would like alternately be able to program it on computer. I use Linux though. I would want it to be a separate program from the available daws just stand alone. If it was on android I could at least run android in a virtual machine. All the keyboards/synths I have used with a screen on them just kind of suck to me. The ability to transfer patches from the keyboard to computer and from the computer to the keyboard would be essential too.

    If it doesn't have 61 keys it's about useless as far as a synth or controller goes. I need two octaves below middle c and 3 above them.

    Besides that the only thing I would use is a module or two of other synths. I don't like romplers. I like a lot of different varieties of synths. I could see why someone would want to keyboards though.

    I am just different. I like a lot of the synth lines from groups like the cars or men at work. The guys were actually playing that stuff though. The guy from men at work would be playing synths live and switching back and forth from like a real saxophone doing lead lines.

    I just like the sound of the older hardware synths. To me it's like super distorted guitars. Timeless and there is only one real way to get that sound.

    I know peoples tastes are different so it's cool people do things differently. My midi set up is just completely different. Right now I am running one synth. I plug it into an amp. I don't even have any modules or anything. I don't have any of the rom cartridges so I only have 30 patches. I normally just program in an organ tone I like and play the thing.

    Something simple to gig with would be essential. Plug it in a play.
     
    24 track likes this.

  13. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    yes , this is my 65' Mustang fast back or the Shelby 350/500 I always wanted. I did alot of studio work in the past and this was always my dream to build my own. for gigging I simplify everything down, and even before I record now I listen to the guitar I 'm going to use with just a guitar and amp so when or if I mess with the sound I know what the root sound I had first. I found simple is the best , and most complex systems are usually a lot of simple systems put together.
     
    String Tree likes this.

  14. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    I use a soft synth called FX7 which allows you to take all of the algorythms from the DX series and down load them into the softsynth , it comes with a front end editor and allows you to work with the operators to create your sounds plus it has about 300 sounds in its library based on the DX /TX algorythms,

    I have a kurzweil K2000 that is my main keyboard and the sounds are stereo and out standing I like to mix them with arturia's Moog V ( a copy of the moog system 55 modular synth)

    the station I built allows me through Logic and the Motu Midi time pieces I have to assign these controllers to what ever I want and script the midi control into the song I'm writing , for what I am doing Midi is such a powerfull tool , I can take My Roland GR 55 guitar synth and trigger any of my soft synths to enhance the sounds and the tracking is really and surprizingly good. also all of my midi guitar preamps can be controlled in logic as well, I have about 20 drum emulators in the computers from Spectrosonic, cubase , waldorf , reason and a set of midi drumpads to play off of if I want .this whole sytem is really flexable but too big to gig with , but Im having a blast building it and exersizing my brains to make it all work .
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2017

  15. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity

    Dec 8, 2010
    Up North
    I have a modest home studio.
    Really makes me wish I had a Second Engineer to go about all of the grunt-work while I concentrate on my Song. :)
     
    24 track likes this.

  16. BartS

    BartS Friend of Leo's

    Feb 18, 2013
    St. louis MO
    I got a real complicated studio in the past year I think I changed one microphone and unplugged one wire the way I have it set up:D.

    I have heard the fx7 and 8 or whatever. They just don't have the same sound as the original dx7. The dx7ii with the 16bit chip instead of the 12bit doesn't even seem the same. For me at least the soft synths don't do it. Same with pedals though so I guess I am just different. I have a rack reverb from the 80s or 90s I recapped. I haven't been able to find anything that matches a good rack reverb with really good caps. One reason I don't buy any of this stuff is it's all so old there is going to be problems with it. Sometimes when I am doing advanced electronics stuff on reverbs or keyboards I mess up and for me that just means I have to throw it in the garbage. The reverbs are harder to program than the synths. The timings default to either way to much or way to little and they don't seem to want to me set just right.

    My Ideal set up would be a dx7. With a couple good rack mount modules a good rack mount reverb or two where it would be easy to have patches where I could press a button and my preprogramed synth sound would come on with a preprogramed reverb or delay. I know you can do it with the older stuff. It's so freaking complicated though. You don't know if the midi and other stuff is going to work because the hardware is so old.

    One thing about midi is to this day it just works. I don't want usb or what ever on synths and stuff just give me good old midi.
     
    24 track likes this.

  17. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    stability is the key, i have rack reverbs, ddls, compressers and parametrics all channelled through a patch bay and use them a lot but if i am mixing or mastering i have a lot of IR reverbs to work with as well and have dedicated one whole system to virtual mastering suite with some top of the line goodies from waves , t-racks, sonalkiss, etc and it works and it's clean so far I am happy with it , My buddy john in Vancouver has 2 floor to ceiling racks full of modules and effects that he has married into logic via midi , plus has integrated the soft synths and Vi's , One killer fun room for sure, So I understand where you are comming from. but this my at home studio for my song writing and playing demented ideas and not a commercial venture , I've been there ,done that, and I have a blast building and creating as I go along
     

  18. BartS

    BartS Friend of Leo's

    Feb 18, 2013
    St. louis MO
    Quick questions on your softsynths can you play and output them into a speaker in realtime?

    I kind of no what you are saying and there are guys into synths that go way overboard. There are guys that literally have rooms full of synths. Doesn't make it sound any better. It sure as heck is fun though.

    My gear is anything but stable. Figure some kind of glue sniffing wacko with a soldering iron is about as stable as I can get it. Like I said it's one reason i don't buy gear anymore. Anything I want they don't make or they remake it and it sounds horrible to my ears. I think where I am getting at is with as much money as a guy like you or me spent on the stuff or are willing to spend on the stuff is should sound as good as any pros set up. It looks like you got tons of money wrapped up in it. I know I have been through 4 or 5 different synths till I found what worked for me. (I have to annotate what works for me because I know a dx7 can sound really cool and cutting edge. Mine works for me because I can program a stale organ sound I really like:D.)

    I don't like a lot of things though. I don't like romplers and I know there a lot of those that just sound incredible. I think the old tr series drum machines where rom samples not sure. I had one of the worst of the series it sounded good. I recapped it and it sounded great but only have the stuff worked on it once I got done working on it WHOOPS..................... I don't like all the new ones they make it's all touch sensitive pads that don't work well. If I wanted touch sensitive I can play my real drums I have. The one I had little built in sequencer was great.

    I know the kurzweil stuff was romplers they sounded incredible. I had an emu box that was I rompler it's why I don't use it anymore but it sounded incredible.

    If I spend 400 or 500 dollars new on something better do something well. Be it electric painos/organs, horns and strings, synth drums, something. I know a new dx7 would probably cost a bit more than that. Not everything is a dx7 though.

    Personally the other problem I have is every piece of gear in my rack has had to been gone over with a fine tooth comb to make sure good electronics components like capacitors are in there to get it to sound anywhere approaching pro and the stuff they sell these days I don't even think that would help with the way I like things to sound. I know some people are different.

    I really shouldn't have to buy 8000 pieces of gear and live in a spaceship to have one synth and one rack reverb that do a lot of things good I would think. A lot of these think are one trick ponies. I have seen guys synth rooms top to bottom filled with gear. I just like to play the things and like the programming a little bit. I am a smart enough guy though if I can mess around with it for a few hours and figure out how to get a few good sounds I won't like it. I know there are guys better at it than me but you need to be a road scholar with some of this stuff. I am not saying I'm not I am just saying I rather be making music.

    The thing with synths is everything is always to much. You either own to many of them. You only own one and you sold so many of them it's hard to count but your looking to buy more. You type way to much in forum posts about them. You complain to much about what you don't like about them. I guess there is no escaping it. It's kind of part of the gig.
     
    24 track likes this.

  19. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    Yes you can in real time, some of the softsynths can be used as a stand alone, that means, that you can use the soft synth with out running through a daw, as long as your key board is connected as the midi controller , like a DX7 when you play the keyboard the soft synth will trigger , I have a GR55 guitar synth and when I play a note on the guitar I am triggering the Moog , Arp 2600, Putney VCS3 , PPG waveterm, Korg MS20, poly 6, or Wavestation, what ever I set up for the moment and can blend in the kurzweil sounds as well , Logic Has a ton of synths in the daw as well and these sound fantastic, I also have the chamberlain , Mellotron, and Novatron , Sample tank will play all of sonic synth libraries as well as the mellotron libraries plus 6 different string synth like the logan , Arp strings etc not to mention that you can sequence these as well < I like the fact you can midi time lock a mini moog model D ( with an arpagiator and a yamaha CS 80 to 120 BPM with the modulation A hard trick to do with analog gear.and lock it to the tune you are playing.

    I only dreamed about this when I had my analog synths (See below)(Roland Sh1000, 2 Korg Ms 20's, 2 korg MS10's 2 SQ10 sequencers 2 Korg ps 3100's (66 note poliphany) with a custom digital sequencer, ensonique mirage sampler Min Moog model D, beautiful stuff but locking it up was a real challenge. The soft synths cured a lot of that and gave everything midi control , the arturia Moogs sound Very close to my Moog model D and the Moog modular gives you the ability to change the filters to diffent moog filters that are very true to the sound , My virtual Putney VCS3 comes really close to the sound and the keyboard is stable beyond one octave , a real problem with these machine .
    1-1.jpg 1.jpg EMS_Putney_VCS_3-1.jpg korg_ps3100_lg.jpg Kurzweil K2000 V3 full.JPG Minimoog_Model_D_angle.jpg MS10.jpg ms20.jpg

    the other bonus is all of these instruments can be stored on one computer and used for a live application plus also be scripted and the midi instructions can be recorded and will play back as recorded

    My mini keyboard controllers are secondary and one will be assigned to each of the recording computers so I may bring up multiple instances say of the Arp 2600 and have different patches that work together on each one but triggered as I see fit. the Peavey PC 1600s in the pics of my midi stations each fader can be assigned to respond to any midi command I need and will also work as the front end control of the moog modular V allowing me to control many functions at once. then at the flick of a switch be reassigned to use for mixing if I need it.

    the possabilities are endless , but thankfully I have a twisted imagination
     

  20. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    Bart I saw the pics of your studio from the other thread and now have a clearer picture of what you are refering to , it looks like you did a lot of work to puu everything up to snuff , definately a labour of love , Ive posted pics of my play space on several occasions , I too have built everything myself including all of the wiring ,snakes, looms, data RJ45 cat 6 , midi, audio, speaker cables its a long and big duty and to get it all to work is nothing short of a miracle , here are a couple of my pics as to where the studio is now , there is more different racks i have built and an Iso box so I can play late at night and not wake the neighbours.

    this is my console

    IMG_0021.JPG

    this is my virtual guitar amp emulation computer
    IMG_0333.JPG

    My midi guitar rack all the midi is routed to the computers into logic
    P1011549.JPG

    And my guitars and amps

    P1011488.JPG

    P1011343.JPG P1011350.JPG

    P1011643.JPG

    you see the midi work station is just an extension of what is there all ready and allows me to organize the controllers into a useable format
    there are more controllers like a yamaha WX7 wind controller and a yamaha midi drum pads

    (I think if you click on the pics they should expand)
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2017

  21. micpoc

    micpoc Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2007
    Louisiana
    24 track, which one are you using? I seem to recall there being several out there, some of which are sample based, while some are doing all the sound generating in the VST itself.

    I've been enjoying working with the u-he RePro1, a virtual Sequential Circuits Pro-One monophonic synth, which they will soon be upgrading to the RePro5, a Prophet Five emulation, the only analog I spent much time with way back when.
     
    24 track likes this.

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