Machinedrum MIDI implementation

So I’m trying to put together a system to control my Machinedrum with a MIDI controller. Mainly program changes although mapping some CC’s for an expression pedal is also desired.

I have the MachineDrum manual.

I have RTFM.

RTFMing has left me FCAS*

Do any of you recommend a book or online resource that will help me understand stuff like Appendixes B/C?

Right now I am messing around with a Keystep 37. If I get a grip on this, I plan to get some kind of foot controller but I better understand what I’m getting myself into.

Thanks for any suggestions!

*That’s not printable but I’m sure you all can improvise. :grin:

it uses 4 midi channels, each channel will have cc for 4 of the slots, so the base channel will be for slots 1 - 4, basechannel + 1 will be 5-8 and so on, the dec value in the manual is that cc number. which will be the same for all the channels just on different slots

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Thanks. I’ll be messing about with that tonight!

midi channel base + 0

cc#8 == track1 level
cc#9 == track2 level
cc#10 == track3 level
cc#11 == track4 level

track 1 synth/effects/routing = cc#12 - cc#39
track 2 synth/effects/routing = cc#40 - cc#63
track 3 synth/effects/routing = cc#72 - cc#95
track 4 synth/effects/routing = cc#96 - cc#119

midi channel base + 1

track 5 synth/effects/routing = cc#12 - cc#39
track 6 synth/effects/routing = cc#40 - cc#63
track 7 synth/effects/routing = cc#72 - cc#95
track 8 synth/effects/routing = cc#96 - cc#119

midi channel base + 2

and so on.
hope this helps



Your notes are helping. Thanks much.

But one thing I’d like to find is a book or resource that explains what all this means, too. I’m really curious about what sysex is and how it all works.

I kind of think it may give me a better understanding of what I’m doing.

I’m in California and I expect to be rained in for a few days. My weekend project is studying my MD and figuring out a way to use it live while playing guitar or synth at the same time.

I’ve been using a Beat Buddy and while I can import samples from my MD I think it would be cool to be able to control the MD in a similar manner, or with even greater functionality.

The Beat Buddy is a really cool device and I’ve seen some folk use it effectively but I think I’d prefer being able to call up more than two patterns with my feet.

i dont really know much about sysex tbh, only used it to update the firmware. there are some old discussions scattered around here about it like here: Undocumented Sysex
thats more advanced stuff that i can’t help out with, if you have any questions about the midi stuff though feel free to as.

Preople like to put sysex in the same category as the black arts and “how to use a compressor correctly”. It’s not that difficult. It’s really just a giant “fill in the blank”

In the manual this part is the key:

The blank to fill in the is “command” part, and that comes from the rest of the section. Then just send that whole string starting with F0 (every sysex starts with this) and F7 (every sysex message ends with this).

Just be aware which values need to be in hex and which ones in decimal. Grab yourself a hex/dev/programming calculator for your phone, roll up those sleeves, and get dirty :wink:

P.S. maybe you just wanna look into a megacommand?

Edit: @Angstwulf


Definitely looking into the MCL. I picked up a couple of books on MIDI - one is more a history, the other…I’m so glad that my best friend is a theoretical mathematics professor and that we’re getting together for drinks.

I picked up that Nectar footcontroller and I’m putting together presets to control simultaneous program changes for the MD and my synths.

I’ve gotten the hang of simple one device changes and it’s been fun jamming to my MD with a bass guitar. So much more fun that just a metronome or a single beat.

Hi :slight_smile: ,

do you guys use ableton with the machinedrum ?
What is the master/slave in your setup ?

I want to use the MD as master but I’dont know how exactly I’m getting everything to work :slight_smile:

I’m the daddy and Ableton’s my bitch. Used to force the MD to watch but had to sell it to fund my crack habit. Now I’ve pocket operator strapped to a chair.
Just make sure you connect in to out and out to in and everything should be running more than smoothly. Unless you’re using midi over usb of course, in which case you should replace smoothly with “jittery like a jonesing crackfiend”.