Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Just bought your first old school MIDI synthesizer and can't get it to work right? Having trouble getting DOSBox or SCUMMVM to work the way you want? Perhaps we can help. Do you have some neat tips you just want to share with the world? Or maybe you just need help convincing your computer to work. Either way, use this forum for all tech support related needs that somehow relate to MIDI and/or PC Gaming.

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JaseOfBass
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Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Post by JaseOfBass » Mon May 10, 2021 2:08 pm

Hi
I'm new here so please excuse me if I start talking dumb.

I have an MT32 and a CM32L, a Windows 10 PC, a MIDI keyboard with MIDI Out and USB ports, a Behringer U-Phoria UMC404HD, an M-Audio Air 192|6 (connected to monitor speakers), with FL Studio 8 and Acid Pro 10 installed as DAWs.

In my simple way of thinking, I'd like to be able to use my MIDI keyboard to send MIDI 'notes' to the MT32 and get the sounds generated by the MT32 recorded in one of my DAWs. I appreciate this may sound easy, but having done lots of googling, I'm struggling to figure it out.

I have done the basics like connecting the USB port on the keyboard to the PC USB port, connecting the MIDI Out on the keyboard to the MIDI In on the MT32, and then connecting the audio outs on the MT32 in to either the Behringer or the M-Audio interfaces. By the way, I have connections from the Behringer to the M-Audio, the idea being I can plug multiple instruments in to the Behringer and send the output through the M-Audio interface to my speakers.

So far, I can't get any sounds from the MT32 and I don't know if it's because my connections are wrong or because I haven't got the settings right in the DAWs. Or possibly both. It is a bit of an odd set-up I guess.

So has anyone here tried using the MT32 as a sound module with a MIDI keyboard and a DAW, and had any success, I guess is my question? And if so, how did you do it?!

Thanks for bearing with me :oops:

Spikey
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Re: Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Post by Spikey » Wed May 12, 2021 3:11 am

It's certainly not a hard thing to accomplish, I'll just need to decipher your setup to figure out where the issue is.

Is the MT-32 receiving data from the keyboard, regardless of whether you can hear the output? Or are you not triggering the MT-32? I.e. is the issue that you can't hear the MT-32, or that you can't get note data to it?

Seems like it will be a relatively simple adjustment to your setup.

In your DAW, do you have the MIDI port set up correctly to send notes from the PC, or are you playing notes 'live'?
Do you have the digital audio tracks set up for the Behringer or the M-Audio as relevant?

farvardin
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Re: Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Post by farvardin » Wed May 19, 2021 3:35 am

There is a very important parameter to take into account about the MT32: midi channel 1 is not used! And it's often the one used by default on many synth or DAW.

So first try to set channel 2 on the DAW (or the keyboard), and output a sound from there.

And I'd also recommend to connect midi out from your keyboard to the DAW, and midi out from the DAW to the MT32, this way you record your keyboard to midi sequences, which can be altered within the DAW, and the DAW sent the result to the MT32 (using midi, again). Then you can record the MT32 audio output back to the DAW, on audio tracks.

jaffa225man
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Re: Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Post by jaffa225man » Thu May 20, 2021 3:05 pm

farvardin wrote:
Wed May 19, 2021 3:35 am
There is a very important parameter to take into account about the MT32: midi channel 1 is not used! And it's often the one used by default on many synth or DAW.

So first try to set channel 2 on the DAW (or the keyboard), and output a sound from there.

And I'd also recommend to connect midi out from your keyboard to the DAW, and midi out from the DAW to the MT32, this way you record your keyboard to midi sequences, which can be altered within the DAW, and the DAW sent the result to the MT32 (using midi, again). Then you can record the MT32 audio output back to the DAW, on audio tracks.
That was what immediately occurred to me when I noticed this thread today. I'm sorry for being so late. If it is simply the channel 2-10 issue, an easy way to test that (on only the MT-32) is to press and hold MASTER VOLUME, then press Part 5, and finally Part 1. That shifts the MT-32's parts down a channel (except the RYTHM part remains on channel 10) so part 1 becomes channel 1, part 2 channel 2, and so on.

On the other hand, to use a sequencer like rosegarden (although rosegarden doesn't exist for windows yet), it's context-sensitive so if you set the channel of a track to 2, selecting that track causes all of your keyboard's input messages to be rewritten so that they're output on channel 2. That works with any selected channel, but the MT-32 still won't respond to channel 1 without the trick above or, possibly, some special SysEx.

farvardin
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Re: Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Post by farvardin » Thu May 20, 2021 8:37 pm

it's context-sensitive so if you set the channel of a track to 2, selecting that track causes all of your keyboard's input messages to be rewritten so that they're output on channel 2
several DAW are working this way I suppose, I have this behavior with the Muse-sequencer (linux only), and Cubase on Atari ST :lol:
I think Ardour (which is multiplateform) is also similar.

jaffa225man
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Re: Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Post by jaffa225man » Fri May 21, 2021 12:34 am

farvardin wrote:
Thu May 20, 2021 8:37 pm
several DAW are working this way I suppose, I have this behavior with the Muse-sequencer (linux only), and Cubase on Atari ST :lol:
I think Ardour (which is multiplateform) is also similar.
You can tell I haven't branched out much. Even being attached to GNU/Linux I haven't tried MusE except an ancient version, about ten years ago, on a LiveCD. Ardour I do use, but had problems with its MIDI features when they were first introduced, so I use it purely for its digital audio capture prowess.

jaffa225man
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Re: Newbie alert - Using MT32 with a DAW

Post by jaffa225man » Thu May 27, 2021 4:15 pm

jaffa225man wrote:
Thu May 20, 2021 3:05 pm
or, possibly, some special SysEx.
Here's what I've gleaned from the MT-32 manual, and it should work for the CM-{32L,64} too, but it's untested until I get home with ample time (when I'll likely record it as a standard MIDI format file):
f0 41 10 16 12 10 00 0d 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 47 f7 (Edit: sorry, this is the fourth rewrite and is finally tested positively as working!)

Here's also the SMF file I supposed I'd capture:
The MTGM SysEx probably contains some form of this too, aside from also reprogramming instruments to match the GM set, so if you wouldn't mind GM compatibility, it seems likely that you could just use it.

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