MIDI Device File Repository?

Where does everyone share their custom MIDI Device files? I’m new to Cubase and looking for device files for some vintage synths / sample players:

  • Akai AX73 / VX90
  • Kurzweil 1000 GX
  • Kurzweil 1000 AX Plus
  • Roland JX-3P

Alternately, if forced to roll my own, I’m happy to share. I’ve looked around but came up empty.

Woops! I just realized there’s actually no import/export MIDI devices option after all. Seems an odd omission. Am I missing something?

You can import and export MIDI Instrument profiles and/or patch scripts.

Go to Devices\MIDI Device Manager

Here’s a site that provides a number of presets, scripts, and setup files:
While some of these have been around a long time I find they still work in today’s Cubase 8.5 Pro.

Your favorite Web Search engine may turn up even more sites.

I’m happy to hear there’s an import/export option but I simply can’t find it.

In MIDI Device Manager, I see just five buttons: Install Device, Remove Device, Export Setup, Import Setup, and Open Device. Three of those are pretty intuitive, but as far as I can tell, Import Setup and Export Setup serve to backup your entire configuration - not individual profiles. How do I add profiles to the list that appears in Install Device? Or is it done some other way?

Thank you for your assistance!

Note, there are a couple of different types of MIDI device profiles out there for Cubase.

  1. Patch Scripts. These are TXT files.
    These are typically just a patch list that will pop up in the track inspector (So you don’t have to enter bank and program change information manually…Just select a patch ‘by name’).

  2. Complete Device Profiles. These are XML files.
    These are complete instrument profiles. They can be as simple as a patch list, or they can host very complicated sets of controls through ‘device panels’ (general MIDI, RPN, NRPN, or even sysex based) which can be written/read from Cubase Automation lanes.

If you are working with Patch Scripts on a Windows machine:

  1. Close any instances of Cubase that might be running on your machine.

  2. Have a look in the following directories (Alter paths if necessary to match your installation/version of Cubase):
    For 64bit Cubase:

"%SYSTEMDRIVE%\Program Files\Steinberg\Cubase 8.5\Scripts\patchnames\inactive"

For 32bit Cubase:

"%SYSTEMDRIVE%\Program Files (x86)\Steinberg\Cubase 8.5\Scripts\patchnames\inactive"
  1. You should see a list of folders by brand name. I.E. alesis, yamaha, roland, etc.
    Copy your Patch Script.txt file(s) into the relevant folder.

  2. Once you’ve got your scripts copied, launch Cubase and click the “Devices/MIDI Device Manager/Install” button. Your recently added Patch Scripts should now show up in the list.[/color]

If you are working with XML profiles, then:

  1. Export your current setup to a safe location, and give it a good name and date. This is just a precaution so you’ll have a backup.

  2. Import your new profile(s) one by one. Your existing profiles will NOT be overwritten. Imported profiles will be appended to your setup. Since it is possible to have multiple profiles in the same XML file, Cubase will toss up a dialogue to choose the profile(s) you want to import.

  3. Once you have everything you like imported, do another Export as a ‘backup’ precaution.

If you ever want to isolate one single profile to save/share it, make sure you’ve got a backup, and then ‘remove’ any profiles that you do NOT want to save to a new XML file. Export just the profile(s) you desire, then re-import your complete setup.

If you want in depth information on creating Patch Scripts, or complete device profiles, then have a look under the “Help Menu” of Cubase. There is a complete PDF manual “MIDI Devices”.

Thank you so much for this!!!

I noticed it isn’t documented in the Cubase manual at all. If you don’t mind my asking a follow-up question, where is this sort of ‘power-user’ information available? I was thinking of purchasing a Cubase book from Amazon but the latest was published in 2013 for version 7. Ridiculous.

MIDI Device documentation is now in a separate manual. Look in the help menu of Cubase for a selection called, “MIDI Devices”. It’s been a long time since I looked at it, and I think the portion on patch scripts may be incomplete (as if someone stripped out information for Windows XP on the usual locations of the files, and never got around to adding it back, but for Vista and later).

I discovered more information on installing the patch scripts, with a search engine in my web browser (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.). Yes, things I found were usually done for much older versions of Windows and Cubase, but the concepts were very similar. Since Windows ‘Vista’ some of the user directories and such have changed from what they were back in XP days, but the files themselves, and the way they work in Cubase are still the same. Those of us who have been using a PC since the days of MS DOS kind of take it for granted that everyone knows where the different versions of Windows like to keep certain kinds of files…go figure.

When it comes to legacy equipment (outboard MIDI gear with built in synths/samplers/audio engines, some of which even need to be ‘synced’ via timecode of some sort) the ‘older’ books and manuals will offer more complete and descriptive documentation as well. When it comes to dealing with ‘outboard MIDI gear’, well, much of that code goes way back to Cubase 5 (or maybe even older). Many of our best MIDI based keyboards and workstations well ‘predate’ the arrival of VST style software based instruments. It’s all we had, so much of the manual and tutorials were built around setting up and using outboard gear. These days fewer and fewer ‘new comers’ to Cubase even own anything like a full blown Keyboard Workstatioin with onboard sounds and synth engines, few companies are even producing such instruments anymore (and when they do they will come with profiles for the most popular DAWs, and instructions on how to install them)…so space in the newer DAW manuals is devoted to the newer VST technologies.

Yeah, any reference to the scripts is gone. The rest speaks of creating devices and panels in the Cubase UI and is pretty thorough but doesn’t work properly, thanks to a bug that was documented in these forums and reported to Steinberg in 2013. [?!]

As a workaround, new MIDI devices must be created by copying an existing device TXT file and then modifying it to suit, either manually or in the Cubase UI. Thankfully, script formatting is documented in a text file: script documentation.txt.

As of Cubase 8.5 (on Windows 10) the default store of device files can be found in two locations:

  • C:\Users<username>\AppData\Roaming\Steinberg\Cubase 8.5_64\Scripts\Patchnames\inactive
  • C:\Program Files\Steinberg\Cubase 8.5\Scripts\Patchnames\inactive

But only the first is referenced by Cubase. Be sure to copy your scripts there or Cubase won’t add them to its pick list.

As much as I hate to date myself, my first synth was a JX-3P. New. Not eBay. :slight_smile: I wrote the short-lived Orpheus MIDI sequencer for IBM PCs too, so I understand what you’re saying.

I understand your point re old technology but as a software developer and business owner of three decades, I feel Steinberg’s treatment of these legacy features is sloppy. Bugs should be fixed. Documentation should be complete and accurate.

Maybe it’s my increasingly-stubborn age talking, but I don’t know that this technology is ready for pasture yet. Regarding vintage MIDI hardware, the prices of used synths just keep going up on eBay. It’s ridiculous (and frustrating, if you happen to be in the market for, say, a Yamaha CS-80 - and who isn’t?). Some items are doubling in value year on year. For a long time, I attributed this to young DJs snapping up TR-808s and 909s because Deadmaus (or whoever) had one, but now I’ve reconsidered as other, more boutique analog synths have followed suit. Clearly, there’s a market.

Anyways, I got this all working, thanks largely to your assistance. Thank you! And I hope my update helps anybody else following this breadcrumb trail.

All the best!

No problem…

I’m with you on legacy support. In fact, it’s a major reason I went for Cubase over some of the newer DAWs on the market these days. While the old code doesn’t get love and documentation anymore, at least it exists to some degree in Cubase. Many of the newer DAWs ‘never had it, and never will’.

My first setup was based on myrid of Peavey DPM stuff (I live in Mississippi where the stuff was built so it was common and easy to come by…) a Yamaha KX 76 controller, and a borrowed DX 7. I sequenced with an Atari ST (Had all of the most popular sequencers for it and loved them all for different reasons), and later got my hands on Falcons and various Amigas (Running Pipes and Bars or KCS). I tracked on 4 track cassette machines synched via SMPTE.

Fun days :slight_smile: I don’t miss having to spend more for cables than an entire orchestra library, taking half a day to set up everything from stacks of floppies and zip drives, dozens of shoe box sized ‘hard drives’, or needing to clutter half my house with the stuff though.

For the most part I feel pretty ‘spoiled’ by present day tech for the money. Cubase 8.5, for around half a grand, and it does more than ROOMS full of stuff did for me back in nineteen-eighty-weird.

Yeah, to be fair, I must give Steinberg credit where it’s due. I just came from Sonar because, among other things, it didn’t support MIDI release velocity or editing of MIDI polyphonic aftertouch. And don’t get me started on the surround sound quirks. Sonar’s UI and docs are more polished, but at the end of the day it’s about getting the work done.

Oh, that brings back memories! :slight_smile: I sold the family piano to buy a Tascam Portastudio. [My parents never forgave me.] And, yeah, I’d invite everyone over to jam and then, after all the tedious setup, “Oh, you can leave your stuff here if you want.” And it was like Chistmas. :smiley:

True. I prefer analog synths but VSTs are so bloody convenient (and affordable). "Crazy kids today don’t know how good they got it." [Shakes fist in air.] And, as much as I hate to admit it, it’s only a matter of time before Moore’s Law brings us exact software emulations of analog synths. End of an era.

Greetings Gents. Noobie, oldie, Cubase guy here. Just purchased Cubase again after the demise of Sonar. Originally purchased Cubase, (back in the last millenium, I think :slight_smile: ), but then moved over to Cakewalk, (with them since ‘Twelve Tone’ days) and had all my .ins files finally working, but time to move on (again). After booting up Cubase 9.5 I still couldn’t get my old XP-80 set up. Your directions to put the script files into the \AppData\Roaming folder path finally got me going (Windows 10). Many thanks for the post. Still some tunes left in my hardware, I think, but I’ll be shelling out for some VSTi’s soon, too, I’m sure. Ciao.

Glad it helped!

Old thread but new to post here. HAving the same inquiry if anyone knows an online location to download MIDI Device setups for Cubase. Specifically after Roland JD-Xi and System-8, but i’d imagine other people are still looking out there for more.