MIDI Remote connection lost when powering on new MIDI Device

I have an AKAI MIDIMIX setup as a MIDI Remote (not from a script). It sometimes seems to loose its connection and it took awhile to see the pattern.

Here’s what I can reproduce here

  1. Start with my Komplete Kontrol S61 powered down
  2. Launch a Project in Cubase
  3. Verify that my MIDIMIX is functioning as a MIDI Remote
  4. Power up the S61
  5. Verify the S61 can play a VSTi
  6. Confirm that the MIDIMIX no longer functions as a MIDI Remote

Hi, if I recall correctly you’re on Windows.

What you describe is inline with others experience, see here for example:

It states the loss of midi remote upon disconnecting another device, while you’re talking about loss upon connecting another one. To me it’s the same, it’s the change that matters.

I can reproduce this behavior when I don’t have winRT MIDI enabled. But when I do have it enabled, I have no problems at all. Now, I don’t really know how the MIDI Remote queries the ports, but until a fix is provided, winRT is a good workaround in my opinion.

As a side note, for years (without winRT) I always have my devices on, before starting Cubase, Windows (legacy) MIDI drivers don’t seem to like changes that much…

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As usual, you’re absolutely correct!

The legacy Windows MIDI API (but still widely used by many applications including drivers for MIDI controller hardware), is a lot more primitive. Two of the main shortcomings in my observation are:

  • USB hardware needs to be already connected before starting software that wants to use it, And changes in USB connections tend to break things.
  • MIDI drivers are generally single client, i.e. you can’t connect such MIDI hardware to more than one piece of software at the same time. Which makes MIDI troubleshooting and experimentation more painful, since it drives you into the arms of MIDI loopback virtual cables - and that 's powerful, but also easily confusing, if you’re not doing it all the time (say hello to endless MIDI loops, if you make a mistake - an easy way to freeze MIDI software! :rofl:)
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Yeah, this was actually my very first and traumatic experience with loopMIDI when (as I always tend to) got straight away into using it without reading the details about “loopBack” :slight_smile:

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Because in loopMIDI the names for the MIDI sending and the MIDI receiving side of the cable are the same. And I’ve never figured out a way of changing that.

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While I don’t dispute that the “legacy driver” (I’m assuming this is Windows Multi Media API, winmm.dll) is more primitive, this particular issue is can not be blamed on it. I have done some basic mucking about with that API and I never had an issue loosing connection to an established port if a different port disconnects. It also doesn’t happen in Cubase main application either, only MIDI Remote suffers from this behavior.

Hope I didn’t imply that - most certainly didn’t mean to.

But the saga just took a weird twist:

When I enable WinRT, all my NI controllers (I’m using 4) stop working. Cubase doesn’t even see their input. Oddly enough, Cubase can still send messages to those controllers.

My Roland keyboard seems to work ok with WinRT.

One commonality with my 4 NI controllers is, that they are all defined and in use by the MIDI Remote (all via the GUI), and the Roland keyboard isn’t used by the MIDI Remote.

I’m also using Bome and loopMIDI - is there any way that could cause a weird side-effect?

I gave up troubleshooting trying to make it work for now, since my setup with plain Windows MIDI seems to work fine for me.