MIDI with a UR824

I have dabbled with Cubase for a few years now but am still quite a newbie as far as skills are concerned, so please bear with me! Having moved to 64 bit PC my old Steinberg MI4 i/f will have to be left behind on the XP machine and I have on order a UR824 as I want to expand my recording capability. However, the UR824 has no MIDI i/o capability and so does anybody have any experience / suggestions as to how to connect MIDI when using a UR824? Is it possible, for example, to use one of the ADAT ports to connect a MIDI i/o device and if so, do you have any recommendations for such a device please?

Dave W.

Hey,

If you Google “midi to usb” you should find a number of appropriate devices. I’m sure others will be able to comment on how good/bad each adapter is. They’re not that expensive.

Basically you don’t need to use the UR824 as the midi interface (although you’ll be playing the audio back through the UR824). That said, a midi connection would have been handy - you’re taking up another USB port this way.

HTH

Cheers,
Stephen.

Thanks for that Stephen, a new MIDI i/f with 64bit drivers is definitely called for, but as you say if I could find one that made use of the ADAT expansion ports then it would save a USB port and as I sometimes use a laptop, that is critical! I am still interested if anybody else can think of a suitable box that connects via the ADAT, but as a supplementary question, can Cubase 6 address more than one interface at the same time using different USB ports and if so, do they have to be the same type and / or specific manufacturer?

Dave

Hey,

Sorry if I wasn’t clear - you won’t be able to use the ADAT ports in that manner (the ADAT ports are for ‘digital’ connectivity, I’d forget about those for this discussion).

In answer to your question, yes, you can have multiple USB devices connected.

So, you’ll have one ‘audio interface’ (in this case your UR824) which you’ll set up in your Cubase device manager in the usual manner. That’s your sound card. You can also have another midi-to-usb interface - this will be a separate ‘device’ connecting e.g. the midi out on a keyboard (or whatever midi output you want to connect) to a different USB port on your computer. Once installed correctly, Cubase should be able to see this new device as incoming midi on a midi track (you may have to configure the device midi port setup). If you leave the midi track input as ‘all midi inputs’ you shouldn’t have too much trouble, unless you’re using multiple midi devices (in this case we’ve just got one - you could select the input for the midi track to be a specific midi device).

Hopefully a few people round these parts can give you a concrete example of what they’ve used and their exact configuration - it’s a very common setup!

I assume the reason midi connectivity wasn’t added to the UR824 is because a) it takes up more real estate and b) other standalone devices to do this are pretty chesp these days.

Does that make sense? If you’ve any more questions, fire away!

Cheers,
Stephen.

Yes, and thank you it does make sense. Doing some more research I realise that MIDI has moved on since I last dabbled with an old Yamaha keyboard running through my MI4 i/f! What with MMC and the new breed of controllers I think it is time to review exactly what I want to do with it so if anybody is able to post examples of how they integrate MIDI and audio with Cubase, or can point to a useful resource that does that, then that will certainly help me to move forward. Thank you Stephen, much appreciated,

Dave

It depends what you want to do!

e.g. do you just need a keyboard, or do you just need some generic midi connectivity (for your existing keyboard and other devices)? Do you have other (non-keyboard) devices that absolutely need a midi input?

If not, perhaps you could look at buying a new USB keyboard/controller. I use a Novation Impulse -> http://uk.novationmusic.com/products/midi_controllers/impulse/ (the 61 key version). It connects via USB at the computer end and also has integrated mapping (Automap) which allows you to remotely control a lot of Cubase functions, from the keyboard e.g. you can control all the transport functions, and certain plugin parameters. Have a look on the site and on YouTube for examples of its use. Instructions of how to set up the automapping software also comes with the keyboard (I had it all working within 10 minutes). The integration of controllers with Cubase these days is great!

There are obviously lots of keyboards and a myriad of other controllers out there that might do some/all of the things you need - it just depends on what that is.

I’ve just started to use a UR28m, for reference (I have a few audio interfaces, big and small), although what audio interface you’re using is irrelevant in the case above.

Right, I’ll stop boring people now.

Good luck!

Cheers,
Stephen.

Exactly! I had presumed that I would use MIDI to input note information into Cubase just as I did last time (about 8 years ago) but I am so blown away by what has been developed since then. Most of my work with Cubase has been audio recording and I now have time to get to grips with something else now my guitar gigging duties have tailed off. A neighbour also runs Cubase 6 and only does music production and not audio recording so I see some sessions coming up between us to get a better understanding of each other’s work. I had looked at Novation as part of my browsing research and the Impulse certainly ticks a lot of boxes. Thanks, I look forward to finding my way round the forum and finding out more ways to create music.

Dave

8 years! That’s a long time in the world of what you can and can’t ask your computer to do, and how you go about doing it. That said, the good old midi protocol is still going strong after 30 odd years!

I’m not so sure that music in the last 8 years has gotten any better though :wink:

Best of luck with your new ventures.

Cheers,
Stephen.