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How do I change bank/patch from a DAW?


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I feel this is a dumb question but I can't seem to get it working. I want to make sure clips I use in Ableton Live set the bank/patch for the instrument I am using on a particular MIDI channel. This is both just to avoid having to select all my patches when I record as well as, and perhaps most importantly, for live settings.

In reading the docs patch/bank changes are SysEx commands but I don't know how to send those through Live on my own (without capturing one and recording it). Live has a bank/patch/program section but for whatever reason that's not working.

The problem could be with Ableton Live but thought I would check here. I seem to remember trying to do this before and thought it might have something to do with the MidiBox firmware having a special way to change banks?

Or am I just dumb? :)

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I'm a cubase user, so unfortunately no specific ableton hints, sorry.

But in general, ya right that ya have to send some sysEx / programm-change information.

The way I do is, to do it live first time, and record the commands on the automatic-layer of the specific track.

All the best! :-)

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I use a hardware sequencer (mpc2000) and do the same.. Record it live to a track.. So basically, when switching tracks the first thing that plays back is the bank switch.. Sometimes it does it mid note or something and I get a little glitch, but it's nothing I've ever worried about.

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For some reason, I thought the MidiBox stuff didn't send patch changes out. But I'll give it a shot once I'm back at home. If I can just record the bank changes, that will work just as easily for me. Curious why setting it in Live's bank/patch section doesn't work though :/

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Thats true, the MBFM doesn't send Programchange

The MBFM expect only CC 0 as a Bankselect.

Ableton alwys sends Bankselect MSB (CC 0) and LSB (CC 32) together.

Even if you leave the subbank value in the MIDI-Clip at "none" it will send the CC 32 value.

If you send only CC 0 it will work, but Ableton fails in doing this.

I have build a small workaround with max for live.

This small device let you choose Program and Bank. Additionally i have added a GM Patchname List, for easy use with the GM Bank.

If you own M4L you can copy and past the following code to a empty M4L MIDI Instance:
































































Sorry for my bad english

best regards


Edited by Thomasch
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Aha, so now this Ableton "feature" finally gets me. I've read of complaints about Ableton filtering things out and I guess this is one of those cases. Unfortunately, I don't have M4L as I just have Suite (would have been great if they included M4L in Suite, but oh well).


From what I now understand, Live may filter CC0 out and it's also not a selectable option in the automation section :/

I suppose I could also use a virtual MIDI device that strips off the CC32 Live sends.

I wonder how many beer donations it might take for TK to add a work-around in the MidiBox firmware :)

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Maybe my last post was unclear, what I mean is, that ya can try to write the sysEx/CC-data by hand (external!) and load the midi-file to a midi-track or use an editor like this.

Do ya wished settings there, load the file, locate/route it at the position it should apply and you're done (...at least in theory, should be worth a try).

Edited by Brathering
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Haha well, I was thinking of building the lite version so we have a clock-box. I think that one allows us to send patch changes as well doesn't it? The full version would be great too but we might not have the funds for that before we start playing live. I want to build an integrated 1U rack that contains a GM5x5x5, a few ArduinoBoys, and some external connections to my GameBoy and some extra MIDI ports and things. I suppose I could put a simple clock-box in there too with a read-out on the front...hmm (*ponders*).

Either way, I will still need Ableton as a send/return bus for some things until we get a hardware effect box. Even then, I don't know of a hardware box that can do grain delay (which we use for one song). Oh and I'd need something that can send out a click track for us too (trying to stay in time with our GameBoys is difficult for some songs due to how we have the noise drums setup).

I've love not to be reliant on a laptop or Live for shows though. That should only be for backup is my thought.

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yes and sorry again for hijacking your thread :)

The SEQ can remote-control ableton via MIDI, and render at is a nice fx, vsti and recording unit (which can be unplugged when you don´t need that).

But for that I´d highly recommend a "full" SEQV4, which is not so terribly expensive, the same LPC, only a few $ more for the control surface PCB, two cheap LCDs and a few more switches and LEDs, all powered by USB. I cannot emphasize how highly I´d recommend it to you, especially as you are very hardware centric and into all kinds of retro/console music :-) (now promises to be quiet about it ;-)).

Have a great day!


Edited by Hawkeye
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Hmm you lost me a bit on the VSTi part. You mean there is a VSTi to integrate with the MBSEQ?

Can the front panels and rack enclosure be had for pretty cheap? The front panel is basically the single most expensive part of my rackmount SID design (and is one reason why I haven't finished it yet - the other being that we use the GameBoys a lot more right now so I've had to focus on them more).

It's probably still a lot more than we would need for just live shows, but it would be nice to have something to better control my live playing synths for my keyboard and handle patch changes and all that. I see in the design on ucapps.de it has enough MIDI outputs that I need for the GameBoys :) I would still need my 1U GameBoy sync rack though (don't really want to try to cram that side-feature into something like the MBSEQ) but that does mean I can make that simpler.

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Controlling a VSTi is nice, as the MBSEQ offers four virtual MIDI interfaces, you can just load up any virtual instrument in ableton/or your other VST host, assign to the interface and play the sequences/automation from the SEQ on the VST... this is interesting, if you have your laptop running for FX anyways...

You can skip the frontpanel first, i use mine without it for quite some time now and really don´t miss it, on the other hand i don´t go touring ;-)

You will learn the buttons rapidly - you can also make a cardboard carton one with handwriting or a printed one on sticker from frontpanel designer. I think julianf on the forum here is offering cheaper-than-fpd 19" frontpanels, but they still cost money, agreed. But a tabletop version (like the seq lite) without anything will work great, too.

Edited by Hawkeye
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The lite would work except I still need MIDI I/O (which I can use one of my spare GM5's for no big) and need a display for the BPM (which I know has been done already).

How exactly do you use MBSEQ without a control surface though? :)

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