combining MIDI and AUDIO?

Discussion in 'General Sequencing' started by leecollings, Oct 29, 2003.

  1. leecollings

    leecollings New Member

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    i know that there are many different keyboards that have floppy drives built-in, my question is:

    are there any keyboards that can have MIDI and Audio playback at the same time ie MIDI backing track and Audio Vocals/Guitars
  2. globalerizer

    globalerizer New Member

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    yamaha makes some but they are like thousands of dollars we have some in our lab at school
  3. saxsinger

    saxsinger New Member

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    The best way I've found with combining audio/midi (at home) is on my pc; I've used an older version of cakewalk (version 5--newer versions' code is slow and bulky) to play audio and midi together... to record the audio, I use Sound Forge, Vegas, or Acid (formerly of Sonic Foundry, bought out by Sony), depending if I'm multitracking or looping...

    Then I have 2 options if I want to use the tracks on gigs:

    1. have the computer on the gig (laptop-easy; desktop-not so easy)

    2. record everything back into digital audio and make a cd (easily done; able to make your own album this way too)

    :) hope this helps
  4. KhuLie

    KhuLie New Member

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    good advise SAX :rock:
  5. tacolung

    tacolung New Member

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    You can output midi to WAV in winamp...
  6. bnjiman80

    bnjiman80 Tangled Up In Blue

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    Hi Lee :)

    I think if you have a decent laptop already, you could be onto something because as saxsinger says, you can get software that plays audio and midi at the same time, so you could hit a single "play" button on the pc to start both off.

    You have to bear in mind though that the recordings will typically come out of your laptop sound card - which will normally suck - and the midi through the soft synth of the laptop (i.e. the computer generates the midi sounds for piano, drums etc) which may suck.

    To get top quality sound I suggest you will want to get some interfaces for a laptop. You can get audio sound "outs" that plug into the USB port to give you decent out (around £70). But since you are recording you'd probably want one that can record into the laptop and play back as well. If you went for something that can handle recording, playback, and generate midis, like Midiman USB Audiophile Soundcard

    http://www.audioamigo.com/mimuap.html

    is a cheap all-in-one at £150 or so, you'd be on the right track, although you'd then need a seperate box to generate your midi voices...e.g.

    laptop (thru usb)
    -> wav sound -> midiman -> speaker
    -> midi events -> midiman -> hardware syth box -> speaker

    ...which would add maybe another hundred quid on for the syth box to generate your nice backing voices.

    The disadvantage of going this route is that, potentially, your liable to get slow down because of the amount of data going through the USB hub. You'd have to look on the net to see how much of a problem this might be.

    The advantage is that, having a decent laptop means you can edit your midis and sounds on a decent size screen, rather than fiddling around on a keyboard display.

    And of course, it would be a heck of a lot cheaper. As soon as you look for any recording devices with hard disk recording, the price really rockets. You mention the floppy drive. Well, you can get quite cheap multitrack recorders (<£300) with midi playback with cards (e.g. multmedia, compact flash) roughly between 8 to 512mb in size. The problem is, WAV files (i.e. CD format) are over 50mb for a 4 minute song so you quickly run out of space. And you would multiply this for each track of backing at best sound quality.

    PC's are quite cost effective in this sense because they are obviously mass produced and hard disks are cheap. I guess you could get this kind of set-up for £800 maybe, especially if you can find a second hand laptop. (As long as you have 1ghZ processing and 256mb ram you'll be ok.)

    However, if you can afford it, a keyboard would do the job with more reliability, anda lot more style! :p

    It really depends what hardware you already have, and your budget. If you have a desktop pc with a cd-writer already, then you can record your midi-out backing as a WAV file through back into the soundcard, and combine it with you WAV recordings, and rip the whole lot to CD. To avoid the possible problem of skipping, you could record you final backing into an mp3 player, which have no moving parts, are pretty cheap nowadays, and have good memory too (512mb versions are <£300 are will do you maybe 6 hours on there). (www.advancedmp3players.co.uk). (This would also give you other benefits, like being able to record you mate's pesky copy protected CD while it is being played the next time you go round someone's house!)

    Good luck! Cheers, Ben
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2003
  7. linkin1

    linkin1 New Member

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    There is software in which this can be accomplished, for example you could use sheetmusic plus to play the midi while using something like INternet tape deck to capture the vocals
  8. songer

    songer New Member

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    some bands in asia use an MD (minidisc) player/recorder, where they can combine midi & audio...
  9. winkel

    winkel New Member

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    what is with using a sequencer ?
  10. bnjiman80

    bnjiman80 Tangled Up In Blue

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    If you mean a stand-alone box, I find it is useful to take to jam sessions and be able to load songs relatively quickly... they're portable, reliable, have good voices, and have proper buttons. I wouldnt fancy fumbling with a laptop to hit "play" on the stage! And in theory they are quieter, having no moving parts, although I don't know if this would matter...
  11. BryGuy

    BryGuy New Member

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    Some sequencers have samplers built in. Or you can use an independant sampler. If the audio you want to playbakc isn't to big (or even if it is, depending on the size and RAM of your sampler) you can still implement and audio sampler by midi control by triggering the sampler (or sample) as part of your midi sequence.

    I've done this sort of thing with a K2000S rackmount. Of course that was before I built a rackmount computer to do all that stuff now. I use a PCI-822 TDIF audio card out of that into a TM-D1000 digital mixer as a submixer in the same rack. It's cool since you can control the TM-D1000 in your midi sequence to apply real-time effects to the audio sample rather than editing the thing before hand. That way you can adjust the effects (mostly delay based) based on venue.
  12. bnjiman80

    bnjiman80 Tangled Up In Blue

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    Hi BryGuy

    Interesting post there, thanks.

    Do you take a seperate monitor/TFT panel with you to gigs as well then?

    Cheers, Ben

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