Why do my instruments sometimes change key unexpectedly while playing midi files?

Discussion in 'General Sequencing' started by Rankinfile, May 29, 2003.

  1. Rankinfile

    Rankinfile Guardian Angel

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    Does this happen to anyone else? It can be really annoying. Here's what happens in a nutshell. I have my midis on a floppy which I load into my Roland. I dial up the song I want and press 'play'. The song plays fine except for the horn part which is suddenly playing in another key! I'd hate to have this happen at a gig...how embarassing! Is there anything to prevent it from happening?:confused:
  2. tonyrome

    tonyrome New Member

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    what program are you using to play the files??
    you need to see what types of programs the sequencer is sending...often, people record program changes in their midi files that ask the synth to switch instruments, change key, change pitch, etc, etc...
    I know, using Digital Performer, you need to double click on the midi part and there will be a program change at the beginning of the file...this just needs to be deleted
  3. Rankinfile

    Rankinfile Guardian Angel

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    I'm just playing them on my Roland XP-60 keyboard...
  4. midiprog2000

    midiprog2000 New Member

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    Hi Rankinfile,

    Did you check this file on another sequencer player(f.i. windows media player, ...) ?

    If this problem also occurs with other sequencer players, the file may be corrupt or there may be some pitch bend controllers that are not reset. Try to check this: if you have Cubase, you can search for pitch bend events in the list editor or in the controller field of the 'edit' editor. Check if the last Pitch Bend event has a value of 64 00 (center). You could also check wether the notes that are in the wrong key have the right note number (i.o.w. that they are not transposed to a wrong key).

    If this problem only occurs with your XP-60, then it might be a controller that is misinterpreted by your XP-60. Check the file with sequencer software (like Cubase or Cakewalk or ...) for control events or Sysex messages not included in the GM or GS protocol (as your XP-60 should interpret this messages right).

    I hope this helps,
    Kind regards,
    Alain
    www.mididesign.be
  5. Rankinfile

    Rankinfile Guardian Angel

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    Thanks for the in depth response midiprog2000. I have not yet checked the corrupt files on my Cakewalk software, only on the XP-60. It doesn't happen consistently either. Sometimes the offending files will play OK but then quite unexpectedly change. I think that I must be doing something wrong with the Roland like changing out of the GM mode or something as I am still very inexperienced with the midi stuff. Thanks for all you help though.
  6. jack3643

    jack3643 New Member

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    I'm with Midiprog on this one.

    Generally it's to do with a pitch wheel event. If you don't zero the pitch bend at the start of the song, it can be fairly ordinary.

    Try sending a GS Reset at the end of the song. That usually fixes most problems. :D
  7. Rankinfile

    Rankinfile Guardian Angel

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    So should I set the last Wheel event to 64 or leave at '0', and what is a GS reset? So many questions...
  8. jack3643

    jack3643 New Member

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    Set the wheel event to 0 to stop the pitch variation for the playing tone. If, say, you do a bend in a guitar solo and forget to change the pitch back to zero, the next time you try to play a note, its pitch will be out by the amount of the previous bend.

    GS Reset. Do you know about system exclusives? They are midi instructions sent in hex. A lot of professional midi places use them to put their name at the start of a midi sequence. The GM Reset and GS Reset just reset your tone generator (or whatever you're using) back to zero on everything. Instruments go back to piano1, volume to 100(I think :S) etc. GS Reset is approximately the same, but for GS compatible devices.
  9. jack3643

    jack3643 New Member

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    Forgot:

    Most sequencing software packages come with the GM and GS reset system exclusive in there somewhere. Do a search in the help file for System Exclusive. Might help. :D
  10. Rankinfile

    Rankinfile Guardian Angel

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    I use Cakewalk and it does have a system exclusive view but does it do a GM or GS reset automatically or is there some setting I have to change in order to make it happen. Still confused but thanks for the great info.
  11. jeo

    jeo New Member

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    i encounter a similar problem too. What i do is i delete off the wheel instead of setting it to 0. Is this method correct?
  12. Rankinfile

    Rankinfile Guardian Angel

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    OK, I finally figured out how to go into the 'sysx' mode and make sure that the general midi was 'turned on'. This seems to have solved the problem with my mysterious instument key changing. Thanks again for the help guys!
  13. Mike S.

    Mike S. New Member

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    Trying to do the same myself, I have the same problem. How did you get into the sysx mode, Rankinfile?
  14. midi04

    midi04 New Member

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    thats weird

    the same thing happened to me when i connected my Korg Triton to my computer, i wasnt able to play the synth sounds i wanted to either, that really pissed me off.
  15. Rankinfile

    Rankinfile Guardian Angel

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    Mike S. --

    I use Cakewalk so just go to View>Sysx and a new window will open up. Then you need to turn the 'General Midi System On' by selecting the little folder symbol on the toolbar (load bank from file) and when the selection window opens up select 'GM System' then press the little arrow icon to send the midi info. Then just make sure you save the file. This seems to have solved my problem of instruments changing and doing weird stuff.

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