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Re: MIDI looping

Sean Barrett made a strong contribution:

>... And then I figured, hey,
>MIDI looping should be a lot simpler than digital looping,
>maybe I could do that.  A search on the web, and here I
>am--nobody anywhere seems to be talking about MIDI looping.
>(I'm not doing it myself--but I want to be.)

Go ahead. I am amazed, too, that the easyer version did not come out first,
and why the sequencer that is about as old as the delay did not develop in
this same specific direction it originally was used for...

This is a nice document you created. I deserves a space on the LD page, I 
Others may add to it.
I liked Robert Carter practical contributions, too!

>Here are some of the obvious issues I've thought of for
>MIDI looping:
>  con: no effects in the feedback path
>   but: most people don't use their loopers that way anyway

Right: The available dedicated Looping devices dont let you insert in the
feedback path either. The delays like PCM42 and t.c.2290 have it, because
they do the feedback all analog, which is not very sutable for looping in
other ways.

>  con: another MIDI delay in your signal path
>   but: you can use your performance synth (e.g. guitar synth or keyboard)
>       to provide the initial tone, and then the extra MIDI delay can
>       be compensated for by reducing the first iteration's delay time
>   but but: now you need another sounds source with very similar sounds
>       to your initial sounds

hm... there is no way you can merge the the two contol signals?

>  pro: requires much less RAM; infinite UNDO is plausible

... and organization is several tracks is simple.

>  con: probably harder to create the software for

No, I do not think so.

>  pro: probably requires much less CPU crunching power
>  pro: you can "record" your performance into a sequencer,
>       storing the notes you played & MIDI patch changes or
>       such that changed the looper's performance--then just
>       play the sequence out into the MIDI looper to repeat it.
>       Now you can edit your performance.
>  con: drops out notes if the layers get too thick
>   but: get more sound sources to avoid this (and possibly multiple
>       MIDI outs on the looper to get more channels with distinct
>       pitch bends).  Also, audio looper must distort or clamp
>       or compress if the total audio volume gets too thick (different
>       but similar sort of problem)
Most important con:
        There is no easy way to simulate feedback and let the notes fade
and leave them behind at a certain point. But it should be possible.
But a lot of kinds of loop music do not need the feedback feature.
and pro: You can create programs that for example repeat each input exactly
4 times (at same volume) or more complex patterns like repeat twice / wait
6 / play twice, softer...

>Well, I could go on and on (well, I guess I already have), but
>I'm interested to hear some comments before I go too far over
>the top with it.

Go on and on and do it!
Then keep in mind, that the real success you will have if you can connect
the result to a HD sound edit program.

Consider also to make it compatible with the existing looping devices to
simplify operation and synchronization. I imagine that you will want to
loop the guitar sound in a Plex for example and simultaneously the synth
sound in MIDI and control all with a pedal board.
In addition you might have a key for each channel, beeing that the Plex
would be one of the channels.
I can give you some information about the functions and we might come up
with some new features to make the two ideas compatible.

I could even imagine a unit that looks about like the Plex, but cost a lot
less for doing the same only in MIDI.

Thank you for this work!