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smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112

If there's a better forum for this type of thing, please let me know and I'll move the post :) 


I'm just about to start trying to set up my Boss ES-8 and planning to use it to change patches on my DD-500 as well as the channels on my JVM via MIDI. 

Now, I’m definitely not expecting to be able to get this all up and running instantly as I have no prior experience/knowledge of using MIDI, but just have a couple of wee questions that I’m hoping folk can help with to help me on my way:

 

How many MIDI cables will I need? Can I just do: ES-8 > DD500 > JVM, or do I need to create a complete loop: ES-8 >DD500 > JVM > ES8?

(Or even: ES-8 >DD500 > JVM > DD500 > ES8?)

 

Can anyone suggest any useful links/references that I can read through to get a basic understanding of what I need to know, to get me started? 

I really am not looking to set up anything complicated here – no tap tempo, no fancy switching/parameter changes – just amp channel changes and patch changes on the DD500 

 

Thanks in advance

 

 

Keir

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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    Series is fine, no loop needed. You’ll just need to assign each thing it’s own midi channel. To simplify, let’s say your amp is on channel 1, and your dd500 is on channel 2. You’ll be able to specify on your ES8 which midi channel any given message gets sent to. The amp will only listen to messages sent on channel one (or omni messages) and the dd500 only on 2. Your DD500 should (I imagine; I don’t have one) have DIN ports for both in and Thru. So connect es8 to the in, then dd500 Thru port out to the amp midi in. 

    Hope this helps / makes sense. 
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  • JayGeeJayGee Frets: 415
    That shouldn’t be a problem.

    I have a similar setup using a Joyo PXL to select patches on a TC Flashback and channels on a Blackstar Series One. Only two cables needed (short one from the Joyo’s MIDI OUT socket to the TC’s MIDI IN socket, long one from the TC’s MIDI THROUGH socket to the amp’s MIDI IN).

    Most likely potential gotcha is MIDI channel assignments, a lot of stuff seems to come out of the box set by default to OMNI, meaning that it’ll retract to commands coming in on any channel - you might have to do some digging in manuals to work out how to make sure the delay pedal and amp are set to “listen” on different MIDI channels...
    Don't ask me, I just play the damned thing...
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  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5542
    Dd500 has midi out,  but not sure if it functions as a thru. Tgp has a huge Dd500 midi thread.

    When I used my es5 with multiple midi devices I found it easier to buy a midi splitter. So es 5 into splitter into each device.
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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    Dd500 has midi out,  but not sure if it functions as a thru. Tgp has a huge Dd500 midi thread.

    When I used my es5 with multiple midi devices I found it easier to buy a midi splitter. So es 5 into splitter into each device.
    Just checked the online manual and you’re right. 

    HOW RIDICULOUS. 

    But OP, in this instance you will need a splitter box too as @teetonetal suggests. 
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112
    Series is fine, no loop needed. You’ll just need to assign each thing it’s own midi channel. To simplify, let’s say your amp is on channel 1, and your dd500 is on channel 2. You’ll be able to specify on your ES8 which midi channel any given message gets sent to. The amp will only listen to messages sent on channel one (or omni messages) and the dd500 only on 2. Your DD500 should (I imagine; I don’t have one) have DIN ports for both in and Thru. So connect es8 to the in, then dd500 Thru port out to the amp midi in. 

    Hope this helps / makes sense. 


    Perfect (about the cables)

    Still not understanding the MIDI terminology though (channel 1/channel 2) so that's what I'm looking to read up about. I don't want to plague the forum with loads of NOOB questions

    If I set the amp up to listen to channel 1, and DD-500 to channel 2, will this be a Global understanding throughout the whole unit/each bank/preset etc?


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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    Yeah. Think of the midi channels as names if it makes it easier. Midi channel one is Steve. Your amp is now called Steve, and will only follow commands if he hears his name first. It’s like famous childhood game Simon Says, only yknow.... Steve. If channel 2 was in fact Nigel, no amount of shouting Nigel will make Steve respond. 

    This is a ridiculous explanation! :D
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112
    Dd500 has midi out,  but not sure if it functions as a thru. Tgp has a huge Dd500 midi thread.

    When I used my es5 with multiple midi devices I found it easier to buy a midi splitter. So es 5 into splitter into each device.
    Just checked the online manual and you’re right. 

    HOW RIDICULOUS. 

    But OP, in this instance you will need a splitter box too as @teetonetal suggests. 

    My JVM has MIDI through, so couldn't I just got ES-8 > JVM > DD-500?
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112
    Yeah. Think of the midi channels as names if it makes it easier. Midi channel one is Steve. Your amp is now called Steve, and will only follow commands if he hears his name first. It’s like famous childhood game Simon Says, only yknow.... Steve. If channel 2 was in fact Nigel, no amount of shouting Nigel will make Steve respond. 

    This is a ridiculous explanation! :D

    Makes sense though!
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  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5542
    edited January 9
    Think of midi has 10 cables twisted together but only 1 plug on each end.
    You can either set data to transmit on all 10 cables (Omni) or you can be specific and specify cable/channel 1-10
    The receiving device, can then be set to OMNI where it picks up all data, or a specific channel. Generally, if you have more than 1 device, you need 1 channel per device and nothing in OMNI.

    A midi through enables that data to continue from 1 device to the next. A splitter box does the same, all 10 channels are sent to all outs. I prefer it, I find it easier to trouble shoot.

    Then Midi data is either Program (PC) or Control (CC) you need to read up what your device can read.

    Normally PC messages are used to change a Preset on a piece of hardware, so think changing from Patch 1 to patch 5 on the DD500

    CC is then normally assigned to individual parameters, so CC 1 could be tempo, CC 2 could be feedback etc
    normally CC is normally associated with a 2nd value for amount, 1-127 with 1 being low and 127 being high value. Sometimes a the value is is grouped in bands, eg 1-63 = off 64 to 127=ON, and sending any value within the band puts the parameter in that state.

    SO say CC no. 1 controls on/off
    Sending a value of 34 on CC1 = Off, sending a value of 120=ON

    where things get confusing is when manufactures poorly implement midi and use PC instead of CC, or only allow you to send OMNI or just 1 or 2 channels.

    Boss generally get it right, amps can be a right PITA

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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    Dd500 has midi out,  but not sure if it functions as a thru. Tgp has a huge Dd500 midi thread.

    When I used my es5 with multiple midi devices I found it easier to buy a midi splitter. So es 5 into splitter into each device.
    Just checked the online manual and you’re right. 

    HOW RIDICULOUS. 

    But OP, in this instance you will need a splitter box too as @teetonetal suggests. 

    My JVM has MIDI through, so couldn't I just got ES-8 > JVM > DD-500?
    Yes you could. 
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  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5542
    Yeah. Think of the midi channels as names if it makes it easier. Midi channel one is Steve. Your amp is now called Steve, and will only follow commands if he hears his name first. It’s like famous childhood game Simon Says, only yknow.... Steve. If channel 2 was in fact Nigel, no amount of shouting Nigel will make Steve respond. 

    This is a ridiculous explanation! :D
    maybe, but it makes perfect sense! I'm only ever going to use that now :)
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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    If it reassures you, what you’re aiming for is really simple and straight forward. Two midi cables required, and a bit of programming on the ES8 and you should be away. You’ll need to assign the midi channels on the Boss delay and the amp, but that should take minutes. 

    Midi is actually great once you get your head around it. It’s like a vision of the future, as imagined by the 1970s. 
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112
    Think of midi has 10 cables twisted together but only 1 plug on each end.
    You can either set data to transmit on all 10 cables (Omni) or you can be specific and specify cable/channel 1-10
    The receiving device, can then be set to OMNI where it picks up all data, or a specific channel. Generally, if you have more than 1 device, you need 1 channel per device and nothing in OMNI.

    A midi through enables that data to continue from 1 device to the next. A splitter box does the same, all 10 channels are sent to all outs. I prefer it, I find it easier to trouble shoot.

    Then Midi data is either Program (PC) or Control (CC) you need to read up what your device can read.

    Normally PC messages are used to change a Preset on a piece of hardware, so think changing from Patch 1 to patch 5 on the DD500

    CC is then normally assigned to individual parameters, so CC 1 could be tempo, CC 2 could be feedback etc
    normally CC is normally associated with a 2nd value for amount, 1-127 with 1 being low and 127 being high value. Sometimes a the value is is grouped in bands, eg 1-63 = off 64 to 127=ON, and sending any value within the band puts the parameter in that state.

    SO say CC no. 1 controls on/off
    Sending a value of 34 on CC1 = Off, sending a value of 120=ON

    where things get confusing is when manufactures poorly implement midi and use PC instead of CC, or only allow you to send OMNI or just 1 or 2 channels.

    Boss generally get it right, amps can be a right PITA


    THIS is a great help, I think, ha ha! Thanks for this!

    Just thinking that sometimes I won't be using my own amp, therefore I will need a separate set of patches on the ES-8 for this scenario which then means I'll be missing a MIDI connection to the DD-500. So, looks like I might need a MIDI splitter after all.

    Which MIDI splitter do you use?

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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    Think of midi has 10 cables twisted together but only 1 plug on each end.
    You can either set data to transmit on all 10 cables (Omni) or you can be specific and specify cable/channel 1-10
    The receiving device, can then be set to OMNI where it picks up all data, or a specific channel. Generally, if you have more than 1 device, you need 1 channel per device and nothing in OMNI.

    A midi through enables that data to continue from 1 device to the next. A splitter box does the same, all 10 channels are sent to all outs. I prefer it, I find it easier to trouble shoot.

    Then Midi data is either Program (PC) or Control (CC) you need to read up what your device can read.

    Normally PC messages are used to change a Preset on a piece of hardware, so think changing from Patch 1 to patch 5 on the DD500

    CC is then normally assigned to individual parameters, so CC 1 could be tempo, CC 2 could be feedback etc
    normally CC is normally associated with a 2nd value for amount, 1-127 with 1 being low and 127 being high value. Sometimes a the value is is grouped in bands, eg 1-63 = off 64 to 127=ON, and sending any value within the band puts the parameter in that state.

    SO say CC no. 1 controls on/off
    Sending a value of 34 on CC1 = Off, sending a value of 120=ON

    where things get confusing is when manufactures poorly implement midi and use PC instead of CC, or only allow you to send OMNI or just 1 or 2 channels.

    Boss generally get it right, amps can be a right PITA


    THIS is a great help, I think, ha ha! Thanks for this!

    Just thinking that sometimes I won't be using my own amp, therefore I will need a separate set of patches on the ES-8 for this scenario which then means I'll be missing a MIDI connection to the DD-500. So, looks like I might need a MIDI splitter after all.

    Which MIDI splitter do you use?

    Go for a powered one to be safe. The Kenton Midi Thru is the best bet. 
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  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5542
    I use the one @GavRichList ; mentions, the unpowered ones can have compatibility issues.
    Midi is great once you get the hang of it. 
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112

    @Teetonetal ; @GavRichList

    Could I use one of these:

    https://www.custompedalboards.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/SAM_7007.jpg

    Or are these still risky as it doesn't look like it's powered at all?

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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    It only looks like a 1 in, 1 out affair? If so, not going to do the job
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  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5542
    This is the one I use: 




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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112

    ah bugger - I was thinking that one cable to the DD500 and then only one more required out to the JVM - was forgetting that the signal actually needs split :(

    I also need a patchbay you see, so was trying to kill 2 birds with one stone!

    Cheers again

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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264

    ah bugger - I was thinking that one cable to the DD500 and then only one more required out to the JVM - was forgetting that the signal actually needs split :(

    I also need a patchbay you see, so was trying to kill 2 birds with one stone!

    Cheers again

    You could always see if bright onion could make you one? 
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112

    ah bugger - I was thinking that one cable to the DD500 and then only one more required out to the JVM - was forgetting that the signal actually needs split :(

    I also need a patchbay you see, so was trying to kill 2 birds with one stone!

    Cheers again

    You could always see if bright onion could make you one? 
    They don't seem to offer anything with MIDI connections after doing a quick website search...unless I'm missing something
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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264
    edited January 10
    There’s a US place who’ll definitely build you a custom one for a pedaltrain - a friend got one recently. Pretty impressive. Search “Best-Tronics Pro Audio” 
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112
    There’s a US place who’ll definitely build you a custom one for a pedaltrain - a friend got one recently. Pretty impressive. Search “Best-Tronics Pro Audio” 


    Well.....I'm planning on getting rid of the PT very soon too, and either getting a two-tier one from Custom Pedalboards, or maybe something even more boutique, so I'm happy enough to just get a normal, cheap-as-possible patch bay to tide me over.

    I will still check them out though, cheers buddy

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  • normula1normula1 Frets: 218
    The Kenton stuff is good. I've a couple of thdir merge boxes. Watch the polarity if you plan on powering it from a non-Kenton power supply.
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112
    normula1 said:
    The Kenton stuff is good. I've a couple of thdir merge boxes. Watch the polarity if you plan on powering it from a non-Kenton power supply.
    Right enough, centre positive as opposed to negative! Feckers!
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  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5542
    It's quite easy to find a reversed polarity lead... just don't plug it to anything else by accident. 
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112

    @Teetonetal @GavRichList - just ordered the MIDI Thru 5 direct from Kenton.

    Order placed at 12:55pm, and e-mail to confirm despatch at 2:20pm. Great service!!

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  • GavRichListGavRichList Frets: 4264

    @Teetonetal @GavRichList - just ordered the MIDI Thru 5 direct from Kenton.

    Order placed at 12:55pm, and e-mail to confirm despatch at 2:20pm. Great service!!

    Good man. If you need any help with any of the PC / CC message stuff, by all means drop me a pm; I’m sure I can get hold of the online manuals for the two boss units easily enough. 
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  • smudge_ladsmudge_lad Frets: 112

    @Teetonetal @GavRichList - just ordered the MIDI Thru 5 direct from Kenton.

    Order placed at 12:55pm, and e-mail to confirm despatch at 2:20pm. Great service!!

    Good man. If you need any help with any of the PC / CC message stuff, by all means drop me a pm; I’m sure I can get hold of the online manuals for the two boss units easily enough. 

    Thanks very much mate! Both manuals are easily available online, as well as the JVM one. I'm going to have a crack at it over the next few days once all the gear has arrived and see how I get on, but will definitely give you a shout if I'm struggling
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