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#426 DrVenkman ONLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 8, 2019 3:56 PM

I've now figured out how to get MIDI data *INTO* the XLD as well as out. From a human-factors/actual playability standpoint, my current arrangement is a disaster - to put it charitably  :grin:  - but it works! Thanks to Ivo's marvelous utility for displaying all incoming MIDI data and playing the note/velocity/patch data through the on-board S2 synth, I've been having a lot of fun today.

 

 

I've since figured out how to get Auria Pro on my iPad to output its MIDI data through my PreSonus interface to the Atari as well. Auria is a very full-featured DAW and its MIDI routing capabilities are both powerful and rather complex. It took me most of the afternoon to do something I should've been able to set up in about 10 seconds, but I've never used the MIDI Out abilities to drive an external synthesizer.

 

So basically I'm using a custom-built Atari 8-bit as a hardware host for a $45 synth module that could otherwise be hooked to an Arduino, a breadboard and a $3 MIDI jack, lol. But as I said, I'm having fun. :)



#427 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 9:11 AM

MIDI XEL and MIDI XEL II Schematic Corrections - PARTS LIST

 

Don't ask me how, but I screwed up on a couple of the parts being called out. Not sure if it was a change at Jameco, or just me transposing numbers. On the MIDI XEL parts list P1 and U2 were shown incorrectly. On the MIDI XEL II only item M1 was incorrectly specified.

 

Here are the updated schematics.

 

Attached File  MIDI-XEL_schema.pdf   43.93KB   18 downloads

Attached File  MIDI-XEL-II_schema.pdf   49.84KB   22 downloads

 

I have also corrected these on my website.

 

Thanks to Dropcheck for reporting the issue :) .



#428 manterola OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 9:48 AM

Hi Guys,

I have decided to build the SIO2MIDI inteface and I am only waiting for Oshpark to deliver the PCBs. I played a little bit with MIDI stuff in the beginning of the 90s but in general is mostly new to me.

I have an old keyboard with midi interface and my son has a electronic drum set with "usb midi". 

I noticed Dr. Venkman connected the ipad to the Atari midi (DIN5) standard interface. Can I do something similar regarding that usb midi instrument? I search google and I could not find a good answer. There are some developed USB host to midi solutions based on arduino kind of hardware, but what is the right way to do it? if any.

Thanks for your help



#429 DrVenkman ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:22 AM

Hi Guys,

I have decided to build the SIO2MIDI inteface and I am only waiting for Oshpark to deliver the PCBs. I played a little bit with MIDI stuff in the beginning of the 90s but in general is mostly new to me.

I have an old keyboard with midi interface and my son has a electronic drum set with "usb midi". 

I noticed Dr. Venkman connected the ipad to the Atari midi (DIN5) standard interface. Can I do something similar regarding that usb midi instrument? I search google and I could not find a good answer. There are some developed USB host to midi solutions based on arduino kind of hardware, but what is the right way to do it? if any.

Thanks for your help

 

Good question re "USB MIDI." So pardon if this is common knowledge to others, but if not it's a good thing to know/think about if you're considering using your Atari with modern-ish MIDI stuff. 

 

USB MIDI is great for everyone who uses modern hardware - most MIDI stuff these days is done with computer- or tablet-based DAWs, Digital Audio Workstations. You just plug in the USB cable from the synth, drum machine, sound module, or keyboard right into your computer and that's it. But USB requires a host controller on the bus; in fact, it's much like an SIO bus. That's why you can't cable two 1050 drives together and copy disks (wouldn't *THAT* have been a game changer? :P

 

So for USB MIDI devices to "talk" to a vintage MIDI device, you need more than just a USB-to-MIDI cable dongle. That connects the wires to the right places, but it's not a USB host. In my case, the USB host is my iPad Pro, though I could also have connected up my laptop to serve the same purpose. I also need a device that has traditional MIDI DIN jacks as well as USB. Fortunately I have a PreSonus interface box that can do that. So my MIDI cables go to my XLD, a USB cable goes from that PreSonus box to my iPad via the hub, etc. The iPad, via software I'm running called Audiobus, now routes the MIDI data between devices however I want. On a PC or Mac, you would do the same thing with whatever music software you use - Reaper, Sonar, Logic Pro, ProTools, Cubase, whatever you want ... route the MIDI data as needed for your setup.

 

If you happen to have a keyboard controller or standalone synth that has on-board MIDI DIN jacks, not just USB MIDI, you should be able to connect that device directly to the Atari MIDI adapter, no computer or tablet required. That's because MIDI is essentially peer-to-peer. It does not actually require a bus controller, only a master clock signal (which really only matters if you want to record audio - to just play sounds through the S2 module, you don't need a clock signal at all). And I *believe* most standalone synths should be able to generate a clock for sync purposes. I don't think a pure MIDI controller can generate a clock, but I'm not sure. I know my old M-Audio cannot, but it's USB MIDI only. Perhaps one with vintage MIDI jacks can do so but again, I don't know. 


Edited by DrVenkman, Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:16 AM.


#430 Forrest ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 12:39 PM

On the MIDI XEL II board, is the audio out line level or headphone level?



#431 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 12:46 PM

On the MIDI XEL II board, is the audio out line level or headphone level?

 

Line level.



#432 ivop OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:07 PM

But USB requires a host controller on the bus; in fact, it's much like an SIO bus. That's why you can't cable two 1050 drives together and copy disks (wouldn't *THAT* have been a game changer? :P )

 

Just came back to this thread to see if can/can't was fixed or make a remark about it. But it's fixed :) I reckon it could be possible to have two Mega Speedy firmwares, one drive being the master and the other the slave. Make a "cross-cable" for SIO. Connect the drives. Put a disk in drive "master", put an empty disk in drive "slave", and once both floppies are active, drive "master" starts copying to drive "slave". Once the busy lights go out, you know it's done. Rinse and repeat.



#433 Mathy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:18 PM

Hello Ivo

 

I had the same idea when I read Herb's posting.

 

Sincerely

 

Mathy



#434 DrVenkman ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:19 PM

 

Just came back to this thread to see if can/can't was fixed or make a remark about it. But it's fixed :) 

 

Yes, typo this morning when I made the post - I noticed it later and fortunately was able to correct it.  :)



#435 Brentarian OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 10, 2019 8:54 PM

This might be the easiest method to connect an iPad/Mac to an SIO2MIDI or 1088XLD. There are generic ones on eBay and AliExpress for half this price.

https://www.sweetwat...-midi-interface

#436 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 12, 2019 4:12 PM

I have a request. If there is anyone who is fluent in both Polish and English I could use your help to translate the Midi Recorder text file to an English pdf. I already ran it through Google Translate and began to put together something in Libre Office (Open Office), which I've included in the attached zip file. Problem is there were some strange characters that didn't translate. My intention is to provide a download of both the program and the user manual on my website.

 

Attached File  Midi Recorder Manual.zip   63.23KB   12 downloads

 



#437 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:19 PM

I think I now have a fairly good translation of both the Midi Recorder and Midi Pattern Editor manuals into English.
 
Attached File  Midi_Recorder_manual.pdf   45.93KB   21 downloads
Attached File  Midi_Pattern_Editor_manual.pdf   74.14KB   13 downloads
 
And both of these along with their programs have been made available on my website's MIDI page.
 
EDIT: re-uploaded Midi Pattern Editor Manual due to correction needed on Raster's real last name. Google Translate decided to change it to something else, and I didn't notice :) .
 
EDIT2: Although I got a better translation for the Midi recorder manual this go around, I see that there are a few symbols being substituted for something unrecognizable (i.e.,  ©). This will be an ongoing process, so expect to see future updates of these documents on my website. And to better distinguish between versions I will be adding a revision date to the footer in future English translations.

Edited by mytek, Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:57 AM.


#438 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Apr 16, 2019 5:08 PM

Still not happy with the user manual language translations to English for the MIDI Recorder and the MIDI Pattern Editor programs. I know that some of the translated text just isn't correct, but I don't know how bad it really is. Since I'm not a musician it would be difficult for me to see where the terminology isn't matching up with reality. So for now I have them marked as a work in process on my website. Hopefully a native Polish and Czech person reading this, will step forward at some point and help me get these documents in better form. Of course it would be best if they were also fluent in English ;) .



#439 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 17, 2019 8:44 AM

And now for the brutal honest truth.

All of the existing MIDI apps totally suck when it comes to the User Interface. Even when they share a common UI like the MIDI Player and Recorder, the execution of such is filled with irregularities from what would be considered convention. And what good is a recorder that doesn't even share the same file format of the player? Or apparently isn't even able to capture the timing of the song as it was entered from the MIDI instrument when subsequently played back (or at least I haven't figured out how to make it so). Perhaps this is possible with MIDITRACK, but this app is far from intuitive in operation, that even with a manual, it's a scary proposition to learn how to use it.

In this regard there has been some behind the scenes discussions going on about eventually replacing these apps with something much better. I'm leaning towards 3 apps that will all work with the standard .mid file format, and share a common UI. The 3 apps would be a Player, a Recorder, and an Editor.

Yes a new frontier in simple to use and standardized MIDI applications :) .

#440 ivop OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 27, 2019 10:28 AM

Today is King's Day in The Netherlands and traditionally there's a fleamarket all over town. And look what I found:

 

alesis-micron-small.png

 

It's an Alesis Micron Analog Modelling Synth. On ePay they seem to go for 200-350 USD. I paid 5 euro :)

 

There was no power supply, but the Atari 1050 PS works fine. It needs 9VAC/1.5A and the Atari PS is rated 3A, so no problems there.

As you can see, the rotary encoder and knob on the upper right is broken, the volume knob is missing, one slider cap is missing and (not very visible) the x/y/z knobs are mushy and covered with glitter. Used to be live gig equipment I guess, because at the bottom is a bunch of velcro to keep it from moving and the brand name at the back was made invisible with red tape. Maybe they were ashamed of using Alesis gear ;)

 

After opening it up, it seems the whole volume pot is borked. Need to replace it with a 10KAx2 and a proper knob. As for the rotary encoder, I found one in my parts bin :)

 

Looking forward to connecting this to my Atari XL :D


Edited by ivop, Sat Apr 27, 2019 10:34 AM.


#441 Forrest ONLINE  

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Posted Fri May 3, 2019 5:00 PM

I finished building my first SIO2MIDI board and have it assembled in a small wood box - looks pretty good. The wood box measures 3.5 x 3.5 x 1.75 inches high, and purchased for $1 at acmoore.com. The board was easy to build. I used a PICKit 3 clone to program the chip. I found out MPLAB defaults to low voltage programming when selecting the PIC12F1572. This is incorrect for this application - you should select high voltage programming in the Advanced tab of MPLAB. I used an SIO jack from salvaged from a 1030 modem. I soldered DuPont wires to the SIO header on the board

 



#442 Forrest ONLINE  

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Posted Fri May 3, 2019 6:22 PM

Pictures of my SIO2MIDI

 

IMG_0626.jpg IMG_0628.jpg IMG_0629.jpg IMG_0630.jpg


Edited by Forrest, Fri May 3, 2019 6:33 PM.


#443 DrVenkman ONLINE  

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Posted Sun May 5, 2019 5:36 PM

Because someone had to do it ...



#444 Sleepy OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon May 6, 2019 12:00 AM

Today is King's Day in The Netherlands and traditionally there's a fleamarket all over town. And look what I found:

 

attachicon.gifalesis-micron-small.png

...

Looking forward to connecting this to my Atari XL :D

 

Great! Looks nice and very compact.  :thumbsup:  Our Yamaha-Keyboard I bought for the kids is much bigger... :-/

 

I got my new pcbs this weekend; hope to find time to fit them soon. :-)

 

Sleepy



#445 Sleepy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 8, 2019 11:49 PM

At the last NOMAM (Not Only Marvelous Atari Machinery), a primarily ATARI-meeting in north-germany last month, we built up a little (only three 8bit) MIDImaze-ring. The MIDI-XEL works fine. :-)

 

Inbetween, I got the missing pcb for my MIDI XEL II and I´m going to assemble it. :-) Hope to test it at the upcoming meeting in The Hunsrück (H.A.T.Z. XIX, meeting in the south).

 

Sleepy


Edited by Sleepy, Wed May 8, 2019 11:53 PM.


#446 ivop OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 9, 2019 7:26 AM

Great! Looks nice and very compact.  :thumbsup:  Our Yamaha-Keyboard I bought for the kids is much bigger... :-/

 

Yes, it's nice and compact, but if your kids really want to learn to play with two hands, like bass and chords, or full piano parts, three otctave is not enough. You need at least five to properly practice playing a keyboard/synth/piano/organ. And even then I sometimes miss an octave at either end.

 

For size comparisson, here's the Alesis Micron on top of my Roland E28:

 

alesis-roland.png

 

Edit: BTW notice how all the knobs are fixed :D Except for M1 slider, which I need to 3D design/print.


Edited by ivop, Thu May 9, 2019 7:27 AM.


#447 Sleepy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 11, 2019 7:53 AM

:thumbsup: 

 

 

Yes, it's nice and compact, but if your kids really want to learn to play with two hands...

 

No, they don´t. The play around a little bit, but they both don´t have ambitions to make music by their own. Same with some other instruments they tried out. Like me, they don´t have any musical abilities... we´re only consuming music... :-/ Only my wife plays a little bit guitar, keyboard and upright.

 

Here two pics of my mostly populated S2-board:

 

DSC_0143.JPG

DSC_0144.JPG

 

Sleepy


Edited by Sleepy, Sat May 11, 2019 7:56 AM.


#448 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 11, 2019 8:48 AM

That's a great idea with the right angle headers, and the way you mounted them. Makes for an extremely compact assembly :) . Unfortunately this will not work --- see my additional notes below.

Oops but I see a problem... The S2 board was meant to mount from the other side, hence the reason it is shown with a a dashed line on the silkscreen which denotes hidden from view on the top side. The signals on the pin header will not align with the ones on the S2. So essentially you have things backwards, and even though it initially looked very cool, it will not work that way.

 

See dashed lines where the S2 module and header sit. If I had more room I normally would have placed text saying that this item is mounted on the back, but things were too tight for doing that.

 

post-42561-0-54450200-1553012488.png

 

Here's how the S2 board was meant to be mounted (this was shown 2 pages back in this POST).

 

post-42561-0-43472800-1553906055.jpg

 

You could still use right angle headers for the other signals, but they would need to face the other direction whether you mounted them on the top or the bottom.

 

Sorry for the bad news :(



#449 mytek OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 11, 2019 9:38 AM

I just added a note on the MIDI page of my website about the issue of which side the S2 Module gets mounted to. Hopefully that'll prevent a similar incident from occurring :) .

 

The problem is that the first MIDI XEL version board did have the S2 Module mounted to the top side, so I can see how it would be assumed that the same would hold true for the MIDI XEL II as well, even though it's not the same in reality.



#450 Sleepy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 11, 2019 9:39 AM

Oops but I see a problem... The S2 board was meant to mount from the other side, hence the reason it is shown with a a dashed line on the silkscreen which denotes hidden from view on the top side. The signals on the pin header will not align with the ones on the S2. So essentially you have things backwards, and even though it initially looked very cool, it will not work that way.

 

F*ck! Yes, you´re right - I was sleeping. I know the meaning of a dashed line, but I didn´t perceived it... Luckily I didn´t power it up until yet. Thanks for that important hint!

 

Probably the right angle headers doesn´t fit if the waveboard is mounted below. I´ll report.

 

Sleepy

 

Edit: Can anybody (admin?) add a notice in post #447 that the pics are not correct?


Edited by Sleepy, Sat May 11, 2019 9:43 AM.





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