Go Down

Topic: Best Controller for project with multiple midi outputs (Read 966 times) previous topic - next topic

Allordacia1

I am working on a synth project that will end up being built into my desk to control several midi enabled synthesizers from one spot. One hurdle I am trying to get across is what controller I would like to use for this. I have a small collection I have acquired and used for various things but since this is going to be permanent, I want to make sure I choose the right one. Not opposed at all to buying something if it would work better but I do have the following boards readily available:

-Arduino MKRZero Music
-Teensy 3.6
-Arduino Uno
-Arduino Mega

I am leaning towards the mega for its plethora of available serial ins and outs but the teensy I have heard is better at handling midi messages. I need to be able to have at least 6 midi din outputs and a midi din input. My biggest question is what board would be the best choice and is what I am doing even doable via Arduino?

Grumpy_Mike

Quote
I need to be able to have at least 6 midi din outputs and a midi din input.
There is no Arduino board that does six serial outputs.

However, you can get external serial ports with built in FIFO buffers.
Like this one https://www.maximintegrated.com/en/products/interface/controllers-expanders/MAX14830.html

Not sure if you can get them on a breakout board but you can always make one.

PieterP

Teensy 3.6 has 6 UARTs (5 through the header pins and 1 through the pads on the back). It also supports 16 MIDI cables over USB.

MIDI is slow compared to the clock speed of the Teensy, so it's definitely doable.

Pieter

Allordacia1

Teensy 3.6 has 6 UARTs (5 through the header pins and 1 through the pads on the back). It also supports 16 MIDI cables over USB.

MIDI is slow compared to the clock speed of the Teensy, so it's definitely doable.

Pieter
This is what I was looking at doing but was worried about the clock speed being able to handle it so this looks promising! I am going to experiment with this direction. I plan on having lots of knobs and buttons to control different parameters so I will definitely be pushing the limits of how much I will be able to do.

To answer Mike, I wasnt sure if there was a sneaky way to do multiple midi outputs with the limited serial outputs of the Arudino. Since each port would only be listening for certain midi channels I thought maybe there was a way to wire multiple outputs to the same serial out but literally as i am typing this it dawned on me how incredibly stupid that would be... so yeah glad I didnt continue down that path!

The teensy looks like the right way to do although I wonder if I should use the mega to control all my buttons and pots and send those changes to the teensy so it is only handling the midi signals?

Grumpy_Mike

Quote
I wonder if I should use the mega to control all my buttons and pots and send those changes to the teensy so it is only handling the midi signals?
I don't think that buys you anything, you still have to send the data from the Mega to the Teensy anyway.

If you are worrying about the input / output pins then simply fit a port expander or even up to 8 to give you lots more. I would recommend the MCP23017, you can have 8 on the same SPI bus with no extra pins.

Allordacia1

I don't think that buys you anything, you still have to send the data from the Mega to the Teensy anyway.

If you are worrying about the input / output pins then simply fit a port expander or even up to 8 to give you lots more. I would recommend the MCP23017, you can have 8 on the same SPI bus with no extra pins.
MCP23017 is a beast! This is perfect, I just ordered one and might end up stacking them if I need more. Thanks for this suggestion!

Go Up