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controller assignments x-touch compact

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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby tipex » Fri Sep 04, 2020 6:28 pm

Yes, I'm sure elf, when you change from MCU to standard you have to power down and press a button on the unit as you're starting up. And when you go into logic its not picking up the position of faders etc on a project. But if you go into controller assignments, expert mode and move a rotary control say, it'll go to a Mackie mapping, like vpot4, pan for example. So if you try to map that knob to a synth parameter you get all the problems
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby The Elf » Fri Sep 04, 2020 6:30 pm

Fair enough...
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby desmond » Fri Sep 04, 2020 6:41 pm

tipex wrote:Yes, I'm sure elf, when you change from MCU to standard you have to power down and press a button on the unit as you're starting up. And when you go into logic its not picking up the position of faders etc on a project. But if you go into controller assignments, expert mode and move a rotary control say, it'll go to a Mackie mapping, like vpot4, pan for example. So if you try to map that knob to a synth parameter you get all the problems

Well, yes, as you've previously added it as an MCU, so Logic has all those mappings listening to that port installed. Did you remove the control surface from the control surface setup window as I recommended? If you did do this properly, all those mappings would be gone and they wouldn't interfere with anything you do manually.

So - remove it from the control surface setup window (and anything else there set to listen to the X-Touch MIDI port).
Quit Logic.
Make sure the XTouch is in normal (non-MCU mode) and power it down.
Start Logic.
Open the control surface setup window.
Turn on the X-Touch.
Make sure that Logic didn't automatically add a new MCU control surface (as a new icon) if it detected the X-Touch as an MCU.
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby tipex » Fri Sep 04, 2020 7:28 pm

yes, it works that way, i.e when you delete mackie control, Elf was wondering why it would be picking up mackie mappings when the hardware is in standard mode
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby OneWorld » Fri Sep 04, 2020 9:50 pm

If I understand correctly I have been down this road too, in the mistaken belief that a controller can be running using MCU protocol and in a more ad hoc manner, say a soft synth controller. Yes in theory you might just be able to cobble together some sort of functionality but as Elf infers, the juice ain’t worth the squeeze and the setup so ‘fragile’ that you’ll lose control of your senses. I have used all manner of controllers and at best even the most finely honed setup will involve some degree of compromise.

I currently use an ICon Qcon which in common with many other controllers has 8 + shit 8 user configurable buttons, but they are used for DAW commands. I also use a cheapo UC33 controller as a dedicated soft synth/VST controller that way there are no conflicts with DAW. It isn’t a ‘perfect’ solution but could there ever be susceptible a thing anyway.
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby tipex » Fri Sep 04, 2020 10:11 pm

thanks Oneworld, no it's not that, the x-touch compact has two separate modes, mackie and standard midi - mackie control works as you would expect, and standard midi mode is supposed to work as an ordinary midi controller where you have to map what you want yourself using midi learn. The problem is that when in standard midi mode, and carrying out some midi learn functions, the rotary knobs are often saying there's something else assigned to them - this turns out to be mackie mapping parameters, like pan - and it just doesn't work properly, you might get the knob to sort of control something in a synth, but it will also affect a pan somewhere else - so basically, when you've put the compact into midi mode, it's still communicating with the mackie mapping somehow - as if the knobs are fixed to the mackie mapping
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby desmond » Fri Sep 04, 2020 10:13 pm

OneWorld wrote:If I understand correctly I have been down this road too, in the mistaken belief that a controller can be running using MCU protocol and in a more ad hoc manner, say a soft synth controller.


It's not a mistaken belief, it just takes some effort. :tongue:

OneWorld wrote:Yes in theory you might just be able to cobble together some sort of functionality but as Elf infers, the juice ain’t worth the squeeze and the setup so ‘fragile’ that you’ll lose control of your senses.

Not just in theory, for me at least it's working quite well in practice and it's no more fragile than a regular MCU setup. In fact, this custom config is by far the best controller scheme I've ever had and is what I've been trying to get to since first trying to do something better than the manufacturers were doing from about the Logic 7.x days...

OneWorld wrote:I have used all manner of controllers and at best even the most finely honed setup will involve some degree of compromise.

That's the benefit of forgetting what the manufacturers think will work for you and implementing what *you* need - you can decide your own compromises! :thumbup:

For instance, I don't need to be able to call up and page between 8 thousand parameters on a synth (though I could do that if that was a design goal). If I need to get to the fourth envelope segment's velocity modulation curve modifier value for the third LFO's fifth modulator, I can do that on the GUI, and I'm not going to need to want to get into that deep sound programming when making music anyway. However I *do* need the important ones - general oscillator controls, filter controls, envelope controls, and a few others, ones that I can tweak in a musical context in a consistent place under my fingers, regardless of the instrument in use, and this alone has brought my soft synths (and other plugins) to life under my fingers.

I can use my controller as a regular mixer with all the usual functions, and as a dedicated soft synth controller with a standard consistent layout for all my plugins, and as a plugin controller, switch between plugin inserts to call individual plugins onto the controls, and also do a few extra custom things that I find useful - with the ability to change and refine as I go to keep improving my setup and workflow, all in a small portable unit, no mapping required, it all works seamlessly, the way I want it to work.

The software side of things is all great (and I have some extensions in mind), it would just be better if there was better hardware for this, but I can't see that happening, seeing as after all these years we *still* don't have a well-designed hardware synth plugin controller on the market...

But, as I said, this kind of controller hacking is not for everyone, and it's non trivial, but the workflow rewards are there if you have specific needs...
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby desmond » Fri Sep 04, 2020 10:17 pm

tipex wrote:The problem is that when in standard midi mode, and carrying out some midi learn functions, the rotary knobs are often saying there's something else assigned to them - this turns out to be mackie mapping parameters, like pan - and it just doesn't work properly

I couldn't work out from your earlier response if you tried my instructions, I think you'll find that if you do follow them properly, it will fix this problem. Either that, or you're just sending standard CC 7 etc MIDI controls from your controller to Logic, and Logic is responding by moving the faders etc, as it's programmed to respond to standard MIDI volume & pan commands by default.

You can either not use those CC numbers, or if you use controller assignment to learn them to other parameters, that will stop happening as your incoming commands get stolen by the controller assignments and aren't passed on to the sequencer.

If you're using the MIDI learn inside third-party plugins, then yes, set your controller to use other CC's than standard MIDI volume and pan controllers, would be my advice.
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby tipex » Fri Sep 04, 2020 10:39 pm

Hi Desmond, yes I've operated the unit in the way you described and that works fine, I was just saying it's a pain that you'll have to reinstall, uninstall the MCU every time - can't believe it's designed to work like that

With the cc messages, could be something there, maybe changing some settings in the editor might sort it, but I know little about such things. It's got some default files which I dumped into the hardware, and did factory reset, but that didn't help
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby desmond » Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:07 pm

tipex wrote:Hi Desmond, yes I've operated the unit in the way you described and that works fine, I was just saying it's a pain that you'll have to reinstall, uninstall the MCU every time - can't believe it's designed to work like that

No, you shouldn't have to do that. As I said above, I couldn't decode a response to deduce what you had done or what behaviour you were seeing: Once you delete the MCU from the control surface setup page, and start the XTouch on standard MIDI mode, Logic should not reinstall an MCU, as it shouldn't find one.

(Technical note, when Logic starts, it sends out a message to say eg "Are there any MCU units out there?", and an MCU will respond with "Yes, I'm here, go and add me I'd love to talk", and there's some communication and Logic then adds the handling for that MCU.

If you put the XT into standard mode, when Logic sends an "Are there any MCU units out there?" message, the XT should *not* respond with yes, and stay in standard mode. Because you've told it to *not* be an MCU.)

*If* it does not behave like this (like I say, I have no idea how it behaves unless you tell me) instead, and responds to an "Are there any MCU units out there?" with "Oh crap, well, I'm in standard mode now, but perhaps I should switch to MCU mode?", switches to MCU mode, then Logic will automatically install it as expected.

But given you have to turn the unit off and power up with a specific key sequence, I'd be surprised if it behaved like that.

So, make sure the XT is in standard mode, turn it off, make sure any control surfaces are removed in Logic's control surface setup window, quit Logic. Now, start Logic, and open the control surface setup window. When that's running, turn on the XT.

*Does the XT stay in standard mode that you left it in, or does it switch to MCU mode, with Logic creating an MCU icon on the control surfaces setup window?*

That's the specific behaviour I'd need clearly answered.

tipex wrote:With the cc messages, could be something there, maybe changing some settings in the editor might sort it, but I know little about such things. It's got some default files which I dumped into the hardware, and did factory reset, but that didn't help

Well, if you want to hack, you'll need to learn! ;)
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby tipex » Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:19 pm

Hi Desmond, yes as I say it works fine, but when I want to use the MCU mode which is often, I'll have to reinstall it, then uninstall it to use the standard midi
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby desmond » Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:41 pm

tipex wrote:Hi Desmond, yes as I say it works fine, but when I want to use the MCU mode which is often, I'll have to reinstall it, then uninstall it to use the standard midi

Ok, I see what you mean now, thanks. My guess would be - I don't think it's designed to be used in that manner, it's more likely supposed to be an either/or thing.

Maybe try asking on a Logic forum how other XT users people are using it with Logic, they might have some tips...
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby tipex » Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:49 pm

yes, have been doing that, not many users unfortunately, think I'll have to send it back as a faulty unit if there's no solution - thanks for all your help
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby The Elf » Sat Sep 05, 2020 8:17 am

As Desmond says, an initial 'handshake' message is sent from the DAW (Cubase in my case), and a message is returned from the X-Touch containing a calculated value to establish MCU communication. Without that response my DAW doesn't recognise that an MCU-compatible device is available.

I would get a MIDI monitor running to see exactly what is being exchanged once MCU is is not 'switched on'.

It doesn't sound as if the X-Touch is faulty.
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Re: controller assignments x-touch compact

Postby tipex » Sat Sep 05, 2020 11:51 am

thanks Elf, I'm looking at that, not sure how it's helping at present, but I have seen that with 8 of the rotary controls on the compact, the cc / value that is sent when I midi learn is the same as the mackie control cc / value for pan for each of those rotary's - the other rotary's don't have this doubling up (touch wood).

what would be a solution here? would it be to make adjustments in the compact editor?
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