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Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

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Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

Postby Grobermatic » Mon May 18, 2020 6:19 pm

Hi all,

First time poster here... I have a Korg Kronos that I am trying to use with Logic Pro X for some multitrack Midi sessions. I have the Kronos connected via USB to my mac, and Midi setup as far as getting a signal to Logic and I'm able to record single tracks, Also changing the track on Logic will select the correct patch on the Kronos.

However I find that when I have more than one track, any sound played to one track will play though all the tracks so I have no separation.

I am using the External MIDI track and using the External Instrument plugin, and I am selecting MIDI channel 1 for track 1, channel 2 for track 2 and so on. I am also making sure I have the correct sounds selected at the Kronos which I do seem to have. Also turned off local control on the Kronos.

I'm pretty sure I have had this working before and I know I have seen others do it. So any obvious things to look out for when setting up the Kronos (or any similar keyboard) with Logic Pro X. Ideally I'd like to get all 16 channels outputting different sounds to different tracks in Logic with no overlap.

I know this seems like a simple task but I'm getting stuck and I don't know if my problem is at the DAW or Keyboard end ... any help much appreciated.

Thanks

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Re: Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

Postby Kwackman » Mon May 18, 2020 7:33 pm

There might be useful info in this thread.

https://www.soundonsound.com/forum/view ... 19&t=71538
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Re: Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

Postby Grobermatic » Mon May 18, 2020 7:39 pm

Thanks for your quick replay Kwackman, but I'm not having any issues with CoreMIDI. The MIDI signal is getting through and I can hear my keyboard. I'm just having issues keeping the tracks in Logic separate with only the patch selected playing in that track.

I'm working around using software interments from Logic but I want to use the Kronos sounds ideally.

Thanks

Craig
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Re: Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

Postby desmond » Mon May 18, 2020 7:54 pm

The only way you can have 16 individual Kronos sounds going to individual channel strips for audio in Logic, is if the Kronos has multiple outputs (16 of them, or better 16x2 (stereo) outputs).

You can't use a multitimbral instrument through the external instrument plugin unless it has multiple outputs, because the synth can otherwise only ever output a stereo mix of all it's parts - so all sounds you are using will come back on all channels you're using the external instrument plugin - which is clearly not what you want.

So, have a look in your Kronos manual to see how many audio outputs the synth has (I don't know offhand without looking it up), and that's the amount of simultaneous individual audio parts you can have at once coming into their own mixer channels in Logic.

Edit: Looking at the spec, it looks like it has one main pair of stereo outputs, which also feed via USB, and four individual outputs. So assuming the sounds you want to play are stereo, if you just use audio over USB, you have a stereo mix of all parts and that's it.

If you're connected via an audio interface, you could do three stereo pairs - ie have one stereo sound routed to the main mix, another stereo sound routed to outputs 3&4, and another one to outputs 5&6. That's the best you are going to do.

If it was me, unless there was a specific need, I'd forget about the individual outputs thing, and just sequence the Kronos over multiple MIDI tracks with it's own mix coming up in one stereo channel in Logic's mixer. Then when I was happy with the parts, I'd solo each and print them to audio, so I now had separate audio tracks of all the parts to treat individually as desired.
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Re: Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

Postby Eddy Deegan » Mon May 18, 2020 11:40 pm

desmond wrote:If it was me, unless there was a specific need, I'd forget about the individual outputs thing, and just sequence the Kronos over multiple MIDI tracks with it's own mix coming up in one stereo channel in Logic's mixer. Then when I was happy with the parts, I'd solo each and print them to audio, so I now had separate audio tracks of all the parts to treat individually as desired.

I can't agree with this more. I have a lot of workstations here, the Kronos included, and in all honesty you are far better off just driving them from MIDI parts in the DAW (whatever it is) than trying to combine everything together.

Many manufacturers, certainly Korg, Yamaha and Roland, try to get you to use their integration with your DAW of choice but in my experience it's simply not worth the bother because it's either a pain to set up, doesn't work as well as you'd like or doesn't play well with other devices in the same studio setup. I've been down this path in the past with Yamaha's mLan, Roland's Fantom-related shizzle, and the Korg Kronos itself and always ended up just using them as sound sources, although I have used the onboard sequencers for recording tracks as MIDI (I find it more immediate and a faster workflow) in order to then replay them faithfully into the DAW for safe keeping when you've got them right.

On the Kronos, using the built-in sequencer for everything is an option but if you don't want to do that then simply use it as a multitimbral sound source and drive it from the DAW, is my advice.

As Desmond says, solo the parts, print them individually (as a stereo track per part if appropriate) and mix/add FX in the DAW. I would also recommend disabling the global FX in the Kronos to avoid printing multiple instances of the reverb, chorus or whatever as you record each track individually as this can lead to a lot of muddiness in the result. Apply the master FX in the DAW so that all the parts are sharing the same "space".
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Re: Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

Postby Grobermatic » Thu May 21, 2020 1:04 am

Ok so I think I managed to do what I was wanting and maybe what you guys have advised me to do.

I was getting confused by tutorials telling me to use the External Instrument Plugin. What I actually needed to do was simply use the external MIDI track type and match each track’s MIDI channel up in the Kronos sequencer. Then when I play back from Logic, all the tracks play their own part simultaneously. I then print to audio and add fx etc as suggested.

Still not sure how this guy got it to work with the Roland FA08 using the External Instrument plugin: https://youtu.be/JwU1Ao53Djw

Thanks for the detailed advice though guys much appreciated.

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Re: Korg Kronos & Logic Pro X issues using multiple tracks

Postby Eddy Deegan » Thu May 21, 2020 3:38 am

Grobermatic wrote:Still not sure how this guy got it to work with the Roland FA08 using the External Instrument plugin: https://youtu.be/JwU1Ao53Djw

Glad you got it working :thumbup:

As for the video... deep breath. Count to 10 ...

Note the almost casual "oh, we're just going to change the core audio input and output device to the Fantom" at https://youtu.be/JwU1Ao53Djw?t=93

Quote: "So the FA, just so you remember, is (sic) audio, MIDI interface just with USB, so one cable you can plug into your laptop and begin recording. So this is pretty cool"

No, it's pretty common these days. It also comes with things you need to be aware of to use properly but the presenter/writer is either oblivious to them or can't be bothered to take the time to explain them.

Apart from anything else it's completely unnecessary to set the output device to be the Fantom unless you're using the Fantom as your primary output sound interface, which most people aren't as they have dedicated audio interfaces that are not synthesizers.

A bit later when he's recording the drums (https://youtu.be/JwU1Ao53Djw?t=182) notice that there is a 'flanging/phasing' effect on the audio.

This is because while recording the drums, the MIDI is coming from the Fantom, entering the DAW to be recorded, then being echoed back up the cable and triggering the same drums fractionally later. This uses twice the polyphony as well as resulting in that phasing sound (which of course is not present when he replays the recorded MIDI back later).

Apart from that, it's just a bog standard workflow showing using multiple tracks, each with a different channel assigned, playing a multitimbral sound generator which is exactly the scenario I described above although I don't use Logic these days so cannot speak to how it's configured in the software.

It's a cool workflow and all, but it's been around since the mid 1980s.

Videos like that annoy me. They are mainly "hey guys let's all be cool Roland kids and get hyped upt about this awesome product" with little or no consideration for how such hardware is likely to be used in a real environment, whether that's a commercial studio or in the home.

It's not just Roland. IMHO manufacturers should start thinking about how their product is likely to be used in combination with other devices rather than trying to get people to lock into whatever ecosystem/hardware configuration is the flavour du jour.

That video was terrible.

/rant

Sorry, I'm being a grumpy old man today. I've even got a t-shirt on that says so :-)
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