Author Topic: RC-50 - Two thoughts: FML, and patch switching isn't so bad.  (Read 1028 times)

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Offline Threeleggedyoyo

RC-50 - Two thoughts: FML, and patch switching isn't so bad.
« on: September 30, 2012, 05:06:29 AM »
Tonight I realized two things. One was immensely infuriating. The other was pretty spiffy.

First the bad news...

Why oh why did anyone ever make a Midi foot controller that can do PC messages and not CC messages? I scoured the internet for weeks reading stray instruction manuals until I thought I'd found the right one that suited me best. Then I scoured the internet for weeks tracking one down. I was certain it could do what I needed. I poured over the manual, and it really seemed like it could. But alas, it can't. Why do you taunt me, Midi Wizard mp128? Your foot layout is so scrumptious, your form factor so trim and sexy, your buttons so supple, your 8 continuous controller jacks so alluring... why? WHY?! So that's how my birthday started.

However, goofing around with the thing, I discovered something that may not be common knowledge and is kind of cool:

Patch switching actually isn't that bad.

It's long been a gripe that you can't switch patches in the middle of a performance without a delay. And if you do it on-board, that's pretty true. But with a PC controller that sends the patch number right away, the gap is a little less than one beat.

So in other words, if you hit the PC change button on beat 4 of a 4 beat sequence, the jump to the next one is not all that noticeable. It's less bad than the infamous first-loop glitch.

There are a couple caveats.

1) I'm using an RC-50. So there's that.
2) If you do this, the RC-50 (maybe not the 300?) will tell any sequencers down the line to start over.

For example, my RC-50 runs Midi clock to an SR-16. The SR-16 has a song sequencer that can play, say, 4 different 8-bar patters in succession once it gets the play command. Switching patches will send it back to the beginning of the song.

So there you have it.

If anybody has a workaround for this Midi thing, btw, I'd be much obliged. Is there any spiffy little piece of hardware that can convert PC messages to CC messages? :/

« Last Edit: October 06, 2017, 03:51:26 PM by admsustainiac »

Offline Guitarpolson

Re: Two thoughts: FML, and patch switching isn't so bad.
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2012, 06:44:05 AM »
A normal cheap behringer FCB1010 sends PC, CC en NOTE OFF/ON's, so I can tell how to use that one.
An yes: only the CC's can be used directly for controntrolling a GR-55 without switching to a new program.
In GR-55 system - midi/usb - general: switch PC RX off! That way the PC's are ignored.. 
Now the tricky part is to get the CC's to work on your gear. The FCB does not send a CC value of "0" when the pedal is deselected.
Therefore you must use a clever assign scheme, where 1 CC switches on and another CC switches off..
On the GR-55 the following assigns can be made:
-effect structure 2, MFX as compressor, mod as distortion
-all assigns are done in "momentary" mode
CC 1: MFX off , CC1: switch mod on
CC 2: MFX on ,  CC2: switch mod off
Now 4 assigns are used, So you can add another: in this case a alternate tuning switch
CC 3: Alt Tuning off
CC 4: Alt Tuning on
Now there are 2 assigns left for your creativity..
The Behringer can send 2 cc's per pedal: so you can make 1 pedal send both CC2 and CC3 to get a clean  guitar in normal tuning.
Hope this is helpfull for you or other folks with the same problem..

Or Buy a "softstep" and you can do anything without having to use double assigns.


Compare MIDI Foot Controllers here:

Read MIDIWizard manual
« Last Edit: April 17, 2015, 10:03:17 PM by Elantric »

Offline Threeleggedyoyo

Re: Two thoughts: FML, and patch switching isn't so bad.
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2012, 07:10:52 AM »
Yeah if I had money I'd be all over the softstep.

Truth be told I like the form of the MidiWizard better. And it has 8 inputs for traditional expression pedals, which I think I'd like better than the crazyland soft-rocker thingies.

For what it's worth I'm not trying to control a GR-55. It's for an Adrenalinn III. It actually won't be too bad even with just the program changes. It's way more than I need.

What I wanted it for was to send commands to both the RC-50 AND the Adrenalinn. Would have saved me space on a very large pedalboard.

The Behringer is an interesting beast. It's just so huge. Good to know about the CCs though... I hadn't thought of that issue. I'll have to pour over some more manuals to see if it would work or not. One thing that makes it kind of appealing is that it can send note messages. It would be nice to use it for organ pedal work, too, but then I'd be limited to too few buttons for everything. I'd like to get a 12-step for that, ideally.

On the bright side, the Midi Solutions Event Processor looks like it could solve my problem. Expensive though. I just dropped a bunch of money on gear thinking I was good for a while. :/

Another possibility is the old DMC MX-8. It clearly has some kind of processing, and I wanted a midi patchbay/merge anyway. But can it be programmed to send a CC message when it gets a PC message? I cna't make heads or tales of the manual. I'd be much obliged if anyone could illuminate me. They are pretty affordable.

Offline tekrytor

Re: Two thoughts: FML, and patch switching isn't so bad.
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2012, 09:27:27 PM »
I followed the FCB-1010 Yahoo groups for a long time after I first got mine, not so much since the UNO Guru drifted off though. However, I recall one user who did not need the EXPs and wanted a smaller footprint actually cut his EXPs off and was quite happy with the results. I also toyed with the idea of separating mine for better pedal board placement, never did though. Anyway, the guy who modified his posted photos and notes, so if that helps, go check it out on the FCB-1010 Yahoo Group for details.
I also have a MidiWizard. These are rather old and you can often find them at used music shops for a song. I've seen them several times for $20-US. Patience pays, if you have the time.
SY-300/BeatBuddy/VoiceLive 3/GR-55(v1.50)/33/1/50/700/VGA-7/V-Bass, Yam-G10, GPK-4, DIY X-Bee HighlyLiquidCPU "Cozy-Lil-Footie", FCB-1010, other MIDI stuff, Godin Freeway SA and various other GK equipped controllers, Sonar X1, Audacity, KXstudio, Misc devices

Offline mbenigni

Re: Two thoughts: FML, and patch switching isn't so bad.
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2012, 08:51:14 AM »
Why oh why did anyone ever make a Midi foot controller that can do PC messages and not CC messages?

I ask myself this question all the time.  As far as I'm concerned, PC messages never should have been walled off from CCs in the original MIDI spec.  I can't see any reason why PCs couldn't have been a specific CC message with program number as a subsequent parameter.  Then this ongoing risk of buying a controller that will do one and not the other might have been avoided altogether.  I've got a couple of foot controllers I've purchased over the years without reading the fine print, all gathering dust in their original boxes.

Lately I've cobbled together a solution by programming a MIDI Solutions Event Processor Plus to convert PC messages to CC on/off toggles.  I'm using this with a Tech21 MIDI Moose.  But it's an expensive solution that's still pretty kludgey, i.e. the lights on the Moose still behave like PC lights, reflecting the last button you pressed rather than the state of the corresponding CC.

Wish I hadn't sold my FC300 last year...   :'(