How does high resolution midi in ableton work?

I have a Little Phatty. When I'm using its onboard pots, I can do some really fine adjustments, get pretty smooth filter sweeps and so on. As I understood it, the LP is using a kind of high resolution 14 bit midi to do this internally.

But I haven't found a way to send this kind of midi from ableton. If I turn on the LP as a midi controller, run the midi signal through ableton and back out again to the LP, those same onboard pots sound very steppy! Not smooth at all.

There is the option on the LP for it to send 14-bit midi, and this actually seems to make a difference, but it's still not as smooth as if I use the LP standalone. So I guess that ableton is somehow downgrading the signal to its maximum resolution..?

Is it just my setup, or is ableton just not able to handle this kind of data? Is there any other program that can cope with it? Logic?

I also think it would be really nice to have this kind of high resolution control over soft synths. Ableton should make support for this, if it doesn't already have it.

Maybe there is a max4live workaround?


sjursju 6 years ago | 0 comments

3 answers

  • cutwithflourish
    26 answers
    56 votes received
    3 votes

    Standard MIDI is only 7 bit. Apparently some devices and software are capable of combining two named MIDI parameters to send 14bit data. There are also other higher resolution standards than MIDI (OSC for example).

    A synth that uses digitally controlled analogue components (like your Little Phatty) will usually have a much higher internal resolution for data sent between knobs and the actual analogue components, but this doesn't have anything to do with MIDI.

    It seems from browsing around that some people are using controllers that output 14bit data successfully with Live, so perhaps this is a question for Moog or Ableton support.

    6 years ago | 1 comment
  • Cuv
    1 answer
    1 vote received
    1 vote

    " Some controllers, such as pitch bend, are special. Whereas the data range of most continuous controllers (such as volume, for example) consists of 128 steps ranging in value from 0 to 127, pitch bend data may be encoded with over 16,000 data steps. This produces the illusion of a continuously sliding pitch, as in a violin's portamento, rather than a series of zippered steps such as a guitarist sliding their finger up the frets of their guitar's neck. Thus, the pitch wheel on a MIDI keyboard may generate large amounts of data which can lead to a slowdown of data throughput....."


    4 years ago | 0 comments
  • ShelLuser
    62 answers
    108 votes received
    -5 votes

    I never heard of "hires midi" before, and personally I think its a very poor choice of wording. Midi is midi, no matter how you call it. So no, I don't think using another sequencer is going to do you much good either.

    I also doubt the smoothness comes from the midi data itself, most likely its triggered by filtering (either on the sound or midi part).

    6 years ago | 2 comments

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