Author Topic: A possible all in one synth ??  (Read 7485 times)

opus.quatre

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A possible all in one synth ??
« on: September 30, 2016, 06:52:09 PM »
Hello there..
I guess this question is mainly for Xavier..
I would like to built an all in one synth, better than an expander..
I would like to have in a single box, the keyboard, 2 or 3 wheels (bend, mod, plus an extra one), and an input for breath controller (in fact, an external potentiiometer)..
I already have a good 3oct keyboard (Kimber Allen, with 2 contacts per key, which I bought in the last century, but never buiilt..)
The questions are..

1) Does anyone here have a good scheme, to share ? So that I could build my own controller..

But I could as well use an already made master keyboard..

2) In both cases, I would want the "internal" keyboard to control the Preenfm2, of course.. So I would connect its midi out to the tmidi in of the preenFM2.. Simple and basic.. But I would also want to be able to command the Preenfm2 with an external device (Other keyboard, sequencer, or anything..).. So of course, I would need a midi merge..
Does anyone have a good scheme for a MIDI merge circuit ?? A real midi merge, able to manage at least two inputs, even if they send midi codes simultaneously..

3) The question is for Xavier.. Would it be possible to have the preenfm2 merging 2 or more midi inputs, by itself, without using any midimerge ??

3) The next question is for Xavier again.. Would it be possible to have the Preenfm2 doing all this :   reading the (open/close) contacts of the bare keyboard, translating into note on/note off/ velocity.. Reading the status of theb  wheels and external potentiometer, turning these into commands value.. Using all this to command its own sound generating module.. accpeting incoming midi data, and merging them with its own command values.. and eventually, sending those data to a midi out plug ??
What any compact combo synth can do, in fact..

Maybe this topic has already been talked about, I don't know..

Have a nice weekend..
Thierry

lokki

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Re: A possible all in one synth ??
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2016, 11:41:07 PM »
Hello there..
I guess this question is mainly for Xavier..
I would like to built an all in one synth, better than an expander..
I would like to have in a single box, the keyboard, 2 or 3 wheels (bend, mod, plus an extra one), and an input for breath controller (in fact, an external potentiiometer)..
I already have a good 3oct keyboard (Kimber Allen, with 2 contacts per key, which I bought in the last century, but never buiilt..)
The questions are..

1) Does anyone here have a good scheme, to share ? So that I could build my own controller..

But I could as well use an already made master keyboard..

2) In both cases, I would want the "internal" keyboard to control the Preenfm2, of course.. So I would connect its midi out to the tmidi in of the preenFM2.. Simple and basic.. But I would also want to be able to command the Preenfm2 with an external device (Other keyboard, sequencer, or anything..).. So of course, I would need a midi merge..
Does anyone have a good scheme for a MIDI merge circuit ?? A real midi merge, able to manage at least two inputs, even if they send midi codes simultaneously..

3) The question is for Xavier.. Would it be possible to have the preenfm2 merging 2 or more midi inputs, by itself, without using any midimerge ??

3) The next question is for Xavier again.. Would it be possible to have the Preenfm2 doing all this :   reading the (open/close) contacts of the bare keyboard, translating into note on/note off/ velocity.. Reading the status of theb  wheels and external potentiometer, turning these into commands value.. Using all this to command its own sound generating module.. accpeting incoming midi data, and merging them with its own command values.. and eventually, sending those data to a midi out plug ??
What any compact combo synth can do, in fact..

Maybe this topic has already been talked about, I don't know..

Have a nice weekend..
Thierry

let me address a few of those questions,

for midimerge you will need a microcontroller, since you effectively have to merge two serial data streams into one, so you have to "decode" both midistreams and reencode them into one. so no easy scheme, sorry. there are many arduino circuits and programs that do that. you can however control the preenfm from usb midi and midi din, so maybe that is an option? there is also a usb midi to serial midi converter for arduino, so that could work as well. let me know if you want to go that route, i can give you some links.

number 3 is VERY unlikely.

Xavier

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Re: A possible all in one synth ??
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2016, 07:13:41 PM »
Hi,

1 ) For controller i think the midibox site is a good ressource to start :
http://www.ucapps.de/
Look at the controller project.

2/first 3) Midi is managed by what is called USART . Yes there are several USART available in the STM32F405 (MCU used by the preenfm2).
I don't have in mind if the other USART MCU pins are exposed through the preenF405.
You'll have to do a bit of research ;)
It's not complicated to have the MCU listen to several USART at the same time. The midi part of the PCB will have to be doubled though (6N137 and the few resistors).

Second 3) I don't understand. Isn't you keyboard midi already ?
If not, go there : http://www.ucapps.de/midio128.html
If yes why do you want the preenfm2 to do that ? Cannot the keyboard send midi information ?

Xavier


opus.quatre

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Re: A possible all in one synth ??
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2016, 12:56:51 PM »
Hello there..
Much thanx to both of you..

Yes, Lokki, I might get to you for arduino (or other) midi merge solutions, when it's time (for now, I even have no preenfm, so that can wait..).. I'll remeber that I can contact you in case I need your help..
Very much thanx for your proposition..

And to Xavier.. Maybe it's a bad shortccut in my mind, but I was thinking that if the preenfm could do everything by itself, from analysing the keyboard diod matrix and wheels and other external controls, to producing the convenient sound, it would be much better.. Maybe I'm wrong.. And probably, it would had some latency, reduce the speed, and would maybe result in lagging.. So it can be best, for me, to use an external device to control the Preenfm module..

I will still want to have it all in a single box, anyway.. So will I, or not, need a midi merge module ? According to your phrase "It's not complicated to have the MCU listen to several USART at the same time. The midi part of the PCB will have to be doubled though (6N137 and the few resistors" I feel authorised to conclude that no midimerge would be necessary.. Ok ok for doubling the midi part.. that's in the case I would build the preenfm kit.. And in case I would use Norbim's solution using  Stm32F4Discovery ??

And concerning the midibox solutions.. You have to know that my knowledge in electronics is very weak, and dates from approx 30years.. And my knowledge in programming is restricted to Basic.. SO you guess that I understand nothing in shift registers and so on.. I simply understand that this MIDIO128 V3 would propose much more options than what I need..
I simply need a 3octave keyboard with velocity, plus 3 wheels (assigned to bend, modulation and breath controller), plus, if I use the Stm32F4Discovery module, a knob dedicated to CC7..
Sure, I can still find a second hand midi keyboard.. but with breath controller input ??
Anyway.. I will browse the midi-box pages, maybe I'll find something for me..
Thanx for your answer..
 and have a nice sunday, all of you..
Thierry


« Last Edit: October 02, 2016, 01:08:00 PM by opus.quatre »

served

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Re: A possible all in one synth ??
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2016, 04:48:54 PM »
Hi.

This has been in my mind the whole summer.
Basically what inspired me to do this was shruthi synth with a keyboard and expansion.


If you get anywhere let me know.
I can do the Keys+case for this if you need.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2016, 04:57:36 PM by served »

opus.quatre

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Re: A possible all in one synth ??
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2016, 06:06:09 PM »
Hello Served..
Nice synth on the picture..
I"ll be thinking about the scrutin later..
I really am an aficionado of the FM synthesis,  and for now,  what I really want is a Preenfm2..
Concerning the box and design,  I would probably go in the direction of the Waldorf Blofeld..  In a way,  the Preenfm2 style is already not so far from this beauty..
The problem of the case is not much a problem for me.. This doesn't scare me..
 It's more about building a kboard with the convenient controllers.. But thanx for your proposition..
Thierry

served

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Re: A possible all in one synth ??
« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2016, 09:46:05 AM »
The point of my post was that you are not creating anything new.
It has been done before. (not with PreenFM, but the road is the same)
Just see how others have done it and it should get you through your questions.
There are many complete guides on how to do it. Just with different synths.

There is no need to change PreenFM software for it, you can just start building.

opus.quatre

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Re: A possible all in one synth ??
« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2016, 01:01:39 PM »
Hello Served..
I know I'm not the first one wanting to build a dynamic kboard and to put it in a single box with the expander..  Of course I'm not..
I've been browsing the web through the whole Spring and summer,  and sure there are lots of people who are concerned.. They open a new Web page explaining their projects,  and they promise to keep the whole world informed about it's evolution..  It seems that most of them die just after..  Or they simply become disabled,  or they forget the address of their webpage,  or they no more have internet,  or they abandon the project..

Or you go to a forum where someone asks the group if they can help,  and of course they can't but they confirm that it is possible,  that they have heard of someone who knows someone who is friend with someone who made something similar,  but where ??  Oh silly thing,  they only dont know this detail..  But they in sure that,  by browsing the web,  the guy sure will find the answer and solution..
They might even give a link to a page.. What a chance !! A page which contains links to pages which centaines links etc and so on kaj tiel plu.
So what Ive learned for now is that there is a module called arduino,  who can do the job..  They dont tell how to use it..  Should I cook it,  boiled or fried,  which is better ??  Or should I simply place it at the center of a pyramid, at which exact distance of both the keys and the expander ??  Does it work only on full-moon nights ??  Or should I wear a pair,  as ear rings,  and a 3rd one as neck lace ??
Simply..  Where do I connect what ?? What programm do I have to burn into the module,  how do I do it, etc etc.. Better than "it's so easy..  As easy as doing it..  Sure you will find out.. "
But this, they never tell..
Or when they do,  it's a 1oct keyboard.. It is not dynamic,  it only sens midi to chan1, it has no contrĂ´ler,  but it can be improved by taking a totally opposite direction..
Or you find a complete DIY kit for a 4oct. master keyboardwhich is simply twice as expansive as a complete studio.. No,  I didn't mention any German brand starting by Do.. Did I ??

Anyway..  It seems that the easiest and cheapest solution will be,  for me,  to buy a second hand midi controller,  take it out of it's box,  and put it inside a new box,  altogether with the preenfm2 module and a few cables and wires..

Anyway..  Thanx for your kind answer.. And have a nice sunny day..
Thierry

« Last Edit: October 05, 2016, 01:20:12 PM by opus.quatre »