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Re: Sending Sysx from a Foot Controller

The point of sysex is really for librarian editors and custom control over 
configuration parameters, usually from a computer but also from other midi 
controllers. This is a pretty normal thing for most midi controlled 
to use sysex, unless you are talking about dirt simple effects processors. 
Sysex allows you to have very detailed control over a device that is 
customized to what that device really does, as opposed to trying to force 
the device to fit under what MIDI thinks are control commands. That's why 
sysex was included in the midi spec. But sysex isn't really there for 
things that are performance controls, those things are all generally 
controllable by continuous controller and/or note messages. In the EDP 
these performance controls are stuff like feedback, volume, triggering 
loops, accessing functions like record and multiply, etc. Anything you 
would normally control in performance - those use the more "ordinary" midi 

In the EDP we make some distinction between what is a performance control 
and what is a configuration parameter that affects the way it operates. 
parameters are things you change once in a while (if ever), to alter the 
way the performance controls behave. In the past, the only way to do this 
was by pressing the parameter button to the appropriate row and then going 
to the button that controls the parameter you want to edit. That's kind of 
awkward. So what we are adding is Presets of parameter settings, so with a 
program change you can switch to a different setup. We also offer sysex 
deeper control. The sysex does act in real-time though, so you can 
effectively use this to change parameter settings on the fly if you want.

The real question you should be asking this guy first is whether his pedal 
supports midi commands like note on/off (preferably with velocity 
startsong, stopsong, continue, as well as features like midi merging. A 
of people are integrating samplers and synths and sequencers and loopers 
into their music these days, and there is a huge glaring lack of decent 
foot-operated midi controllers to support things with more sophisticated 
midi control interfaces. The world just doesn't need any more dumb midi 
footpedals that only send program change and 2 continuous controllers. If 
that's all a pedal can do, its not good enough anymore. This is why 
pmc-10's and midigators hold their value well and are hard to find used. 
People want them and that's all there is!!  If he doesn't see that, he's 
missing a big market opportunity in my opinion. I was completely floored 
that the new DMC ground control "pro" pedal STILL doesn't support the 
majority of the midi spec! How is that pro?

Cost? come on. if you've already gotten something designed to the point 
where you can program it to send out midi commands, you can send out any 
midi command. It's just a different byte. I don't see any reason why a 
controller can't support the full midi 1.0 spec. I mean it's been with us 
for 20 years now! Two decades worth of electronic music products that in 
some way or another use all of the commands available in midi. Why is it 
hard to get a decent foot controller to actually operate these?


At 09:36 AM 2/20/2002, Gary Lehmann wrote:
>I quoted Kim from the post about sysx to Mario at Axess and asked whether
>his new pedal will send sysx--here's what he said in an email to me:
>\The ONLY footcontroller manufactured recently that allows the 
>of user
>defined Sysex messages is the Rocktron All Access. The All Access used to
>\for $700us (it is currently not in production). Though the All Access is 
>\footcontroller, a lot of people find it difficult to use in a live
>situation because the
>\switches are very close together compared to other footcontrollers like 
>\RS-10 (which doesn't transmit Sysex messages).
>\So, I really think that if someone is designing a piece of MIDI gear and
>using Sysex
>\messages for real-time control is limiting the compatibility of their
>product. So, adding
>\a feature to our footcontroller that will only work with one piece of 
>and make the
>\footcontroller more difficult to use and slightly more expensive isn't
>going to be a priority.
>\Finally, the observation clearly states that;
>\"2nd way is using the new presets feature with a different setting in 
>\one, then use midi program change commands to change it on the fly."
>\which we've got covered, so custom Sysex messages aren't really a 
>FYI, if
>\Custom Sysex messages were really necessary, there are custom solutions
>\that only the people really needing this would/could pay for.
>So it seems it costs too much to build a full featured pedal based on how
>many people will buy it--sound familiar?

Kim Flint                     | Looper's Delight
kflint@loopers-delight.com    | http://www.loopers-delight.com