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Playing Standard MIDI Files with Sweet MIDI Player

Started by arlo, March 16, 2015, 04:50:50 PM

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UPDATE JUNE 10, 2018: In the new app versions released today, you can attach an SMF file (.mid) to a song and play it back just as you would with a "real" audio recording. This should eliminate the need for another app like Sweet MIDI Player. Details are in "To play music from a Standard MIDI File" on the Sending MIDI page:


Many people have asked about playing Standard MIDI Files from Set List Maker on iOS. Since Set List Maker uses standard iOS audio frameworks, it can only play audio formats that iTunes can play. But if you have a MIDI player app that can run in the background and can be controlled with MIDI messages, you can combine that app's MIDI playback functionality with the rest of Set List Maker's functionality.

Here's a tutorial for using Sweet MIDI Player as a background MIDI player for Set List Maker:

  • Open Set List Maker, navigate to MIDI Presets and tap the + button.
  • In the Title field, enter Start MIDI Sequence and in the Raw MIDI field, enter FA.
  • Tap the + button again.
  • In the Title field, enter Stop MIDI Sequence and in the Raw MIDI field, enter FC.
  • Navigate to Layouts > [your layout name] > Edit Details > Song Selection Actions and turn on Send MIDI.
  • In the top toolbar, tap the MIDI icon to open the MIDI Status window, and if the bottom button says MIDI Stopped, tap it to start the MIDI engine.
  • Open Sweet MIDI Player, tap Settings in the bottom toolbar, scroll down to Other Settings, and tap MIDI Input.
  • Select Set List Maker under Devices. If Set List Maker does not appear in the list, return to step 6.
  • Under the When In Background section, turn on Monitor MIDI Input.
  • Under Stop Monitoring After, change the length to the longest that your device will remain idle during a performance, or to be safe, set it to the full duration of your performance.
  • Tap Done to close the Settings window.
  • Tap Playlists in the bottom toolbar, then tap Edit in the top toolbar, then tap New in the top toolbar.
  • Enter Set List Maker as the playlist name.
  • Tap Done in the top toolbar.
  • Select Set List Maker in the list of playlists.
  • Tap Edit in the top toolbar, then tap + in the top toolbar.
  • In the popup window, tap the + button next to each MIDI sequence you want to add to the playlist.
  • When you are finished selecting MIDI sequences, tap outside of the popup window to add your selections.
  • Tap Done in the top toolbar to save your playlist.
  • Open Set List Maker, navigate to the Songs list and tap the song title corresponding to the first sequence in your Sweet MIDI Player playlist.
  • Scroll down to the MIDI Song Number field and enter 0.
  • Scroll further down to the MIDI Presets section, tap the + button next to Add MIDI Presets, select Start MIDI Sequence and Stop MIDI Sequence, then tap Save.
  • Return to step 20 and repeat for each song in your MIDI sequence playlist, incrementing the number for each item in the playlist (0 for the first item, 1 for the second item, etc.).
  • Navigate to Smart Lists > Songs By Title and select one of the songs you just edited. At this point, Sweet MIDI Player should select the corresponding MIDI sequence and start playing it.
  • If you need to stop the sequence, you can tap and hold the song's MIDI button until a popup window appears, and then tap Stop MIDI Sequence in the popup. If your layout doesn't have a MIDI button, you can select a different layout or edit the layout to add a MIDI button.
  • Alternatively, you can edit your layout to include Multiple MIDI Buttons, and then the start and stop buttons will both appear on your screen.

Note: Next time you use this setup, you might have to relaunch Sweet MIDI Player, tap Playlists in the bottom toolbar, tap the Set List Maker playlist, tap the first item in the playlist, and tap the pause button. Then you can switch back to Set List Maker and start selecting songs.

Note: If you want to add MIDI sequences to your playlist in Sweet MIDI Player, you should always add them to the end. If you rearrange the playlist, you will break the links between your Set List Maker songs and your Sweet MIDI Player playlist items.


Arlo, thanks for this detailed description! As SetList Maker is going to loose it's db sync capability I'm trying to setup BandHelper now on the go ...

That's why I tried to translate your description for the BandHelper setup. Unfortunetaly I failed already at point 5, as I could not find "Song Selection Actions" in "Settings > Automation > Song Selection Actions" (in German: "Einstellungen > Fernsteuerung > Song Auswahl Aktionen")

Would it be too much for you to help with a description for BandHelper Midi Playback enablement also?

I (and a bunch of other guys, I'm sure) would appreciate that greatly!! :-)

Ah, another one: do you know of alternatives for The Sweet Midi Player? (Speed is wobbling and download from DropBox is killing the midi files, and, in fact, it sounds terrible ...)


The setup is the same in BandHelper and Set List Maker, but these instructions were a couple years old and the song selection action settings have moved. I just updated step 5.

I don't know of alternatives, sorry. I assume there are some, I just don't personally know what they are.


Hey, it worked! It's amazing what happens when one reads the instructions.  :)