Apps by Arlomedia

BandHelper => Repertoire Help => Topic started by: themetallikid on July 06, 2019, 08:28:16 PM

Title: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 06, 2019, 08:28:16 PM
Ok....So I found an older MidiPlus 2x2 that should work, I'll have have one of the midi in/outs not connected....for now its great. 

However...few questions....

I have my Helix setup now so that I have 4 snaps/4 stomps.  The 4 stomps I have labeled as prev/next song (2) and scroll down/up (2). 

I have them programmed in the Helix sending 80-83 respectively, sending a message of 127 (?) as a latching button as a MIDI CC.  On the Bandhelper App, under Settings > Remote Control - I have Previous/Next Songs as 'General Button 3/4 82/83' and Previous/Next Song as 'General Button 1/2 80/81'....this part i'm not sure is right.

When I step on my stomp buttons I do not see any interaction with the Bandhelper App

I'm not sure if that part is right, but it feels right...it's been awhile since i've used MIDI between devices. 
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: arlo on July 06, 2019, 10:49:19 PM
If you click the remote control button (foot switch icon) in the top toolbar and then send the remote control messages, what do you see in the activity log?
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 07, 2019, 06:42:26 AM
I dont believe the Midiplus 2x2 is working right, or its not sending/receiving information correctly.  There are 5 lights: red, yellow/green, yellow/green.  The red I believe is just a connection status (I could be wrong), and each yellow/green set is for indicating transmission of signals on each pair of in/outs.

I'm not getting anything when I push one of my stomps for any of the 4 buttons, so regardless of how BH is setup, it doesnt look like its receiving info from the Helix.  I think I need to start there first and solve that issue....

To answer your quesiton though Arlo, I'm not seeing any anything in the Activity Log or anything under Paired Devices, which makes sense given my above statements. 
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: iguana on July 07, 2019, 10:12:24 PM
First thing to check is the obvious - cabling. Seems silly to say, but it's caught me out a few times... Cables need to be fully seated, and the Helix OUT goes to the 2x2 IN. And if that doesn't work, try a different cable.

Also, check the Helix's MIDI settings. Make sure the Helix is set to send MIDI over the DIN, not just over USB.
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 08, 2019, 04:19:01 AM
Iguana, that makes sense...and now that you mentioned it, I think I made that mistake often when plugging things in years ago when I was in a hurry....I did the in>in and out>out/thru.....thinking they were labeled with where they go, but really its what the Midiplus wants to see... so Helix In>Midiplus Out and Helix Out>Midiplus In....

That should solve the 'connection' issues....and allow me to see information being sent and triggering the lights.  I'll try this when I get home....later.

As long as the functions I'm trying to set up are needing 'CC' and not 'Program change' messages I should be all set then. 
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 10, 2019, 04:15:31 AM
Ok, I swapped cables on the in/outs...connected to my tablet...just for testing I pushed a stomp and saw the yellow light flicker when button was pushed.....yay!!......But hold on....I get no change in BH when that happened.  I proceeded to push the buttons for my prev/next song and also my page/screen up/down and I got it scroll down slightly once, but can't duplicate it.  I checked my CC's and button labels on my helix to make sure i've got them not conflicting (up/down with the same CC) and I'm good that way...

I seem to be stuck again.
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 10, 2019, 04:26:11 AM
I think the issues may be with my tablet.  I connected the Midi/USB to my laptop and i get no stoppage of the lights flickering after I change songs on the BH website and such.  So I may just have to go via laptop possibly as a workaround.  I dont know why the tablet is stopping the connection or not talking.  I tried changing the channels of Midi to 1 on both and still same issue. 

On the PC i'm not getting the movement of the songs or pages/screens like I should, but I think thats expected with the website BH right?
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: iguana on July 10, 2019, 07:20:43 AM
Yup, the website is just for editing. You need to be using the BH app on iOS or Android to get MIDI control.

Have you set up a setlist with your songs in it, and are you viewing that set list as if you are performing? Can you see events happening when you bring up the MIDI log?
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 10, 2019, 04:03:45 PM
yes for right now I have setup an 'Acoustic Potential' setlist that has all songs I tag with 'Acoustic'.  These are any songs I feel would/should work acoustically....once I go through them with the lyrics/chords and am comfortable with everything, I will create an actual peforming setlist "Acoustic - Solo".  But both should function the same with what I'm trying to get setup at this point.

I do see there is lights flickering on the MidiPlus' display R/Y/G/Y/G colored lights.  Red is for connection on both ends to a device...always had this, even when the Midi side was plugged in backwards.  Once I corrected the In/Out that you pointed out I get flickering on the one Yellow when I stomp on it....however the difference between the PC and Tablet is that the PC always flickered when I stepped on a button, the tablet did once, but the didnt any further. 

That makes sense then why I've seen some people download/install an Android clone type program to run BH within...which I may end up doing if my Tablet wont respond how it should.  I got it on sale via a department store a rediculously cheap price as a way to see if we would even like tablets...Its become a decent band aid, however, I can definately see how upgrading would help its performance for sure.  Just not sure if the MIDI issue is tablet or idiot related, lol
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: iguana on July 10, 2019, 10:37:34 PM
The first thing I'd check is if MIDI is getting through the 2x2. On your PC, download a program called MIDI-OX and have it log the incoming MIDI from the 2x2. That will tell you if the MIDI from the Helix is making it through the 2x2 properly.

How is that MIDI interface powered? I went to the MidiPlus website, and it looks like it gets power over USB? If so, there may be an issue with how much power the tablet can supply over it's USB ports.

Another thought - the Helix is a class-compliant MIDI device. I've never tried this on my rig, but you should be able to hook the Helix directly to your tablet using a USB cable. And as long as the Helix is set to send/receive MIDI over USB, it should work without needing the 2x2. I think...

And in BH on the tablet, what does the MIDI log show? Also, there is an Android MIDI utility - Midi Commander - that you can use to watch incoming MIDI without going through BH.

I've tried running BH in an emulator under Windows. It runs OK, but I was never able to get MIDI connections to work. Didn't seem like the emulator passed MIDI at all.

I've tried three different SBCs (Pi, LattePanda, Odroid) running Android and they all run BH well enough, with functioning MIDI via a Mio USB interface. I'd be surprised is your tablet wouldn't support MIDI.
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 11, 2019, 04:29:28 AM
ok, this is getting frustrating (i'm not giving up though)

I tried the 2x2 in both devices with the programs you mentioned.  Maybe I'm not using the programs right, but I went through menu options and tried different things in case it wasnt plug and play like it seemed.  I dont get any 'info' on either device.  On the tablet the screen that starts up shows that note/pc/cc/other are all checked, and when I stomp my buttons I see no data under the 'Receiving Midi Input:" title.  When I plugged the helix directly in using the USB cable it did recognize the Helix and ask me to allow it to access that device which I did. 

On the PC side, I tried the 2x2 and direct USB as well, and the MIDI Ox from what I could see also did not show any traffic.  Both times on the 2x2 the yellow light did flicker when I stomping buttons, but I did not see any reporting on either device.  I'm about ready to just order a blue tooth device and say screw it...but this should work I feel. 
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: iguana on July 13, 2019, 02:31:41 PM
...but this should work I feel.

Yes, it should!

The fact that the 2x2 blinks when you step on the Helix says that the Helix is sending out MIDI data. And that means you should see something on either MIDI monitor.

The simplest case should be connecting the Helix to your PC via USB and using MIDI-OX. In MIDI-OX, View->Input Monitor brings up the window that shows you incoming and outgoing MIDI events. Its been a couple years since I got my rig working, can't remember if there was any configuration needed to view the correct MIDI input ports. And my rig isn't at home right now, so I can't plug it in and test, sorry.

IIRC, there was a glitch with Midi Commander on Android if you were running BH and then switched to Midi Commander. The apps were fighting for control of the MIDI device (unless Arlo has made some changes since then) and things were a little flaky.  Reboot the tablet and run Midi Commander without opening BH.

And you've set the Helix to send and receive MIDI over USB, right?

Can you post a screen shot of your Helix command center showing the MIDI CC assignment to one of the buttons?
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 21, 2019, 09:10:51 PM
Ok, progress....finally...sorta.....

I updated my Helix to v2.8, yay.....not that that had anything to do with it.

I tried using USB cord to laptop and the MIDI tracking for the laptop/windows and couldnt get anything to show up in the MIDI logs....using the USB cable or the Midi 2x2....

Thought I'd try the tablet and see what I get.  Tried the Midi link and USB with the BH app open, and got no response within the app....

Then I tried the MIDI Commander app and once I got the right screen up, I'm getting some sort of feedback (visual, not audible...)  when I cycle through the 4 stomp buttons I have setup....I get messages that state the same thing except for the 'Function' number changing to the CC number I had chosen.  The message is stating,

"ControlChange cable: 0, channel: 0, function: 83/82/82/80, value:127"

My only thought would be the value of 127 is incorrect maybe?  or i'm not choosing the right CC#'s. 

Any help?  I have recently converted all my songs/chords/lyrics to .pdf files and would like to reverse/advance songs with 2 buttons and also scroll down/up with the other 2 stomps I have available. 
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: iguana on July 22, 2019, 12:12:03 AM
Finally got my rig home today and updated to 2.8, too! Looking forward to using the KoT...

So here's how I've got thing set up:

In the BandHelper App: (not the website...)
- in your project Setting/Remote Control:
    -- MIDI Input Channel - this can be set to any allowable value, but all messages destined to BH must invoke this value. In my case, I use channel 5
    -- And then set Previous Song/Next Song/etc to CC 80, 81, etc.

In Helix, in your preset, go to the Command Center:
    -- for each button, set the MIDI Channel to whatever value you picked above. In my case, 5.
    -- CC # will be 80, 81, 82, or 83
    -- Value will be 127
    -- Switch LED and name will be whatever you want.

I have my Helix connected to my PC, and using MIDI-OX:
    -- First in the Options menu, select MIDI Devices. Under MIDI Inputs, "Line 6 Helix" should be listed. (There might be a number before it, like "2- Line 6 Helix")
    -- Click on that input to highlight it, then click OK
    -- next, under the View menu, select "Input Monitor..."
    -- press the Helix button. You should see something in the Monitor window. DATA1 should be 50-53 (hex values corresponding to decimal 80-83). DATA2 should be 7F (decimal 127) and CHAN should be, in my case, 5.

This will tell you that your Helix is sending the right data.

With the Helix connected to my Android device through my MIDI interface (I don't have the right USB cable to connect the Helix to the Android directly), the MIDI Commander MIDI Monitor window shows:

"ControlChange cable: 0, channel: 4, function: 82, value:127"

In other words, exactly what you see, with one critical change - the MIDI channel.

** MIDI Commander counts the MIDI channel from 0, whereas BH and Helix count from 1, so what MIDI Commander says is channel 4 is actually channel 5 for everyone else in the equation...

So, this is a long way of getting around to saying that I'm pretty sure all you need to do is configure BH with a MIDI channel, and then specify that MIDI channel in your Helix command center programming.

And to test it, I got out of MIDI Commander, ran BH, opened up my set list to the first song, pressed the Helix button - and it works as expected.

Hopefully, the attached screenshot makess the Helix setup and MIDI monitor (on my PC) clear. Sorry, not sure how to show the screenshots from my Android.
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 22, 2019, 02:01:37 PM
Hey Iguana,

thank you again for the detailed help.  It doesn't sound like your doing anything different than I am.  I will follow your instructions, including the midi channel setting and see if I can duplicate.  I know in the Midi program you told me about those menu options sound familiar but maybe I missed something on the pc side of it.  ON the android side I was getting those CC messages so I think that parts right. 

hoping to get it all hammered out tonight finally.  Acoustic show Thursday for 2 hours and my Wednesday is a mandatory after work-work meeting, lol...so limited time or its manual for another show. 
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 22, 2019, 08:53:38 PM
Quote
-- press the Helix button. You should see something in the Monitor window. DATA1 should be 50-53 (hex values corresponding to decimal 80-83). DATA2 should be 7F (decimal 127) and CHAN should be, in my case, 5.

I was good til here.  I get nothing when I step on my Prev/Next Song buttons.  Using channel 5, and CC 80/81.  I exited 'stomp mode' and changed presets and the Midi Input Monitor went nutz...I switched back to my preset I want to use and it again went nuts.  One time not stopping...it literally scrolled for about 5 or 6 seconds before I killed the application and exited. 

Hm....

in the android app, I get the same response, both set to channel 5, and 80/81 only setup for prev/next song buttons and I get nothing in the activity log under the midi status. 

Only thing left would be to try a new cord...but this is with the USB cord, not the MIDI 2x2 I was trying before....i unfortunately get the same thing with the midi 2x2....
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: iguana on July 23, 2019, 07:59:01 AM
Hmm... Sounds like the Helix is going into some kind of MIDI feedback loop...

Check the MIDI settings in Helix Global.:(going by memory here, I'm now 1000km from home)
- MIDI Base Channel should be anything but the number you assigned to BH. If you gave 5 to BH, make the Helix 3, say.
- MIDI Thru should be Off
- MIDI over USB should be On
- MIDI PC Send/Receive should be Off. (**)
- Tempo Select and Snapshot BPM settings are irrelevant to this

** For now. I think you'll want this to be on for your use case, but just for testing, make sure it is off.

Also, because I'm going from memory, I might have one or two of those parameters wrong. If so, post a pic of the Helix MIDI settings screen so I can refer to it.

Once you've confirmed the Helix settings, try the MIDI-Ox test again. And if you can, post a screen shot of the input window - it would be nice to see what data is being sent.

One more thing - make sure HX Edit is not running when you use MIDI-Ox...
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: arlo on July 23, 2019, 02:38:10 PM
Also, BandHelper has Settings > Audio & MIDI > MIDI Thru that should be off unless you have a specific need to use it.
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: themetallikid on July 23, 2019, 08:23:14 PM
yeah for Midi global settings:
Midi Thru Off (was turned on, but didnt change anything)

Midi Base channel I had set to 5 same as BH, and I was getting the CC information in the Midi Android App you instructed earlier, showing my 80-83 CC/127 values...if I change this to channel 3, I get the same reaction/feedback. 

Midi over USB - On
Midi PC REceive - MIDI + USB
Midi PC Send - MIDI + USB

In the BH app, I do have the 'Thru' setting off....

In the BH Midi Status Window (when you touch the Midi jack icon), it shows MIDI RUNNING in green, and shows connected ports BH Input/Output RCT6513W87 for both.  The Activity Log shows Midi Started and some other information of 'found RTP port BH', 'adding port BH' etc...but nothing when I push the stomp buttons on the Helix. 
Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: iguana on July 23, 2019, 10:22:37 PM
Looks like all those settings in Helix and BH re: MIDI setup are good.

So, just to get this straight - MIDI Commander shows the button press from the Helix.  Correct channel, too?

Then the MIDI log in BH is a bit puzzling. Did you scroll the log window down to see if there were any other messages? (And I apologise in advance if that sounds like I'm asking the blatantly obvious...) The reason I'm asking is that the RCT6513W87 device, I when I googled it, appears to be the tablet itself.

When you go into the setlist, is Android ever asking you to allow a connection to another device? Like a "Line 6 Helix" or a "2x2"? I'm guessing not - what is showing in the BH MIDI log is only the BH is talking to the tablet's internal MIDI, rather than an external device.

Try to force the issue by opening up the BH MIDI status window. If the big button is green and says  "MIDI Running", press it. It should turn grey and say "MIDI Stopped". With a grey button, press it to activate MIDI. At this point, Android should ask if you want to allow access to one or more devices - one of which should be your connected device, either the Helix or the 2x2.

If BH can't ever find the external MIDi device, but MIDI Commander sees data, I'm at a loss..

What Android version is the table running? 6.0 (Marshmallow)? My experience with BH starts with Android 7, so I don't know if what you are seeing is normal. Maybe Arlo or another Android 6 user can comment on expected behavior in this scenario undrer Android 6.0?

It is also possible (though unlikely) that the Android port running on your tablet has a buggy MIDI implementation. But MIDI Commander sees data from the Helix.

Hmm... Try rebooting the tablet and going into BH without ever going into MIDI Commander. Is the BH MIDI log showing any other data? Is it asking to connect to the external device?

Title: Re: Helix Midi control...few questions
Post by: arlo on July 24, 2019, 10:23:16 AM
iguana is right -- you should see your external device or MIDI interface in the list of connected ports in the activity log. The Android version does matter, since Android didn't support MIDI natively until Android 6, and some hardware still didn't support it until Android 7. This page has the best collection of info about getting the MIDI connection working on Android:

http://forum.arlomedia.com/index.php/topic,739.0.html